November 1993

Criminality Associated With Mental Disorders and Intellectual Deficiency

Author Affiliations

Departments of Neurophysiology and Forensic Psychiatry University of Kuopio Niuvanniemi Hospital SF-70240 Kuopio, Finland

Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1993;50(11):917-918. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1993.01820230087010

Studies of different risk factors in prediction of criminal behavior have neglected an epidemiologic approach using large samples of patients with different mental disorders to calculate odds ratios concerning their forthcoming criminal behavior. We were pleased to read the article by Hodgins1 on the relationship between crime, mental disorder, and intellectual handicap. The results of this study showed that male patients with a major mental disorder were four times more likely to commit a violent offense than men with no disorder, and female patients with major mental disorder were 27 times more likely to do so. Corresponding numbers were 15 for male substance abusers and 55 for female substance abusers. Patients with intellectual handicap and other mental disorders were also at greater risk for criminal behavior. However, those results do not give information about the risk for criminality associated with specifically defined disorders due to the heterogeneity of the

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