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Adolescent Sex Offenders in Vermont

NCJ Number
J Wasserman; S Kappel
Date Published
This study of 161 adolescents who had committed sexual offenses in 1984 documents the existence of youthful sex offenders in Vermont, their frequent choice of younger victims, and the prevalence of invasive offenses and offender/victim familiarity.
The survey population was defined as anyone 19 years old or younger who was on the caseload of the Department of Social and Rehabilitation Services or the Department of Corrections and who had committed a known sex offense. Questionnaires completed by caseworkers showed that over 90 percent of the offenders were male, with a median age of 15. The median age of the victim was 7. Over one-quarter of the victims were male. Almost 60 percent of the offenses were acts of penetration. Over 90 percent of the offenders were either relatives or acquaintances of the victim. Only about one-quarter of all offenders were adjudicated or convicted for a sexual offense, and the majority of all offenders did not receive treatment specialized for sex offenses. Policy and research implications of the study's results are discussed. Footnotes and the questionnaire. (Author summary modified)