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Title: Characteristics of Older Adult First-Time Sex Offenders: Insights From the Missouri Registry
Authors: Ghossoub, Elias
Khoury, Rita
Affiliations: Faculty of Medicine 
Keywords: Sex offenses
Crime victims
Sexual recidivism
Issue Date: 2021
Publisher: Elsevier
Part of: American Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
Volume: 29
Issue: 3
Start page: 230
End page: 238
To explore the characteristics of older adult first-time sex offenders (who offended for the first time at the age of 65 years or above).

The authors retrieved and analyzed data from the publicly available Missouri sex offender registry database up to December 2018 and the Missouri public case management system website.

Registered older (≥65 years) sex offenders in the state of Missouri, United States.

Sociodemographic characteristics of the offender, offense type(s), offense, and conviction dates; age and sex of the victim(s); and case disposition information (whether the trial was waived or not and what were the sentences imposed).

One hundred and ninety-four older adult sex offenders all males were identified, of which 172 were first-time offenders. The majority were white; the median age of offense was 68.6 years old. One hundred and thirty-nine (80.8%) first-time offenders were convicted strictly of non-pornography offenses, with prepubescent girls the predominant victim pool. The most prevalent charge in this subgroup was Child Molestation, First Degree (36.5%). Twenty-eight (16.3%) offenders were convicted strictly of pornography offenses, the most prevalent one being Possession of Child Pornography (96.6%). The recidivism rate among first-time offenders was close to 1%.

A substantial proportion of older registered sex offenders are first-time sex offenders and most of them have underage victims. Although the offense and recidivism rates seem to be low, future longitudinal studies should focus on the predictors of sexual offending in the older population, in order to design targeted preventive measures, risk assessment, and treatment options.
ISSN: 10647481
DOI: 10.1016/j.jagp.2020.06.020
Ezproxy URL: Link to full text
Type: Journal Article
Appears in Collections:Faculty of Medicine

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