Depression in homicidal adolescents.
C. P. Malmquist,
Bull. Amer. Acad. Psychiatry & the Law
18(1): 23-36, 1990.
The problem of adolescents who commit homicides is of increasing concern in its own right, as well
as from the possibility of their facing execution. In this study, a psychiatric and psychological
assessment was aimed at screening out a group of juveniles who were being considered for
certification to adult court in terms of depressive symptomatology. Within a group of 213, 30 males
and 14 females were assessed as depressed by clinical history, the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality
Inventories (MMPI) and the Beck Depressive Inventory (BDI). Empirical and psychosocial data
attempted to differentiate significant developmental components related to the homicides, as well
as differences between the 30 males and 14 females. Although the problem of predicting such
behavior from descriptive characteristics remains elusive, certain patterns were present among
diverse homicidal behaviors. In conclusion, some psychodynamic hypotheses are offered.