Murder in America
Author(s) Ronald M. Holmes
Stephen T. Holmes
Published 1993
Publisher Sage Publications
Country United States
Pages 248
ISBN 9780803950542

Murder in America is a book by Ronald M. Holmes and Stephen T. Holmes, first published by Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, CA, in 1993. An updated second edition was released in 2000.


This volume presents an examination of both the common and unusual acts of murder in light of society's changing norms, values, attitudes, and customs. Each chapter explores a specific type of murder by examining trends, methods, motives and statistics, and concludes with suggestions aimed at prediction and prevention.

Table of contentsEdit

Chapter Page*
Preface ix
1. Murder in America 1
Murder: Definitions 2
Legal Degrees of Murder 2
Manslaughter 3
Justifiable and Excusable Homicide 3
Chances of Being a Murder Victim 6
Guns and Homicide 8
General Typologies of Murderers 10
Conclusion 13
2. Serial Murder 15
Serial Murder Outside the United States 18
Serial Killers in the United States 20
Incidences of Serial Murder 21
The Number of Victims 23
Spatial Mobility and Male Serial Killers 24
Phases in Serial Murder 25
Typology of Male Serial Murderers 27
Traits of Male Serial Killers 31
Motivational Factors 32
Conclusion 34
3. Female Serial Killers 37
Spatial Mobility and Female Serial Killers 40
Typology of Female Serial Killers 41
Traits of Types of Female Serial Killers 49
Conclusion 51
4. Mass Murder 53
What Is Mass Murder? 54
Incidents of Mass Murder 56
Classification of Mass Murderers 67
Typology of Mass Murderers 70
Conclusion 78
5. Children Who Kill 79
Homicidal Trends Among Youthful Killers 81
The Etiology of the Juvenile Homicidal Offender 85
Youth Killers and School Shootings 88
Treatment of Violent Juvenile Offenders 94
Conclusion 95
6. Intimates Who Kill 97
Statistics on Partner Homicide 99
Perpetrator Profiles 104
The Law and Legal Defenses in Cases of Spousal Homicide 108
Policy Implications 112
Conclusion 113
7. Parents Who kill 115
The Murder of Children in the United States Today 117
Children as Chattel and Infanticide 119
Typology of the Child Killing Incident 120
Motives for Murdering Children 124
Mothers Who Kill 125
Fathers Who Kill 128
Stepparents Who Kill 129
Discussion and Conclusion 130
8. Sex-Related Homicide 133
What Is Sexual Homicide? 134
Elements in Sexual Homicide 141
Lust Murder 144
Conclusion 153
9. Murder in the Workplace 155
Traits of the Disgruntled Employee Mass Killer 157
Conclusion 165
References 167
Index 177
About the Authors 190

*Chapters and page numbers taken from the 2000 paperback edition.


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