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Am J Health Behav. 2013 Jul;37(4):531-42. doi: 10.5993/AJHB.37.4.11.

Homicide-followed-by-suicide incidents involving child victims.

Author information

  • 1Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Injury Prevention and Control, Atlanta, GA, USA. ffa3@cdc.gov

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

To describe homicide-followed-by-suicide incidents involving child victims

METHODS:

Using 2003-2009 National Violent Death Reporting System data, we characterized 129 incidents based on victim and perpetrator demographic information, their relationships, the weapons/mechanisms involved, and the perpetrators' health and stress-related circumstances.

RESULTS:

These incidents accounted for 188 child deaths; 69% were under 11 years old, and 58% were killed with a firearm. Approximately 76% of perpetrators were males, and 75% were parents/caregivers. Eighty-one percent of incidents with paternal perpetrators and 59% with maternal perpetrators were preceded by parental discord. Fifty-two percent of incidents with maternal perpetrators were associated with maternal psychiatric problems.

CONCLUSIONS:

Strategies that resolve parental conflicts rationally and facilitate detection and treatment of parental mental conditions might help prevention efforts.

PMID:
23985234
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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