“The 1 % of the population accountable for 63 % of all violent crime convictions”


That’s the title of an article about Swedish research into violent crime in that country.  In the light of our discussion yesterday about violent crime in Washington D.C. and other US cities, I found its conclusions very interesting.  Here’s the abstract (i.e. executive summary) from the article.  Bold, underlined text is my emphasis.


Population-based studies on violent crime and background factors may provide an understanding of the relationships between susceptibility factors and crime. We aimed to determine the distribution of violent crime convictions in the Swedish population 1973–2004 and to identify criminal, academic, parental, and psychiatric risk factors for persistence in violent crime.


The nationwide multi-generation register was used with many other linked nationwide registers to select participants. All individuals born in 1958–1980 (2,393,765 individuals) were included. Persistent violent offenders (those with a lifetime history of three or more violent crime convictions) were compared with individuals having one or two such convictions, and to matched non-offenders. Independent variables were gender, age of first conviction for a violent crime, nonviolent crime convictions, and diagnoses for major mental disorders, personality disorders, and substance use disorders.


A total of 93,642 individuals (3.9 %) had at least one violent conviction. The distribution of convictions was highly skewed; 24,342 persistent violent offenders (1.0 % of the total population) accounted for 63.2 % of all convictions. Persistence in violence was associated with male sex, personality disorder, violent crime conviction before age 19, drug-related offenses, nonviolent criminality, substance use disorder, and major mental disorder.


The majority of violent crimes are perpetrated by a small number of persistent violent offenders, typically males, characterized by early onset of violent criminality, substance abuse, personality disorders, and nonviolent criminality.

There’s much more at the link.  Highly recommended reading for those in the field of crime prevention, investigation and prosecution.

Based upon my (admittedly subjective and anecdotal) experience as a prison chaplain, I’d say that seems accurate.  A small minority of criminals perpetrate most of the crimes (and cause most of the trouble behind bars).  The “hard core” really is a hard core, dominating criminal society in and out of prison by their sheer ruthlessness and uncaring brutality towards anyone they consider a threat or a rival.  Here’s an excerpt from my memoir of prison chaplaincy, “Walls, Wire, Bars and Souls“, to illustrate at least part of the problem in action.

Violence is a constant undercurrent to life in a high-security institution. Most of the inmates are predators, after all, and our rules and regulations can’t change that deep-rooted reality. They’re going to go on looking for prey — and in the absence of innocent victims, they’ll prey on each other. Many of them are members of various gangs (of which more later), or join gangs once they’re incarcerated. The gangs act like packs of predators, preying on individuals, other gangs and anyone else available.

There are also particularly dangerous individuals who hold themselves aloof from gangs. We shipped one off to Supermax after holding him in isolation in SHU for a long time. He’d murdered his cellmate, and used to boast that he was going to kill one of the staff before he left. He had nothing to lose, after all. He’s going to be in prison until he dies. If he succeeded in killing a staff member, how could we punish him? Another life sentence wouldn’t make any difference, and the death penalty would actually be merciful compared to the many decades he faces behind bars. You may be sure that we were very careful in how we handled him. He never left his cell without being shackled hand and foot, and guarded by a three-person escort under the command of a Lieutenant. We all breathed a sigh of relief when he left us — all except the crew assigned to escort him to Supermax. Their language reportedly scorched paint from the nearest wall when they were informed of their selection! (I’m pleased to report that they made it back safely.)

In every Federal penitentiary there’s what’s known as the ‘Posted Picture File’ or PPF. It used to be on paper in multiple files, kept in the Lieutenant’s Office and updated frequently, but is now often online. Every member of staff is required to read it on a regular basis, and certify that they’ve done so. It contains a page for every inmate regarded as dangerous, with his photograph, a description of the crime(s) for which he’s been incarcerated, and the reason(s) he’s considered a threat. Prior to its automation, our institution’s paper PPF filled two thick binders to capacity. They contained records for a very significant proportion of our inmate population. Their history of attempts (many of them successful) to suborn or seduce or assault or murder prison staff and inmates, their vicious attacks on fellow convicts, and their conspiracies with those outside prison to target others (including the families of other inmates and prison staff), made for very chilling reading indeed. We don’t get complacent inside the walls, believe me.

I described one such inmate in more detail (using a pseudonym for him, of course, to protect his identity).

Finally, let’s take Howard. He got drunk one night and began to smash the furniture and fittings in his uncle’s home. His uncle tried to stop him… a fatal mistake. Howard beat him until he collapsed, then for two days and nights drank himself into a stupor, periodically getting up to kick and stomp his uncle as he lay moaning on the floor. Howard eventually passed out. He was found next morning, unconscious at the table, with his uncle dead on the floor beside him. He’d been in enough trouble with the law on previous occasions that this crime earned him a life sentence without parole. He’s still a relatively young man, and still just as violent. He’s been known to get bombed out of his skull on prison hooch (of which more later). When he gets that way, everyone steers clear of him, even the prison ‘hard men’ — all except the reaction squad, who have to subdue him and put him in the Hole to sober up. He’s quite capable of killing anyone who crosses him.

Howard’s eyes scare me. They’re pitch-black and utterly lifeless. When one looks into them, one strives to detect a spark of life, of humanity, of the person inside the body… but it’s not there. I’ve never looked into the bottomless pits of Hell, but I’ve got a good idea what they must be like after working with Howard. He’s one of the few convicts who genuinely frightens me. I take care not to show it, but I also try to have support available if I’ve got to see him about something. He could snap at any moment (and has in the past). I want to make sure that if he does so while I’m around, I have the best possible chance of coming out of it relatively unscathed.

I’ve met too many like Howard, and I take their threat very seriously.  It’s one reason I carry a gun, because I know they’re out there.  For every one behind bars, I’d guesstimate there are at least two or three on the street.

Go read the Swedish report for yourself.  I think it’s very applicable to the US criminal community as well.



  1. Hmmm… 1%. That matches the Sociopath/Psycopath percentage. Hmmm…

    And what helps make non-functioning socio/psychos? Broken homes, family history of alcoholism and drug use, and other things like that.

    And this is nothing new. This was known in the early 1800's, when the Quakers took over the reformation of America's penal system. And in the late 1800's from New York City's police records. And known over and over and over again.

    Now look at the populations where the crime is, index broken homes, bad family histories (if there is one) and, what do you get? Inner city gang members.

  2. And it continues to be 'ignored' by those in power because to actually work the issue would require housing many more than the prison system is capable of…

  3. I wonder how many people there are who, if they thought they could get away with it, would become like the 1% violent criminals? Look at the number of people who participate in the rioting and looting, shoplifting, etc. in those cities that do nothing to stop that behavior. How many of those individuals would quickly turn to violent crime if they thought they could get away with it as easily as they get away with the so-called petty crimes?
    Unfortunately, we may find out the answer to the above questions should we experience a societal break down where the police quit responding to calls for help.

  4. Something not accounted for in that survey (I'll match paychecks), would be the near 1:1 Venn circle correspondence between that 1%, an IQ below 80, and a high melatonin count. Fatherless homes would account for everything else outside that.

    Back in the late 1980s, when it was still safe to do so in public, Wm. Buckley's National Review noted in print that the incidence of violent crime in the U.S. committed by all whites (which included hispanics) was a rate lower than the violent crime rate in Luxembourg, and if they removed hispanics from the sample population, the U.S. crime rate dropped to one lower than that of Liechtenstein.

    Even with liberal parole laws and hundreds of millions of guns readily available here.

    To speak those facts out loud now is to tar and feather oneself, and staple a klan hood to your head.

    We don't have a crime problem; we simply haven't chosen to use the gibbet to eliminate recidivism among the worst of the worst, who most desperately need it. But such common sense would play out as "RAYCISSSSSSSS!"

  5. A couple of other observations.

    The study focused on native-born only and while they noted that having one immigrant parent was a risk factor they didn't identify what fraction of each tier of offence count could be attributed to that factor.

    Also, it looks like they only analyzed crimes by the subject group, I didn't see any reference to the overall crime count to see what percentage was caused by multiple-offender immigrants.

    So yes, career criminals are the problem and removing them prevents a LOT of future crimes but the 1% of native born are not the only such group that needs to be identified and removed from society.

  6. A perverse observation. This same type of analysis might be applied to "political" thought. What percentage of the population is readily identifiable as anti-government as defined by those in power?

  7. @The Lab Manager: I'm afraid the testimony at their trial completely disproves your claims about "three awesome white men". They were anything but awesome; they were tried and convicted by a jury of their peers, and they got what they deserved. If I'd been on that jury, based on the evidence presented, I'd have voted to convict them.

    You consistently display pro-white and anti-every-other-race sentiments in your comments here. Please don't. If that's not acceptable to you, then please don't bother to come back here. I'm sure you'll find darker corners of the Web that will give you a willing home.

  8. When you aren't serious about violent crime and protecting your population, you provide reports like this that ignore race, country of origin, etc.

  9. My late uncle worked at a state prison as a psychiatrist for a number of years. He wrote an article noting that the men in the system that he had diagnosed as being sociopaths had an average of 6 children. He also had evidence that there was a hefty genetic factor. For some reason he could never get that article published.

  10. I would guess that the 1% in question are overwhelmingly black and Hispanic which reflects the general criminal patterns in America. That makes some White people uncomfortable when you point this out without a heaping helping of excuse making but that doesn't make it go away. Conversations about violent crime without including the racial aspect are useless.

  11. The higher level functioning socio/psychos are the ones running top corporations and the government.

    They aren't much for direct violence, but instead kill millions by proxy. Currently the very top level are aspiring for billions dead under the guidance of Klaus Schwab of the WEF. One weak pandemic wasn't enough, so they have more planned.

    The major difference between them and the creatures Peter writes about? Higher IQ and much better impulse control. And totally opposite demographics.

    And these higher level predators are the ones behind letting the lower level ones out on bail to prey on the rest of the population.

    Guess which group I'm more scared of?

  12. " I'm afraid the testimony at their trial completely disproves your claims about "three awesome white men". "

    The police had cleared them and then the communist press got involved. It's disgusting another criminal will have a day in their name. Society gains nothing by having these guys in jail. I simply don't see them as criminals.

    I'm simply tired of the anti-White justice system with these three great men in Georgia, the white female officer with the taser mix-up, George Floyd, etc.

    There are some great people from black and Indian and other immigrant communities trying to do what is right, but there is not enough of them to go around.

    And even your other readers here have pointed out which groups cause the most crime. I find it ironic that you left a multi-cultural deteriorating hole of a once great country to come here and pretend we are all equal. Some cultures will simply never grasp some aspects of Western Civilization and the statistics and antidotal evidence show that.

  13. I watched what I could of the trial, and followed various daily reviews on YT, and from what I got from the evidence presented, I could justify manslaughter, but that's about it. I certainly couldn't have convicted on all accounts.

    Having followed the Chauvin trial I couldn't have convicted in that one either.

    Then you have various molesters, rapists, and murderers who get off with next to nothing from a judge, jury, or prosecutor who just doesn't want to do their job. If the accused can claim any kind of victim status – grew up poor, lack of education, sexual orientation, religious discrimination, racism, or whatever flavor of the month is in vogue, they quite literally get away with a slap on the wrist, like the POS rapist in Cali who is being sent to juvenile facility for GIRLS

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