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Common Variables Associated with the Development of Stockholm Syndrome: Some Case Examples

NCJ Number
Victims and Offenders Volume: 2 Issue: 1 Dated: January 2007 Pages: 91-98
Nathalie de Fabrique; Vincent B. Van Hasselt; Gregory M. Vecchi; Stephen J. Romano
Date Published
January 2007
8 pages
This paper used case examples of reported Stockholm Syndrome to analyze crisis situations and examine variables associated with the development of Stockholm Syndrome.
Stockholm Syndrome is a paradoxical psychological experience which both intrigues and often frustrates law enforcement and mental health professionals alike. Much attention has been directed toward understanding and defining the contextual variables associated with the development of Stockholm Syndrome. Since it appears that the formation of Stockholm Syndrome may increase the likelihood of hostage survival, discerning the factors that may encourage its occurrence is a priority for crisis negotiators. The purpose of this paper is to (1) analyze crisis situations using actual case examples in which evidence of Stockholm Syndrome has been reported and (2) examine the variables associated with the development of this phenomenon. Case information was obtained from the Hostage Barricade Database System (HOBAS) of the FBI's Crisis Negotiation Unit. Results of this analysis conclude that some, but not all, factors previously hypothesized as requisite to the development of Stockholm Syndrome find additional support from this case analysis. (Published Abstract)