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Does Victim Age Differentiate Between Perpetrators of Sexual Child Abuse? A Study of Mental Health, Psychosocial Circumstances, and Crimes

Carlstedt, Anita; Nilsson, Thomas; Hofvander, Björn LU ; Brimse, Agneta; Innala, Sune and Anckarsäter, Henrik LU (2009) In Sexual Abuse 21(4). p.442-454
Abstract
To test the theory that sexual offenders who abuse very young children (0-5 years) have more severe mental health and psychosocial problems than those who victimize older children, authors compared psychiatric diagnoses, social circumstances, and crime-related data in all sexual offenders against minors referred to forensic psychiatric investigation in Sweden during a 5-year period. Thirty-one men had committed index crimes involving victims between the ages of 0 and 5 years (Group 1), 90 had 6- to 11-year-old victims (Group 2), and 41 had 12- to 15-year-old victims (Group 3). All three offender groups were characterized by severe mental health problems, in many cases fulfilling American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical... (More)
To test the theory that sexual offenders who abuse very young children (0-5 years) have more severe mental health and psychosocial problems than those who victimize older children, authors compared psychiatric diagnoses, social circumstances, and crime-related data in all sexual offenders against minors referred to forensic psychiatric investigation in Sweden during a 5-year period. Thirty-one men had committed index crimes involving victims between the ages of 0 and 5 years (Group 1), 90 had 6- to 11-year-old victims (Group 2), and 41 had 12- to 15-year-old victims (Group 3). All three offender groups were characterized by severe mental health problems, in many cases fulfilling American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.) criteria for both Axis I and Axis II diagnoses, but these problems did not differ between groups. Neither did social situation or sexual orientation. Offenders with 0- to 5-year-old victims significantly more often abused both boys and girls. Frequencies of retrospectively diagnosed childhood-onset behavior disorders were high in all three offender groups. The authors' data did not support previous findings of increasingly severe mental health problems with decreasing victim age. (Less)
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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
keywords
childhood-onset behavior, psychiatry, sexual child abuse, victim age, gender crossover, disorders
in
Sexual Abuse
volume
21
issue
4
pages
442 - 454
publisher
Springer
external identifiers
  • wos:000271592700004
  • scopus:70449492533
ISSN
1079-0632
DOI
10.1177/1079063209346699
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
95a63e7f-1510-4d84-a5d3-2014706d63d1 (old id 1519706)
date added to LUP
2009-12-28 11:48:42
date last changed
2017-08-20 03:52:18
@article{95a63e7f-1510-4d84-a5d3-2014706d63d1,
  abstract     = {To test the theory that sexual offenders who abuse very young children (0-5 years) have more severe mental health and psychosocial problems than those who victimize older children, authors compared psychiatric diagnoses, social circumstances, and crime-related data in all sexual offenders against minors referred to forensic psychiatric investigation in Sweden during a 5-year period. Thirty-one men had committed index crimes involving victims between the ages of 0 and 5 years (Group 1), 90 had 6- to 11-year-old victims (Group 2), and 41 had 12- to 15-year-old victims (Group 3). All three offender groups were characterized by severe mental health problems, in many cases fulfilling American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.) criteria for both Axis I and Axis II diagnoses, but these problems did not differ between groups. Neither did social situation or sexual orientation. Offenders with 0- to 5-year-old victims significantly more often abused both boys and girls. Frequencies of retrospectively diagnosed childhood-onset behavior disorders were high in all three offender groups. The authors' data did not support previous findings of increasingly severe mental health problems with decreasing victim age.},
  author       = {Carlstedt, Anita and Nilsson, Thomas and Hofvander, Björn and Brimse, Agneta and Innala, Sune and Anckarsäter, Henrik},
  issn         = {1079-0632},
  keyword      = {childhood-onset behavior,psychiatry,sexual child abuse,victim age,gender crossover,disorders},
  language     = {eng},
  number       = {4},
  pages        = {442--454},
  publisher    = {Springer},
  series       = {Sexual Abuse},
  title        = {Does Victim Age Differentiate Between Perpetrators of Sexual Child Abuse? A Study of Mental Health, Psychosocial Circumstances, and Crimes},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/1079063209346699},
  volume       = {21},
  year         = {2009},
}