« Notable criminology studies from international sources | Main | A remarkable concurrence in the affirmance of a long mandatory minimum sentence »

September 7, 2009

Confronting the gendered realities of extreme sex crimes

Most serious observers of the criminal justice system surely recognize how dramatically "gendered" much criminal offending tends to be — i.e., the vast majority of serious criminal offenders are men, and many female offenders get involved in crimes because of, or through, their relationship to men.  Nevertheless, these gendered realities are not often broadly discussed or debated.  But, as this new Sacremento Bee article highlights, the high-profile Garrido case is prompting new discussions of these matters.  The piece is headlined "Women's role in sex crimes resurfaces as issue," and here is how it starts:

Charlene Williams of Sacramento lured six teenage girls and four young adults to their deaths as her husband demanded the perfect "sex slave."

Michelle Lyn Michaud, also of Sacramento, customized curling irons to help her boyfriend torture and murder a 22-year-old student abducted from a Pleasanton street.

In Utah, Wanda Eileen Barzee was accused of helping her husband kidnap 14-year old Elizabeth Smart at knifepoint from her Salt Lake City bedroom so that he could secure another "wife."

Now along comes Nancy Garrido of the Bay Area. Like the others, Garrido is accused of teaming up with a male partner — in Garrido's case, her husband of nearly three decades — and allegedly committing unthinkable crimes against other women and children.

September 7, 2009 at 11:17 AM | Permalink


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Confronting the gendered realities of extreme sex crimes:


123D would save the wife, and not just the future victims.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 7, 2009 11:47:24 AM

Except you see men form groups, with and without sexual bonds to undertake crimes, both for profit and not. I would think that dynamic would be the better route for any research.

As an example, how did the Columbine pair find each other and decide that such an attack would be a good idea?

Profit crimes, bank robbery etc, make far more sense to me for this sort of grouping.

One idea I've seen, though I don't know if it is true or not with the no-profit type, one member of the group provides the identity for the rest, much like a cult leader figure.

Posted by: Soronel Haetir | Sep 7, 2009 12:25:23 PM

"and many female offenders get involved in crimes because of, or through, their relationship to men."

Nice to pull prejudice out of thin air. What is you back-up for that claim. As a "serious" observer I have never seen *any* factual data that supports such a claim. Or is this just another DB troll.

Posted by: Daniel | Sep 7, 2009 12:32:21 PM

Dan: I would like someone to find a feminist victimization whore lawyer who supports the death penalty, even for rapist/killers of little girls. There are none.

Many of the ladies got pulled in with their man. However, they loved the drugs and the sex when they flowed. Not victims, but scheming little vipers with better social and hustling skills than the guys. The slick and pretty ones go to rehab. The ugly, nasty ones go to stir.

However, take the prettiest, smartest, and best cook, they still all have antisocial personality disorder. No normal man will have them, after any brief encounter. So they have to seek out their own.

They need 123D as much as the males. But, they have even more protection than the male criminals from the vile criminal lover lawyer. Now they have victimization whores lawyers shrieking against the death penalty.

No feminist victimization whore lawyer will ever allow substantive corporal punishment or the immediate death penalty, no matter how many tortured and repeatedly raped female college student sex slaves are buried in the basement by the husband. It tells you what these feminist victimization whore lawyers value above all else, the rent. No government jobs from victims. Male hierarchy members love feminist victimization whore lawyers, even when yelled at, shrieked at, and targeted personally as sexist pigs. They hear the katching from feminism, while still in the taxpayers' pockets.

I do not know many feminist victimization whore lawyers on the hierarchy arrest list. Almost all are safe from arrest when the time comes to take down the world's most powerful criminal syndicate. There are females in the hierarchy, but it is the rare one who is a feminist victimization whore lawyer.

Before the lawyers get too sanctimonious about serial rapists and killers. You lawyers allow 17,000 extra-judicial executions, many with rapes before and after death. The vile criminal lover lawyer is the biggest mass murderer of all. No one conspires as he does. No one has more murder victims. The lawyer whores in the hierarchy need justice as much as the males with whom they collaborate. Execute this criminal syndicate hierarchy, the crime rate, including serial murder, drops by 90% in a month.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 7, 2009 1:44:33 PM

Daniel, all the examples given in this article provide support for my suggestion that many female offenders get involved in crimes because of, or through, their relationship to men. In addition, many of the federal cases I read involving female defendants usually have a relationship to a man in the statement of facts.

For something a bit more systematic, consider this abstract of a recent criminology piece --- http://crj.sagepub.com/cgi/content/abstract/8/2/147 --- which concludes based on interviews with female offenders that there is "the widespread use of devices by males ranging from various forms of manipulation to direct physical coercion in order to ensure female compliance with their criminal activities."

Posted by: Doug B. | Sep 7, 2009 3:28:48 PM

Where is the immediate coercion if you are lining up defenses for these accomplices? And is coercion a defense to homicide?

As to "devices by males", those are called the lifestyle, the cocaine, the credit card, the straight cash, not to mention the privilege of the sexual sadism fun of it.

The female victims of these male devices are straight whores. The lawyers are victimization whores. You decide which is worse. To their credit, the whores are not sanctimonious when assisting their man nab a sex slave. The lawyer victimization whore is insufferable in PC sanctimony.

Thanks, to the lack of protection from the criminal lover lawyer, this crime is under reported by any survivors. I have met a couple of ladies taken as sex slaves. They refused to report the crime, even when told they would be helping future victims. One was taken from our country, through customs, and back. I can't blame them since the criminal has the total protection of the criminal lover lawyer. The crime victim has no protection. One reported the crime to the FBI. Nothing happened to the abductor nor his wife. A lot of paper shuffling. It is she that has to look over her shoulder, not the lawyer immunized criminal.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 7, 2009 4:49:37 PM

Doug. I won't dispute that there are men that manipulate women, just like I won't dispute their are women who manipulate men. But given the fact that some 48% of the population in the USA is men it's normal to find men involved in the lives of women. None of the items you reference support the claim that *many* men manipulate women into sex crimes. They merely indicate that there are a few men that do.

It's rather interesting that if a man is involved in a sex crime no one questions if a woman manipulated him. But if a woman is involved in a sex crime somewhere there is a man to blame.

Honestly I'm astonished. Given prior comments on this blog I though you were more sophisticated than your comment shows.

Posted by: Daniel | Sep 7, 2009 8:49:18 PM

I suggest Prof. Berman volunteer to teach literacy in a local prison. Just 2 hours a week. He will get a lot out of the experience of getting to know the prisoners. They will greatly benefit from his erudition. He will be safe. The prisoners will protect him because he will be helping them. They respond well to mutual respect.

I know he is all Ivy. However, he will get new respect for the skills and effort it took for these prisoners needed to survive their Fallujah like environment, devoid of police protection, with lawyer herded crime, and the full time pursuit of personal security.

In informal brain storming sessions about the writing course, ask them about their beliefs. For example, do any believe in the death penalty? Their ladies. Who was the real boss? Are they libertarians or real rule enforcers in their own businesses with lots of tiny gotchas? And how are rules enforced in their businesses? If the class is not monitored, ask, how many crimes they were committing a week. Multiply by the duration of their careers. How would they deal with someone who acts as they do?

He may enjoy that class as much as his law school classes. In a structured setting, they are not really different from anyone else.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 7, 2009 10:13:33 PM

"In a structured setting, they are not really different from anyone else."

Are you suggesting that a classroom is no different from a prision?


Posted by: Daniel | Sep 8, 2009 1:07:28 AM

In a system that fails to distinguish in any meaningful way between actual shooters and their arguably less culpable (perhaps even unwitting) companions in non-sexual crimes, what practical difference does it make why these women participated in sex crimes?

Posted by: John K | Sep 8, 2009 5:21:49 PM

Dan: No. The prisoners are in cages, with guards with tools to make them comply with the rules. The class could use more coercion, but is different. The prisoners are where they belong unless among the likely 50% who are innocent. When the limits are set and enforced, they respond and normalize. For example, they might decide to learn to read and write for the first time. They each may have a good book in them.

There is a NY Times story about the client with MR who was spared the death penalty by the Supreme Court (he ran a drug business from age 9 - you try that, see how MR he was). After spending so much time with lawyers, his IQ went up enough to death qualify him.

Anecdotal, you may say. But it is a clue to a valid, beneficial effect of lawyers. This may be where the lawyer has success, as opposed to across the board failure in all goals of all legal subjects. Send them the people with illiteracy, with MR, the lawyer will improve their skills without even trying to. Lawyers provide the best special ed.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 9, 2009 1:34:34 AM

John: Oliver Wendell Homes supported felony murder crime. He is never wrong. A professor cited fractions from a study showing no benefit from having felony murder. I redid the math because of the above OW track record. The prof made a math error, and felony murder charge does reduce murder.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 9, 2009 1:38:26 AM

Daniel, please read my initial post carefully. I never asserted "that *many* men manipulate women into sex crimes." Rather, my initial post (and my follow-up after you reacted to what you perhaps mistakenly thought I said) stated merely that "many female offenders get involved in crimes because of, or through, their relationship to men."

Please understand that I am not trying to make a controversial claim, but rather to state my sense, based on my own unscientific observation, that the vast majority of serious criminal offenders are men, and that "many female offenders get involved in crimes because of, or through, their relationship to men."

I sense that this focus on gendered realities has touched a nerve for you, as it may for many others. Perhaps this is why this issue is not broadly discussed, even though it seems worthy of board (and careful) discussion.

Posted by: Doug B. | Sep 9, 2009 2:00:16 PM

Prof. Berman: I would like to introduce you to the Equity Theory. It is the only Newtonian class rule in the social sciences of which I am aware. It makes planetary orbit class predictions. It states, because women bring the ability to bear children to a relationship, the male must always be superior to the female in some or many other ways.

Because criminals have the lowest value of anyone, no matter looks, intelligence, charm, cooking ability, they will always end up together.

The relationship is quite mutual, if forced on both parties by the rejection of the entire outside world. Even in the most patriarchal cultures, the pretense is of male superiority to the outside world. In the home, such females are the total boss.

So struggling actors work as bartenders. The female gets a part in a TV series. Within weeks, the husband is history and divorced. Gone in 60 days.

Andrew Cuomo loses his bid for Governor. Within weeks, the Kennedy wife is gone. Gone in 60 days.

These criminal liaisons are equal, across the board. Secrets are impossible in a family. The female has the choice of ending the career of her serial killer husband by picking up a phone at any time. Do you have such power in your marriage? Almost no one does.

You are a left wing feminist. Here is another almost Newtownian class principle, not quite as valid or robust as the Equity Theory. Take the PC position of the American academic. What is its opposite? That is the correct assertion.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Sep 9, 2009 11:12:42 PM

Post a comment

In the body of your email, please indicate if you are a professor, student, prosecutor, defense attorney, etc. so I can gain a sense of who is reading my blog. Thank you, DAB