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Effects of Physical and Emotional Child Abuse and Its Chronicity on Crime Into Adulthood

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Analyses tested hypotheses that pertain to direct and indirect effects of parent-reported physical and emotional abuse on later self-reported criminal behavior in a sample of 356 adults of a longitudinal study of more than 30 years. Childhood antisocial behavior was included in analyses as a potential mediator. Physical abuse only predicted adult crime indirectly through childhood antisocial behavior, whereas emotional abuse predicted adult outcome both directly and indirectly. Chronicity of physical abuse was indirectly related to later crime in a subsample test for those who had been physically abused (n = 318), whereas chronicity of emotional abuse was neither directly nor indirectly related to adult crime in a test of those who had been emotionally abused (n = 225). Implications for future research and practice are discussed.
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Keywords: ANTISOCIAL BEHAVIOR; CHILD ABUSE TYPE; CRIME; MEDIATION

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Washington, USA

Publication date: 01 December 2015

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