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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 156386 Find in a Library
Title: Personality Characteristics of Adolescent Sexual Offenders: A Pilot Study
Journal: Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment  Volume:7  Issue:3  Dated:(July 1995)  Pages:195-203
Author(s): D R Carpenter; S F Peed; B Eastman
Date Published: 1995
Page Count: 9
Type: Research (Applied/Empirical)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study compared personality characteristics of adolescent sex offenders by examining the extent to which personality differences existed between adolescents who offended against peers and adolescents who offended against young children.
Abstract: The sample consisted of 36 adolescent offenders (16 peer offenders and 20 child offenders) committed to Virginia's Department of Youth and Family Services. All subjects were mandated to receive sex offender treatment services, and participants were divided into two mutually exclusive groups depending on victim age. The child group consisted of males who offended against children 12 years of age and younger and at least 3 years younger than the offender at the time of the offense. The peer group consisted of adolescents who offended against peers who were at least 13 years of age and no less than 2 years younger than the offender at the time of the offense. Subjects were administered the Millon Clinical Multiaxial Inventory (MCMI) and compared on six of its subscales. Results showed that adolescents who offended against children appeared to have problems with dependency issues and seemed to be more avoidant and schizoid than adolescents who offended against peers. MCMI scales suggested that members of the child group were frequently submissively dependent, self-effacing, and noncompetitive. They were inclined to be self-belittling, had a self-image of a weak and ineffectual person, frequently withdrew from social encounters with peers, and commonly experienced loneliness and isolation. Differences in personality characteristics observed in the study may explain why adolescent sex offenders gravitate toward child victims. Findings indicate that adequate interventions, such as social skills training, should be provided to adolescents with certain personality characteristics. 20 references and 2 tables
Main Term(s): Juvenile Sex Offenders
Index Term(s): Abused children; Child Sexual Abuse; Child victims; Juvenile Corrections/Detention; Juvenile personality characteristics; Juvenile psychological evaluation; Juvenile self concept; Juvenile treatment methods; Juvenile victims; Personality assessment; Psychological research; Sex offender treatment; Sexual assault victims; Social skills training; Virginia
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