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By Holly Farrell & Brittany Gonzalez

Lunacy is

o The affects of the lunar phases on the human mental state o A persons behavior or psychological state is considered to be affected by the changes in moon phases

History and Mythology


o Belief in lunacy dates back to

ancient roman times o Luna, the Roman goddess of the Moon

o Also know as the Transylvania Effect oDuring the middle ages in Europe, Lunacy was believed to be the cause of so called werewolves and vampires

Theories
One theory states that since humans are composed of 80% of water, the affect of the moon on us is similar to that of the affect of the moon on the oceans (the gravitational pull that creates tides). Another theory states that changes in mental heath and behavior can be related to the increase in sunlight that is reflected off the visible surface of the moon from our perspective as it goes through phases. Some studies report a peak in mental health admissions and homicide rates around the full moon, as well as heightened episodes of seizures in those with epilepsy.

For Example: A study completed in 1972 showed that 2,000 homicides committed in Dade County, Florida over a 15 Year period peaked at the times of the full moons.
Some studies show that the incidence of crimes reported to the police is often higher during the full moon phase of the moon

Our Hypothesis
We hypothesize that the lunar phases will have a significant effect on the number of crimes reported to the police.

Why Are We Doing This?


The significance of the study is to shed light on popular social beliefs regarding lunacy. If Studies conclude exclusively that the moon phases actually do affect peoples mental states and behavior, we can better predict and prepare for these occurrences and heightened incidences of crimes. For example, during times of full moons, hospitals and police stations can be better staffed to deal with increases in Lunacy related issues. Also, if the general population is aware of the moons affects, some may consider seeking help or guidance during full moon phases.

What We Did and How We Did It

I. Since weather is unpredictable, we decided to track the moon phases via the NASA website.

II. Plattsburgh State University Police was the only station that offered crime reports to the public therefore our information was limited to crimes reported to UP (which didnt seem to be a problem).
III. Our collected data ranged from August 20th, 2009 (New moon phase) to November 9th, 2009 (Third quarter phase). IV. Finally, we constructed tables and graphs to organize and analyze our data. From there we were able to draw conclusions.

Moon phases from August 20 November 9, 2009


NEW MOON WAXING CRESCENT FIRST QUARTER WAXING GIBBOUS FULL MOON WANNING GIBBOUS LAST QUARTER WANING CRESCENT

Aug 20

Aug 21 Aug 26

Aug 27

Aug 28 Sept 3

Sept 4

Sept 5 Sept 11

Sept 12

Sept 13 Sept 17

Sept 18

Sept 19 Sept 25

Sept 26

Sept 27 Oct 3

Oct 4

Oct 5 Oct 10

Oct 11

Oct 12 Oct 17

Oct 18

Oct 19 Oct 25

Oct 26

Oct 27 Nov 1

Nov 2

Nov 3 Nov 5

Nov 9

Our Data
August
12 10 8

6 August 4

* New Moon # First Quarter ^ Full Moon ~ Third Quarter

Trends: Spike of activities reported correlates to opening of the dorms and end of the first week for the Fall Semester. *New Moon reveals incidences at a level of 6. An increase in the number of reports during the first and second day of classes was revealed.

September
14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 2-Sep 3-Sep ^ 4-Aug 5-Sep 6-Sep 7-Sep 8-Sep 9-Sep 10-Sep 11-Sep ~ 12-Aug 13-Sep 14-Sep 15-Sep 16-Sep 17-Sep *18- Sep 19-Sep 20-Sep 21-Sep 22-Sep 23-Sep 24-Sep 25-Sep # 26-Aug 27-Sep 28-Sep 29-Sep 30-Sep

September

* New Moon # First Quarter ^ Full Moon ~ Third Quarter

Trends: Most significant peaks correlate with the weekends of September. Level of incidents seems to be high comparatively to other months from which data was collected. ^ Full Moon received low amount of activity (4 incidents). However, drug possession, mental health call, and other were reported.
~ 3rd Quarter reported a high amount of activity (9 incidents) including 2 burglaries, property damage, and 6 others.

October
12

10

6 October 4

* New Moon # First Quarter ^ Full Moon ~ Third Quarter

0 2-Oct 3-Oct ^ 4-Oct 5-Oct 6-Oct 7-Oct 8-Oct 9-Oct ~ 10-Oct 11-Oct 12-Oct 13-Oct 14-Oct 15-Oct 16-Oct 17-Oct * 18 oct 19-Oct 20-Oct 21-Oct 22-Oct 23-Oct 24-Oct 25-Oct # 26 oct 27-Oct 28-Oct 29-Oct 30-Oct 31-Oct

Trends: Significant peaks continue to correlate with weekend days. ^Full Moon (and day before) on October 4 received high peaks within the data (7, 5). Days before and during the holiday of Halloween show a great amount of activity. It is hard to distinguish if the raised level of activity is from the holiday/weekend festivities or the approaching ^Full Moon on November 2.

November
9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 1-Nov ^ 2-Nov 3-Nov 4-Nov 5-Nov 6-Nov 7-Nov 8-Nov ~ 9-Nov November

* New Moon # First Quarter ^ Full Moon ~ Third Quarter

Trends: Significant peak on weekend ^Full Moon (day before and after) contain a considerable amount of activity. The highest point (8 incidences on November 3rd)

Drawing Conclusions
From looking collectively at the data, there appears to be no clear relation to the number of reported incidences (burglary, domestic violence, criminal mischief, disorderly conduct, Hit and Run, DWI, ambulance requests, drug possession, property damage, mental health/health and safety hazard, assist. Citizen, EMS, fire) provided by the University Police on Plattsburgh State Universitys campus and the Full Moon phase. However, weekends, holidays, and/or other special events seem to have a direct relationship with the amount of incidences reported: often during these times, the amount of reported incidents increases. Therefore, the we cannot confirm a strong correlation between human mental states or behaviors, including criminal activities, to lunar phases with the current data. Possibly with more data and funding spanning from years to decades or further, more insights could be found.

Conclusions cont.
Limitations for research included the research sample (consisting only of the University Police Reports and particular age range correlating to the majority of Plattsburghs students) and the period of time available to collect the data (from August 20 New Moon to November 9 New Moon of 2009). Continued research involving the original hypothesis could potentially show stronger supportive/negative evidence with more data. Division of data could also include specific types of altered human states, such as mental health, criminal behavior (harassment, property damage, burglary, domestic dispute, and disorderly conduct), drug possession, etc., in relation to lunar phases, specifically the Full Moon.