JOURNAL ARTICLE

The violent female perpetrator and her victim

Ghitta Weizmann-Henelius, Vappu Viemerö, Markku Eronen
Forensic Science International 2003 May 5, 133 (3): 197-203
12787652
The aim of the present study was to examine the relationship between violent female offenders and their victims as well as the putative differences in the motives and specific psychological factors among three groups of female offenders: women who have victimised someone closely related to them, those who have victimised an acquaintance and lastly women who have victimised a stranger. More than half (N=61) of all violent female offenders hospitalised or incarcerated in Finland during the year of study were interviewed and assessed by Structured Clinical Interview II for DSM-IV (SCID-II) and Hare's Psychopathy Checklist-Revised (PCL-R). In 34% of the cases the victims were persons close to the offender, in 41% the victims were acquaintances and in 25% strangers. The victims in homicide offences were more often both male and closer to the perpetrator than in assault offences. Although motives were related to interpersonal problems, self-defence and long-term physical or psychological abuse were reported by only a few women, even for the small proportion of women whose victims were intimate partners. The most frequent reason for offences stemmed from confrontational situations in connection with alcohol use. Women who victimised acquaintances and strangers were also more likely to have a history of criminality and substance abuse than women who victimised those in close personal relationships. The latter were also more likely to have an antisocial personality disorder (PD) and psychopathic characteristics. There were, however, no significant differences found between those who had experienced physical or psychological abuse in childhood or adulthood and those who had no adverse experiences. These findings suggest that the violent behaviour by females leads more often to the death of the victim, when the victim is closely related to the perpetrator. The commonly-held view that violent female offending occurs primarily as a consequence of precipitation by the victim was not supported.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article

Discussion

You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read
12787652
×

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.

×

Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"