Objective: The hypothesis of a lunar influence on human abnormal behavior is still widespread, although research has led to conflicting findings. Therefore, a population-based study to assess the influence of lunar phases on violent crimes was conducted.
Methods: The study included all serious crimes of battery (aggravated assaults) committed in Middle Franconia (Bavaria, Germany) between 1999 and 2005 (n = 23 142). Data were analyzed regarding lunar phase, sex, and place of crime scene (outdoor vs indoor).
Results: No significant associations between full, absent, and the moon's interphases and serious crimes of battery could be detected. Furthermore, a Fourier analysis was conducted that failed to produce an association between violence and the moon's phases.
Discussion: Several possible explanations for the presented results are discussed including biological and social mechanisms.
Conclusions: The present study fails to find a significant association between lunar phases and crimes of battery.