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Forensic Psychiatrist Keith Ablow, MD Identifies New Syndrome in Killers: Male Pre-Partum Homicidal Syndrome (MPHS)

BOSTONAug. 20, 2018 /PRNewswire/ — Dr. Keith AblowNew York Times bestselling author of Inside the Mind of Scott Peterson, has identified a new syndrome he believes may drive killers like Scott Petersonand, most recently, murder suspect Chris Watts.

Peterson is the man who was convicted in 2004 of murdering his wife Laci Peterson and the couple’s unborn child and dumping their bodies in the San Francisco Bay.  At the time, he was involved in a romantic affair with a woman named Amber Frey.

Watts is the man who reportedly confessed last week to the murders of his pregnant wife Shannan and the couple’s two daughters.  Dr. Ablow appeared on Inside Edition to comment on the Watts case.

Homicide is the second leading cause of death of pregnant women.  The first is car accidents.

Former NFL star Rae Carruth hired three hitmen to kill his pregnant girlfriend, Cherica, in 1999.

Last year, Tyler Tessier was charged with killing his pregnant girlfriend, a Maryland teacher.

Ablow theorizes that Male Pre-partum Homicidal Syndrome occurs in men who come to believe—consciously or unconsciously—that their own life stories cannot continue in any acceptable way, if a child (or another child) is born to them.  “Such a man [displaying MPHS] comes to equate the impending birth of a son or daughter with his own impending psychological death.  The pathological arithmetic comes down to, ‘It’s that child or it’s me.  One of us has to go.'”

Very often, Ablow believes, men displaying MPHS have experienced feelings of loss or trauma in the setting of growing families before—in their families of origin.  “These men may have felt pushed aside by a new child in the family or unloved by their own mothers.  The idea of living in another growing family is untenable to them, at a deep, emotional, usually unconscious level.”

For media inquiries about Male Pre-partum Homicidal Syndrome, contact Dr. Ablow at or call 978-462-1125.

For more information about Dr. Ablow, visit

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SOURCE Dr. Keith Ablow

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