Katy-Louise Morgan, Leicester’s Department of Media and Communication graduate says, “Both the tabloid and the broadsheet press have consistently given disproportionate and sensationalized coverage to psychotic illnesses such as schizophrenia, often linking them to serious crime. This is producing a very damaging misunderstanding not only of such psychotic conditions but is also damaging the portrayal of the more common neurotic illnesses”.
Unrealistic links between mental illness and violent crimes are often made by readers due to news of violent crimes such as murder being reported most commonly in connection with psychotic illness.
“The misconception is two-fold. Firstly, schizophrenia and other psychotic illnesses are actually among the least common of all mental illnesses. Secondly, not all schizophrenics are murderers nor conversely are all murderers schizophrenic.” Indeed, most schizophrenic patients are not prone to violence” Miss Morgan added.