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Violent Crime Case Study

Good Essays
‘’Violent offenders think differently than normal people’’ Critically evaluate this statement.
Aggression is a global issue which has existed since the dawn of time. It is a natural function of human expression (Blackburn: 1993, Bowes & McMurran: 2013). It is the subsequent product of some aggression; violence which is of concern on a variety of domains.
Many academics strive to find out why people commit violent crimes and what cognitive thought processes drive them to commit such offences; academics also highlight that there is a lack of coherent evidence which explains who some people engage in violent offending and some individuals don’t (Bennett, Farrington & Huesmann: 2004, Blackburn: 1993, Bowes & McMurran: 2013, Chermack & Giancola:
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Due to the broad spectrum of crimes which are included within the ‘violent crime’ umbrella, violent crimes cannot be equally comparable when it comes to potential explanations of violent crime (Butler: 2015). There is no known cause for violence, it occurs due to a complex relationship of contributory components which all in turn, impact how a person behaves respectively (Bowes & McMurran: 2013).
Dodge (1986) developed theories concerning violence and violent crime and so, coined two main types of violence; the first is ‘instrumental violence’ which is crime which is carried out to serve a purpose, this includes violence in the pursuit of material goals, violence in pursuit of social dominance and lastly violence against a threat as a form of defence. The second type of violent crime is known as ‘expressive violence’ which is derived from emotionally driven cognitions like anger or jealousy (Butler: 2015, Dodge: 1986, Howitt:
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Many criminologists have turned towards explanations relating to biological factors (Blackburn: 1993, Howitt: 2015, McCoy, Rover & Sharkey: 2015, Raine: 2002, Wilkowski & Robinson: 2011). More specifically, theorists have suggested that biological defects which may change or impair mental processes which take place inside the brain. These processes determine how a person interprets a situation and also how a person responds to certain situations (McCoy, Rover & Sharkey: 2015, Howitt: 2015, Raine: 2002).
The brain is a complex organ where an individual’s behaviour and mental processes are determined. It consists of two main components which control an individual’s emotions; the thalamus and the amygdala (Hyman: 2001). It has been suggested that damage or changes in these mental processes may impact on a person’s cognitions and how they respond. How an individual responds to a certain situation depends on the way the individual perceives or interprets the situation. This is turn is also determinant of a person’s cognitive processes which are derived from a series of social scripts which exist as a