Richard Kuklinski: Nature vs. Nurture

Topics: Gambino crime family, Kill, Richard Kuklinski Pages: 28 (10414 words) Published: April 29, 2013
Application of the Motivational Model for Serial Killers


Richard Kuklinski


Submitted to Professor Verwys On April 22, 2005
Judy Adami
Jenny Chang
Colleen Cherepko
Group leader ( Daniela Hock
David McCloskey
Stage 1 - Ineffective Social Environment
Support Distortions and Non-protective
Richard Kuklinski was born on April 11, 1935, in Jersey City, New Jersey, just outside of New York City. He spent his childhood in a low income housing project, the son of a brakeman and a meat packer. A scrawny child, he was often teased by the boys in the neighborhood. His nicknames were "Richie the rag boy", "Hobo Richie", and "The Skinny Polack." He was also beaten up by these bullies. In a normal social environment, Kuklinski would have been able to return home to the protection of his parents. This was not the case. His mom worked long hours, and his dad was often absent—months and years at a time. In fact there was an instance in Kuklinski’s adolescence when his father was gone for three years. Moreover, he received no protection from the abuse his own parents gave him themselves. His father indiscriminately beat him for no reason, whether intoxicated or not; his mother did not protect him from this. His mother was very verbally abusive, as well as physically; she would often hit Kuklinski with a broom handle. Kuklinski said that more than once the broom handle broke when she was hitting him; his father did not protect him from this. In this way, his parents supported the distortion of violence as normal. Kuklinski’s mother believed a harsh discipline at home went hand in hand with a religious upbringing. He went to a catholic school and was even an altar boy. She felt that corporal punishment and a strict religious upbringing was all that was needed to raise a child. She did not give him any emotional support. Ignore Behavior and Non-intervening

Kuklinski likely exhibited extensive behavior as a child that a normal social environment would address. However, because his parents were continuously violent and abusive, any attempt to intervene in non-social behavior would be interpreted as just another beating. Also likely, his parents ignored any non-social behavior because they were so used to participating in similar behavior themselves. Moreover, Kuklinski’s father abandoned the family during his teenage years. Now there was absolutely no intervention on behalf of his father, and Kuklinski was left to fend for himself. During these years, bullying towards him became worse. Since no one was there to intervene on his behalf, he finally took action himself. At the age of 14 he beat his bully to death. The only intervention to take place was by his mother who walked him to school after it was reported that he skipped school for a week (this was the week after killing the bully). Evidence of any other intervention was not found. Furthermore, since Kuklinski’s parents were often absent from his home, his behavior was indirectly ignored. It was probably during this time that he took it upon himself to show cruelty to animals. He claimed that he tied cats’ tails together and watched them kill each other, put cats in incinerators, tied dogs to buses to be dragged along on the road, and also threw dogs off the roof. Thus, it is evident that Kuklinski was heavily ignored. Stage 2 - Formative Events in Childhood and Adolescent

Although there is no evidence of sexual abuse, extensive exposal to physical abuse was a trademark of Kuklinski’s childhood. His parents were physically abusive to him. His mother would beat him with a broom stick; his father would beat him with a belt whenever he was drunk or sober. In either circumstance the beatings were severe. Most of the beatings from his father were done before he was 11 years old, and Kuklinski...
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