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Violent Criminals with no History of Mental Illness


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#31 Jerod Poore

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 11:44 AM

I think the whole misnomer hinges around the use of the term 'psycho'.
The majority of the population would probably consider this synonymous with the word 'psychotic' when in fact it is synonymous with the word 'psychopathic'.
Bet you all the money in the world the average person doesn't know the difference (and probably thinks they're one in the same).


Exactly.

Just like schizophrenic = "split" or "multiple" personalities.

Which probably contributes to the searching for the crazy when the fucking crazy doesn't exist.
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#32 Jerod Poore

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 12:10 PM

Again, not trying to split hairs.

Psychopath and sociopath are often used interchangeably and both can fall under the Anti-Social Personality Disorder umbrella.
This is a very debatable subject from a clinical standpoint as firm definitions haven't been established in many cases to differentiate the two.
The most common belief currently held is that psychopathology is an inheritable or biological trait whereas sociopathology is a product of environment or learned behaviour.
Symptoms are very similar for both.

jook


Correct - the DSM IV does not discriminate between the two. It is psychologists and psychiatrists who often do.

A few interesting takes on the matter here, here, and here:

Although many clinicians use the terms psychopath and sociopath interchangeably, writes psychopath expert Robert Hare on his book 'Without Conscience', a sociopath's criminal behavior is shaped by social forces and is the result of a dysfunctional environment.



Dymphna



And now with get to Stacia's questions that are rarely asked when it comes to the psychopaths and sociopaths out there who are far more dangerous.

What could have been done to prevent things? Who dropped the ball? Where were the services? Where was the funding?

When you lump in the family annihilators and berserkers who take out their coworkers you're looking at child protective services, teachers and assorted mandated reporters who didn't spot abused and/or bullied kids. The funding to help kids is crap, bullying still happens and child abuse is an endless cycle.

It's far from easy for the victims of these crimes to not get even more screwed up and turn into killers, but it's not impossible. There's a stigma to being a victim, but most of it is imposed by the victim and the victim's family. Especially as the family are the ones usually doing the abuse and bullying. Yet one is considered heroic for overcoming the stigma of such things. The longer one lets the hurt fester, the more likely one will take it out on anyone and everyone in the neighborhood.

How heroic is one considered for overcoming the stigmata of being crazy and taking medication in society at large?

As jook wrote we're 800 times more likely to kill ourselves than kill someone else. My ex-wife's brother was bullied and berated by their father for not being athletic. Factor in schizophrenia or schizoaffective disorder did he turn into a killer? Nope. They found his decaying body in his apartment after a complaint about the smell. It was too far gone for an autopsy, given that we don't count for anything. Knowing him it's likely he spent all of his money on something stupid early in the month after paying his rent, got stuck and agoraphobic, wasn't able to ask for help, and he starved to death. Their mother was anti-med, and it didn't help that she died after an allergic reaction to medication she had just started for lupus.

Stigma kills.
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#33 sorrel

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 12:21 PM

Did Andrea Yates have a prior history?


Andrea Yates had been treated for depression at one time before she got married. But nothing severe (with psychosis or requiring hospitalization) until after her 4th child was born. She had such a severe postpartum psychosis that she was instructed not to have any more kids; however she did have a 5th child the next year and we know what happened after that. I think most people who have that level of severity in postpartum mood disruption tend to have an underlying mood disorder already.
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#34 Jerod Poore

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 12:25 PM



If it can't be exclusively talked away it's the sort of crazy I'm writing about. I.e. if it doesn't take meds, it's not crazy.


Not trying to split hairs here but Anti-Social Personality Disorder cannot be exclusively talked away. It's an Axis II disorder (of course) and nothing can cure it, including meds.


I'm all about splitting hairs. I forgot about ASPD and other axis 2 stuff that, as of now, can't be cured.

That's where we need a humane place of isolation. I can't think of any better solution. There has to be an island with an infrastructure that no one really wants. A buy-out of the residents of St. Helena or something.

Are sociopaths crazy?? In lay terms I would say a most definite 'yes'. In clinical terms I would say 'no'. Having no conscience doesn't make one crazy. It makes one evil.
Scary Stat Alert- 1 in 100 men are sociopaths. One in 300 women are sociopaths. In men, this is approx. the same number as BPAD (1%).


Scary indeed. I ask out of ignorance, is it a spectrum disorder? On a scale of one to infinity would someone like Ivan Boesky at around a 10 and good old Hitler at somewhere on the scale of unimaginable awfulness.
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#35 Artemisia

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 12:27 PM

Did Andrea Yates have a prior history?


Andrea Yates had been treated for depression at one time before she got married. But nothing severe (with psychosis or requiring hospitalization) until after her 4th child was born. She had such a severe postpartum psychosis that she was instructed not to have any more kids; however she did have a 5th child the next year and we know what happened after that. I think most people who have that level of severity in postpartum mood disruption tend to have an underlying mood disorder already.


[Completely off-topic:]
And it so pisses me off that her husband feels completely innocet in the whole situation (IIRC, he pressured her into more kids) and has gone on to start a new family.
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#36 Stacia

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 12:53 PM



If it can't be exclusively talked away it's the sort of crazy I'm writing about. I.e. if it doesn't take meds, it's not crazy.


Not trying to split hairs here but Anti-Social Personality Disorder cannot be exclusively talked away. It's an Axis II disorder (of course) and nothing can cure it, including meds.


I'm all about splitting hairs. I forgot about ASPD and other axis 2 stuff that, as of now, can't be cured.

That's where we need a humane place of isolation. I can't think of any better solution. There has to be an island with an infrastructure that no one really wants. A buy-out of the residents of St. Helena or something.

Are sociopaths crazy?? In lay terms I would say a most definite 'yes'. In clinical terms I would say 'no'. Having no conscience doesn't make one crazy. It makes one evil.
Scary Stat Alert- 1 in 100 men are sociopaths. One in 300 women are sociopaths. In men, this is approx. the same number as BPAD (1%).


Scary indeed. I ask out of ignorance, is it a spectrum disorder? On a scale of one to infinity would someone like Ivan Boesky at around a 10 and good old Hitler at somewhere on the scale of unimaginable awfulness.

Whoa, Jerod, you just said that exiling a subset of the population is good and Hitler is bad in the same post. :mad: I wholly understand the humanity behind the idea of sending those who were given psychological issues a place other than prison to go while protecting society. However, England exiled the criminals, dissidents, and riff raff to the US colonies, Australia and etc. That didn't turn out so well for England in the end. It'd have to be a very big island or it'd be a very brutal place. Besides, who decides who goes. More importantly, there are some who would like to ship off all seriously MI to somewhere else. Same with street ppl. etc.

As for Hitler on the scale, nah, he was a charismatic who gathered up the real sickos. My UNinformed guess is that he was as much narcissist as ASPD.
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#37 Stacia

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 12:57 PM

What could have been done to prevent things? Who dropped the ball? Where were the services? Where was the funding?


That's it in a nutshell.
The only way to possibly counteract anti-social behaviour is to treat juvenile misconduct.

jook

Yep, that's it. Unfortunately, it's often only treated with punishment which isn't a terribly effective way to treat the outfall of abuse. Slap the symptom instead of deal with the cause and effect (what's still going on at home and how it's been incorporated into self).
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#38 Jerod Poore

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 01:14 PM

It's all about the lack of drugs killing people in Indianapolis, home of Eli Lilly. Of course it's the wrong type of drugs, and the wrong type of people getting killed, so the 24/7 media don't give a rat's ass. With no crazy involved who cares that young women and their children are being killed left and right.

2nd Mass Slaying In 2 Years Shakes City

INDIANAPOLIS -- The police account is harrowing: Two women, one holding her 5-month-old daughter and the other her toddler son, cowering behind a bed and pleading with a gunman for their lives.

The Jan. 14 slayings of Andrea Yarrell and her best friend, Gina Hunt, might have been just another sad footnote in a city already weary of violent crime. But the deaths of their children sparked calls for renewed efforts to fight crime in a city still stinging from a near-record murder rate two years ago.


"It's not strangers doing it to strangers," he [Deputy mayor Olgen Williams] said. "It's just parasites preying on the weak. They think they have an opportunity to take advantage of somebody and no one is going to tell. Because if they think there's drugs in the house, they think they've got a blank card to get away with it."


The suspects have no history of mental illness.

Lots of links to stories of gang-related killings, including the murders of people who have nothing to do with the drugs trade. Every now and then some network or another will get on the anti-gang bandwagon, but anti-gang hysteria has never had the staying power of anti-crazy hysteria. That's been going on since, I don't know, forever. It's not like the gangs have gotten all globalized, with Central American gangs moving into major US cities, while big city gangs are moving into the Midwest and Intermountain West to get control of the meth trade.

I guess "no snitchin'" is a form of stigma, but not everyone getting killed subscribed to that.
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#39 Jerod Poore

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 02:19 PM



If it can't be exclusively talked away it's the sort of crazy I'm writing about. I.e. if it doesn't take meds, it's not crazy.


Not trying to split hairs here but Anti-Social Personality Disorder cannot be exclusively talked away. It's an Axis II disorder (of course) and nothing can cure it, including meds.


I'm all about splitting hairs. I forgot about ASPD and other axis 2 stuff that, as of now, can't be cured.

That's where we need a humane place of isolation. I can't think of any better solution. There has to be an island with an infrastructure that no one really wants. A buy-out of the residents of St. Helena or something.

Are sociopaths crazy?? In lay terms I would say a most definite 'yes'. In clinical terms I would say 'no'. Having no conscience doesn't make one crazy. It makes one evil.
Scary Stat Alert- 1 in 100 men are sociopaths. One in 300 women are sociopaths. In men, this is approx. the same number as BPAD (1%).


Scary indeed. I ask out of ignorance, is it a spectrum disorder? On a scale of one to infinity would someone like Ivan Boesky at around a 10 and good old Hitler at somewhere on the scale of unimaginable awfulness.

Whoa, Jerod, you just said that exiling a subset of the population is good and Hitler is bad in the same post. :mad: I wholly understand the humanity behind the idea of sending those who were given psychological issues a place other than prison to go while protecting society. However, England exiled the criminals, dissidents, and riff raff to the US colonies, Australia and etc. That didn't turn out so well for England in the end.


Nor for the Soviet Union and its gulags, which were vastly worse than 17th century to 18th century Georgia and 18th to 19th century Australia.

It'd have to be a very big island or it'd be a very brutal place. Besides, who decides who goes.


Some of those places are fairly large, and it doesn't have to be limited to one. In any event I doubt this would happen.

As for deciding who goes: the criminal justice system combined with better psych people working within that system.

What happens when someone is convicted of torturing and/or killing animals these days? Does anyone look for a history of stalking?

Talk about your "red flags."

In my highly uneducated opinion I think that's the point where someone is too far gone. Next stop: serial killer.

More importantly, there are some who would like to ship off all seriously MI to somewhere else. Same with street ppl. etc.


The same thing is done today. They're called underfunded state hospitals. The conditions are horrific. Other countries use psychiatric incarceration to deal with dissidents.

My idea is flawed. Who would run the island? Certainly not the people sent there. What safeguards would there be to make sure that the wrong people aren't sent there? Because it would probably be worse than prison. I have no idea if it would suck more or less than what we have now.


As for Hitler on the scale, nah, he was a charismatic who gathered up the real sickos. My UNinformed guess is that he was as much narcissist as ASPD.


He certainly did gather up the sickos. Such as Dr Karl Brandt, his personal physician, and Philipp Bouhler, the head of the private chancellery. They came up with Action T4, the original final solution. That's where 200,000 to 250,000 people with assorted brain cooties and physical deformities were rounded up, put in shitty asylums, then concentration camps, then finally systematically killed. That was between 1939 and 1941, before the "official" holocaust was even started.

It wasn't until a couple years back that the Holocaust museums and memorials even recognized that.

The Nazis considered us lower, more "racially impure" and more of a threat to "racial hygiene" than the Jews, the Romany and all of the other peoples rounded up and killed. First to be killed, last to be recognized. Because we're still considered the lowest of the low.

There's been one movie with even a tangential reference to the events at Grafeneck, where most of the mentally interesting where exterminated, W.R.: Mysteries of the Organism Included in that film is propaganda footage that the Nazis used to ramp up their hate campaign against people like us. How much of a threat we are, etc.

Not that any of the spates of hysteria one sees these days are anything like what the Nazis did.
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#40 Jerod Poore

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 02:42 PM

Last Christmas Eve a woman had had enough. So she and her boyfriend killed her family. Since then her defense attorney has been looking for the crazy. One motion after another, with it now extended to May.

One would think that she would know if there were any records about crazy.

However, I can understand giving them until May to find out if teachers missed anything. After all, if the killings were all about money and respect, that sure points to a bullying, abusive and/or generally abusive family. Especially if the killings happened on freaking Xmas eve.

Just because women usually aren't family annihilators doesn't mean they never are.
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#41 Jerod Poore

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 03:19 PM

Hate crimes. How many people who commit hate crimes have a history of mental illness? Not that many.

What are the chances of getting the mentally interesting included as a protected group? Somewhere between slim and none. You think NAMI is going to get in on that action? I doubt it. Hate crimes get in the news. It's bad enough for some families just to be related to nutjobs, so getting the name in the news would be mortifying, and NAMI represents the families embarrassed to be related to the crazy.

Still, there is a bit of inclusion. With the rise of attacks on the homeless, the homeless are being considered as a protected class. With so many of us being homeless, it's a de facto, although not de jure, method of including the hate crime add-on when going after some of the mentally interesting.

Attacks on the Homeless Rise, With Youths Mostly to Blame

In Fort Lauderdale a group of teenagers captured national attention in 2006 when a surveillance camera caught one laughing as he beat a homeless man with a baseball bat. The teenagers attacked three homeless men that night and face a murder trial in one man’s death. A year later in Daytona Beach, a 17-year-old and two 10-year-olds attacked a homeless Army veteran. One 10-year-old dropped a cement block on the man’s face, the police said.

“What could possibly be in the mind of a 10- or 12-year-old that would possess them to pick up a rock and pick up a brick and beat another human being in the head?” said Ron Book, chairman of the Miami-Dade County Homeless Trust. “It defies any rational thought process, but it’s also why we felt so strongly we had to do something.”

The trust has teamed with the local schools to develop a curriculum for elementary, middle and high schools teaching respect for the homeless.

Advocates for the homeless blame a society that they say shuns the homeless through laws that criminalize sleeping in parks, camping and begging.

“I think it reflects a lack of respect for the homeless that has reached such extreme proportions that homeless people aren’t viewed as people,” said Maria Foscarinis, executive director of the National Law Center on Homelessness and Poverty.

Troubled by news photos showing those two 10-year-olds in Daytona Beach in prison suits and handcuffs, the National Coalition for the Homeless joined with AmeriCorps Vista to open speakers bureaus last fall in Key West, Jacksonville and Tallahassee. Nine more are planned in Florida. The idea is to educate students using speakers who are homeless or once lived on the streets, and the organization wants to open more bureaus nationwide, said Michael Stoops, executive director of the coalition.

The speakers are like George Siletti, who grew up in foster care and lived as a homeless drifter on and off for 25 years, starting at the age of 16. Now 51, Mr. Siletti said he took medication for schizophrenia and depression and lived in subsidized housing in Washington, addressing schools, churches and organizations about homelessness.

“I’ve had bottles thrown at me. I’ve had people spit on me, cursed me out for no reason,” said Mr. Siletti, who was attacked by teenagers in Fort Lauderdale as he and others slept under a bridge in the 1980s. “People seem to pick on the most vulnerable because they really think that they won’t do nothing.”


The subtext being that he's on meds and is able to hold down a job. It doesn't pay that much, as he's living in subsidized housing, but it's a job. He's crazy and yet with his meds he's trusted enough to work with children! Wow! How come he's not on the 24/7 news cycle talking about the issue?

Legislation adding the homeless to hate-crime laws has been introduced in Alaska, California, Florida, Maryland, Massachusetts, Nevada, Ohio and Texas. Bills are also pending in Congress.


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#42 StrungOutOnLife

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 06:58 PM

---------
Forced Sterilization hit a LOT of people.


I wrote about, and cited articles about, stuff that happened within the last year. And is still happening.

Not in the 20th century.

Stuff that is going on right now.

Hey, that's just the kids who are being sterilized. Now that we've opened that door, there's the entire topic of filicide. After all, when a child is killed it's usually the mom who did it. More often than not a mother with no history of mental illness. Post-partum depression might have been a factor, but no previous history of inborn brain cooties involved.

Still, there are plenty of parents who kill their kids are batshit crazy.

But a most of the ones who do so aren't. Just the ones who are in the news all the time.

And the parents who kill their kids who never, ever show up on Nancy Grace?

Why the ones who murder their autistic children.


Because any kid considered disabled (and all sorts of disabled kids can be murdered and parents can get off with slapped wrists) is a non-person these days.

This isn't about the past, this is about today.

Do a Google search for "The Awful Privacy of Baby Doe" by Nat Hentoff. The point is that the nonpersonhood is nothing new. I say, "do a Google search" because it isn't available from theatlantic.com for some bizarre reason, even though much older articles are.

On a related note, I saw a bizarre video in Introduction to Medical Science at Duke TIP in 2003. Cris didn't want us to see videos that we'd already seen before, so he'd show us these weirdass rare ones. One of them was about a baby with Down's syndrome that was denied surgery for duodenal atresia. After giving us the scenario (which included a scene with the mother, who said that they didn't make enough and have enough left over (they already had 3/4 kids) to care for someone like him/her), a bunch of people sat around and talked about it.

I remember one kid wondering why the holy hell they had another kid if they were really so financially strapped. Looking back, I think that the parents were using duodenal atresia and Down's syndrome as an excuse to dispose of an unwanted child the o-o-o-o-o-old fashioned way.
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#43 dymphna

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 07:24 PM

Did Andrea Yates have a prior history?


Andrea Yates had been treated for depression at one time before she got married. But nothing severe (with psychosis or requiring hospitalization) until after her 4th child was born. She had such a severe postpartum psychosis that she was instructed not to have any more kids; however she did have a 5th child the next year and we know what happened after that. I think most people who have that level of severity in postpartum mood disruption tend to have an underlying mood disorder already.


I don't think that the following helped her case, either (even if it was finally a Dx of schizophrenia):

"What she described was feeling a presence ... Satan ... telling her to take a knife and stab her son Noah," Ringholz said.

Ringholz acknowledged that he did not perform certain tests to see if Yates was trying to make her mental illness appear worse, but he said other tests and safeguards as part of the extensive two-day evaluation indicated she was not faking. Ringholz diagnosed Yates as having schizophrenia.

Ringholz said Yates was suffering from a delusion on the day of the drownings and did not know her actions were wrong, even though she called 911 and knew she would be arrested. Her delusion was that Satan had entered her and that she had to be executed in order to kill Satan, Ringholz said.

"Delusions cannot be willed away," Ringholz said.




Many jobs are well suited for sociopaths. Lawyers being #1. Police. Military.Doctors.
I wonder how many psychiatrists are sociopaths?

jook


I have to disagree with the military being included in this list. It has long been observed that those soldiers who do not feel they have "something to go home to" do not survive in a military environment. "Home", in my opinion, would be a concept lost on a sociopath.


As for Hitler on the scale, nah, he was a charismatic who gathered up the real sickos. My UNinformed guess is that he was as much narcissist as ASPD.


In my opinion, all charismatics are incredibly dangerous. Sometimes I wonder if people even realize what the true definition of charisma is.


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#44 Anna

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 07:48 PM

Dumb question....

But, it applies to both sociopaths, and BPD.

Isn't the fact that parents are abusing their kids in some way, itself indicative of psychopathology?

What I mean is, how is it possible to differentiate between "learned behavior" and "genetics" if/when it's the family doing the teaching?

I can understand that sociopathy could be "proven" as a genuine syndrome, by for example, looking at the fact that prisons breed anti-social behavior.

But, like BPD, the kid could "learn" the borderline from, say, the mom.

Or, there could also be underlying genetics being passed on.

I've met BPD with seemingly "normal" families, but it isn't like I did an extensive, 5 generation history to look for other borderlines (No time. Too busy dealing with the chaos of treating the borderline.)

I raise this because a doc I worked with who I really respected once said to me, "hey, some borderlines are born, not made." I was bitching about a borderline mom who I assumed, had made her BPD daughter.

I hated them about equally, it just depended on which one of them I had last talked to.

When I asked her, she said given that Depakote can work on some sx of BPD, there were general rumblings about there being a genetic underpinning to the syndrome.

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#45 dymphna

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Posted 23 February 2008 - 08:02 PM

Dumb question....

But, it applies to both sociopaths, and BPD.

Isn't the fact that parents are abusing their kids in some way, itself indicative of psychopathology?

What I mean is, how is it possible to differentiate between "learned behavior" and "genetics" if/when it's the family doing the teaching?

I can understand that sociopathy could be "proven" as a genuine syndrome, by for example, looking at the fact that prisons breed anti-social behavior.

But, like BPD, the kid could "learn" the borderline from, say, the mom.

Or, there could also be underlying genetics being passed on.

I've met BPD with seemingly "normal" families, but it isn't like I did an extensive, 5 generation history to look for other borderlines (No time. Too busy dealing with the chaos of treating the borderline.)

I raise this because a doc I worked with who I really respected once said to me, "hey, some borderlines are born, not made." I was bitching about a borderline mom who I assumed, had made her BPD daughter.

I hated them about equally, it just depended on which one of them I had last talked to.

When I asked her, she said given that Depakote can work on some sx of BPD, there were general rumblings about there being a genetic underpinning to the syndrome.

Anna.


Ooo.... what a nice segue.

We have an entire thread on this. Though it wanders a bit at the beginning.


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#46 StrungOutOnLife

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 06:18 AM

I know we have the stats previously listed on the site.
But here's a good site.

the question to be asked first is 'What proportion of people with a mental illness commit a crime?'. Gunn cites a lifetime crime prevalence of 4% out of 500 psychiatric patients, which is unlikely to be higher than the general population (Henderson, 1988, p123).


These issues are further highlighted by the long-held evidence that people with severe mental illness are more likely to be convicted of misdemeanours than their mentally healthy counterparts, and tend to be incarcerated for longer periods (Lamberti et al, 2001, p64).


Relationship Between Mental Disorder And Violence

Similar scrutiny must also be applied to the theory that people with a mental illness are more violent than the general population.

Violence and violent crime are commonly regarded by the public as the domain of the mentally ill (Australian Institute of Criminology, 1990). Public misconception about the true nature of mental illness, as distinct from personality disorder or behavioural disorder, frequently links extreme violence with mental illness. This misconception is enhanced by media depictions of the involvement of the 'schizophrenic' or 'psycho' in violent crime. The Victorian Government's health information website, BetterHealth Channel, gives the following content analysis:


'A one-year analysis of television drama programs (for example, soap operas, plays and films) in the USA found that 73 per cent of people with a mental illness were depicted as violent, while 23 per cent of people were portrayed as homicidal maniacs. When the same study analysed media reports about mental illness on television and in newspapers, it found that nearly 90 per cent of stories depicted people with mental illness as violent and usually homicidal.' (BetterHealth Channel, 2002)


The evidence base has long displayed greater scepticism. Monahan's 1983 study observed no relationship between mental illness and general crime, when controlled for age, race, socio-economic status and previous hospitalisation or imprisonment.

Of far greater threat are people without a mental illness who abuse drugs and alcohol, and young men aged 15-25.


jook

This has been challenged. I have read elsewhere that it's only higher because drug abuse is so common. I can't find that, but I did find this, which says that one must be screwed up before the mental illness kicks in. By that I mean, "not get along well with others." Oh, and having a lousy childhood makes this more likely.

I'm also bringing up this before I lose it again.
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#47 Jerod Poore

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 09:48 AM

From your study-

Studies combining outpatients and inpatients reported that 12% to 22% had perpetrated violence in the past six to 18 months, compared with 35% who had been a victim in the past year.


Let's look @ the stats. Twelve to 22 percent w/ severe mental illness perpetrated violence. Approximately 1% of the population has a severe mental illness. That puts the number between 0.12% to 0.22% of the general population.

What percent of the general population commits violent crime??


And what percentage of the general population are victims of violent crime?

We made up 35% of the victims in that sample! Good grief, I've been writing here, there and everywhere that we are the ones who are vulnerable, and those numbers back it up.

Although, to be fair, it's more like 2% of the general population is severely nuts. 1% bipolar, 1% schizophrenic, and throw in a fractional for miscellaneous severe illnesses that make people too dysfunctional to do anything or too unpredictable to balance out the overlap of bipolar and schizophrenic because the stats don't allow for schizoaffective disorder (the bastard love child of schizophrenia of bipolar). Then there are the undiagnosed, the misdiagnosed and permanently over-medicated that nothing will ever happen.

So call it a wash at 2%.
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#48 Jerod Poore

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 10:16 AM

Of Czech men, 4.8% replied positively to the question whether they had ever forced a woman to have sexual contact.

I seriously doubt that the population of the Czech Republic is that crazy. The crazy isn't even from that side of my family.
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#49 Jerod Poore

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 10:21 AM

Ten to fifteen percent of high school seniors, or those aged 17 to 18 and aren't in school, have commited assault with injury.

In spite of the increase of diagnosis and medication of adolescents, I don't think 10 to 15% of teenagers are crazy.
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#50 Jerod Poore

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 12:36 PM

Although, to be fair, it's more like 2% of the general population is severely nuts. 1% bipolar, 1% schizophrenic, and throw in a fractional for miscellaneous severe illnesses that make people too dysfunctional to do anything or too unpredictable to balance out the overlap of bipolar and schizophrenic because the stats don't allow for schizoaffective disorder (the bastard love child of schizophrenia of bipolar). Then there are the undiagnosed, the misdiagnosed and permanently over-medicated that nothing will ever happen.

So call it a wash at 2%.


Didn't mean to throw off the curve by misrepresentation. I was thinking along the lines of those who were non-compliant or treatment resistant. Two percent is the number of folks who have bipolar disorder or schizophrenia, yes.


But the fear is that any of us can "go off of our meds" and go on some kind of rampage. As recently happened.

Let's see, there's a stigma about taking meds, and an added fear that if we go off of our meds we'll go on a rampage, but we'll kill people no matter what...

It's enough to make one crazy.

No, wait...
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#51 Jerod Poore

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 01:51 PM

Lies, damned lies, and statistics. But it's the best I can come up with. Worst case scenario for the hypothesis that crazy = violent.

Slightly less than one percent of the US population is currently in prison. That's not even counting the people on parole!

From the
U.S. Department of Justice
Office of Justice Programs
Bureau of Justice Statistics
Bulletin

Prisoners in 2006

At yearend 2006, 2.26 million inmates were in custody in
State and Federal prisons and in local jails. This was an
incarceration rate of 751 inmates per 100,000 U.S. residents,
or 1 in every 133 residents.


Of those about 52% were convicted of violent crimes. So about 0.5% of the population of the US is a violent criminal.

As for crazy people in jail, the numbers are lining up with the studies finding that approximately 15% of us are violent.

Here's a popular one.

A growing number of people with mental illness are being held in US prisons, according to a recent report by the US Department of Justice.

The report is the first in-depth national study of mental illness in US prisons. It reported a total of 283800 prison inmates with some form of mental illness in mid-1998, which is about 16%of the total prison population. This figure was in line with a previous literature review, suggesting that 6-15%of people in city and county jails, and 10-15%of inmates in state prisons, had severe mental illness.

The report suggested that one of the main reasons for the increasing number of mentally ill people in all US prisons was the wave of discharges from long stay hospitals that started in the United States in the 1960s. The number of people in state psychiatric hospitals decreased from 559000 in 1955 (out of a population of 165 million) to 72000 by 1998 (out of a total national population of around 250 million). At the same time, the number of prison beds has increased four times in the past 25 years, raising the number of prisoners to 1.8 million.


I've found other studies with the same range of violent behavior in the crazy population, 5-15%. So while the above study might be flawed, the numbers are still good. For now. Compared with the general population, we're allegedly more prone to violence. Compared with the general population we're also vastly more prone to be the victims of violent crime.

Now let's crunch the numbers a bit more.

The real whack jobs among us make up about 2% of the population take up about 15% of the beds in prisons. Given that the studies are all showing ranges of violent behavior of 5-15% and half of the prison population is in there for violent crime, put us in with that group. There are plenty of nutjobs who come up with white collar crimes after all. More likely it's people in state prisons for pretty much just being crazy and stuff happened when poorly trained police officers made things worse. So 7-8% of the prison population is made up of actually violent crazy people.

Which means that about 44% of the prison population is violent non-crazy people.

Again, not counting people on parole, about 0.25% of the non-crazy population of the United States is a violent felon.

"Dangerously" crazy population of the US (bipolar, schizophrenic, assorted other psychotic diagnoses): approximately 6,000,000
Not-crazy population of the United States (excludes all psychiatric diagnoses, or about 95% of the population): approximately 285,000,000

Approximate violent crazy population of the US, based on the above: 420,000
Approximate violent non-crazy population of the US: 712,500

Go us.

The numbers for the non-crazy are probably low because the only juveniles included are those poor kids tried as adults. Also the numbers for the crazy are disproportionately high because, again, although I rounded up to try to account for parolees and people who were killed in things like gang violence, robberies gone wrong, shoot-outs with cops, family annihilators, etc. That is slightly offset by the crazy committing suicide by cop. Plus many of the crazy don't survive prison.

And this is counting people who are just convicted. Crazy: more likely to be caught and convicted. Not crazy: less likely than crazy.

In the end the numbers of violent non-crazies are probably much higher than violent crazies. The results are still the same, proportionately some of us may be more likely to go off and do something crazy violent, but there are still at least twice as many violent non-crazies out there. The odds are a non-crazy person is more likely to commit a violent crime just be sheer numbers of population if nothing else!


Personally I'm not buying the 5-15% of us being violent for a very simple reason: all of the studies get that range from people who have either been hospitalized or arrested. In other words, they are people who have flipped out enough to get violent. So extrapolating from the same experimental population I could report from a study of prison populations that 44% of the non-crazy people in the US are violent to the point they need careful monitoring at all times.

No, as written in previous posts too many of us just don't have it in us for a variety of reasons to commit any violent acts. If 15% of the prison population is crazy, that's 300,000 crazy people in prison out of a population of 6,000,000 psychotic and 15,000,000 total psychiatric. Crazy doesn't get paroled. Crazy often doesn't make it out of prison. 0.5% of us being violent, to be generous, is a much more likely statistic. Twice as likely as the general population, but given that those most likely to get violent make up 2% of the population the numbers look like this:

Violent non-crazy population pool: 712,500
Violent crazy population pool: 30,000

One is more than twenty times more likely to be the victim of a violent crime at the hands of a non-crazy person. No history of mental illness. They can look for the crazy all they want and they'll never find it.

I hope all of those people who do their best to avoid us feel safer now.
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#52 dymphna

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 02:54 PM

You know Jerod, I'm just glad you use your brain power for good, not evil.

Just reading all of those stats made my head hurt.

(quoth the economist)


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#53 Silver

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Posted 24 February 2008 - 03:28 PM

Crazy violence tends to get more media attention. One, it plays into assumptions. Two, it is sometimes more creative than non-crazy violence.

I would say that those #s for prison MI 'feel' slightly low, having worked in state prison doing intake evals on every single inmate who came through a central men's processing center. None of them were going into the fed system, though, which has a higher preponderance of white collar crime.

Drop APD out of it and the numbers shift a lot. I should go find my stats (I kept a copy of my anonymized database when I left.)

BoJ usually drops all addiction-as-primary-dx people from their 'mentally ill' numbers (or did at least until a few years ago; I don't know if anything has changed.) Note that not all prisons REPORT the second, third, or fourth dx, and that there can be pressure for staff to list substance-as-primary for that reason. Especially in states that have lost major civil suits re: undertx of mental illness in prison and want to make things look better than they are. Hypothetically speaking. "Substance-induced mood disorder," anyone?

What's even more interesting to me is the number of inmates who are neurologically interesting. Lots of head injuries. Not surprising in violent crimes - live a violent life, you get conked on the head from time to time - but the head injuries were in earlier life.

Primary care is the de facto outpatient MH system. Prison is the inpatient version.

Therapeutic courts are great when they work, but a lot of people never get referred to them, and, of course, violent offenses aren't allowed in mental health court around here. (So - hitting your partner because you believe he is actually bin Laden in a clever disguise - you go to regular court. Breaking grocery store windows b/c they are reflecting your thoughts to satellites, however, will get you to MH court.)

I always felt a lot safer on the psych unit than I did anywhere else in the facility.
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#54 Jerod Poore

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 11:15 AM

This one didn't last long in the 24/7 news cycle. No evidence at all of the crazy. Yet it is so classic. Teen daughter enlists three adults to kill her entire freaking family because mom didn't want said daughter to date her a controlling boyfriend.

Killings shock residents of Emory, Texas

Why, as alleged in court documents, did a 16-year-old girl known for tearful, sweet alto church solos help conceive and carry out a hellish plot to massacre her family and torch her home? Did darkness infect and rot out her heart? Did she sit in the silver Dodge Neon listening to the gunfire and screams?

And later, as fire crews recovered the charred remains of her mother and two young brothers, did the angelic girl with blond hair and a radiant smile lie down in a raggedy blue trailer and have sex with one of the confessed killers?

The questions defy easy answers.

Police said she wanted her parents dead because they wanted her to break up with her boyfriend.


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#55 Jerod Poore

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Posted 15 March 2008 - 11:26 AM

All this got was a mention on the crawl. That's it. If it were a normal, pretty white woman it would still be news. It would be rehashed on Larry King and Nancy Grace for the next ten years. But considering the victim, well, the AP story tells it all. Reprinted in its entirety and intellectual property rights be damned in this case.

6 Accused of Killing Pregnant Ill. Woman

ALTON, Ill. (AP) — Six people are charged in the killing of a pregnant developmentally disabled woman who was beaten and scalded with hot liquid in Alton, Ill.

A grand jury has indicted the six on murder and other charges in the January slaying of 29-year-old Dorothy Dixon. She was six months pregnant.

The indictments were returned last week but unsealed Monday.

The defendants range in age from 12 to 43. A 12-year-old boy is charged as a juvenile.

One of the six had already been charged with first-degree murder and intentional homicide of an unborn child.


That's it. A pregnant tard is tortured to death over a period of two months and the AP rates it as worth five lines. Hey, a 12-year-old boy is involved, whoopee-shit.

Fortunately there is some better coverage.

Ring of torture tied to murder

ALTON — A torturous environment of beatings, scaldings, even BB gun shootings in a small white A-frame house on Hillcrest Avenue eventually led to the death of a mentally disabled pregnant woman, officials, neighbors and family members said.


The abuse took place between Dec. 1 and Jan. 30, according to court records. Dixon was found beaten to death Jan. 31 in her apartment in the 2900 block of Hillcrest Avenue. Woods was arrested and charged the next day.

"I think it can be characterized as torturous," said Lt. David Hayes, Alton police's chief of detectives.

Riley had been taking Dixon's monthly Social Security check that she presumably received as a result of developmental disabilities, Hayes said.

"If there was one single motive, it was probably money," he said.


Tortured and killed for her disability checks.

But it wasn't crazy on non-crazy violence, so it's not news. Worse yet, it was a tard who was the one being tortured, and we all know that TAHDS DON'T COUNT!
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Jerod Poore - Owner, Founder and Chief Citizen Medical Expert of crazymeds.us
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Current meds: lamotrigine 300mg, topiramate 325mg, buspirone 60mg, protriptyline 60mg, EPA 600mg, methylphenidate 5-10mg, lorazepam 1mg PRN
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#56 Jerod Poore

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Posted 17 March 2008 - 02:41 PM

Looks like a shrink got pissed off about the constant searching for the crazy around the same time I did. Great minds thinking alike, or someone mining this site?

Mentally ill unfairly portrayed as violent

By Dr. Ronald Pies
February 25, 2008

Yet the impression that we are awash in a sea of psychotic violence is clearly unfounded. Writing in the Nov. 16, 2006, New England Journal of Medicine, Dr. Richard A. Friedman of the Weill Cornell Medical College notes that only about 3 to 5 percent of violence in the general population is attributable to those with "serious mental illness," conventionally defined as schizophrenia, major depression, or bipolar disorder. The combined lifetime prevalence of these conditions in the US general population is estimated at 19 percent - far larger than their contribution to violence.



The MacArthur study found that the prevalence of violence among discharged psychiatric patients without a substance abuse disorder was similar to that among community-dwellers who didn't abuse substances. Furthermore, violence by these discharged patients rarely involved vicious attacks on strangers or clinicians. Usually, it resembled violence committed by other community-dwellers, such as hitting a family member inside the home. Lethal violence among the discharged patients was very rare.

In the February 2008 issue of Psychiatric Services, Monahan and Steadman conclude: ". . . for people [with mental illness] who do not abuse alcohol and drugs, there is no reason to anticipate that they present greater risk than their neighbors."


The key being, not substance abusers. Other studies I've read points to booze being the great lubricator for violent acts regardless of how an individual's brain is put together.

My, this seems familiar...

The image of the violent mentally ill person must also be tempered by research from Linda A. Teplin, of Northwestern University. Teplin finds that those with mental illness are much more likely to be victims than perpetrators of a violent crime. Among psychiatric outpatients, about 8 percent reported committing a violent act, whereas about 27 percent reported being the victim of a violent crime.


I guess having letters after one's name allows one the respectability to get the exact same information out to the public. Because I'm just a crazy tard, so what do I know.
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Jerod Poore - Owner, Founder and Chief Citizen Medical Expert of crazymeds.us
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Current meds: lamotrigine 300mg, topiramate 325mg, buspirone 60mg, protriptyline 60mg, EPA 600mg, methylphenidate 5-10mg, lorazepam 1mg PRN
Past meds (likely incomplete): Abilify, clonazepam, desipramine, diazepam, Gabitril, lithium, Neurontin, Paxil, prochlorperazine, Provigil, Prozac, Risperdal, Seroquel, Serzone, Strattera, Trileptal, Zyprexa

#57 Bipolar Bear

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Posted 17 March 2008 - 03:47 PM

Interesting article

Basically talks about how that small subset of folks that are non med compliant or who abuse substances fuck up the stats and the stereotypes for the rest of us.

Also an abstract from another article:

A scale of psychotic symptoms is the only variable that accounts for differences in levels of violenti
illegal behavior between patients and never-treated community residents. Although mental
patients have elevated rates of violentiillegal behavior compared to nonpatients, the differences
are modest and are confined to those experiencing psychotic symptoms.


Being the good APA writer that I have recently become to be (browbeaten into submission by busywork) I thought I'd come back and at least cite the article that is from:
The Violent and Illegal Behavior of Mental Patients Reconsidered
Bruce G. Link; Howard Andrews; Francis T. Cullen
American Sociological Review, Vol. 57, No. 3. (Jun., 1992), pp. 275-292.

Edited by Bipolar Bear, 18 March 2008 - 09:41 PM.
JSTOR, in its infinite wisdom, stored BipolarBear's school user ID, and school, in the URL. So I had to remove it. They wouldn't allow any of us plebes to see the abstact.

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Remember kids, Snape didn't kill Dumbledore, Michael Gambon did.

"Ah, war. God's way of making Americans learn geography." ~ Jon Stewart, The Daily Show

Dx: Bipolar Something (depends on who you ask...), ADHD- inattentive type, some anxiety stuff, PTSD
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#58 Bipolar Bear

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Posted 17 March 2008 - 10:24 PM

Sorry Jerod. I didn't realize that.

I have THE COOLEST thing to add to this thread, though.

Tonight I got to hear Augusten Burroughs and John Elder Robison speak.

There's lots of fun stuff on that on my blog, but this is the part that really means something for this thread.

John was talking about all of the pranks he pulled as a young boy/teen. Someone asked him why and he specifically said that it was his way of blowing off steam and coping. He mentioned that he had guns and knives and such just laying around the house and at his immediate disposal, but he had no interest in being violent. He just liked playing jokes, which don't harm anyone.

I thought it was pretty cool. I'm totally using that for my paper.
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Remember kids, Snape didn't kill Dumbledore, Michael Gambon did.

"Ah, war. God's way of making Americans learn geography." ~ Jon Stewart, The Daily Show

Dx: Bipolar Something (depends on who you ask...), ADHD- inattentive type, some anxiety stuff, PTSD
Alt Dx: "Nutty as squirrel poo." (quote from Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows)
Rx:Seroquel- 200 mg at bedtime, Vyvanse 50 mg, Klonopin .5 mg prn

Favorite things: Harry Potter, Seroquel, flannel sheets, my Tempur-pedic bed, pajama pants, massage, music, reading, Coca-Cola, Starbucks, sleep

Dr. Wilson: Beauty often seduces us on the road to truth.
Dr. Gregory House: And triteness kicks us in the nads.


#59 Jerod Poore

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 10:43 AM

Sorry Jerod. I didn't realize that.


JSTOR are dickheads. That is just the latest way they are dickheads. I was surprised when I saw the URL.


I have THE COOLEST thing to add to this thread, though.

Tonight I got to hear Augusten Burroughs and John Elder Robison speak.

There's lots of fun stuff on that on my blog, but this is the part that really means something for this thread.

John was talking about all of the pranks he pulled as a young boy/teen. Someone asked him why and he specifically said that it was his way of blowing off steam and coping. He mentioned that he had guns and knives and such just laying around the house and at his immediate disposal, but he had no interest in being violent. He just liked playing jokes, which don't harm anyone.

I thought it was pretty cool. I'm totally using that for my paper.


Try to find a copy of RE/Search #11 Pranks! You'll find that same theme. Mark Pauline, who started the Billboard Liberation Front before Survival Research Laboratories, would have been one nasty little shit if it weren't for his pranks.

Still, he did manage to blow off all but the middle finger of his right hand during one ill-fated build. The show went on, and the post-accident photos were somehow apt.

I've not read Pranks! 2 so I can't tell you if there is further documentation of pranks mitigating violent tendencies.
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Current meds: lamotrigine 300mg, topiramate 325mg, buspirone 60mg, protriptyline 60mg, EPA 600mg, methylphenidate 5-10mg, lorazepam 1mg PRN
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#60 Jerod Poore

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Posted 18 March 2008 - 12:57 PM

Back to the matter at hand. Health Canada did a survey of violent crime in the US and Canada way back in 1996 and the results then were the same as the studies done ten years later (referenced a couple of posts above).

MENTAL ILLNESS AND VIOLENCE: PROOF OR STEREOTYPE?

# The strongest predictor of violence and criminality is past history of violence and criminality. This was true regardless of diagnostic group (e.g., whether schizophrenia or substance abuse).


Criminals commit crimes! Wow!


# Whether persons with schizophrenia are at risk of violence depends, in part, on the context and the presence of psychotic symptoms. For example, persons with schizophrenia have been found to be at somewhat increased risk of committing violent acts when in the community, especially when they are experiencing psychotic symptoms. Conversely, violent behaviour has been found to be low among hospitalized patients with schizophrenia who are receiving appropriate neuroleptic medication.


This study, and others, harps on schizophrenia. Which further ghettoizes the schizophrenic. I.e. "At least I'm not that crazy!

The key thing though is "psychotic (i.e. positive) symptoms." The best numbers I could find is about three-quarters of people diagnosed with schizophrenia start out with chronic negative symptoms. Negative symptoms basically being withdrawing from the world at large, and chronic negative symptoms known as "prodromal" in the research trade. Only about one third of people who start out harmless will have, at the most, one psychotic episode. And not necessarily a stereotypical one.

So of the very small subset of the psychotic who are apt to get violent, here's a study that found something else in addition to booze that are key to violence. Especially the sort of violence that gets on the 24/7 news cycles where reports and talking heads go on and on about the crazy.

childhood conduct problems, and victimization. -- In other words, a really fucked-up childhood can cause a crazy person to explode just like a non-crazy person!

# Family members (not the general public) are the most likely targets of violence from formerly hospitalized patients in the community;


As is the case with anyone who gets violent, crazy or not.

# Substance abuse appears to be a significant risk factor for violence and criminality among community, hospitalized, and offender populations. It is unlikely that a member of the public would be at risk of violence from someone with a non-substance abuse disorder;


Once again booze is the greatest threat to people, regardless if the person doing the crime is crazy or not.
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Jerod Poore - Owner, Founder and Chief Citizen Medical Expert of crazymeds.us
Keep up with Crazymeds and my slow descent into irreparable madness boring life via your preferred social media:

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I am not a doctor, nor do I play one on TV. No doctor, nurse, pharmacist or lawyer was harmed in the creation of this post. No warranty is expressed or implied. Not valid with any other offer. Void where prohibited.

Current meds: lamotrigine 300mg, topiramate 325mg, buspirone 60mg, protriptyline 60mg, EPA 600mg, methylphenidate 5-10mg, lorazepam 1mg PRN
Past meds (likely incomplete): Abilify, clonazepam, desipramine, diazepam, Gabitril, lithium, Neurontin, Paxil, prochlorperazine, Provigil, Prozac, Risperdal, Seroquel, Serzone, Strattera, Trileptal, Zyprexa


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