A deep study between intelligence and crime

The Author is  Mr. Rajdeep Singh Chauhan, a student pursuing B.A.LL.B and currently in 8th semester, from LLOYD Law College, Greater Noida.
We always heard about that a person committed a crime and as usual, our mentality proved that he is a criminal, he is indeed criminal because he committed a crime, but we have to think that did he have any other options so that he could choose that other one and protect himself from the tag of criminal. According to scriptures, science every coin has two sides, positive and negative. So every criminal has also some positive elements but we have to develop those eyes to find positivity from them. We cannot say that individuals with high or low IQ have a higher chance of engaging in crime. The criminal intention doesn’t depend on IQ because no person is born criminal. There are a lot of circumstances behind a person for becoming a criminal. After committing any criminal activity, every criminal tries to find a way to prove him innocent. Here we can find out the role of IQ, so every criminal protect him according to their IQ.

IQ measures the cognitive ability of a person. The low IQ leads to poor situational decisions and poor analysis of the consequences of certain behavior. Also, low IQ leads to low cognitive development, low academic performance, and, thus, to poverty and low socioeconomic status that is S.E.S. All of these factors could contribute to crime. Those individuals having low IQ is more easily determined to engage in unlawful behaviors and persuaded to commit crimes and support consequences.[1] Most of the studies on intelligence and crime demonstrated that IQ has only an indirect effect on delinquency. Usually, the effect is mediated by school performance or environment.[2]

Intelligence and Crime
The relationship between intelligence and crime remains a fiercely debated topic. Despite recent advancements through revised intelligence tests and sophisticated brain imaging techniques, there remain numerous theoretical deficiencies regarding the mechanisms underlying the intelligence – crime relationship. Needless to say, these shortcomings need to be examined more thoroughly, and new hypotheses must emerge before the role of intelligence in criminal behavior can be fully explained.
First, the differential detection hypothesis states, in essence, that criminals with lower intelligence are more likely to be detected by the police authority for their unlawful activities compared with other criminals with higher intelligence quotient. In other simple words, we can say, individuals with higher intelligence may be committing crimes at the same rate as individuals with lower intelligence, but only the less intelligent ones are getting caught by the police authority. For that reason, most of the time it is argued that studies that show a relationship between intelligence and criminal behavior are invalid because the more intelligent criminals can avoid being detected by the police.[3]

Classification of Criminals according to their IQ
Many criminologists have written about the relationship between intelligence and crime, often finding an inverse relationship between these two. That is, criminologists have found individuals with a below-average IQ are more likely to commit a criminal offense than higher IQ individuals. The simple logic is behind this is that the criminals having high IQ use their brains to find techniques to protect themselves. Some have considered IQ among the most significant correlates of crime. However, James Oleson’s Criminal Genius sheds light on the offenses drawn from self-reports and interviews, committed by high IQ individuals, a group understudied in the field of criminology. 

Using a sample was drawn from members of a high IQ society, college students, and prisoners, Criminal Genius demonstrates that high IQ offenders defined as individuals with an IQ score of 130 or higher, may commit more offenses than lower IQ individuals. A novelty of Oleson’s research was the inclusion of participants from a high IQ society, whose members must score 150 or higher on the IQ test for membership, despite several earlier, failed efforts to obtain participation from other high IQ societies. Besides, Oleson analyzed the study’s participant’s involvement in 72 offenses. Nonetheless, a limitation of the study was the comparability of offenses committed by high IQ offenders and the low IQ offender’s individuals with IQ scores below the average IQ of 100 of previous criminological research since the average IQ score for the control the group was approximately 115, an above-average IQ.[4]

Development of criminal psychology
No person is born criminal, there are some critical circumstances behind a person who could be addressed as a criminal. If we studied the development of criminal intention which induced a person to take part in criminal activities, at the initial level we need to talk about those persons who have high IQ and those who have low IQ. God created human being and all humans have equal opportunities to prove themselves. In this world, every person completes their task according to their capacity, so they use their brain according to their IQ. But if that task is any criminal activity, then every criminal tries to get rid of such criminal tag and punishment. In this context, we will study those criminals who react with their high IQ and low IQ after committing a crime.

IQ tests generally are reliable enough that most people ages ten and older have similar IQ scores throughout life.[5] Still, some individuals score very differently when taking the same test at different times or when taking more than one kind of IQ test at the same age.[6] For example, many children in the famous longitudinal Genetic Studies of Genius begun in 1921 by Lewis Terman showed declines in IQ as they grew up. IQ level cannot characterize the chances of being criminal. Criminal intention can be considered are psychology or criminal and its accomplishment can be termed according to IQ of criminals. We can find the IQ level of any crime according to their strategy towards crime.

High and low IQ criminals
The majority of studies have found that there are different IQs between offenders and non-offenders. On average, the IQ for chronic juvenile offenders is 92, about half a standard deviation below the population means. For chronic adult offenders, however, the average IQ is 85, 1 standard deviation below the population mean. A study of Texas inmates who entered the prison system in 2002 indicated that approximately 23% of the inmates scored below 80, almost 69% scored between 80 and 109, and only 9.6% scored above 110 IQ level.[7]
This should not be taken as evidence that IQ is unimportant in delinquency or criminal behavior. When researchers examine self-report data that are based on measures of relatively serious crime, such as armed robbery, burglary, or assault, they note substantial IQ differences. Individuals with relatively lower IQs are more likely to report engaging in these serious criminal acts. The association between IQ and misbehavior, therefore, depends on the seriousness of the behavior being analyzed, with the association becoming stronger as the behavior becomes more serious. Indian legal system doesn’t provide any provision that the punishment which is given to the criminals is according to their IQ level; in the context of Indian law, there should be the same punishment for every criminal for the same crime.

Intelligence and interruptions
We stated earlier that no known social interruptions have successfully increased IQ scores over the life course. Programs designed to increase IQ for human being and thus reduce crime and violence is likely to fail. Even so, this should not be taken as evidence that cognitive interruptions, in general, are likely to fail. Indeed, quite the opposite is true. Programs that reduce criminal involvement and violence are more likely to use principles of cognitive therapy and behavioral modeling.
IQ appears to be immutable after childhood, but individuals, even those with low IQs can be instructed to recognize criminal thinking patterns and to alter those patterns. Evidence indicates that IQ is not as important as the way an individual’s reason, the moral values they hold, or even their level of impulsivity. Because of this, interruptions that occur early or later in the life span can be effective in reducing delinquency and crime even if they do not increase individuals' IQ.

The relationship between intelligence and crime remains a fiercely debated topic. Despite recent advancements through revised intelligence tests and sophisticated brain imaging techniques, there remain numerous theoretical deficiencies regarding the mechanisms underlying the intelligence crime relationship. Needless to say, these shortcomings need to be examined more thoroughly, and new hypotheses must emerge before the role of intelligence in criminal behavior can be fully explained. True understanding may eventually emerge with the unification of several perspectives from various disciplines; therefore, anyone cannot forget that intelligence may just be one small piece of a larger puzzle in which numerous variables taken together can best explain the cognitive makeup of today’s modern criminal. If a person misuses there high IQ, it would be problematic for individuals and as well as for the country.

[1] Levine, S. (2011) Elaboration on the association between IQ and parental SES with the subsequent crime, Intelligence 50, 1233-1237
[2] Romi, S.; Marom, D. (2007) Differences in intelligence between no delinquent and dropout delinquent adolescents, Adolescence, Summer, 2007; 42, 166,325-337
[3] Moffitt, T., & Silva, P. (1988), IQ and delinquency: A direct test of the differential detection hypothesis. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 97, 330–333
[4] James C. Oleson, CRIMINAL GENIUS: A PORTRAIT OF HIGH-IQ OFFENDERS, (Oakland, CA: University of California Press, 2016. 300p)
[5] Mackintosh 2011, p. 169 "after the age of 8–10, IQ scores remain relatively stable: the correlation between IQ scores from age 8 to 18 and IQ at age 40 is over 0.70
[6] Uzieblo et al. 2012, p. 34 "Despite the increasing disparity between total test scores across intelligence batteries—as the expanding factor structures cover an increasing amount of cognitive abilities (Flanagan, et al., 2010)—Floyd et al. (2008) noted that still 25% of assessed individuals will obtain a 10-point IQ score difference with another IQ battery. Even though not all studies indicate significant discrepancies between intelligence batteries at the group level (e.g., Thompson et al., 1997), the absence of differences at the individual level cannot be automatically assumed.
 [7] Ellis, L., & Walsh, A. (2003). Crime, delinquency, and intelligence: A review of the worldwide literature. In H. Nyborg (Ed.), The scientific study of general intelligence: Tribute to Arthur R. Jensen (pp. 343–366). New York: Pergamon Press.