Date of Award
Doctor of Philosophy
The purpose of this study is to examine the role psychopathy and adverse childhood experiences have on criminal behavior. Data for psychopathy and adverse childhood experiences was gathered via surveys and official criminal histories were also collected. The use of the Psychopathy Personality Inventory-Short Form allowed for an examination of the impact that different facets of psychopathy have on crime. Furthermore, the use of official criminal histories allowed for an examination at how psychopathy and adverse childhood experiences impacted violent crime, property crime, drug offenses, sexual offenses, and weapons offenses. The sample is comprised of 320 offenders, both male and female who were under the supervision of the Iowa Department of Corrections.
Data was analyzed using negative binomial regression and logistic regression with odds ratios. Results indicate that psychopathy and adverse childhood experiences were strongly related to property offending and drug offending. Moreover, sexual offending was significantly associated with adverse childhood experiences, specifically having been a victim of sexual abuse. The findings suggest that criminal justice practitioners should be accounting for psychopathy and adverse childhood experiences when supervising individuals and when developing treatment programs.
Mark H. Heirigs
Heirigs, Mark H., "Psychopathy, adverse childhood experiences, and antisocial behavior" (2020). Graduate Theses and Dissertations. 17932.