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Perspectives on the Juvenile Sex Offender (From Exploring the Relationship Between Child Abuse and Delinquency, P 145-151, 1981, Robert J Hunner and Yvonne Elder Walker, ed. - See NCJ-77711)

NCJ Number
G A Wenet; T R Clark; R J Hunner
Date Published
7 pages
The results of a study of 60 juveniles who committed sex offenses are presented, and possible developmental influences on these offenders are considered.
The Adolescent Program at the University of Washington, Seattle, Wash., conducted the study on a population from juvenile courts and institutions throughout the State. The offenders were between 12 and 18 years of age and reflected the racial breakdown of the statewide population. The youths came from every socioeconomic group and often had a history of behavior problems prior to their sexual offenses. The evaluation presented a profile of the offender as generally a male with average intelligence who has problems performing in school. If he has molested children, he has a 50-50 chance of having been molested or physically abused himself; his social skills are not well developed, and he tends to have few close friends and no group of companions. If he is a rapist, however, he may have many casual friends, but no intimate friends. The young sex offender tends to repeat the offense for which he was originally caught. About one-half of the rapists and child molesters were repeaters, and exposers were the most consistent group to repeat offenses. While research has produced little evidence that hormonal imbalances can be held responsible for the majority of deviant sexual behavior, the socialization process with its attendant learning history probably does contribute to the development of sexual offense behavior. The long-range effects of sexual abuse on a child are still undetermined. Specific data are not presented. A five-item reference list is included.