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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 89681 Find in a Library
Title: Killing for Profit - The Social Organization of Felony Homicide
Author(s): M L Dietz
Date Published: 1983
Page Count: 225
Sponsoring Agency: Nelson-Hall Publishers
Chicago, IL 60606
Sale Source: Nelson-Hall Publishers
111 North Canal Street
Chicago, IL 60606
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Felony homicides -- killings which occur during a burglary, robbery, sexual assault, or other felony crime -are increasing, according to field observations of and interviews with murderers in Detroit, Mich.
Abstract: The Detroit Police Department's homicide files for 1974 were studied in order to identify some common patterns of behavior in interactions between killers and victims, witnesses and victims, and within the killer group itself. During the entire homicide episode, negotiations occur which can effect the final outcome of the crime. The people who commit these murders are cruel, inhuman, yet rational human beings who can kill because they depersonalize the victim. Robbery homicides, executions, and sexual assaults leading to homicide are the most common felony homicides. The motive in all three cases is profit, either for money and goods, or sexual favors. The group's observation and evaluation of killing performances influence both killers and victims. Persons who become killers are usually influenced by the type of criminal group they join and by their ability to envision themselves as killers. Their intention is to gain personal profit and to avoid interpersonal conflict. Several tactics are used to depersonalize the act: depersonalizing victims or personalizing their acts, defensively interpreting situations as doing a public service, denigrating the victim, and glorifying the killer role. The book includes footnotes, comments on areas for further research, homicide statistics, a glossary of terms, about 60 references, and an index.
Index Term(s): Criminal methods; Felony murder; Offender profiles; Personality assessment; Psychological research; Victim-offender relationships
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