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Forensic Sci Int. 2009 Apr 15;186(1-3):75-80. doi: 10.1016/j.forsciint.2009.02.001. Epub 2009 Mar 9.

Gender differences in Finnish homicide offence characteristics.

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Forensic Laboratory, National Bureau of Investigation, PO Box 285, FIN-01301 Vantaa, Finland.


Approximately 10% of the homicides in Finland are committed by females. This study was designed to compare offence circumstances and crime scene behaviour among female and male homicide offenders. The forensic examination reports and crime reports of all female offenders prosecuted for a homicide between 1995 and 2004 were collected and content analysed (n=91). A sample of male offenders was selected for a comparison group. In addition to several bivariate analyses, two multidimensional scaling analyses were conducted to identify the underlying structure of the offence characteristics-related variables in male and female offenders. The results showed that family members were the victims of female offenders more frequently than of male offenders. Child victims were almost always killed by females. No significant difference emerged between the gender groups in the proportion of victims being former intimate partners. The results also showed that different offence characteristics relate to offender gender and type of victim. In male offenders, covering the body relates to moving and hiding an acquaintance victim's body, while in females it relates to emotional detachment and family member victim. For females, post-offence behaviours that relate to seek for help and regret were more frequent than for males. There were only marginal differences in the use of violence between females and males.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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