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Journal Article

Citation

Carlstedt A, Nilsson T, Hofvander B, Brimse A, Innala S, Anckars├Ąter H. Sex Abuse 2009; 21(4): 442-454.

Affiliation

University of Gothenburg, Sweden. anita.carlstedt@neuro.gu.se.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2009, SAGE Publishing)

DOI

10.1177/1079063209346699

PMID

19901238

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.


Language: en

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