Australian Institute of Criminology

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Mental disorder and homicide in Australia

Trends & issues in crime and criminal justice no. 133

Jenny Mouzos
ISBN 0 642 24124 4 ISSN 0817-8542
Canberra: Australian Institute of Criminology, November 1999

Abstract

The general public tends to assume that mental disorder is associated with violent criminal behaviour, and this view is reinforced by the media. This study provides evidence dispelling the myth that mentally disordered offenders prey on innocent and unsuspecting strangers in public places. The incidence of mental disorder among homicide offenders does not exceed the incidence of mental disorder in the general population.