Fear in certain crimes

A study by Bennett (2001) looks at other non- biological reasons for criminal behaviour these include socialisation by parents and peers and also verbal ability, raine et al. focus mainly on these biological aspects whereas there are studies that reject to only looking at crime from just one perspective, in the study by Raine and Liu (1998) they tend to focus on biological factors alone and fail to mention the criminal differences between males and females.

It has been argued that the level in which criminal behaviour is inherited genetically may come down to the behaviour of a child's parent, if the parent has a criminal background and is in prison it will obviously effect the child's life a great deal, there is substantial evidence that children brought up in single parent families suffer, a study carried out by Anderson et al (1998) into single parent families looks at these factors, finding that as a result of one parent being in prison, children are at an increased risk of delinquency.

If a child lives in a single-parent family and in areas with high levels of family disruption they have a higher chance of becoming a criminal themselves, this study suggests that while biology has a part to play in the development of crime, social factors also have a major part to play.

It is thought social factors could impair a child's intelligence, problem solving skills and impair overall social skills essential for formulating non-aggressive solutions to problems, on a cognitive level it would cause poor concentration, all these factors could result in school failure, economic problems and maybe even homelessness in later life, which could push an individual further into a criminal lifestyle, we cannot however predict a person will become a criminal only point out that there is evidence that these factors may cause a person to commit a crime whereas a person with a good social background would be less likely and would take longer to get into such a social state.

A study that goes against the biological approach to the subject of crime and supports the view that biology cannot be the major factor in understanding criminal behaviour is a study by Martin (2002), Martin points out that what constitutes a problem for those who are concerned with social justice is not the fact that particular behaviours may be genetically determined, but the fact that our value system and social institutions create the conditions that make such behaviours problematic, he also states that biological determinism points to natural limits constraining individuals, and therefore tends to de-emphasize the influence of social circumstances . Thus, if biological determinism were true, it would seem that no possible social system or educational policy changes the status quo.

In another study by Raine (1990) it is shown that under arousal may be critically involved in the development of antisocial and criminal behaviour, 101 fifteen year olds were taken using a random sample, the resting skin conductance heart rate and EEG activity were measured, the 101 subjects were then reassessed nine years later at twenty-four, criminals were found to have lower resting heart rates, slow wave EEG and reduced skin conductance. As a criticism to Raine et al. it could be argued that living a delinquent life could lower heart rate, due to the excitement and exercise they may be involved in, but then again a fit non- criminal may have the same heart rate.

This particular study does not seem to look at the seriousness of the crime and the specific crime, it is thought that a small crime like getting into a fight would be different to an armed robbery and there would be more fear in certain crimes, this phenomenon was looked at by (Raine and Jones, 1987) they suggested that an individual who is lacking in fear would be more likely to become involved in violent fight because they are not afraid of the consequences.

Overall, after assessing all the information, it Seems like biology and genetics can explain and predict some aspects of criminal behaviour, but there are a number of other factors that contribute to the development of criminal behaviour, crime can therefore not be explained by any one factor, the biological explanations have great validity and will be continually worked on but other factors such as social and individual reasons must be taken into consideration to create a full understanding of the subject and explanations of crime as a whole.