Nature of Crime

                            Dr. Robert E. Ford

Biological and Psychological Theories of Crime

These theories focus on anatomical, physiological or genetic abnormalities and their contributions to crime

 BIOLOGICAL POSITIVISM Origin Circa 1810

      Founders: Joseph Gall, Johann Spurzheim, J.K. Lavater, Cesare Lombroso, Enrico Ferri, Raffaele Garofalo, Ernest Hooten, Charles Goring
Most Important Works Lombroso, Criminal Man (1863); Garofalo, Criminology (1885); Ferri, Criminal Sociology (1884); Goring, The English Convict (1913); William Sheldon, Varieties of Delinquent Youth (1949); Eleanor Glueck and Sheldon Glueck, Unraveling Juvenile Delinquency (1950)

Biological Positivism

     Core Ideas Some people have biological and mental traits that make them crime-prone. These traits are inherited and present at birth. Mental and physical degeneracies are the cause of crime.
Modern Outgrowths Biosocial Theory, Psychodynamic Theory, Cognitive Theory, Behavioral Theory, Evolutionary Theory.

 

 

Early Positivist Research

 

    Phrenology (Gall)

    Atavism (Lombroso)

    Hereditary School

    Jukes and Kallikaks

    Somatology (Sheldon)

    Family, Heredity and Genes

Modern Biological Theories

 

    Twin Studies

    Adoption Studies

    Chromosomal Abnormalities

    Neurochemical Mechanisms

    Diet

 

Lombroso and the Early Biological Theories

     The most important of the early theories was the work of Cesare Lombroso,

     1876 Criminal Man

     Compared Italian Soldiers with Italian Prisoners, found systematic differences convincing him criminals were born…

     Lombroso’s work was the trigger that lead to the positivist perspective.

The Positive School (1875-1920)

Almost entirely biologically or psychologically deterministic:

     Multiple factor causation -- natural factors, biological and environmental, caused crime

   Strong influence of Darwinism -- man just another, albeit superior, animal

     No link to Divinity

     Free will and rationalism challenged by determinism -- controlling effects are biological and cultural antecedents.

 

Major Significance—Method, Not Substantive Content

     Beginning of modern criminology uses  scientific method

     Most important early theory of crime

     Method was based on seven main ideas

     1) a single scientific methodology is appropriate for natural and social sciences

     2) assumes that invariable social laws exist and can be discovered by scientific research

     3) insists upon use of quantitative, rather than qualitative research methods

Positivist Approach

     4) deterministic, denies possibility of free will

     5) sought causal laws of crime -- derived from deterministic relationships inherent in human existence

     6) separation of morality from science and law 

     7) research directed to the causes of criminal behavior, not the sources of criminal law

     Founder and primary proponent - Lombroso

 

Cesare Lombroso (1835-1909)

      Most tested, reevaluated, retested, and rewritten of all theories of crime

      Basic idea -- a significant proportion of criminals were biological throwbacks -- ATAVISMS -- a primitive form of humans

     Could not adapt to modern society, predetermined to crime

     Recognizable by physical stigmata

     Rejected free will -- a positivist

 

Cesare Lombroso (1835-1909)

After years testing, revising, and modifying, identified three classes of criminals

 

     atavistic -- born criminals -- throwbacks, more primitive human types

   a) recognized by their physical stigmata

   b) one-third of criminals were so classified

 

 

 

Stigmata

    Asymmetry of the face or head

    Large monkey like ears

    Large lips

    Receding chin

    Twisted nose

    Excessive cheek bones

    Long arms

Stigmata

    Long arms

    Excessive skin wrinkles

    Extra fingers or toes

 

    Five or more of these characteristics made a male an atavist:  Three or more made a female an atavist.

 

 

Three Classes of Criminals

     occasional criminals -- non-atavistic

a) pseudo-criminals: commit crimes which do not offend moral sense (traffic violators)

b) criminaloids: commit crime as result of adverse environmental influences, largest single group of criminals, non-atavistic no physical stigmata or mental disorder, similar to later "psychopathic personality"

 

Three Classes of Criminals

criminals by passion -- non-atavistic and non-occasional --- mainly political criminals

Enrico Ferri (1856-1928)

     main follower of Lombroso developed a fourfold classification of criminals:

     1) insane -- idiots, imbeciles, paranoics, melancholics, general paralysis, dementia, alcoholism, epilepsy, and hysterics

     2) BORN -- same as Lombroso's "atavistic"

     3) occasional -- same as Lombroso

     4) criminals by passion -- same as Lombroso

 

Ferri’s Causes of Crime

     Crime was caused by a number of factors:

     1) physical -- race, climate, geographic location, season of year, temperature, etc.

     2) anthropological -- age, sex, organic and psychological condition

     3) social -- population density, religion, customs, governmental structure, economic and industrial condition

     Rejected free will; argued for "substitutes for punishment", preventive measures

Raphael Garofalo (1852-1934)

     Follower of Lombroso, developed concept of NATURAL CRIME -- "acts which no civilized society can refuse to recognize as criminal and repress by means of punishment"

     Avoided analytic problem of differing legal definitions of crime from society to society

     Such acts violated two basic altruistic sentiments common to all peoples

    a) probity -- respect for rights of others

    b) pity -- feeling of revulsion on viewing harm to others

Garofolo’s Law of Adaptation

     Theory of punishment based on "Law of Adaptation" :

     Society must eliminate those unfit for human society due to their criminal conduct

     Suggested three means of elimination:

     death – those with permanent psychological anomalies rendering them unfit for social life

Three Means of Elimination

     partial elimination -- for persons "fit only for nomadic hordes or primitive tribes"

    long-term imprisonment

    isolation of agricultural colonies for young offenders with prospects for rehabilitation

     enforced reparation -- for persons who lack altruistic sentiments and who commit crime under circumstances not likely to recur

Garofolo’s Theory of Punishment

     Argued this theory of punishment met three  conditions for effective public policy:

    satisfied public demand for punishment of criminal offenders

    "principle of elimination" was sufficiently threatening to contribute to deterrence

    its application would slowly improve human stock by eliminating inferior humans, i.e., criminals, and their offspring

     Pessimistic about chances for reform, i.e., rehabilitation, of criminal offenders

Phrenology

     Franz Joseph Gall (1791) and John Gaspar Spurzheim physical appearance:

     Believed that the "mind", controlled conduct

     "mind" was made up of specific functions

     "faculties" of the mind -- three classes

    lower or active propensities (crime causation) 

    moral sentiments

    intellectual faculties

Brain is physiological organ of "mind"

Phrenology

     "mind" exists within brain

     "faculties" have specific locations

     Crime is caused by overdevelopment of parts of brain and underdevelopment of other parts

     Greater the development (or lack)of "faculties" of the "mind", the greater the development (or lack )of corresponding parts

     Skull conforms to shape of brain

     Bumps on skull are indicators of shape, which indicates development of "faculties" of "mind"

Phrenology

    Very highly developed model--great influence until early twentieth century

    Impacted policy-making

    Was rejected because empirical research could not support its concepts or conclusions

 

 

Body Type

     Temperament is related to body type

     Criminal tendency are related to specific physical types

     Ernst Kretschmer -- three basic body types:

    leptosome (Asthenic) tall and thin, petty thievery and fraud

    athletic -- well developed and muscled, crimes of violence

    Pyknic: short and fat, deception and fraud, some violence

Body Type

   Dyplastic (mixed)type: offenses against decency and morality, tendency to violence

    No statistical evidence to support assertions,  questionable validity

Morphology (body type)

     William Sheldon (1936-54)-- CONTINUED BODY TYPE THEORY

     Specific types associated "temperaments"

     ENDOMORPHIC -- fat, soft, smooth skin, small bones & limbs

    VISCEROTONIC temperament -- extrovert, relaxed, comfortable -- loves luxury

     MESOMORPHIC -- dominance of bone and muscle, large bones

    SOMOTONIC temperament -- aggressive, active, dynamic

 

Morphology (Body Types)

    ECTOMORPHIC -- dominance of skin, appendages, and nervous system; lean, fragile, delicate body

    CEREBROTONIC temperament -- introvert, avoids crowds, many illnesses

    Argued not discrete types, but interrelated tendencies with many combinations

The Biological Inferior Criminal

 Charles Goring (1913)  The English Convict.

English Prison Medical Officer, used sophisticated physiological measurements and statistics of the day to compare prisoner with college undergraduates, soldiers, professors, and hospital patients.

 Biologically Inferior Criminals

    Goring tested on 37 measures and found significant differences only on two factors weight and height

    Contradicted Lombroso’s findings

    However, decided prisoners suffered from defective intelligence and defective physique.

Hooten’s Counter Findings

    E.A. Hooten in Crime and the Man (1939) attached Goring findings and found that he could not replicate Goring’s findings in the United States.

    His own study of 17,000 subjects in several states, comparisons of prisoners and non prisoners, he concluded that prisoners were organically inferior.

Hooten

    His study suffered from some methodological problems

    Differences were small

    Police and Fire (Personnel Policies) biased the samples

    There was extensive variation among prisoners

The American Criminal: Anthropological Study (1939)

     E.A. HOOTON, HARVARD ANTHROPOLOGIST, 14,000 CRIMINAL AND ABOUT 3000 NON CRIMINALS Controls      IN 19 OUT OF 33 MEASUREMENTS A SIGNIFICANT DIFFERENCE:CRIMINALS ARE INFERIOR IN NEARLY ALL  MEASUREMENTS:

     LOW FOREHEADS, HIGH PINCHED NASAL ROOTS, NASAL BRIDGES AND TIPS VARYING TO BOTH EXTREMES OF BREADTH AND NARROWNESS, EXCESS OF NASAL DEFLECTIONS, COMPRESSED FACES AND NARROW JAWS

Hooten’s Findings

   PHYSICAL INFERIORITY IS ASSOCIATED WITH MENTAL INFERIORITY.

   INFERIORITY IS DUE TO HEREDITY AND NOT TO SITUATION OR ENVIRONMENT 

   DARK EYES AND BLUE EYES ARE DEFICIENT IN CRIMINALS, AND BLUE-GRAY AND MIXED EYES ARE IN EXCESS;...EYEBROWS THAT ARE THIN TO VERY THIN OCCUR MORE FREQUENTLY.

Hooten’s Findings

   TATTOOING IS MORE COMMON AMONG CRIMINALS THAN AMONG CONTROLS.

   THIN LIPS AND COMPRESSED JAW ANGLES OCCUR MORE; MARKED OVERBITE LESS  AMONG CRIMINALS THAN CIVILIANS.

   THE EAR OF THE CRIMINAL TENDS TO A SLIGHTLY ROLLED HELIX, AND MORE PERCEPTIBLE DARWIN'S POINT THAN CIVILIAN; MORE EXTREME VARIATIONS OF EAR PROTRUSION, AND SMALL EARS.

Hooten’s Findings

   LOW AND SLOPING FOREHEADS, LONG, THIN NECKS, AND SLOPING SHOULDERS, ARE SIMILARLY IN EXCESS AMONG CRIMINALS IN COMPARISONS WITH CIVILIANS.

 

 

 

Crime and Human Degeneracy

     Biological determinist theory propounded in mid-1800's (influenced by evolution).

     Crime resulted from physical, moral, and intellectual degeneracy

     Measured people to associate physical degeneracy and crime

     Looked to physiological causes of behavior giving rise to scientific studies of offenders to determine behavioral causes

     Failed to take account of environmental influences

Febblemindedness

    Goddard defined mentally incompetent as those born w/o, sufficient intelligence to know right from wrong, or w/o sufficient willpower and judgment to do right. Goddard believed that anywhere from 25 to 50% of those in prisons were feeble-minded. "It is hereditary feeble-mindedness and not hereditary criminality that accounts for" our prison populations. Goddard claimed he had uncovered defective rates within prisons ranging from 28 to 89% with most over 50%.

 

Feeblemindedness Theories

     Related mental deficiency to crime

     Defect causing crime was low intelligence

     Esquirol, Dugdale (studied Jukes family), Ebbinghaus (Germany), and Binet (France, I.Q. Tests)--- Empirically inadequate:

    Did not identify causal linkages between crime and low intelligence

    Did not explain why all feebleminded persons did not commit crime

    Did not explain why all criminals were not feebleminded

 

     Heredity inferior genes traced to certain ancestors, (Dugdale, 1877; Goddard, 1913; Estabrook, 1916) 

 

Feeblemindedness and Heredity

    Heredity inferior genes traced to certain ancestors, (Dugdale, 1877; Goddard, 1913; Estabrook, 1916) 

 

 

Additional Early Positivistic Approaches

    Inherited feeblemindedness, (Goddard, 1914; Burt 1925)

    General Body types (Sheldon, 1949; Gleuck and Gleuck, 1950)

Critiques of Early Biological Theories

    Criticized for giving insufficient attention to social, economic and environmental factors.

    Social winds had changed and biological theories had fallen out of favor.  Universities dominated by social science

    Methodologies weak

    Little empirical support.

Older Biological Theories

      Older theories of biological links to criminal behavior were marked by a poor understanding of the human brain and by serious methodological deficiencies (see, e.g., Glueck and Glueck, 1956; Goddard, 1921; Hooten, 1939; Jacobs et al., 1965; Lombroso, 1918; Sheldon, 1949).

      “Biological Criminology" was discredited due to findings that were unscientific, simplistic, and unicausal. Biological factors were rejected due to the lack of a rational link between biological variables and criminal behavior. (see Fishbein,1999)

 

Newer Biological Theories

•   Rising number of heredity based perspectives:

    –  genetic predisposition to crime is the most common of these perspectives.

    Some authors have also argued for genetic defects, resulting from poor material habits:

    –  mutations result                          Enviromentally induced approaches have also appeared.

 

More Recent Biological Theories

    A wide range of biological factors have been suggested as “predisposing one to crime.”

    The link between crime and biology is often seen as more complex than the earlier biological theories, demanding the interaction of other variables, usually social.

More Recent Biological Theories

    These newer theories often arise after a breakthrough in biology and often reflect new measuring techniques.

More Recent Biological Theories

    Crime and:

     Endocrine system

     Neurotransmitters

     Brain imagery

     Neuropsychology

     Psychophysiology

     Drug and alcohol abuse

     Nutrition and toxins

     Pregnancy and birth complications

     Head injury

 

Endocrine Systems and Crime

   Overall, difficult to causally link hormones/crime:

     exception - sex hormones - testosterone

  Animal studies do link testosterone and aggression

  Literature on human testosterone and criminal behaviour mixed, see (Archer,1991)

      •   weak on personality inventories (written tests)

      •   strong using behavioural observation measures

      Testosterone peaks puberty and early 20’s correlate crime rates

Endocrine System and Crime

      There are methodological problems

    •   don’t separate different types of aggression (physical/verbal) (legal/illegal)

    •   difficulties in measuring testosterone, testing equipment is simply not that exact.

 

 

Testosterone and Crime

  Germany voluntary castration:

      –  11 year follow-up sex offenders

      –  99 castrated - 3% recidivism

      –  35 non-castrated - 46% (Willie and Beier, 1989)

      –  not inherited but may be expressed through hormones genetic

      •      not simple causal relationship

      •      one of many factors affecting aggression

 

Endocrine System and Crime

      Premenstrual syndrome and crime, large hormonal changes just before or during menstruation:

      •   156 newly convicted women

      •   46% of crimes 4 days prior or following menstruation

      –    critics - stress trigger menstruation

      –    legal, ethical, and  treatment implication

      –    public interest outstripped scientific knowledge (a problem throughout biology/crime)

 

Neurotransmitters and Crime

      Catecholamines -  Serotonin

      •   antisocials lower serotonin levels

      •   violent assaultive antisocials had lowest serotonin levels

      •   drugs which increase in uptake decreases aggressive episodes  (Scerbo and Raine,1992)

Norepinephrine and Crime

      antisocials no history of drug abuse low norepinephrine levels

      drugs which reduce norepinephrine levels inhibit aggressive behaviour (odd)

  Dopamine

      no effect comparing antisocial and non antisocial

      drugs decreasing dopamine decrease aggression

      Neurotransmitters affect brain sensitivity

      Neurological high from drug abuse and antisocial behaviour

 

 

Neurotransmitters - GABA

      –    alcohol imitates GABA

      –    opens GABA receptors

      –    receptor for anti anxiety substances (benzodiazepine)

      –    calming and quieting effects and anti-aggressive

      –    low doses may also increase violent behaviour

     potential as a diagnostic and therapeutic tool for managing violence

Brain Imaging and Crime

     CT Found:

      Temporal lobe deficits in sex offenders not accompanied by temporal functional deficits (neuropsychological tests)

      PET and RCBF

      structures suggestive of frontal lobe dysfunction

      MRI

      temporal lobe structural deficits

    frontal lobe dysfunction violent offenders

   temporal lobe dysfunction sexual offending

Neuropsychology and Crime

     Some evidence links frontal lobe damage to offenders

     Suggestion that left hemisphere damage exists in higher than expected proportions in violent and offenders in general.

     Higher incidence of reduced lateralisation in criminal populations (left handedness) Left hemisphere is dominant in 70% of the population.

Psychophysiology and Crime

    Skin Conductance: under arousal in anti social. Resting heart rate is lower (antisocial)

    Low arousal

    Fearlessness in novel situations

    EEG: slow apha waves in property offenders (related to low arousal, high testosterone)

Psychophysiology and Crime

    ERP (event relate Potential):

    Under arousal, high filtering of environmental stimuli

    Sensation seeking

    Enhanced attention to stimulating events

    Stimulation Theory of antisocial behavior: under-arousal may predispose an individual to conduct disorders.

 

Drug and Alcohol Abuse

     Alcohol:

     Increase aggressiveness in low doses, decrease in high

     Little evidence for disinhibiting effect

     Does alcohol increase the production of testosterone?

     What does long term use of other drugs do? : Opiates, amphetamines, cocaine, hallucinogenic, marijuana.

Nutrition and Crime

    Hypoglycaemia:

    Low blood sugar related to aggressiveness.

    Brain needs 80mg per minute below this panic, irritability, nervousness and aggression.

    Correlation between time of day when most likely to be hypoglycaemic and attacks on staff.

Nutrition and Crime

    Extreme fluctuations in blood glucose by diet

    Reduction in diets of refined carbohydrates

    Reduction in disciplinary offenses among institutional juvenile populations.  (some contrary findings as well)

Toxins and Crime

    Lead: high levels may impact neurotransmitters and hormonal system

    Related to learning and attention disorders

    Linked to acting out and antisocial behavior.

Pregnancy – Birth Complications

     Difficult deliveries are predictive of impulsive offenses, conduct disorders and violent offenders

 

Delivery complications       

      Hyperactivity               High        Low 

      High                    53%        16.7% 

      Low                    8.3%       3.6%

 

 

Head Injuries

     Prisoners report a large number of head injuries (loss of consciousness): reports confirmed by research

    Child maltreatment

    Violent offenders more likely to have head injuries

    Highest rate 15-19

    Most not from violence

    Injuries parallel onset of crime

Head Injuries

    Biological problems early in life increase probability of head injuries

    Increases sensitivity to alcohol

    Decreases cognitive and social skills

    Causes headaches and irritability

    Damage frontal or temporal lobes increase anxiety and hostility.

    Linked to child abuse

 

    Wilson and Herrnstein(1985) have evaluated criminological relevant biological data. They argued insufficient consideration has been given to biological and social interactions:

      Observation: a small percentage of offenders commit the majority of serious crime suggesting that particular forces produce antisocial behavior in particular individuals. (Hamparin et al., 1978; Moffitt et al., 1989; Wolfgang, 1972)

 

    Research demonstrates violent offenders to have an early history of violence (Loeber and Dishion, 1983; Moffitt et al., 1989).

    Biological conditions may play a role in the development of antisocial and criminal behavior is suggested by such research and has spurred a search for biological markers in "vulnerable" subgroups (Mednick et al., 1987).

 

 

More Recent Biological Theories

    XXY: The Super Male  Some males possess an extra Y chromosome

    This extra dosage of maleness creates strong compulsions, that they are at risk of doing violent crimes.

    Thesis arose due to the higher proportion of extra Ys in prison (1% in the population, 3% in prison.)

Modern Biological Theories

    The majority of XYY males in prison not in for violent crimes.

    Many XYY commit no crimes

    Has generally been dismissed as a criminological theory.

Modern Biological Theories of Crime

    Feeblemindedness and learning disabilities has been argued but support has been hard to find.

    Childhood intelligence does not appear to predict adolescent delinquency very well (McCord and McCord, 1959)

    Research has found a weak to moderate correlation between IQ and delinquency.

Modern Biological Theories of Crime.

    Moffit et al. (1994) have proposed a neuropsychological  model of male delinquency that go beyond IQ to incorporate other aspects of mental functioning as verbal skills, visual motor integration and mental flexibility.  Data provides some support.

Testosterone and Criminal Aggressiveness

     A number of researchers have proposed a connection between testosterone levels and anti social and aggressive behavior. (Booth and Osgood, 1993)

     Research has found significantly significant relationships.

     Booth and Osgood also claim a relationship with adult crime.  Statistically the relationship is weak.

Mednick’s Theory of Inherited Criminal Tendencies

    The best known is the bio-social theory of Sarnoff Mednick and his associates.

    Mednick’s theory proposes that some genetic factor is passed down.  Criminal behavior is not directly inherited, one inherits a greater susceptibility to succumb to crimogenic environments.

Mednick’s Theory

    Mednick argues that a person inherits a autonomic nervous system ANS that is slower to be aroused or to react to stimuli.  They are slow to learn how to control aggressive or anti social behavior.  Thus, they are at greater risk of becoming law breakers. (Mednick,1977)

Recent Bio-social Theories

    Hans Eysenck has also proposed a similar biosocial arousal theory.  Inherited differences in arousal levels affect social conditioning.

    There are considerable questions about Mednick’s methodologies.

    Mednick conducted twin studies, twins separated at birth.

Some Research Questions

    Mednick compared the criminality of the natural father, the adopted father, the mother and the son.

    Mednick found sons whose fathers had crime records but adopted had none, to have a higher probability of engaging in delinquency.

    Gottfredson and Hirschi (1990) have pointed to flaws in the research.

Bio-social Studies

    Concordance studies have also shown greater similarity in behavior between monozigotic twins and fraternal twins

    Again while no one doubts the relationship, there is considerable question as to the strengths of the relationships.

Bio Social Studies

    Conducting meta analysis Walters (1992) concluded that the methodology was flawed but that all continued to achieve a significant relationship, however those relationships remain weak in the more rigorous of the studies.

    There is support for the proposition that biology interacts with the environment.

Psychoanalytic Theory

    Look for causes of crime and deviance in the minds of the individual. Friedlander (1947) focuses on abnormalities or disturbances in the individual’s emotional development from early childhood.

    The id is the unconscious seat of the irrational, antisocial and instinctual.

Psychoanalytic Theory

 Freudian derivative with major thesis that crime is result of mental illness

Mind broken down into at least three parts:

     id -- most primitive part, source of animalistic urges and drives unconscious drives and urges which underlie all behavior

     ego -- conscious mind: portion we are aware of

     superego -- conscience-highest human attributes ; contains forces of self-criticism

Freudian Theory

     The ego (or self) work with the superego (conscience) to control the id.

     As the child goes through the six phases:

    Oral

    Anal

    phallic

    latency

    Mature genital

     Poor maturation and relationships with parents during maturation weaken the controls on the id by ego and superego.

Freudian Theory

Basic urges (id)are found to be unacceptable by superego and are repressed into unconscious

    Repression produces mental conflict

    Repressed urges continue even when suppressed into the unconscious

    Continue to seek outlets through SUBSTITUTE or SYMBOLIC behavior

    Primary means to express repressed are dreams; secondary means is deviant behavior particularly crime

Freudian Theory

     Crime is substitute and symbolic "acting out" of repressed motivations, drives, and urges

     Crime can only be explained by each individual's own life history

     Each explanation is unique, only a psychoanalyst can construct it.

     Repressed guilt and conflict continued to be the cause of delinquency.

 

Psychoanalytic Theories

    Delinquents and criminals are sick and need treatment.

    No way to test psychoanalytic theories (It’s all about repression) These theories are also often tautological.

Personality Theory

    As with psychoanalytic approach criminal behavior finds it source in personality weaknesses in individuals.

    The basic proposition is that delinquents and criminals have abnormal, inadequate, or specifically criminal personalities.

Personality Theories

    Aberrant personality are variously labeled as psychopathic, antisocial, or sociopathic personalities.

    Basically vague concepts, self centered person who has not been properly socialized into pro social values. No sense of right and wrong, no empathy and generally feels no remorse.

Personality Theories

    Have been empirically tested.

    Have compared personality traits between criminal and non criminal populations.

    MMPI frequently used and the CPI.

    The MMPI (Hathaway and Meehl, 1951)was designed for the purpose of detecting deviant personality traits in the mentally ill.

Personality Theories

    MMPI uses several scales to measure abnormal personality traits:

    depression

    hysteria

    paranoia

    psychopathology

    introversion, extroversion

    compulsiveness

Personality Theories

    Interestingly, the most strongly predictive scale for crime is the F Scale which is not a personality scale, it records sloppiness, or careless responses and poor reading skills.

    Majority of the more carefully put together studies did find correlation with self report delinquencies.

Personality Theories

    These do have problems with tautology

    Some scales are a thinly disguised prior history.

    Other personality inventories have been unable to identify personality traits correlated with crime.