The connection between cruelty to animals in childhood/early adolescence and adult violent criminal behavior has been a topic of interest for decades. Formal research on this matter began as early as the 1960s with Mead’s 1964 bulletin article including her theory “that childhood animal cruelty was symptomatic of a violent personality that, if not diagnosed and targeted, could lead to ‘a long career of episodic violence and murder’.” This phenomenon was also studied as part of a triad including enuresis (bed wetting) and fire setting in childhood by a number of researchers. In the 1980s studies found that the association was not as significant as originally thought and triad research opened the way for the study of cruelty to animals as an independent indicator.
|Publisher||Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Dept. of Correction, Office of Strategic Planning and Research|
|Institution||Commonwealth of Massachusetts|