Skip to Main Content

James Kimmel Jr, JD

Lecturer in Psychiatry
James Kimmel
DownloadHi-Res Photo


James Kimmel, Jr., J.D., is a violence researcher, lawyer, social theorist, and novelist who focuses on the intersections of law, psychology, and spirituality. He received his doctorate in jurisprudence from the University of Pennsylvania, where he was a member of the University of Pennsylvania Law Review, and his B.S. degree summa cum laude from the Schreyer Honors College of the Pennsylvania State University. He is a Co-Director of the Yale Collaborative for Motive Control Studies and leader in expanding local, state, and national gun violence threat risk and reduction initiatives to include public behavioral health motive control strategies -- new prevention and treatment approaches for reducing the desire to abuse guns to kill by controlling the revenge cravings that arise out of grievances and perceived victimization and are the common motive in most acts of violence. He is the creator of the Revenge Attack Warning Signs and First Aid, Violence Risk Identification and Disruption (V-RID) and Violence Interruption Court (VIC) models for violence threat identification and reduction using motive control strategies, and the Teen Court motive control model for bullying prevention in schools. He created, the first-of-it’s-kind website aimed at saving lives by providing support and resources to help potential murderers and mass shooters overcome the desire to kill. He is also the creator of the "nonjustice" construct of conflict resolution and violence prevention and the "Nonjustice System" intervention for reducing revenge cravings and controlling revenge addiction. He co-founded and directed an evidence-based forensic peer support program in Pennsylvania utilizing, in part, the Nonjustice System for criminal justice-involved individuals with serious mental illnesses in Pennsylvania jails and prisons. He is the author of Suing for Peace: A Guide for Resolving Life's Conflicts (Hampton Roads, 2005) and The Trial of Fallen Angels (New York: Penguin Random House/Putnam 2012). He was featured with Bob Costas and Franco Harris in the motion picture documentary 365 Days: A Year in the Life of Happy Valley (2014) about the Penn State University Jerry Sandusky child sex abuse scandal. He was also featured in the book Schadenfreude: The Joy of Another’s Misfortune by Tiffany Watt Smith (Little, Brown, 2018).

Education & Training

  • JD
    University of Pennsylvania (1990)

Departments & Organizations