City stories: Steffani Soriano, 21; Jackson Heights, Queens

A sidewalk interview with a 21-year-old criminal-psych major: "If I can be normal, why can’t deviants?"

Photograph: Jorge Quinteros

What’s your story?
This is basically where I grew up; my grandma’s in a nursing home not far from here. I go to school now, and I’m studying criminal psychology.

What led you to that?
It makes me want to know what in the brain clicks to make criminals and deviants want to do those kinds of things. If I can be normal, why can’t they?

What are warning signs to look out for?
It can start off as any abnormal acting—tiny things. Parents might not even notice it, that’s the crazy part. When they get to their adolescent years, parents think it’s normal rebellion, but there are things that aren’t normal.

Do you worry that you’ll internalize any of this?
If anything, studying criminals makes me want to interview them. I tell myself I’m gonna be the next Sherlock Holmes. I’m not scared. And that scares me.

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Editor: Marley Lynch (@marleyasinbob)

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