Juvenile Sexual Offenders: Continuous Research Needed
By Thomas G. Tittle / PATC
High-risk behaviors have been believed to have a link to sexually risky (unlawful) behaviors. The actions offenders take to commit a criminal sexual act are very stimulating to some in different ways – It’s a crime, the planning, committing the incident, the thrill, feeling superior to others.
Other responses ranged from musician, grocery-truck driver, artist, lawyer, marine biologist, mechanic, dentist, businessman, cement truck driver, video game designer and computer programmer.
Many adult criminals have stated they wanted to be cops, counselors or in the ministry. Each seems to possess the ability to control people verbally. When one possesses wealth, they can control others financially.
The topic of previous abuse often is raised as a factor in sexual offenses. When examining the offenders’ responses on this topic, mental abuse prevailed (10 acknowledgements), physical abuse (7 acknowledgements), with sexual abuse last (4 acknowledgements).
These responses run contrary to public perception. There seems to be widespread belief that sexual offenders were all victims of sexual abuse, with mental and physical abuse being relegated to a lower scale. Studies have targeted this specific area (mental, physical or sexual abuse) of the offender’s background attempting to link this as a causal factor for future violent behavior.
Using the belief that “it feels good to hurt someone like you have been hurt” is not new. Placing the appropriate term, “Reversal of Indelible Pain (RIP),” seems fitting. Unable to “ash” the past pain away, it is transferred to another for a “moment” of restoration of the offender. What forms of inflicted pain this may take, is in the fantasy or imagination of the offender.
It has been speculated that movies or television motivates or inspires sexual offenders. On that line of thought, the question was posed, “What horror or scary movie do you think about or like most?” Rated highest were Scary Movie (5), Halloween (3), and Scream (3), followed by others.
Certainly most people have seen a sampling of these movies and have no further thought on them. But focusing on the original question (what they think about or like the most), may indicate an influence of some nature. By majority, the ones that were mentioned tend to have more gore and “slashing” where the antagonist controls in a sadistic manner.
For any survey to have value, the data examined must be accurate. Even though the responses evaluated here reflect what was noted by the actual sexual offender, we have no way to confirm the veracity of those statements. Thus, this evaluation is after-the-fact and not empirical.
The age factor still holds validity where the perpetrator is almost always older than the victim. Females continue to outnumber the males as the main victim.
Relationships of some nature existed universally, with stranger contact non-existent in this case study. Causing injury to a living creature is always a red flag. Also brought in were the issues of the appeal for fire setting and enuresis.
The offenders’ description of what had occurred to them in life or the behaviors they displayed sexually as a result of the incident(s) indicates a continuous pattern of risky behaviors (or an attempt to maintain high excitement levels). This is taken from the questions on careers, abuse, movie stimulation and their description of incident locations.
Finally, the ability to identify a specific juvenile whose behavior may indicate a predilection to committing a sexual offense is a long shot at best.
Continuous interaction and experience with juvenile sexual offenders is the best teacher for the law enforcement officer. The law enforcement officer becomes the hunter of facts through select questions and reactions.
He or she can then reach a more reasonable and statistical based conclusion of an investigation concerning the circumstances they are up against.