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Alternative Title

Potential correlate for criminogenic factors and mental health factors in incarcerated sex offending male adolescents

Publication Date


Document Type



School for Social Work


Teenage sex offenders-Mental health, Family violence-Psychological aspects, Children of abused wives-Psychology, Attachment behavior in adolescence, Post-traumatic stress disorder in adolescence, Childhood domestic violence exposure, Male adolescent sex offenders, Mental health of adolescent sex offenders, Crime characteristics of adolescent sex offencers, Attachment and trauma male adolescent sex offenders


Domestic and sexual violence are serious social issues impacting all facets of our society. This study uses a secondary national data set with 307 participants to explore the associations between child hood domestic violence exposure and mental health factors and sex offense characteristics among incar cerated male adolescent sex offenders in the United States. It also examines the correlations between childhood domestic violence exposure and criminogenic factors of sex crimes, as well as the associations between childhood domestic violence exposure and mental health factors. Domestic violence was highly correlated with every criminogenic factor variable, and particular sex offense characteristics predicted domestic violence exposure for this particular population. Additionally, a difficult attachment to fathers and post-traumatic-stress were the only mental health variables consistently correlated with childhood domestic violence exposure. Both of these mental health factors also functioned to predict domestic vio lence exposure in childhood. Participants living in poverty and identified as living in single mother and partner households both functioned to predict domestic violence exposure for this population by 2.5 and 1.5 times, respectively. Thus the implications for practice and policy are to screen for and address do mestic violence exposure, as well as advocate and fund domestic violence prevention initiatives, as do mestic violence is linked to problematic and dangerous behaviors for vulnerable male youth in this coun try.




189 pages : color illustration. Ph.D. Dissertation-Smith College School for Social Work, Northampton, Ma., 2016. Includes bibliographical references (pages 149-171)