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Significance of a Criminological Report in Understanding Contributory Factors to Aggressive and Violent Behaviour: A Case Study Analysis

NCJ Number
Acta Criminologica Volume: 18 Issue: 1 Dated: 2005 Pages: 54-67
A. Hesselink-Louw
Date Published
14 pages
This article analyzes a selected case study to explore the causes of aggressive and violent behavior in the individual under examination.
Criminological, or forensic, reports to the court regarding perpetrators have been under fire recently in South Africa. Critics claim that most of the information contained in these reports is already known to the court. The author contends that factors such as date of birth, family orientation, and other typical demographic information about the perpetrator should be avoided and the report should instead detail the origin and onset of criminal behavior and should discuss the contributory factors to the involvement in criminal activities. In order to illustrate the myriad of factors contributing to criminal behavior, this study analyzed the case of a violent and aggressive offender from a qualitative-criminological perspective. The relevant contributory factors were identified, as well as the triggers for criminal behavior, risks, and intervention indicators. The case study analysis illustrates the contribution of peer victimization to violent and aggressive behavior. Perhaps most importantly, the analysis underscores the importance of a criminological, or forensic, analysis for pre-sentence and custodial purposes; such an expert analysis can point toward the treatments and interventions most likely to have an impact on individual offenders. Bibliography