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This chapter covers mass murder (mass killing), an all too common focus of the author’s casework. The phrase mass murder is commonly defined as the murder of multiple victims during a single event, at one or more associated locations. This construct is distinct from serial crime classifications, such as killing sprees and serial murder; which are discussed in Chapter 22.1
The definition of mass murder appears straightforward, and it should be. For any event to be described thus, there must be multiple victims and they must all be victims of criminal homicide. This also means that they must all be dead. It is not permissible to refer to a case as a mass murder, or any related subtype, should there be doubt whether the alleged victims are dead or should there be doubt that their deaths were the result of a homicide.
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