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NCJ Number: 134962 Find in a Library
Title: Alcohol and Crimes of Violence: Present Issues
Journal: International Journal of the Addictions  Volume:25  Issue:9  Dated:(1990)  Pages:1065-1081
Author(s): D Murdoch; R O Pihl; D Ross
Date Published: 1990
Page Count: 17
Type: Research (Theoretical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study highlights issues in alcohol-related violence by examining correlational studies of alcohol and violent crime.
Abstract: The focus is on crimes of assault and homicide, where the instrumental value of the crime may play a smaller role than in armed robbery or in mixed-motive crimes such as rape. The studies reviewed show that alcohol use is associated with violent crime at a greater than chance level and at a significantly higher level than it is associated with nonviolent crime. Heavy drinking and a verbal argument usually precede the violent act, and the victim is as likely as the offender to initiate the altercation; however, the precipitator of the altercation is more likely to be intoxicated. Alcohol and aggression are more strongly related than expected with violent offenders who demonstrate psychopathology. Marital violence is apparently related to alcohol use, independent of other marital problems. Although there is a strong correlational relationship between alcohol and violent crime, the nature of the evidence prohibits the conclusion that there is a causal link between the two. Methodological problems, such as a lack of appropriate comparison groups, make it difficult to draw conclusions in this area. Laboratory studies of alcohol and aggression are required to determine any causal link between alcohol use and aggressive behavior. 1 table and 54 references
Main Term(s): Alcohol-crime relationship
Index Term(s): Alcohol abuse; Violence causes
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