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  • Submitted by: aparker713
  • on November 17, 2013
  • Category: Psychology
  • Length: 1,439 words

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Below is a free excerpt of "Essay" from Anti Essays, your source for free research papers, essays, and term paper examples.

The roots and predictors of adult criminal behaviour have been the topic of a long standing debate in both the academic and regulatory spheres of the criminal justice system and the psychological health sector. While it is widely accepted that maltreated and neglected children are at a greater risk of criminal behaviour later in life, the relationship is less defined. This paper will discuss two forms of child victimization: sexual abuse and familial violence. The focus of this paper is the strength of the relationship between each type of child victimization and adult criminal behaviour. It will be argued that adult criminal behaviour is a consequence of child maltreatment and that there is a moderate relationship between child victimisation in the aforementioned forms of abuse and the occurrence of criminal behaviour in adult life. Before discussing the two forms of child victimisation outlined above, it is necessary to properly define what is meant by the term ‘adult criminal behaviour’.
There is a vast quantity of academic discussion regarding the definition of a child and an adult in the criminal justice system, which can differ greatly to the societal and cultural considerations of what constitutes awareness and consent. The question of when a child becomes criminally responsible for their actions is intrinsically linked the similar but distinct question of when an individual is no longer a child but an adult for the purposes of being charged and/or prosecuted as a criminal. For the purposes of this report, the age of adult criminal consent is defined as 17 years, in accordance with Sections 5 and 6 of the Juvenile Justice Act 1992 (Qld), which prescribe that an offender is to be treated as a child/juvenile up until the age of 17 years. It is noted however, that the age at which individuals develop awareness and can therefore understand that their behaviour is criminal is not uniform across every individual, and may diverge significantly from the age of...

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