The ‘Environmental Factor’: When Criminals Are Also Victims

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Watts

Could the racism and poverty that fueled the Los Angeles' Watts rebellion in 1965 be considered an "environmental" cause of criminal behavior? Photo of Watts, 1965 by Beth Noe via Flickr.

In a 1968 murder case, the defendant claimed systemic racism and poverty were mitigating circumstances in his crime. An appeals court rejected the argument, but is the relationship between the “environment” and criminal behavior worth examining today . . .

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