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The Disturbed Violent Offender by Hans Toch, Kenneth Adams


The Disturbed Violent Offender by Hans Toch, Kenneth Adams

Fear of violent crime has intensified the search for effective anticrime policies. When the violent offender is also mentally disturbed, the criminal justice and mental health systems face particular challenges. What is the relationship between emotional disorder and violence? How are mentally ill persons driven to commit violent crimes? Can their crimes be prevented?The Disturbed Violent Offender addresses these and other key questions, providing a compelling clinical picture of disturbed violent offenders. Updated and substantially revised from the original version, published in 1989, this book focuses on the correlation between types of offenders and types of crimes. Toch and Adams report on their study of a year's intake of violent, mentally ill prisoners in New York state and the experiences of those offenders with the state criminal justice and mental health establishments. Using cluster analysis, the authors make detailed connections between psychological problems and patterns of behavior and criminal offense.They identify typologies for the offenders-those who had received psychological treatment, those who were substance abusers, and those with both attributes-in contrast with a central group. Vivid case histories representative of offender populations illustrate each type. The book addresses criminal acts that reflect pathology, acts by disturbed but nonserious offenders, and acts by the most chronic and dangerous patients. A new chapter on policy offers a lucid discussion of the continuing policy dilemmas and controversies posed by violent offenders.The authors discuss intervention options and explore the faults of traditional sentencing practices and approaches to behavior prediction and treatment. They offer detailed recommendations for a hybrid or multiservice arrangement in the community or in institutions as an ideal approach to meeting the unusual needs of multiproblem offenders. This readable volume provides a unique combined view of mental health problems and patterns of criminal violence-an up-to-date and insightful perspective on mentally ill offenders.

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Book Info

Publication date

31st December 1994


Hans Toch, Kenneth Adams

More books by Hans Toch, Kenneth Adams
Author 'Like for Like'


American Psychological Association


252 pages


Clinical psychology
Behavioural theory (Behaviourism)
Violence in society



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