Criminal Behavior - biology

  • Created by: Maya98
  • Created on: 02-06-17 16:14

Criminal Behaviour 


There are many different types of crime:

1. property predatory crime - in which an individual is involved in taking personal property that does not belong to them without permission ( e.g. burglary or robbery)

2. Property fraudulent crime - individual involved in deciet or manipulation in order to obtain custody of the houses or services (embezzlement, fraud and bribery)

3. Interpersonal violence general - involved in actions that are threateneing or cause harm to others ( murder, assult and kidnapping)

4. Interpersonal violence sexual - involved in actions that are threatening or cause harm and contain a sexual element (****, sexual abuse or incest)

5. Transactional vice - victimless offences in which there is a willing exchange of goods or services (prostitution, illegal gambling and drug sales)

6. Order Disruption - no direct victim, but concern is raised about potential victims (resisting arrest, disorderly conduct, loitering and rioting)

7. Folk/Mundane crime - broad category. Can range from rule violations (fishing without a license) or more serious violations (load regulations on commercial vehicles). This category is considered more of acts of inconvenience or nusiance than crime 

The office of National Statistics (ONS) collects and publishes information about the different types and amount of criminal behaviour in the UK. Criminal behaviour has been categorised into two main groups: 

Victim-based crimes - including murder, violence and theft 

Crimes against society - public disorder offences, drug offeces and possession of weapons. 

The normality of criminal behaviour 

John Munice - suggest that although people consider themselves law-abiding citizens' it was revealed that an average person in the UK if only convicted once for each type of crime would spend a total of six years in jail and been fined up to £61,000. 

Who is a criminal 

the definition of a crime is 'any act that violates the law as determined by the state' - however, laws change and therefore what is viewed as criminal behaviour would change. For example, homosexuality was illegal until 1969 and stealing something as insignificent as a handkerchied was punishable by hanging in 17th century Britain. Therefore, what is considered criminal changes over time. 

Is criminal behaviour always wrong

In some situations criminal behaviour is morally correct. For example Nelson Mandela was punished and deemed a criminal for attempting to defend and bring to light issues with the law. 

Problems for research 

not explaining one kid of behaviour, as criminal behaviour may involve violence against another individual or a peacful protest. Many of the research into this area is in aggessive and impulsive behaviour, therefore does not explain criminal behaviour fully. 

Biological explanations 

Inherited criminality 

Genetic factors:

Proposes that one or more genes predispose individuals to criminal behaviour. For example, Raine et al reviewed research on deliquent behaviour of twins and found 52% concordance rantes for MZ twins when compared to 21% DZ twins - suggesting that the more closely related they are the more liekly that both will demonstrate criminal behaviour. 

Searching for candidate genes:



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