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Sex Abuse. 2005 Jul;17(3):313-31.

Juvenile sex offender re-arrest rates for sexual, violent nonsexual and property crimes: a 10-year follow-up.

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  • 1Department of Juvenile Justice, Behavioral Services Unit, Richmond, Virginia, USA.


We report the results of a 10-year follow-up recidivism study of two sex offender treatment programs for incarcerated juvenile sex offenders (JSOs) in Virginia. The programs vary in environment and intensity. The more intense JSO program ("self-contained") operates in specialized living units that are separate from those of the general juvenile incarcerated population. In the less intense program ("prescriptive"), JSOs remain housed with the general population of juvenile offenders. Arrest and incarceration data through January 2003 were obtained for 261 male JSOs released between 1992 and 2001. The inclusion of adult incarceration data allowed for a more accurate assessment of the actual time at risk for sexual re-offending. Outcomes are re-arrest rates, length of time to re-arrest and type of offense (property, nonsexual assault, sexual) on re-arrest, with analyses using survival curve functions. For both groups, actual re-arrest is most likely to be for a nonsexual person offense (31 and 47%, respectively) and least likely to be for a sexual offense (<5% for both groups). Comparing the nonequivalent groups, the self-contained treatment group has a lower predicted re-arrest rate and a longer mean time to re-arrest, for all types of offenses, than the prescriptive treatment group. In addition, juveniles who indicate high levels of impulsive/antisocial behaviors are significantly more likely to recidivate compared to juveniles with low-levels of impulsive/antisocial behaviors, regardless of treatment type. This is the first 10-year follow-up study of treatment outcomes for a relatively large sample of males who were incarcerated for sexual offenses as juveniles.

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