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The Psychology Behind Charles Whitman

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Michelle Martinez

on 29 May 2013

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Transcript of The Psychology Behind Charles Whitman

The Psychology Behind
Charles Whitman Early Life Military and University Life Adult Life Whitman was born in 1941 in Lake Worth, Florida

A model student and one of the youngest boys to ever become an Eagle Scout

Generally regarded as very polite and well mannered

Was taught how to use firearms becoming an avid hunter and accomplished marksman

Physical and emotional abuse by his father 18 months on Marine duty

Transferred to the University of Texas at Austin

Morbid and chilling statements

Results of poor grades

Exhibited disobedience for the law on a few occasions Abused amphetamines and had awful headaches

Despised self

Fears of becoming like his father

Psychiatric consultation Soumya Gogia
Michelle Martinez
Margaret Puckett 1B Texas Tower Shooting Making of suicide note in the evening of the July 31

Whitman goes on to kill mother and wife

Charles Whitman climbed to the top of the University of Texas Tower the morning of August 1, 1966

Autopsy found Astrocytoma Texas Tower Shooting After Math
Charles Whitman had the clear intention of dying

Request for autopsy

SWAT teams and other special operation teams were formed as a result

It is of course one of the biggest tragedies in United States History
The Letter "I don’t quite understand what it is that compels me to type this letter. Perhaps it is to leave some vague reason for the actions I have recently performed. I don’t really understand myself these days. I am supposed to be an average reasonable and intelligent young man. However, lately (I can’t recall when it started) I have been a victim of many unusual and irrational thoughts. These thoughts constantly recur, and it requires a tremendous mental effort to concentrate on useful and progressive tasks. …
It was after much thought that I decided to kill my wife, Kathy, tonight after I pick her up from work at the telephone company. I love her dearly, and she has been as fine a wife to me as any man could ever hope to have. I cannot rationally [ sic] pinpoint any specific reason for doing this. I don’t know whether it is selfishness, or if I don’t want her to have to face the embarrassment [ sic] of my actions would surely cause her. AT this time, though, the prominent reason in my mind is that I truly do not consider this world worth living in, and am prepared to die, and I do not want to leave her to suffer alone in it. I intend to kill her as painlessly as possible."
Similar reasons provoked me to take my mother’s life also. …"
"...8-1-66. Mon. 3:00 A.M. Both Dead." Factors Psychological Factors Biological Factors Social Factors Charles was oddly ideal in the face of abuse

Excelled in socially acceptable activities

Letters spoke of repressed violent feelings

Sociopath tendencies

Pressure and Tension within self

Apathetic Physically abused by father

Later had given up on life

Self hatred for harming others

Was brought up among violence

Weapons were common in his life
Brain tumor near the amygdala

Amphetamines (dedraxine)
Works Cited Audience. "Methamphetamine | National Institute on Drug Abuse." National Institute on Drug Abuse. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2013. <http://www.drugabuse.gov/publications/drugfacts/methamphetamine>.
"Casting off shadow of UT Tower shooting | www.statesman.com." Austin news, sports, weather, Longhorns, business | www.statesman.com. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2013. <http://www.statesman.com/news/news/local/casting-off-shadow-of-ut-tower-shooting-1/nRZ3G/>.
"Charles J. Whitman Catastrophe." Cimedia. N.p., n.d. Web. 28 May 2013. <alt.cimedia.com/statesman/specialreports/whitman/findings.pdf>.
"Charles Whitman: The Texas Bell Tower Sniper — Lost Innocence — Crime Library on truTV.com." truTV.com: Not Reality. Actuality.. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2013. <http://www.trutv.com/library/crime/notorious_murders/mass/whitman/index_1.html>.
"Killers So Often Tagged 'Nice' Boys." The Palm Beach Post [Miami] 9 Aug. 1966: 14. Print.
"The UT Tower Shooting | Texas Monthly." Texas News, Politics, Food, Recipes, Travel, Music & Entertainment | Texas Monthly: The National Magazine of Texas. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2013. <http://www.texasmonthly.com/topics/ut-tower-shooting>.
country. "Charles Whitman | Photos | Murderpedia, the encyclopedia of murderers." Murderpedia, the encyclopedia of murderers. N.p., n.d. Web. 29 May 2013. <http://murderpedia.org/male.W/w/whitman-charles-photos.htm>.

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