Distinguishing Antecedent Traits of Juvenile Sex Offenders Essay examples

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While sexually deviant behavior among juveniles is not a new phenomenon there has been a dramatic increase in the concern of this problem over the last two decades. As the number of juvenile sex offenders arrested increases, the recognition of it as a serious issue also increases. The anxiety over juvenile sex crimes has led to a wide variety of research being conducted to determine if there are antecedent traits in offenders. The tremendous data collected and analyzed to try to understand the factors leading a juvenile to sexually violate has piloted a wide range of theories and also much disagreement among professionals about the appropriate consequences a violator must face. The basic uncertainty of who a juvenile sex offender is can…show more content…
Most research indicates that about ninety percent of juvenile sex offenders are male. However, there is also research indicating there may be a considerable underrepresentation of the female juvenile offender in data. According to Schwartz, Cavanaugh, Pimental, and Prentky, although the vast majority of sexually aggressive youth are male, the proportion that is female appears to be much greater than is commonly observed among adult sex offenders, which may indicate that abuse by adolescent females is reported at a significantly lower rate than abuse by male adolescents (2006). One explanation for this is that the general public tends to struggle with the idea that a young woman could be capable of such perverse behavior. It should also be considered that male victims may have more difficulty reporting a sexual crime against them when the perpetrator is someone that society has taught them is the inferior gender (Hendriks, Bijleveld 2006). As a whole, female abusers have been researched very little, and juvenile female abusers have been virtually ignored in the field of criminological study. In terms of the female adolescent offenders that have been studied, more than half report being sexually abused themselves. This tends to be a common characteristic of male juvenile offenders as well. Childhood experiences of sexual abuse have been associated with juvenile sex offending for quite some time. Rates of juvenile sex

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