This study examined which dynamic risk factors for recidivism play an important role during adolescence. The sample consisted of 13,613 American juveniles who had committed a criminal offense. The results showed that the importance of almost all dynamic risk factors, both in the social environment domain (school, family, relationships) and in the individual domain (attitude, skills, aggressiveness), decreased as juveniles grew older. Therefore, the potential effect of an intervention aimed at these factors will also decrease as juveniles grow older. The relative importance of the risk factors also changed: In early adolescence, risk factors in the family domain showed the strongest association with recidivism, whereas in late adolescence risk factors in the attitude, relationships, and school domain were more strongly related to recidivism. These results suggest that the focus of an intervention needs to be attuned to the age of the juvenile to achieve the maximum potential effect on recidivism. © 2012 The Author(s).
|International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
|Early online date
|21 Feb 2011
|Published - 2012