Essential Reads

Police Versus Community: Why All the Trauma?

Using a trauma-informed lens to understand the promise of community policing.

How Our Lips Speak Louder Than Our Words

When you see the signs, you need to know what to say next.

Living After a Police Officer Dies

Where do families turn when their police officer dies?

When a Parent Is Incarcerated

Parental incarceration puts children in their own prison.

Recent Posts on Law and Crime

The Birth of Modern Day Criminal Profiling

By Scott A. Bonn Ph.D. on May 26, 2015 in Wicked Deeds
In the mid-1970s, two supervisory agents with the FBI, John Douglas and the late Robert Ressler, set out to create a centralized computer database where the motives of serial offenders were matched with crime scene information. Their efforts led to modern day criminal profiling.

Self-Esteem and Your Inner Biker

The news pumps up the biker “shootout” in Waco. The psychology of abandon cuts through the hype and examines how biker gangs mirror the struggle for self-esteem that shapes all of us—even you and me. Gun your engines.

What If A Junker Car Cost More Than A Porsche?

By Peter Edelstein M.D. on May 23, 2015 in Patient Power
What if you had to pay more to buy a junk car than a brand new sports car? That's a major problem with the American healthcare system, and one focus of ObamaCare (maybe the only one) on which we can all agree: tying payments to quality.

Fourteen Dead Men: Link or No Link?

Recent book provides comprehensive overview of Smiley Face incidents, offering unique serial murder theory.

Finding the Truth through Forensic Media Psychology

In years ahead, law schools, schools of psychology, television, media and film, business schools and schools of public policy will offer courses, certificates and degrees in Forensic Media Psychology. FMP is a field whose time has arrived. Must Read!

Do You Have the Personality to Drive an Indy Car?

Driving at over 200 miles per hour around an oval track requires not only a well-tuned engine, but also a driver with the right personality.

Criminals as Counselors: A Clarification

One does not have to be a criminal to help criminals change. But having lived a life of crime does not automatically disqualify an offender from helping others who are like him change

The Changing Face of the Heroin Addict

Heroin use is spiking across the United States, especially among middle-class populations without prior history of use.

Barred Art: Reflections on a Prison Art Show

Guest blogger and colleague Shannon Schmitz, an art therapist who has spent many years working as an art therapist in various prison settings, offers heartfelt musings following her recent experience of judging an art show in a makeshift prison art gallery.

VA Emails Discuss How to Handle "Problem" Vet

By Eric Newhouse on May 20, 2015 in Invisible Wounds
Ever wonder what the VA is saying behind your back? Charles Gatlin did. So he and his wife requested—and received—hundreds of pages of emails that testify to a growing rift between a vet and the agency designated to serve him.

What Did The LAPD Know About Robert Durst and When?

By Cathy Scott on May 20, 2015 in Crime, She Writes
An in-depth look at delayed evidence in the California case against real estate heir Robert Durst, who stands charged with the murder of his best friend, writer Susan Berman.

Vet Wins Partial Victory on TBI Rating Challenge

By Eric Newhouse on May 19, 2015 in Invisible Wounds
A VA appeals panel has ordered a full neuropsychological workup for a former Army captain, Charles Gatlin, who challenged his TBI disability rating on the grounds that the VA's RBANS screening test wasn't capable of measuring the brain injury he suffered from a car bomb in Iraq. It's a ruling with implications for all vets, but the VA says its policy won't change.

Police Versus Community: Why All the Trauma?

The power of trauma is that it compels us to protect ourselves from threats both real and imagined. How do you help police and community members filter threats that deserve our attention from those that don't?

How Our Lips Speak Louder Than Our Words

No one can read minds, but you can come close by observing nonverbal gestures.

On the Theater Shooting

With the trial going on, I am reposting my thoughts from the day of the shooting.

Boxing and Domestic Abuse

Why boxing is not a causal factor behind domestic abuse

Mad Men vs. Hill Street Blues

Which world do you choose?

Did Dzhokhar Tsarnaev Deserve the Death Penalty?

By Joe Pierre M.D. on May 15, 2015 in Psych Unseen
How did jurors decide Dzhokhar Tsarnaev's fate?

A Death Sentence Will Not Bring “Closure”

By Nancy Berns Ph.D. on May 15, 2015 in Freedom to Grieve
The jury’s decision to send Tsarnaev to death row will not bring closure for the families.

Living After a Police Officer Dies

By Nancy Berns Ph.D. on May 15, 2015 in Freedom to Grieve
If you look closer, you’ll see some of them wiping away tears. You’ll see the exhausted look of fresh grief on many faces. For others, eyes shine with appreciation of being among family—not related by blood but related by blood lost.

Can Women be as Violent as Men?

By Nigel Barber Ph.D. on May 14, 2015 in The Human Beast
Gender equality is making strides in most occupations, including violent ones such as the military and police. If violent crime is a “job,” as Woody Allen referred to bank robbery in Take the Money and Run, can we expect to see gender equality there also?

Protecting Mental Health Research from the War on Terror

Have we done enough to prevent government officials from forcing mental health professionals to act unethically?

A Postscript to the Baltimore Riots

Criminals, not the environment, cause crime

Fixing Corruption

By Ken Eisold Ph.D. on May 10, 2015 in Hidden Motives
Recently, The Economist looking into the effort of containing bribery, noted that “the cost and complexity of investigations are spiraling beyond what is reasonable. What can be done about it?

Videos of Violence and the Primacy of Perception

We believe what we see – and that has made a big difference in public responses to violence, from Ray Rice’s assault of his fiancée in an elevator several months ago to the killing of Walter Scott by a police officer in North Charleston, South Carolina.

The APA's Disappearing History

By Roy Eidelson Ph.D. on May 07, 2015 in Dangerous Ideas
Amid mounting evidence that the American Psychological Association colluded with the CIA in protecting the Bush Administration’s abusive “enhanced interrogation program,” it appears that someone has been steadily removing valuable, relevant content from the APA website. Perhaps it’s true after all: idle hands are indeed the devil’s workshop.

When a Parent Is Incarcerated

A two-step process developed by Dr. Glen Palm may help children cope with their parents' incarceration.

Child Custody Issues for Polyamorous Families

Sexual minorities usually fare poorly in court when family members (often an ex-spouse or parent/grandparent) or institutional representative from Child Protective Services challenge their custody of their children. This blog explains five things parents or families who are concerned about custody can do to prepare themselves in case their custody is challenged.

Freedom of Speech Is Everything

By Gad Saad Ph.D. on May 06, 2015 in Homo Consumericus
Offending someone’s religious sensibilities can never justify a violent response. There are no “but” qualifiers and the sooner that this lesson is internalized, the rosier our future will be.

The CIA’s Torture Consultant Darlings

By Jay Richards Ph.D. on May 05, 2015 in The Violent Mind
How the American Psychological Association has supported the CIA's "enhanced interrogation" (aka Torture) program.