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Comparing Personality Characteristics of Juvenile Sex Offenders and Non-Sex Offending Delinquent Peers: A Preliminary Investigation

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There exists a paucity of research on psychopathology among Juvenile Sex Offenders (JSOs) as measured by standardized instruments, particularly as compared to nonclinical and other clinical populations. The current investigation involved a comparison of scores on the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory—Adolescent Version (MMPI-A) between a group of JSOs and non-sex offending delinquent peers. Thirty-six youth from a staff-secure residential facilitate participated, 18 JSOs and 18 non-sex offending delinquent peers. Results revealed that the mean score on clinical Scale 4 (Psychopathic Deviant) was in the clinically significant range for non-sex offending peers and not for JSOs, although the difference between the mean scores was not statistically significant. Chi-square analysis indicated that a significantly greater number of non-sex offending delinquents had scores in the clinical range on this scale as compared to JSOs. Results are discussed in the context of current research on psychopathology among JSOs.

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Correspondence to Kurt A. Freeman or Elizabeth T. Dexter-Mazza or Kerry C. Hoffman.

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Freeman, K.A., Dexter-Mazza, E.T. & Hoffman, K.C. Comparing Personality Characteristics of Juvenile Sex Offenders and Non-Sex Offending Delinquent Peers: A Preliminary Investigation. Sex Abuse 17, 3–12 (2005).

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  • Juvenile Sexual Offenders
  • personality characteristics
  • psychopathology