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NCJ Number: 221657 Find in a Library
Title: Stability of Psychopathy From Adolescence Into Adulthood: The Search for Moderators
Journal: Criminal Justice and Behavior  Volume:35  Issue:2  Dated:February 2008  Pages:228-243
Author(s): Donald R. Lynam; Rolf Loeber; Magda Stouthamer-Loeber
Date Published: February 2008
Page Count: 16
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Mental Health
Bethesda, MD 20852
Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
Washington, DC 20531
University of Wisconsin Graduate School
Madison, WI 53706
Grant Number: MH45070;MH49414;MH60104;86-JN-CX-0009
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: By measuring psychopathic traits at age 13 and age 24 for 271 boys, this study examined whether experiences, environments, or individual characteristics ("moderators") rendered psychopathy more or less stable over this period.
Abstract: The study found that physical punishment and peer delinquency interacted with psychopathy at age 13 to predict the psychopathy score at age 24; however, boys who were high in psychopathy at age 13 tended to remain high at age 24, regardless of the status of the moderators measured. The important changes in behavior and mental state across time occurred for the boys who were low in psychopathy at age 13. Boys who were low in psychopathy at age 13 and who grew up in wealthier families, had fewer antisocial peers, and experienced less physical punishment remained low in psychopathy across time; however, boys who were low in psychopathy at age 13 and who grew up poorer, had antisocial friends, and experienced more physical punishment became more psychopathic over time. The disappointing finding is that no moderators acted to reduce future psychopathy among those who exhibited the highest levels of psychopathy at age 13. This finding is consistent with previous accounts that suggest psychopathy is an innate temperament that is relatively resistant to socialization efforts by parents and peers. Subjects for this study are members of the middle sample of the Pittsburgh Youth Study. Two hundred and seventy-one of the boys had psychopathy data available at age 13 and were included in the study. Juvenile psychopathy was assessed with the Childhood Psychopathy Scale. Psychopathy in adulthood was assessed with the Psychopathy Checklist: Screening Version. Moderator variables measured at age 13 pertained to demographics, neighborhood socioeconomic status, parenting, peer delinquency, delinquency, and several individual variables. 1 table, 3 figures, and 56 references
Main Term(s): Juvenile crime patterns
Index Term(s): Juvenile to adult criminal careers; Longitudinal studies; Mental disorders; Moral development; OJJDP grant-related documents; Parental influence; Peer influences on behavior; Psychopaths; Youth development
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