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The current body of research lacks clarity and specificity on which factors may contribute to sexual offense recidivism. The body of research on recidivism suggests that among online sexual offenses committed against minors, victim prevalence rates may be as high as 19 percent and offender recidivism rates may be as high as 13.4 percent. These data create a compelling case that offender recidivism is a critical area of study that affects many individuals nationwide. The present study explores whether selected personal history variables or particular crimes may predict whether or not the perpetrator of an online sexual offense against minors is a first-time or repeat offender. The sample is derived from a national representative sample conducted by the National Data Archive of Child Abuse and Neglect between the years of 2000 and 2001. Findings suggest that controlling for age, gender, and race of the online offender, history of mental illness, history of drug or alcohol abuse, having an illegal occupation, and having been previously convicted of a non-sexual crime are not significant predictors of recidivism. Secondly, committing a crime involving the sexual exploitation of a minor, the distribution of child pornography to a minor, and possession/production of child pornography are also not-significant predictors of offender recidivism within this population.


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19 Jul 2022
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  • Alternative title
    • A Study of Recidivism among Online Sexual Predators

  • Journal title
    • International Social Science Review

  • Volume
    • 97

  • Issue
    • 2

  • Date submitted

    19 July 2022

  • Keywords
  • Additional information
    • Acknowledgements:

      Hannah Kolodner is a PhD Candidate in Clinical Social Work who studies at the National Catholic School of Social Service.