Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science





First Advisor

Matthew DeLisi


The purpose of this analysis is to evaluate the criminal histories of a cohort of offenders in Iowa who have been newly admitted to prison on a most serious domestic or sex offense. Moreover, addressing whether offenders convicted of domestic violence and sex abuse have intersecting, specialized, or versatile criminal histories. Data was collected from the Justice Data Warehouse and offenders newly admitted to prison during FY2015 on a most serious domestic violence or sex crime, as well as a matched comparison group, were assessed. Analyses by logistical regression and receiver operating characteristic curves examined the criminal histories of these offenders between FY2005-FY2015. Results showed that domestic violence offenders who had prior assault and drug possession histories were more likely to have their current conviction be for domestic violence. Similarly, sex offenders who had prior sex abuse histories were significantly more likely to have their current conviction be for sexual abuse. Current sex offenders also had prior burglaries and/or property offense histories as indicators of a sex conviction. As the findings implicated, while some domestic violence and sex offenders may be specialized, they too displayed versatile criminal histories with prior non-violent charges and convictions. Thus, knowledge can be provided to interested stakeholders on how to reassess offender treatment and prediction measures within Iowa’s criminal justice system. Overall, creating a system that acknowledges the predictive factors of prior charges and convictions, which will help to keep the most vulnerable victims and society safe.


Copyright Owner

Taylor Jo Barry



File Format


File Size

150 pages