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Disaggregating Lone-actor Grievance-fuelled Violence: Comparing Lone-actor Terrorists and Mass Murderers

Clemmow, C; Gill, P; Bouhana, N; Silver, J; Horgan, J; (2020) Disaggregating Lone-actor Grievance-fuelled Violence: Comparing Lone-actor Terrorists and Mass Murderers. Terrorism and Political Violence 10.1080/09546553.2020.1718661. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Research suggests that lone-actor terrorists and mass murderers may be better conceptualized as lone-actor grievance-fueled violence (LAGFV) offenders, rather than as distinct types. The present study sought to examine the extent to which these offenders could (or could not) be disaggregated along dimensions relevant to the threat assessment of both. Drawing on a Risk Analysis Framework (RAF), the offending process was theorized as interactions among propensity, situation, preparatory, leakage and network indicators. We analyzed a dataset of 183 U.S. offenders, including sixty-eight lone-actor terrorists and 115 solo mass murderers. Cluster analysis identified profiles within each of the components: propensity (stable, criminal, unstable), situation (low stress, high stress (social), high stress (interpersonal), preparatory (fixated, novel aggression, equipped, clandestine, predatory, preparatory), leakage (high leakage, low leakage), and network (lone, associated, connected). Bi-variate analysis examined the extent to which the profiles classified offenders previously labeled as lone-actor terrorists or mass murderers. The results suggest that while significant differences may exist at the periphery of these dimensions, offenders previously classified as lone-actor terrorists or mass murderers occupy a noteworthy shared space. Moreover, no profile classifies a single “type” of offender exclusively. Lastly, we propose a dynamic, interactional model of LAGFV and discuss the implications of these findings for the threat assessment and management of LAGFV offenders.

Type: Article
Title: Disaggregating Lone-actor Grievance-fuelled Violence: Comparing Lone-actor Terrorists and Mass Murderers
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1080/09546553.2020.1718661
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1080/09546553.2020.1718661
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Lone-actor, terrorism, mass murder, lone-actor grievance-fueled violence, risk analysis framework, threat assessment
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Security and Crime Science
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10091881
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