Shoplifting: Is There a Specific Psychiatric Syndrome?*
- Additional Document Info
- View All
The psychiatric, psychosocial and medicolegal variables of 50 shoplifters and two comparison groups are described. The shoplifters were found to be an almost identical population when compared to general, (non-forensic) psychiatric outpatients, and differed significantly from a comparison group of general forensic patients excluding shoplifters. A high level of psychosocial stress antedating the shoplifting behaviour was a significant finding. A profile of a typical shoplifter referred for psychiatric examination is a 37 year old married female person, employed at the professional end of the occupational spectrum, who is suffering from a depressive neurosis and who steals an item of insignificant value or use to herself. The psychiatric diagnostic profile supports the lenient legal disposition by the courts.
has subject area