All About Law and Crime

Psychology and the law intersect in the field of forensic science. Legal practitioners require a grasp of human motivation at its most basic and most debased in order to render fair judgment.

Recent posts on Law and Crime

The Ponzi Schemers

By Eugene Soltes Ph.D. on October 20, 2016 in Why They Do It
Inside white-collar crime

Death Penalty May Not Bring Peace to Victims' Families

Does the death penalty provide true justice and closure to victims?

How Human Traffickers Keep Victims Mentally Enslaved

Psychological manipulation tactics are critical to traffickers’ success, and coercion, manipulation and psychological abuse are often more powerful weapons than physical violence.

"Mine, Mine, Mine!": The Psychology of Property

By Ruth Lee Johnson J.D. on October 18, 2016 in So Sue Me
"Mine! Mine! Mine!" It is one of the first words that toddlers learn. But where does property come from, and what does it really mean? Scholars, philosophers, and toddlers answer.

Which Candidate Will Make America Safer?

By Gleb Tsipursky Ph.D. on October 15, 2016 in Intentional Insights
Both candidates promise to make you safer. But which one will actually do so? This articles describes how research shows how candidates mislead our intuitions on this topic.

Please Keep Your Emotional Support Iguana Off My Couch

By David J Ley Ph.D. on October 15, 2016 in Women Who Stray
Emotional support animals offer valuable assistance. But sometimes, therapists need to focus on helping people develop alternative strategies of soothing and anxiety-reduction.

Clown Scare to Grow Violent, then Subside after Halloween

By Robert Bartholomew Ph.D. on October 15, 2016 in It's Catching
It's likely to get worse before it gets better.

The Hidden Harm Behind Your Dinner

By Christopher Dum Ph.D. on October 14, 2016 in Exiled in America
Paying for cheap and easy food? There's a true cost, and it's human.

Can Putting a Price on a Kidney Save Lives?

The idea of putting a value on a human organ seems bizarre—and even unconscionable. But I suggest those intuitions do us more harm than good.

How to Stop Violence in America

There is a solution to stop the violence in America. A solution that is far more central than controlling religious radicalization and gun access. It's all about fear.

Connecting Dots Between The Opioid Epidemic and Philanthropy

By Allen J Frances M.D. on October 12, 2016 in Saving Normal
The Sackler family earned a fortune promoting the opioid epidemic and should devote their philanthropy to helping the millions of Americans who have been harmed by it.

There's a Word for Men Who Grope Women

We don't enable gropers by rationalizing their behavior. Do we?

Hunting the Japanese Hospital Serial Killer

By Joni E Johnston Psy.D. on October 10, 2016 in The Human Equation
A serial killer is stalking senior citizens at a Japanese hospital. What kind of person would do this?
Mugshot: public domain

Who Wants to Be Ted Bundy?

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on October 09, 2016 in Shadow Boxing
A girl in England wanted to copy Ted Bundy. So did a boy. Bundy remains a darkly contagious figure for those who aspire to black deeds.

Why We Obey and Disobey the Law

By Glenn C. Altschuler Ph.D. on October 06, 2016 in This Is America
Responses to law are shaped by rewards and punishments, peer group influence, and internal motivation. They vary by time, place, and culture, and how information is communicated.

President Trump Releases His Tax Returns

By Mark Goulston M.D., F.A.P.A. on October 05, 2016 in Just Listen
What if a President Trump releases his taxes and what he's hiding is so reprehensible—but legal—and we just have to live with it?
used with permission from

"You're My Celebrity Soulmate"

By Joni E Johnston Psy.D. on October 05, 2016 in The Human Equation
When does a fan become a foe? When the pseudo-intimacy of social media is mistaken for a real relationship.

Was Tyre King’s Shooting Justified?

By Gleb Tsipursky Ph.D. on October 03, 2016 in Intentional Insights
Research-based approaches can help us think in rational ways about racial profiling, implicit bias, and other emotionally polarizing topics.

9 Youth Violence Prevention Recommendations

By Kathryn Seifert Ph.D. on October 02, 2016 in Stop The Cycle
Everyone wants to know how to prevent the next school shooting. Here are 10 recommendations to move us closer to that goal.

Serial Killers Do Not Want to Get Caught

By Scott A. Bonn Ph.D. on October 02, 2016 in Wicked Deeds
It is not true that serial killers want to get caught. Most of them love their work far too much for that to be true.

You Can Be Fired for Wearing Dreadlocks

A federal court and court of appeals held that an Alabama company had the right to rescind its offer of employment to an African American woman who insisted on wearing dreadlocks.
Richard Cobb

The Ripper Conclave

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on October 01, 2016 in Shadow Boxing
Ripperologists gather for a conference in Whitechapel to explore the infamous 1888 Ripper murders.

Why Some People Blame the Victims of Crime

By Art Markman Ph.D. on September 30, 2016 in Ulterior Motives
There are many situations in which people blame the victims of crimes for what happened to them. Are there factors that predict when this happens?

Good Deeds, Sinister Motives

Good deeds can have a dark motive

Sex, Secrets, and Shame

By Marty Klein PhD on September 26, 2016 in Sexual Intelligence
Should the government criminalize fantasies? Many people already feel ashamed of theirs.

White Sensitivity Is Like Black Sensitivity

By Michael Karson Ph.D., J.D. on September 26, 2016 in Feeling Our Way
Being put in your body unexpectedly is status-lowering, whatever color your skin is.
K. Ramsland

The Murder Market

By Katherine Ramsland Ph.D. on September 25, 2016 in Shadow Boxing
Novelist takes readers on a very dark journey into the addictive world of the murder market.

The Truth Shall Set You Free—Except When It Doesn’t

By Eric Dietrich Ph.D. on September 24, 2016 in Excellent Beauty
Uncertainty can be more deadly than certainty, but certainty is what the law is looking for. Why, when it is such a rare commodity?

5 Ways of the Corporate Psychopath

How ruthless predators infiltrate and compromise organizations.

Women’s Right to Say YES to Sexuality

By Aaron Ben-Zeév Ph.D. on September 21, 2016 in In the Name of Love
Women’s sexual right to say “yes” should be respected, including their right to freely shape their sexual performances, without incurring any social or emotional censure.