Spousal revenge — The killing of a child by a parent in order to make the other parent suffer.
Huntsman has three daughters, ages 14, 20 and 22, which places the date of birth of the youngest child within the time period of the alleged infant homicides and miscarriage.
Mariano had no explanation for that phenomenon, noting it was "very uncommon to have filicides interspersed with a living child. I'm not aware of many cases where that would appear."
There was nothing in the researchers' analysis of the FBI data that would shed light on serial filicides, he said.
Parents most often use "personal weapons" — hands, fists or feet — to kill their children. Fathers were three times more likely to use a firearm than mothers, the research found.
While the analysis by Mariano, Dr. Wade Myers of Brown University and Dr. Heng Choon Chan of the University of Hong Kong does not definitively explain why filicide occurs, it is the most comprehensive review to date, Mariano said.
Filicides make up 15 percent of the nation's homicides, which suggests the issue deserves more attention and study to help mental health professionals, law enforcement officials and other professionals "to identify people who may be at risk of committing filicide and intervening before another tragedy occurs," Mariano said.
Editor's note: On July 21, 2014, Brown University notified the Deseret News/ Deseret News National Edition/ ksl.com/ of data corrections in a research paper by Brown University researchers used for this article. The researchers' overall conclusions are unchanged. For an update, click here.
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