A teddy on the groundFamily Homicide

Exploring the dark world of familial murder where family members turn on each other with deadly consequences. Family homicide is a rising phenomenon which includes partner violence, familicide, parricide and siblicide where murder occurs inside the family carried out family member against family member.

Related: Criminal Casefiles | Research Articles | Juvenile Crime | The Criminal Mind

Familicide is characterised by multiple victims of homicide within the same family and where the perpetrator is also a member of that family.


Familicide is a crime that has invoked horror and fascination in equal measures. It is characterised by multiple murder victims from the same family where their killer is also a family member. Furthermore, many familicide cases involve the murder of children within that family.

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Parricide: when children kill their own parents.


Parricide is an act which causes horror when the lives of parents are taken by their own offspring. The FBI suggest there are 200 to 300 parricides every year. That is up to 300 murders where the person responsible was not only known to their victim, but was their own child.

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Within siblicide, as with any homicide, there is always the question of motive. Why would anyone kill their own sibling?


Siblicide is a type of family homicide where murder takes place within the family unit. Often also referred to as fratricide, it is one of the most rare forms of family homicide but can be one of the most difficult to understand. Murders within families can feature significantly inside homicide rates.

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The profile of a man who kills his family, often called a ‘family annihilator’ “is a middle-aged man, a good provider who would appear to neighbours to be a dedicated husband and a devoted father.” says Professor Jack Leven, Professor of Sociology and Criminology Emeritus at Northeastern University in Boston.

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A murderer is regarded by the conventional world as something almost monstrous, but a murderer to himself is only an ordinary man. It is only if the murderer is a good man that he can be regarded as monstrous. – Graham Greene

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