Sensational and Extreme Interests in Adolescents

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Abstract

This chapter addresses sensational interests and offending behavior in adolescents and examines if such interests can be said to cause offending. The quantitative assessment of sensational interests is a relatively new area within forensic psychology. This chapter reviews the literature so far and presents the first findings in this area based on an adolescent sample. Several recent case studies of adolescents with sensational interests who have also murdered are presented. Intrasexual competition (or mating effort) emerges as an important individual difference affecting the criminogenic relevance of sensational interests. Suggestions for improvements in the measurement of sensational interests are discussed along with the relevance of the current findings for offender profiling.