Young men intoxicated with drugs or drink are more likely than people with mental health problems to kill strangers, according to research published today.

The study found that contrary to popular fears, failures of the mental health care system were not to blame for the rising number of "stranger homicides" in England and Wales.
Looking at 358 cases of murder between 1996 and 1999 where the victim was a stranger to the perpetrator, researchers from the University of Manchester found that the killers most commonly had a history of alcohol or drug abuse.

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