Locus of control and sex offenders with an intellectual disability.
ABSTRACT Locus of control has been implicated as an important construct that is related to treatment outcome for several groups of offenders, including sexual offenders. However, little attention has been paid to how this construct is related to sexual offending by people with intellectual disabilities. Given this, 41 participants with intellectual disabilities were recruited into three groups: sex offenders who had undergone psychological treatment, sex offenders who had no history of treatment, and nonoffenders. All participants completed measures of locus of control and distorted cognitions. There was a significant difference between those who had and had not completed treatment in terms of cognitive distortions relating to sexual offending. There was no significant difference between the three groups on the measure of locus of control, with all three groups endorsing an external locus of control. Three possible explanations for how locus of control relates to sexual offending by people with intellectual disabilities is explored and discussed.
- Mental Health and Learning Disabilities Research and Practice. 04/2009; 6(1).
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ABSTRACT: Many studies conclude there is a strong relationship between moral reasoning and illegal behaviour amongst young offenders. However, there has been no research examining this relationship amongst people with intellectual disabilities. There is some empirical evidence to suggest that the relationship between moral reasoning and illegal behaviour may be curvilinear, such that lower moral reasoning and higher moral reasoning relates to lower rates of illegal behaviour and inappropriate conduct. Given this, and evidence that people with intellectual disabilities are reasoning at a lower moral stage than their same-age peers, it is proposed that some people with intellectual disabilities may actually be less likely to engage in illegal behaviour because they are reasoning at an earlier moral stage, while those with ‘borderline’ intelligence would be more likely to engage in illegal behaviour. This suggests that the relationship between moral reasoning and illegal behaviour is moderated by intelligence, and this has implications for the design of intervention programmes for people with intellectual disabilities, but further research is needed.Psychology Crime and Law 01/2011; 17(2):101-115. · 0.69 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Background The objectives were (a) to compare the general empathy abilities of men with intellectual disabilities (IDs) who had a history of sexual offending to men with IDs who had no known history of illegal behaviour; and (b) to determine whether men with IDs who had a history of sexual offending had different levels of specific victim empathy towards their own victim, in comparison with an unknown victim of sexual crime, and a victim of non-sexual crime, and make comparisons with non-offenders.Methods Men with mild IDs (n = 35) were asked to complete a measure of general empathy and a measure of specific victim empathy. All participants completed the victim empathy measure in relation to a hypothetical victim of a sexual offence, and a non-sexual crime, while additionally, men with a history of sexual offending were asked to complete this measure in relation to their own most recent victim.ResultsMen with a history of sexual offending had significantly lower general empathy, and specific victim empathy towards an unknown sexual offence victim, than men with no known history of illegal behaviour. Men with a history of sexual offending had significantly lower victim empathy for their own victim than for an unknown sexual offence victim. Victim empathy towards an unknown victim of a non-sexual crime did not differ significantly between the two groups.Conclusions The findings suggest that it is important include interventions within treatment programmes that attempt to improve empathy and perspective-taking.Journal of Intellectual Disability Research 05/2014; · 1.88 Impact Factor