Can We Identify Mass Murderers Before They Strike?

Jared Lougner

Seung-Hui Cho, Nidal Hasan, and Jared Lee Loughner: three men guilty of mass shootings (at Virginia Tech, Fort Hood, and a constituents meeting held by Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, respectively). In hindsight, it seems that it should have been possible to identify them as potential murderers before their horrible acts—whether by their odd or ominous behavior, or perhaps by matching them up with the psychological profiles of past mass killers.

In his piece for the online magazine Salon "Why Psychiatrists Can't Predict Mass Murderers," Professor of Psychology Richard J. McNally considers the difficult task of "distinguishing the truly dangerous from the merely odd." You can find a complete list of Prof. McNally's works in DASH here.