WHEN A CHILD KILLS by Paul A. Mones

WHEN A CHILD KILLS

Abused Children Who Kill Their Parents

KIRKUS REVIEW

 From an attorney who specializes in defending children who kill parents, case studies that show how years of sexual, physical, or emotional abuse--sometimes all three--always provide the motive for these crimes. It is nearly a decade since the national conscience was pricked by commission reports and well-publicized revelations on the subject of child abuse. Among the saddest aspects of the eight tragic stories related here is that so many relatives, friends, neighbors, teachers, social workers, judges, and jurors still turn blind eyes to evidence of abuse. Then a child dies, or is driven to murder. It is Mones's job, as a lawyer and an expert on juvenile parricide, to help convince a horrified court and community that the murder of an abusive parent is defensible, if not justifiable. The children are not always lovable, the parents are not always archvillains. But the moving stories of Tim, Patty, Steve, Cindy and others who shot mother or father or both show they knew no other way out. Painfully graphic, the details of incest and violence are presented here as they were laid out for the juries. Baldly evident are the flaws in a legal system that protects a parent's absolute authority over a child, virtually no matter what. Informed by court records and extensive personal interviews, a welcome contribution to the growing literature on child abuse.

Pub Date: Oct. 7th, 1991
ISBN: 0-671-67420-X
Page count: 352pp
Publisher: Pocket
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Aug. 1st, 1991




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