|Healthcare Training Institute - Quality Education since 1979CE for Psychologist, Social Worker, Counselor, & MFT!!
Child Molesters Dangerous?
Child molesters have traditionally been viewed as passive, unassertive
individuals who only involve themselves with willing children and only infrequently
use force during commission of the crime. Gebhard et at. (1965) report that only
12.2% of heterosexual pedophiles use significant aggression during their contact
with children; however, these data rely heavily on interviews with incarcerated
offenders or police records that are easily distorted by the offender or not detailed.
Marshall, and Lanthier (1978) have recently reported a study of 150 incarcerated
sex offenders, 27% of which were pedophiles (victims younger than 13 years of
age) and 73% heterosexual rapists. This study is unique in that, in addition to
the traditional offender's self-report and arrest records, detailed information
was obtained from probation officers' presentencing reports, transcripts of courtroom
testimony, and reports from medical personnel examining the victims. Table 2 outlines
the extent of aggression used by each category of offender.
Offender's Use of Aggression
During the Offense
of Aggression||Child Molesters||Rapists|
|Used verbal threat only||12%||20%|
|Used excessive physical
|Victim sustained noticeable injury||42%||39%|
to popular opinion, 58% of child molesters used excessive physical force during
the crime, compared to 71 % of rapists. Moreover, 42% of the child victims sustained
noticeable injury, compared to 39% of the rape victims. Thus, although a smaller
percentage of child molesters than rapists use physical aggression while committing
the crime, the percentage of victims actually injured is slightly higher for victims
of child molestation than victims of rape. This leads Christie et al. (1978) to
Perhaps the most surprising observation of
the present study concerns the degree of violence employed in the offense. It
is of course not unreasonable to expect rapists to use violence, and other researchers
have confirmed this expectation, but most other studies have reported pedophiles
to be physically harmless individuals. For whatever reason, a substantial number
of the pedophiles in our group used physical force in excess of that necessary
for the commission of the crime, and this appears to be unusual observation sufficient
to warrant further examination (p. 29).
- Stuart, Richard B., Violent Behavior:
Social Learning Approaches to Prediction, Management, and Treatment, Brunner/Mazel,
Inc.: New York, 1981.
Personal Reflection Exercise Explanation
Goal of this Home Study Course is to create a learning experience that enhances
your clinical skills. We encourage you to discuss the Personal Reflection
Journaling Activities, found at the end of each Section, with your colleagues.
Thus, you are provided with an opportunity for a Group Discussion experience.
Case Study examples might include: family background, socio-economic status, education,
occupation, social/emotional issues, legal/financial issues, death/dying/health,
home management, parenting, etc. as you deem appropriate. A Case Study is to be
approximately 250 words in length. However, since the content of these Personal
Reflection Journaling Exercises is intended for your future reference, they
may contain confidential information and are to be applied as a work in
progress. You will not
be required to provide us with these Journaling Activities.
Reflection Exercise #1
The preceding section contained information
about the dangerousness of child molesters. Write three case study examples regarding
how you might use the content of this section in your practice.
Most other studies have reported pedophiles to be physically harmless
individuals. However, what did Stuart's study find? To select and enter your answer go to .