Crime and Victimization

In our scenario, Dr. O’Donnell touched on the psychodynamic theory of crime. This theory suggests that a person commits a crime because of an unbalanced or antisocial personality. These offenders may have also been bulled or abused as children which may have led to their instability. An example of this theory is the case of Adam Lanza. On December 14, 2012, Mr. Lanza entered Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Ct and opened fire on the school. He shot and killed twenty children and six adults before turning the gun on himself. According to investigative reports, Mr. Lanza was shy as a young pre-teen and then developed into a mentally unstable adult who was a virtual recluse and had an obsession with mass murder and war. Although Mr. Lanza was taken out of public school at 16 and homeschooled by his mother, there was nothing to suspect he would later commit such a horrible act. There was no indication of a motive and because Mr. Lanza took his own life we will never know why. There are some indications he had an obsession with mass murder and collected numerous paper clippings and stories of these crimes especially the Columbine High School shooting, however, there were no indications of abuse. This leads us to believe that a mental or personality disorder may have been at play.

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Unfortunately, crime is everywhere around us. In my own metropolitan area there was recently a horrible event. On January 26 Darion Aguilar arrived at Columbia Mall in Columbia, Md. He hung around the mall for a short while before assembling a shotgun in a back room then opening fire at a retail store killing two people then himself. Howard County Police department were called and investigated the incident. They found that Mr. Aguilar had no criminal record and legally purchased the gun he used about a month before the incident. Because this was an event that took place locally the Howard County Police Department had jurisdiction over this case. This was appropriate because it did not cross state lines or involve drugs or other illegal activity. While the S.W.A.T team was deployed no other agencies were actively involved.

Recently our neighborhood was attacked by a group of juveniles from another local area. Some of my neighbor’s property was destroyed, windows broken, and numerous items stolen. Our community sits off of a major highway, however, it is not very well lit and we do not have a security person or Neighborhood Watch group. If we were to adopt Sgt. Evans’ suggestions of adding more lights and video cameras, I think we would have a better chance of making sure this type of thing doesn’t happen. Also, I feel like if we were to add a Neighborhood Watch program and we all became actively involved in it, we would see that these kids would be deterred from coming around. I also think that it would be a good idea to enforce the curfew rule we have in place now. Children under the age of 18 are to be indoors by 9 p.m. during the week and 10 p.m. on the weekends. I feel like the parents of the kids who are causing problems need to be held responsible to some extent. If they made sure the kids were in at curfew then again we would not have such a problem.

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