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43 Suffolk Transnat'l L. Rev. 291 (2020)
Detecting Covert Legal Killing to Stop: A New Approach to Terrorist Intention

handle is hein.journals/sujtnlr43 and id is 307 raw text is: 







DETECTING COVERT LEGAL KILLING TO
           STOP: A NEW APPROACH TO
               TERRORIST INTENTION

                        Joshua  M.  Pearce*


                           ABSTRACT

         This study argues that the definition of terrorism should be ex-
     panded to include covert legal killings (CLK). CLK refers to the
     fourth terrorist intention (mass killing in the targeted group or nation
     by any means) where the law does not provide guidance as those with
     this intention currently use legal means. Statistics on individuals with
     this intention are limited because our legal system provides no way to
     identify or track them at the national or international level. To pro-
     vide a rudimentary method to begin to detect such individuals, this
     paper develops new methods for quantifying the effectiveness of CLK
     using the concept of target national deaths per million dollars (DPM).
     In a case study of high death rate advertising the DPM was found to
     be only 3.4 because of the existing saturation of the United States
     market. This data coupled with previous studies indicate an opportu-
     nity to disrupt both legal and illegal terrorist intent. These new meth-
     ods of evaluating the effectiveness of CLK can be useful for
     identifying and protecting target populations and the analysis
     presented in this study indicate that considerable future work is
     needed in evaluating the DPM of other CLK methods to provide gui-
     dance for an evolution in the law.
Keywords: counter       terrorism,   terrorism,  killing,  Terrorist
Screening  Database


     I.  INTRODUCTION AND THE LEGAL IMPLICATIONS OF
                            INTENTION

     Intention  is often subjective and challenging  to assign. Yet,
intention  is what  determines   if an act of killing is terrorist in
nature  or not. Intention  is also critical for assigning legal culpa-
bility as well as punishment in our legal system.1 To illustrate
the importance   of intention, consider  the following  thought  ex-

    * Professor, Michigan Technological University, 601 M&M Building, 1400
Townsend Drive, Houghton, MI 49931-1295, pearce@mtu.edu.
    1. See Alice Ristroph, State Intentions and the Law of Punishment, 98 J. OF CRIM.
L. & CRIMINOLOGY 1353, 1375 (2008). See also LARRY ALEXANDER & KIMBERLY
KESSLER FERZAN, CRIME AND CULPABILITY: A THEORY OF CRIMINAL LAW 200, 200-
01 (2009).

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