Compulsive Crimes: More Common Than You Think?

There are many different classifications of crimes. One of the more interesting of these categories is the compulsive crime. This type of crime is often the result of an emotional issue rather than criminal intent. In fact, many of these people do not even realize that they have broken the law because the emotion to do what they did was so strong at the time.

Common Forms Of Compulsive Crimes

Shoplifting – While some forms of shoplifting are done with criminal intent, there are many cases that involve compulsion. Compulsive shoplifters steal to meet an emotional need. Since they are close in proximity to the infamous Mall of America, any Minneapolis criminal defense attorney can attest to the fact that most shoplifters, surprisingly, can usually afford what they steal. However, if they choose to purchase the item, it will not fill their emotional need.

Gambling – While gambling is not a crime, compulsive gambling can lead a person to steal or embezzle money so that they can continue to gamble.
Compulsive Drug Crimes – Also known as economic-compulsive crimes, these crimes are usually the result of someone who is desperate to get a fix for drugs and commits a crime to get the money to buy drugs.

Stalking – Again, some cases of stalking are done with criminal intent; many cases that occur are the result of a compulsion. This usually occurs when someone starts stalking a celebrity, sports figure or musician.

This is only a sampling of these types of crimes. There are others that can fall under this type of classification.

Laws Regarding Compulsive Crimes

Many states have enacted new laws that are specifically designed to address the mental and emotional problems that are the cause of these crimes. Louisiana, for instance, has established new laws and sentencing procedures that deal specifically with compulsion crimes. The state has decided that it is more in the best interest of the state and the criminal to have these people treated for a mental condition than to place them in prison.

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Other states have implemented similar laws and sentencing procedures for these types of crimes. However, it must be proven to the Court that the individual that committed a crime actually did so due to a compulsion and not due to criminal intent.

States that have implemented these laws have also laid out specific criteria that must be met for the accused to be deemed as a compulsive criminal. These people must undergo Court approved psychological evaluation before the Court will accept this type of plea.

Compulsive crimes occur more often than an average person may believe. This mental issue drives these people to do things that any rational person would see as wrong. They, however, do not see it as wrong; they see it as the only way to fill a personal need.

Compulsions are very hard to understand. In fact, most people that suffer from this type of disorder do not even recognize it as a problem. It is not until they are facing a jail sentence and have been evaluated by a professional that they are confronted with the reality that there is a problem that is causing them to act this way.

Bethany Gillis offers this information to make more people aware of the many variations of compulsive crimes. It is her hope that anyone who is currently battling such a compulsion, or perhaps knows someone who is, will seek professional help. She has found that, if an arrest has already been made,  Minneapolis criminal defense attorney group Devore Law, or a legal professional in your local area, has answers to help explore your legal options.

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