Good Research Paper About Homicide Victims

Type of paper: Research Paper

Topic: Homicide, Family, Crime, Children, Women, Criminal Justice, People, Victimology

Pages: 8

Words: 2200

Published: 2020/12/15

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Homicide is a term often used parallel to murder and both terms are interchangeable. Homicide victims are the people who are subjected to attack, and they die eventually, whether they know the killer or not. Many a times people are killed out of reasons such as theft, revenge, or targeted killing or cases of assassination. However, homicide is usually done when a person kills another person whereas, murder is often a planned killing and a criminal homicide. Sometimes homicides can be excused, forgiven and justified if the homicide was done in self-defense, defending another person or any other likely reason. However, criminal homicide cannot be excused because it was intentional and the harm done is irreplaceable. Manslaughter is another kind of homicide which involves ruthless killing of people without preplanned intentions for murder; nevertheless it is reckless and ruthless. Homicide is unintentional and forgiven in the case such as a person dying during a surgery and sometimes the relatives of that patient would file a case against the doctor for actually killing the patient.
Many people across the world become victims of homicide, and this includes people with all age groups, races, and social backgrounds. It is very surprising to find cases such as children getting killed by their own mothers, wives getting injured while they are pregnant, and they die thereafter which is also a homicide. Killings at school and outside from school are also reported as cases of homicide, and more cases are reported of those that are away from school premises.
Much research has been done and is being done to find out who are the people behind homicides, what causes them to suddenly kill someone out of the blue or is it a tendency amongst them and they are inclined to commit such a heinous act in an instant.
Cases of maternal filicide or more commonly known as child murder are more common in the United States than in any other nation. Little is still known as to why a mother would kill her own child and research is being conducted at the moment in various states to discover this reason.
A study conducted revealed the results that under the age of five years, children murdered in the United States were those of which sixty-one percent were killed by their own parents, thirty percent were killed by their mothers and thirty-one percent by their fathers. Homicide was the fourth leading cause of the murder of preschoolers and third leading cause of deaths of children ranging from age five to fourteen according to Center for disease control and prevention. In the last century, homicide of children less than one year of age has increased to a high degree. Statistics reports that United Nations has the highest rate of child homicide where 8.0/100,000 infants, 2,5/100,000 for preschoolers ages one to four and 1.5/100,000 for school going children of ages five and onwards. In contrast to the UN, Canada has half the rate of child homicide with 2.9/100,000 infants per year. (Friedman, Horwitz, Resnick, 2005).
The reasons of neonaticide which is the killing of a child when it has just been born are still a debated issue amongst psychologists and doctors. Most of the results point out to psychiatric issues with the mothers who have just given birth and at the moment are overwhelmed with the child they have had. The investigation laid down to understand the issue points out that there can be certain factors present in the mother’s life such as stressors that include financial worries, shelter issues, job and home problems or possible clashes with the husband.
There can also be background issues in the mother’s life such as separation of her parents at a young age, attempts for suicide and she being a victim of domestic violence. The issue is also reported with young mothers, women who are often unmarried and are not mentally prepared to have a child. There have been reported cases of a mother killing her child in a hospital ward right after birth since she did not want to have the child in the first place. There were also many cases reported of infanticide where the mothers had psychiatric disorders. The mothers who were charged with filicide did not necessarily have any psychiatric disorder rather they were found to be extremely poor, had to give full-time care to their family or their jobs and did not have any means of sustenance for their child. These women were also found to be socially isolated. Limited education, unemployment, alcohol abuse substance abuse were also the given causes why these mothers killed their children. Some also gave their reasons as the child they bore was abnormal. (Friedman, Horwitz, Resnick, 2005).
Homicide victims are often the mothers as well if not the children they are giving birth to. High cases of pregnancy-homicide have been reported among women who died due to various reasons while they were expectant of a child. These cases have been injuries by road accidents, suicide, and this remains the second biggest reason of why women die in the United States. According to a study conducted to research the cases, the women were mostly killed as a result of motor vehicle accidents that accorded for forty-four percent of the death rates in the United States that were collected from their post mortem reports.
Also, the pregnancy related issue of deaths in women was more dominant in black women as compared to white women; their ratio being seven times higher than for survival than black women. Women who were younger than twenty years of age were more victimized by pregnancy deaths as compared to older women. Many of these women were those who did not even receive any prenatal care while they were pregnant which became the leading cause of death. There is much evidence that many women are abused during pregnancy, and they are not treated well usually by their intimate partners.
There is also a striking case of deaths of women, especially black women who are targeted irrespective of their pregnancy status, by their partners or husbands, and that becomes their second highest leading cause of death. Death, in this case, is usually with the help of firearms. (Chang et al., 2005).
This leads to the other factor that causes homicides in a home, which is the prevalence of firearms in the house. The US mortality follow-back survey conducted a search to discover if the presence of guns and weapons at home could be a leading cause of homicides in families. People with guns at homes were at a greater risk of a homicide than those who did not own guns; the risk being about nineteen percent higher than the other. These people can also be victims of suicides through firearms present at home. Over 500,000 homicides and suicides are recorded in the U.S each year of which sixty percent of them are committed with the aid of firearms. Many people would keep firearms at home for recreational and defensive purposes, however, the risk associated with keeping a gun at home gets greater especially if others would know about it and decided to use it against someone.
In a case-control study performed by Cummings et al., it was discovered that a family who had a history of handing down guns and forearms down the generations, there had been a trend of continuous homicides as well as suicides in that very family. (Dahlberg, Ikeda, Kresnow, 2004).
The homicide victims were mostly males, in their middle ages ranging from thirty five years of age and onwards and would belong to racial or an ethnic-minority. Females of ages forty-five and above were also at a risk of homicides if they possessed firearms at home. Also, those people that possessed guns at home regardless of the type of guns, the number of guns or quality of guns were still at a greater risk of homicides than those who did not possess any guns at home. These people can be victimized during self-defense when they use a gun, or they can be murdered by anyone in the family, out of animosity or revenge which is also a leading cause of homicides. Domestic violence, interpersonal disputes involving these people or others around them are responsible for cases that happen so. (Dahlberg, Ikeda, Kresnow, 2004). Environmental factors also need to be considered when a person keeps a gun and is involved in homicide. There can be the person’s involvement in illegal activities, having a criminal association or living in a neighborhood that is unsafe, and it is a requirement for him to keep a gun at hand.
It is quite alarming at the same time that it is the high-income countries that are at a higher risk of getting involved in homicides caused by keeping firearms at homes. It is a trend that is observed that ninety percent of the offenders or criminals who commit homicide are males, and they are the ones that represent seventy-five percent of victimization. The rate of homicides is higher in urban areas as compared to rural areas.
A cross-sectional analysis of the states of America has shown that the country has the highest availability of firearms in homes that leads to homicide being a common factor for deaths. Those states where individuals possessed higher number of guns and firearms at homes had higher levels of homicide events than those states where gun possession was comparatively low. (Hepburn and Hemenway, 2004).
Homicide among women living at home is also an issue that haunts the country. There are many women who are living alone at homes, without family or a male counterpart, they are addicted to alcohol or drugs and lead a solitary life. There are also women who are reported of being abused by their husbands; they are beaten by them, and they are forced to live a life of submission. Prior to homicide, there are reported events of domestic violence, and assault and then a homicide event occurred. Women are vulnerable targets at these incidents, and if there is a presence of firearms in the household it can lead to an easy, unplanned homicide. (Bailey et al., 2005).
The other important factor that underlies the issue of homicide, murder and manslaughter is the mind of the killer, the person behind all that happened. Serial killers are a problematic dimension of society who need to be tackled and understood before they take with them more homicide victims. There are people who commit murder after murder, or mass murders have a pattern of killings and attack people in a given geographical location usually. Studies have shown that these people are usually males; they have trends of being psychologically prone to killing, and they have little or no association with the victims at times.
There are no financial gains that can be taken from these victims, and the reasons are more psychologically woven than being extrinsically evident. (Hinch, 2008).
The reason that males are more involved than females is the force and brutality that men can exhibit and females cannot. Defense can be easily countered by males especially if their victim is a female. Males are more likely to stab, bludgeon, strangle and suffocate their victims as compared to females. It has also been reported that males are more likely to kill strangers whereas females are more likely to kill someone in the family, a close relation or friend. Motives also differ for males and females where males want sex, money and control of their victim whereas a female would want money, control and power over the person they have targeted.
In usual cases of homicide, the victim and the killer will not know each other, they are strangers to one another and the male serial killer will probably always go to a stranger rather than a person they know. However, the fact that they are totally strangers in all cases is untrue because at most times the killer and victim know each other, and the reason for killing can be revenge, animosity or an interpersonal conflict.
Also, in most cases it has been reported that the victim is powerless against the killer, and they cannot do much to protect themselves. This can be observed in the case of females that are murdered or killed at homes as they are powerless against the male who is trying to kill them and since they cannot defend themselves, they lose their lives. This also goes for the children that are murdered at places away from schools or inside schools. Those who kill children and victimize them are usually termed as sadistic killers, and they have no associations with the children whatsoever.
Sometimes, rapists, kidnappers, and molesters also get in the way of children, and they can kill children after they have avenged themselves on them. The behavior of homicide killers needs to be observed as well if a person would wish to know what instigates these people to cross such boundaries and kill others.
There have been many theories regarding the behavior of these serial homicide killers which relate to their social background, their psychological condition as well as their financial situations. There can be past incidents in a person’s life that can instigate them to become violent, exhibit violent behavior and get aggressive in minor situations where otherwise a cooler temperament could have been adopted.
Some people can suffer from personality disorders, cognitive problems and have hormonal imbalances in their bodies that can be the cause of uncontrolled and aggressive behavior. Some individuals come from homes where they have not spent a pleasant childhood, they lack the resources to lead good life, have divorced or separated parents or they got into bad habits at an early age that prompts them to behave in an unethical manner.
Conclusively, homicide victims are people who are killed when they are innocent or unarmed, and it is usually done by someone they know. Homicide differs slightly from murder as it is unplanned. Homicide victims vary from people of all age groups like children to adults, males and females all alike. The homicide killers can be people who know or don’t know their victims, they can suffer from some disorder or are just obsessed with killing people. The United States has one of the highest rates of homicide events in the world that can be controlled if the cases of victims are properly analyzed and preventative measures are sought against them.


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