Sex Offenders, Research Paper Example

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Research Paper

Introduction

Individuals who commit sex related crimes are referred to as a sex offender.  Several factors lead to the occurrence of various forms of sex crimes. Different cultures and jurisdictions in a society contribute too many sex offending cases. For example, in United States of America pandering obscenity can range from digital child pornographic material to a book, which is referred to as ‘memoirs of a woman of pleasure’. There are different natures of sex offending, from child molestation to rape. Other forms of sex offending crimes include sexual assault, statutory rape, sexual imposition and child sexual abuse among others. Within the community, we hear of cases where a person has been convicted or is being charged with a sex offending crime. They vary with age, from young adolescent kids to mature people. Some people will feel pity for them and suggest that they are mad or mentally disturbed people. Others see them as the evil itself.

This research essay will discuss sex offenders in two groups; adolescent sex offenders and adult sex offenders. The sex offender can also be referred to as a sexual predator or habitual sex offender depending on the frequent nature of their behavior. For example, in the United Kingdom and the USA sex offenders are required to register with the sex offender registry which is accessible to public scrutiny. An individual can search for an offender by the use of name, location, email address, neighborhood maps, FAQ and email alerts. The data base classifies the offenders into groups, and some of those involved in severe cases may be on the database for a lifetime. The research essay will also discuss their resemblance and differences as well as the treatment recommended for such individuals. It is essential for people to know the person they associate with since they can never tell an offender by just physical characteristics; anyone can be a victim of these people’s activities and fantasies.

Literature review

There are various research reports developed concerning sex offenders. Although there is a belief that sexual assaults are only committed by strangers, the truth of the matter is that most of the sexually abusive individuals are known to their victims who range from children to adults and adolescents (Marshall, Jones, Ward, Johnston, and Bambaree 470). Other relevant information shows that the rate at which females sexually abuse their victims is less than that of men.

The problem of sexual victimization still remains a challenge throughout the world. In United States, estimates show that one in every five girls and one in every seven boys, have been sexually abused by the time they reach their adulthood (Rea 198).  In adults, one in every six adult women has been sexually assaulted, and one out of every 33 adults has been sexually assaulted or has experienced the attempt of the assault.

Other victimization studies have revealed the many events where many of the victims know their perpetrator but do not report their victimization to the authorities. They are also likely to report subsequent victimizations compared to those who do not know their perpetrators. Therefore, assumptions cannot be made regarding the absence of new allegations of sexually abuse has reduced or is completely absent.

Although it is quite impossible to examine the scope of the study of various socio cultural subjects of both adolescent and adult sex offenders, there is adequate literature on the family environment. Environment areas indicate the functioning of the family relationships. This assesses the degree of support and commitment of the family members towards each other. The second is personal growth, which reflects how family members are able to go to what extent to make their own decisions, and the third is the system maintenance that assesses the importance of family activities and family rule through clear planning organization and structures (Grubin 52).

Study has also shown that both adult and juvenile sex offenders are heterogeneous groups made of adults or juveniles, males or females. The crimes they commit range from “hands off” offenses such as voyeurism and exhibitionism, to “hands on” offenses like fondling or rape. In addition, there is varied intervention, different ways of offending, and various risk levels faced. The diversity not only applies to the sex offenders but also in the victims they target. Victims vary in terms of their demographics; they can be young or old, tall or short, fat or thin, male or female. The impact of the victimization on victims also differ, some take it as the end of the world and can never move on other see the positivity in life and live with it. Variation also occurs in the victims’ needs and wants for intervention and their desire in the justice process that is whether to take legal actions or not to take against the offenders.

Adolescent sexual offenders

Some adolescent teenagers may develop behaviors which are sexually abusive as stated by the law. In the past such individuals who are below 18 years of age, commit such acts which are threatening, manipulative, aggressive, and exploitative or without consent of the victim have been termed as pedophile, child molester, and perpetrator. Experts have encouraged the use of simpler terms like juvenile delinquency. Since, the use of harsh terms like predator can have aversive psychological effect on the individual been treated or been convicted. It is vital to understand adolescent sex offenders as experts suggest, since some of these behaviors root from aspects such as neglect and abuse. Adolescent sex offences mostly involve an individual who attempts to force a penetration or genital contact or even anal contact. There are several signs of an abuser. These include individuals who possess pornographic material. They develop what is termed as pseudo-mature language, poor judgment, and difficulty in impulse control, mental disorder and learning disabilities, academic dysfunction, exposure and obscene. The behaviors of young offender may develop from just touching their victims to forcing penetration. It is important for a person to know that each offender is unique in their own ways. These sexual offenders are mostly male and the female juvenile offenders are a minority.

These sex offenders are not confined to a particular ethnic group, race and even socioeconomic class; they are everywhere. Most of the juvenile sex offenders are reported to have first committed the crime at the age below 15 years. Research has shown that most of the juvenile offenders were previously abused. For example, 40-80% has been sexually abused and that 20-50% has been physically abused (Barbaree, and Marshall). Neglect, abuse, family dysfunction or even maltreatment drives juveniles into such heinous acts. Victimizations are the core fuel that leads to adolescent individuals into such acts especially when they cannot control and understand their emotions very well.

There are several theories created to try and explain the behavior of these individuals. Some of the most wide spread theories include; individuals moving through predictable progression. This is a cycle where the individual suffers an event where it triggers a negative emotion response. The failure to deal with the control issues of the emotional distress, triggers anger leading to thoughts of overpowering another person. This has recently been dismissed as being too rigid since interviews of numerous juvenile sex offenders has shown that life problems, that constitute the offenders school and family life, trigger these behaviors.

Research has shown that there are two types of juvenile offenders; based on clinical and empirical research. There are those that attack children and those that attack adults and their peers. These two groups only seem to have a difference when it comes to their victims, but this is not so. The pattern of their crimes, behavior, social interactions and treatment methods all differ.

Estimates show that juvenile sex offenders commit 30-60% of USA’s child sexual abuses which have been reported. Reports from 2008 showed that, adolescent sex offenders contributed to16.7% of forcible rapes and also they contributed to 20.61% of other related sex crimes (Hanson and Harris 25). Center of sex management has shown that one fifth of all rapes can be attributed to the juveniles, also one half of almost all child molestations are attributed to them. It is crucial for the reader to take this bit seriously since the phenomenon is widespread. It is important to take cases of molestations seriously and proper procedure followed to the letter while handling such cases. In USA alone, there are 60 million sex abuse survivors who were victims of adolescent sex offenders. Now I’m sure we can all see the magnitude of this phenomenon.

Adult sex offenders

Apart from juveniles, adults are also known to offend sexually other individuals from children, teenagers to adults. It is true that most adult sex offenders have natured this behavior since this behavior since they were teenagers or even younger. Such individuals did not get the recommended help which could have contained their condition. Such individuals may have carried bitter memories into the future. Most adult sex offenders are diagnosed with paraphilia that come with urges, fantasies, children and other non-living objects. Adult sex offenders can be classified into child molesters and rapists. Adult’s offenders are known to have many victims. (Grubin 51). Some of these offenders have proved to be very skillful in evading the law. Majority of adult sex offenders are males, and most of their victims include women and kids. It is sad that some offenders kill their victims after torturing them. Research has shown that, after a treatment program, most adult sex offenders commit the crime again. (Marshall 322).

Similarities between adult sex offenders and adolescent sex offenders

There are various similarities that exist between the adult and the adolescent sex offenders. This are; both are human beings who although of difference in ages, commit sexual offences like raping, touching others inappropriately or sexually abusing others who are their victims. From studies carried out, adult and adolescent sex offenders’ posses’ similar characteristics. This include; emotionally isolated, lack self confidence in themselves, ill equipped when dealing with emotional stress and are usually under assertiveness.

Rates of sexual recidivism is low for both the offenders

In both cases, there are a small proportion of females compared to the male that commit the crimes. Both the adult sex offenders and the adolescent sex offenders have forms of treatment for their offensive conditions that aim and rehabilitating them

Differences between adult sex offenders and adolescent sex offenders

Adolescent sex offenders are aged from below18 years while the adults are 18 years and above. Rate at which the adolescent offenders reoffend sexually is lower than that of the adult offenders. There is a tendency that adult offenders are more likely to be diagnosed with paraphilia than adolescent offenders. Adolescent offenders are less likely to target strangers, than adult offenders.

Treatment Recommendations

In the field of research, there have been tremendous advances aimed at the treatment of adolescent sex offenders. There are thousands of adolescent sex offenders throughout the world. Treatment can be difficult for these adolescent sex offenders. Majority is known to be expelled from treatment programs because of the poor attendance and obscene behaviors. Most treatment programs for juveniles were coined traditionally for those used for adults (Marshall, et al 473). There are standards for every treatment. These include; sex education, anger management, sexual abuse cycle, cognitive reconstruction, empathy training and assertiveness training.

The research carried out recently, has shown that adult sex offenders who receive treatment have low chances of committing the crime again compared to those who do not.  Interventions are very important part for the treatment process of these adult sex offenders. Most of the time, treatment programs for adult and juvenile are similar although, there may be few changes depending on the problem being addressed (Hanson and Harris 25).

In conclusion, there should be a set up of strategies that will address the wide range of problems of sexual offending and victimization wide range of disciplines and agencies. Examples of these strategies should be made up of key agencies, individuals, entities, and organization in order to manage of adult and juvenile sex offenders. A comprehensive approach should be adopted with a framework well–grounded (Carter et al 1280) This is where jurisdictions can promote the objective of making the society a safer place by considering the informed integration of policies and practices that lead to this.

Work Cited

Barbaree, H. E., & Marshall, W. L. (Eds.). The juvenile sex offender (2nd ed.). New York, NY: Guilford, 2006. Print.

Carter, M., Bumby, K., & Talbot, T. Promoting offender accountability and community safety through the Comprehensive Approach to Sex Offender Management. Seton Hall Law Review, 34 (2004): 1273–1297. Print.

Grubin, D. Sex Offending against children: Understanding the risk (1998): 51-53. Print.

Hanson, R. K., & Harris, A. J. R. Where should we intervene? Dynamic predictors of sexual offense recidivism. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 27 (2000):  6–35. Print.

Marshall, W.L., Jones, R., Ward, T., Johnston, P. & Bambaree, H.E. Treatment of sex offenders. Clinical Psychology Review, 11 (1991): 465-485. Print

Marshall, W. L. The sexual offender: Monster, victim, or everyman? Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, 8 (1996): 317–335. Print.

Rea, J. Covert Sensitization. The Behavior Analyst Today, 4.2 (2003): 192-201. Print.

Salter, A. Treating Child Sex Offenders and Victims. Newbury Park: Sage, 1988. Print.

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