Case Summary Analysis Essay

Total Length: 1790 words ( 6 double-spaced pages)

Total Sources: 3

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Kennedy, aged 46, was traveling in a convoy when he was shot. He was in a limousine with an open top, passing the Book Depository of Texas School Building, in downtown Dallas at around 12:30 P.M. Kennedy's wife, Jacqueline Kennedy, the governor of Texas John Connally (1917-1993), and John's wife Nellie were riding with President Kennedy that day. John Connally also got shot and sustained serious injuries. Kennedy is said to have died 30 minutes after the shot. He had been rushed to the Parkland Hospital of Dallas.

Less than 60 minutes after the shooting, Oswald, who was formerly a Marine, murdered a police officer who interrogated him while on a street close to his rooming house in Dallas. Oswald had just begun his job at the Book of Depository of Texas School Building. After half an hour, he was apprehended while at the movie theatre. The police had been informed about a suspect. On 23rd November, Oswald was officially arraigned in court for two murders, Kennedy's and that of Officer J.D. Tippit.

Behavior of the offender(s) relative to the psychological history and evaluation of the offender(s).

Oswald was an angry and bitter young man. While he was young, his mother did not control his violent ways. In fact, she may have had a hand in his rebellion. Oswald was fixated on getting what he desired. There are so many similar case histories in prison files. Oswald developed hate for the world while he was still very young. He also believed that he had to succeed on his own. In addition, he realized the reality that he needed to grow without the maternal warmth he should have acquired from his mother.

People who knew Oswald well claimed that he was arrogant, aggressive and secretive. He was also, to some extent, paranoid. According to Robert, his brother, he also enjoyed creating mystery and drama around himself. While he was still young, Lee gained interest in those TV shows with subversive activities and espionage.

Lee Oswald believed that he was important, and often, his wife would make fun of him for it. The mockery he got from his wife aggravated his hate and anger, especially since he was already a troubled man. On the eve of the murder, Oswald attempted to make things better for his wife, since they had had disagreements during their life in the marriage. Oswald's wife rejected his attempts, which must have hurt his ego.

According to psychologists, people with low self-esteem tend to have pathological traits and aggression.
The psychologists have not considered extremely high self-esteem into consideration towards same effects until recently. People with narcissistic traits think very highly of themselves and believe that they do not have to act like other people do. This issue comes up when children are given either too much or too little emotional help. According to Dr. M. Kelly Oswald's mother doted on him and ignored his transgressions, instead of disciplining him.

Oswald's therapist concluded that he suffered from "personality pattern disruption, passive-aggressive behavior and schizoid features." He was also emotional and quite troubled while he was young. Oswald's problems were due to emotional deprivation and isolation, lack of a family setting and rejection by his mother, who was conflicted and self-involved (Hartogs, 1953).

Describe the psychological, behavioral, environmental, and cognitive factors that you believe led to the offender's criminality.

Due to his delinquent behavior as an adolescent, Oswald was put in juvenile detention in seventh grade, for truancy. He went through a psychiatric test, and it was discovered that he had a "clear fantasy life, twisting the subjects of power and omnipotence, and used them to make up for his current frustrations and shortcomings,."He had "passive-aggressive traits" and "schizoid features." Before he left New York for New Orleans, Lee allegedly beat up his mother (this was not his first time). He also threatened his sister-in-law with a knife while they argued. This showed that he had severe impulse control problems, triggered especially by anger. He also portrayed symptoms of Oppositional Defiant and Conduct Disorders (Diamond, 2013).

By the age of seventeen, Oswald had lived in over twenty cities, having attended many different schools. Living with a self-involved mother gave him limited support, structure and stability. Oswald, not surprisingly, probably in search of better structure and transition into a man, joined the Marine Corps of the U.S. when he turned 17. Oswald was trained to be a sharpshooter. He shot himself by accident, and was later court-martialed twice. He got into trouble for violent insubordination to his superior, unlawful possession of a firearm that was non-regulated as well as unnecessarily using a rifle while in a jungle in the Philippines. Oswald was still in search for direction and a cause, so he read a lot, focusing on the Castro support movement, communism and Marxism. He wanted to get some sense of purpose, community and meaning to his life, which seemed insignificant.

Summarize the psychological history of the offender as….....

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Ayton, M. (2016, October). Lee Harvey Oswald's Motives. Retrieved from

Diamond, S. A. (2013, November 21). Why Did Lee Harvey Oswald Kill John Fitzgerald Kennedy? Retrieved from Psychology Today:

Hartogs, R. (1953). Lee Harvey Oswald: Troubled Youth; Oswald Assessed by Psychiatrist Renatus Hartogs. Bronx.

Warren Commission Report. (1963). Lee Harvey Oswald: Troubled Youth. New York City.

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