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The Perversion of YouthControversies in the Assessment and Treatment of Juvenile Sex Offenders$
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Frank C. DiCataldo

Print publication date: 2009

Print ISBN-13: 9780814720011

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9780814720011.001.0001

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The Return of the Blob

The Return of the Blob

The Heterogeneity of Juvenile Sex Offenders

(p.19) 2 The Return of the Blob
The Perversion of Youth

Frank C. DiCataldo

NYU Press

This chapter challenges the notion that the juvenile sex offender is a distinct category of juvenile offenders. The term juvenile sex offender is essentially a legal designation but it purports to carry significant clinical meaning, since it provides little understanding or insight into who might be its recipient. For a category to have any scientific validity and clinical utility, it must be proven that the members of the group share a set of essential or core characteristics. Given that—apart from the defining sexual offense itself—there are no common markers or clinical signs that distinguish juvenile sex offenders from nonsex offenders, juvenile sexual offenders bear little resemblance to their adult counterpart.

Keywords:   juvenile sex offender, juvenile offenders, core characteristics, sexual offense

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