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Continuity in crime: Sex and age differences

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This study deals primarily with the question of continuity in serious criminality. The study follows a cohort consisting of 15,117 individuals from the age of 15 years through the age of 30 years. The age-based transition probabilities are studied, both for males and for females, showing that the transitions for females conform to a first-order Markov chain, so that the original matrices can be seen as estimates from a single “parent matrix.” This was not the case for males. The predictive power of prior criminality for later transition probabilities is also studied. Finally, the difference between stating that a given percentage will relapse in crime and the ability to make real prediction is emphasized.

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Andersson, J. Continuity in crime: Sex and age differences. J Quant Criminol 6, 85–100 (1990). https://doi.org/10.1007/BF01065291

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Key words

  • cohort data
  • age-based transitions
  • sex differences
  • prediction