Another cause which makes these children tick is family. This instance is the engagement of irresponsible parenting and bad upbringing, similar to the abusive situations mentioned above. One of the biggest ever cases is in the case of James Bulger’s murder, many motives were arisen but the most frequently questioned one was whether or not the two young boys that murdered James had been watching a violent horror film from the collection of one of the boys’ father.
However, this was not the only proposed cause, because the young boy’s, named Jon Enables and Robert Thompson, also had problems in their home with their family, which will later be discussed. Jon and Robert were troublesome boys that often did the wrong thing. On the day of the murder of Jamie Bulger, the two youngsters who were playing truant from school in a local shopping centre in which they often stole items such as batteries, enamel paint, stationary, sweets, make up and more. They rarely kept any of their stealing, just threw them away because to them it was just the fun and buzz that they got from it.
It was evident that the boys were menaces when they were told to leave everywhere they went, and got chased out of McDonald’s for climbing all over the chairs. After, the murder when questioned in custody whose idea it was to coax Jamie away from his mother at the shopping centre that day, Robert claimed that Jon said “Lets get a kid, I haven’t hit one for ages. “8 However, Jon also claimed that Robert had said, “Let’s get him lost outside so when he goes into the road he’ll get knocked over.
“9 It can not be determined if either one of the boys was right, but it can go without saying that they had brutal intentions for this toddler. After, getting the Jamie away from his mother they took him down to a nearby hang out of theirs, an isolated canal, where they dropped James on his head. Later on that evening when it had become dark, the boys were presented with a police station but they bypassed it and continued on to a railway where Jon and Robert proceeded to murder the toddler.
At first, paint was thrown into James’s left eye, then he was hit by stones and bricks and possibly even sexually assaulted, and as if it wasn’t enough, the boys proceeded to beat him with an iron bar and then thinking he was dead, left his body on the railway track after putting bricks on his continuous bleeding head. The boys were obviously questioned and put on trial following the murder, and motives arose. They had had very difficult upbringings living in one of the most run down areas in the UK.
Jon was a middle child, whose siblings both had developmental problems; his older brother was born with a cleft pallet meaning that he could not communicate well and was prone to frustration and had frequent temper tantrums which led to him attending a special school and led to his parent’s focusing most of their attention trying to control his brother’s outbreaks, but they found this difficult so they often put him in foster care.
Jon’s younger sister also attended a special needs school taking even more attention from Jon. This lack of attention made him confused and resentful. He was also troubled by his parent’s having a turbulent marriage constantly splitting up and preventing any kind of security in the family. Both of the parent’s had been diagnosed with clinical depression, suicidal tendencies, and when their mother was stressed, she often beat them and shouted abusive language at them.
Jon was always an antisocial child, especially with other children his age because they repeatedly made fun of and mocked him and his mentally challenged siblings. When Jon met Robert they then became the bullies instead of the bullied. With Robert now Jon’s friend, he felt tough rather than weak and became a well-known trouble maker. When analysing the two boys, it was discovered that Jon had no severe mental illness and that he knew death was certain, claiming that it meant that people could not come back.
He also had a vivid idea of heaven and hell as permanent places. However, he was said to be scared of television violence because when a bloody or gruesome scene was shown, he would have to turn away covering his eyes and ears. In the case of Robert, a psychiatrist concluded that he was above average intellectually and also had no mental illness, but at the time showed signs of post-traumatic stress disorder.
Robert on the other hand was the tough one of the two and appeared as the ringleader in the murder; however he was more likely to emit his anger for defence rather than inflicting unnecessary pain on someone else, because he was brought up in a violent household. His father was an aggressive alcoholic that repeatedly beat his wife and left the family when the children were young, and his mother was a beaten alcoholic wife that took out her aggression by hitting her sons with sticks and belts, and she also attempted suicide several times.
From this, the children resulted to demonstrating violence on each other just because that is what they themselves had constantly been shown by their parents. Robert had six siblings all with problems; the oldest brother was placed in social care following abuse at the age of four, another brother became a thief, another was an arsonist and suspect of sexually abusing children (maybe even Robert), and one brother violently threatened his teachers on a regular bases and constantly attempted to commit suicide.
This horrific family environment led Robert to become antisocial and to abuse his younger brother (maybe even sexually as he did not deny or confirm this when asked in questioning). The case study used of James Bulger, was a huge case, and in researching this, I have discovered many things and found many answers. Like that of Cheryl Pierson, Mary Bell, Cindy Collier and Shirley Wolf, and now, these two young boys, family including security love and a good upbringing is a crucial part and need of a child’s development.
In conclusion I would like to integrate a quote by Walter C. Reckless, which is an extensive summary to my discussed theories and ideas. “Unlike biological theories, the sociological study of crime emphasizes the role of the environment on criminal behaviour. Here, Walter reckless advocates that society contributes tom criminal conduct by showing that external factors can influence crime rates and patterns. Reckless argues that family discord, peer pressure, and community factors aid in the creation of juvenile delinquents and criminals alike.
He emphasizes the roles of society in both the definition and socialization of criminal behaviours and advocates increased focus on these to predict and prevent criminality.
Pg. 12, Time Warner, Born to be Killers; the complexity of abnormal behaviour. 2 Maccoby, E. E. (1980) Social Development. New York: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Inc. 3 Duncan, Alice. “”Outline how our environment plays a role in causing children to kill? “. ” 4 Pg. 144, Time Warner, Born to be Killers; the complexity of abnormal behaviour. 5 Pg. 29, Charles Ewing, Children Who Kill.