Violent Crime is a Symptom of Insanity
A particularly ugly criminal case is being tried in Stockholm. The defendant is a bodybuilder of 27 with a steroid habit, sundry other drug habits and a record for violent crime. One Saturday night in May, in his own home, he murdered his twelve-year-old step-daughter with an absurd number of knife stabs. He then spent two hours wrestling with, raping and knifing the girl's thirteen-year-old friend. Finally the knife broke and he fell asleep. Despite many wounds, the surviving girl then escaped the apartment and called the police.
According to both the prosecution and the defense, the man killed his step-daughter for the brilliant reason that he didn't want her to tell anyone that he had raped her friend, as he wished to do. The murderer himself claims to remember nothing about the night in question.
Committing an extremely messy murder in order to cover up a planned rape, all in one's own apartment in a densely populated housing area, is hardly the actions of a sane man. Such hyper-violent and unbelievably stupid behaviour is typical of a steroid psychosis brought on by alcohol. Yet the trial is all about whether the murderer was sane at the time or not. Duh, say I.
Questions of the perpetrators' sanity in cases of violent crime always have me shaking my head. To my mind, the ability to commit a highly violent crime is, in itself, a symptom of insanity for all societal intents and purposes. Insanity is defined by violent behaviour among other things. And as we have no sure methods of curing such insanity, we must simply keep violent madmen locked up and sedated indefinitely for safety's sake. Whether this is called a jail sentence or a one-way commitment to a mental hospital is to my mind irrelevant. But that anyone wishes to suggest that the murderer currently on trial might have been sane makes me worry about that person's mental health.
[More blog entries about crime, murder, insanity, psychosis; brott, mord, psykos.]