Athens was senior research criminologist at Georgetown University Law Center and now teaches in the criminology department at Seton Hall University.
Born in Richmond, Virginia, Athens lived with his parents, Irene and Pete Athens. He was educated at Virginia Polytechnic Institute, where he started majoring in political science but later changed his major to Sociology and Criminology. After graduating from Virginia Tech, Athens continued his criminology studies at the University of Wisconsin.
After college Athens continued to interview inmates about their criminal lives and social experiences. Athens focused on the areas of Iowa and California for his interviews.
He also worked as a probation and parole officer in northern Virginia in 1986. He took all of his findings and his studies and put them together in the book, The Creation of Dangerous Violent Criminals, in which he discusses his theory and the cases he had to look at along the way.
Athens developed a theory called The Process of Violentization that supports the nurture argument of Nature vs. Nurture when it comes to serial killers.
We will discuss hes background, publications an his Violentization Process Theory and the implicatons it has on our understanding of criminals and why they kill.