Saturday, September 29, 2007

More NCJRS Abstracts, Sex Offenses Edition


NCJ 219658
Michelle Cohen; Elizabeth L. Jeglic
Sex Offender Legislation in the United States: What Do We Know?
International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
Volume:51 Issue:4 Dated:August 2007 Pages:369 to 383

This article reviews current trends in sex offender legislation and analyzes how these policies may impact sex offender recidivism and treatment. Despite less than promising research findings, it is likely that the public will continue to favor incarceration and incapacitation of sex offenders over treatment. Future research should explore other methods of dealing with sex offenders to replace or accompany those already in use. Main trends under examination included: mandatory sentencing laws, civil commitment, community notification, monitoring, and supervision. The current trend in dealing with sex offenders is to incarcerate them. Additionally, multiple new laws have been enacted allowing for longer periods of confinement for sex offenders. Many States even have mandatory sentencing laws for sex offenders to ensure that their incarceration will be both severe and uniform. For those who have already been released, there has been a movement toward increased monitoring. Sex offenders can also be civilly committed following the termination of their criminal sentence. While the option of civil commitments was originally designed to offer treatment to mentally ill offenders, it has devolved into a system used to keep sex offenders out of the community after their maximum sentences have expired. Once sex offenders have been released into the community and are under community supervision, a variety of laws govern their whereabouts and actions, including community notification laws, physical monitoring systems, and lifetime supervision policies. Many of these legal-based methods for dealing with sex offenders lack research regarding their effectiveness and the research on community notification laws indicates that these laws are ineffective and impractical. References

NCJ 219589
Lynn M. Pazzani
Factors Affecting Sexual Assaults Committed by Strangers and Acquaintances
Violence Against Women
Volume:13 Issue:7 Dated:July 2007 Pages:717 to 749

This study explored whether the causes of two types of sexual assault--stranger and acquaintance rape--differ. The findings point to different causes for stranger rape versus acquaintance rape. Factors associated with gender equality, prior child abuse, and prior sexual assaults were associated with acquaintance rape while a culture of “hypermasculinity” was associated with stranger rape. Other findings revealed that women who had been victims of child abuse or victims of prior sexual assaults were more likely to be current victims of acquaintance rape, but not stranger rape. The findings generally support feminist theories regarding violence against women stemming from historical and structural patriarchal beliefs and practices. Data were drawn from the Violence and Threats of Violence Against Women and Men in the United States, 1994-1996 survey, which used a nationally representative sample of 8,000 women and 8,000 men contacted by telephone using random-digit dialing. The survey asked respondents about violent victimization and sexual victimization. Data were analyzed using conventional multivariate statistical techniques including ordinary least squares regression, logistic regression, and multinomial logistic regression. Tables, appendix, notes, references

NCJ 219661
Eric Beauregard; Jean Proulx
Classification of Sexual Homicide Against Men
International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology
Volume:51 Issue:4 Dated:August 2007 Pages:420 to 432

This study explored the sexual murders of men and offers a typology of sexual homicides of men. Three distinctive types of sexual homicides of men were identified: (1) the avenger; (2) the sexual predator; and (3) the nonsexual predator. After describing the general trends in the sexual murder of men, each of these three types of sexual homicide perpetrators is described, including their motivation and the characteristics of the criminal event. The avenger type of sexual murderer tends to be involved in prostitution and have substance abuse problems. Most experienced different forms of abuse during childhood. The motivation to murder may be to avenge himself of all past victimizations. Anger usually precedes the event and a weapon of opportunity is generally used. The sexual predator, on the other hand, is motivated by deviant sexual fantasies and he may have committed past sexual offenses against children. The victim is usually abducted and the event is marked by sadistic acts. The nonsexual predator is not motivated by deviant thoughts or by anger. Instead, this type of homicide tends to be accidental or instrumental. The principle motivation in most cases is to rob the victim, which then degenerates into homicide due to victim resistance. In most cases, the victim is not sexual assaulted, although sexual contact between the victim and offender may occur to manipulate the victim. Future research should continue to gather empirical evidence about this rare but very serious crime. Participants were 10 sexual murderers incarcerated in Quebec, Canada between 1998 and 2000. Participants completed interviews regarding the specifics of their crime, disinhibitors such as deviant sexual fantasies and substance abuse, occupational problems, relationship problems, and victim characteristics. The institutional files of the participants, the police reports, and in some cases the autopsy reports were also reviewed. Tables, note, references

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