Criminal behavior, offending and pathways into forensic intellectual disability services

William R. Lindsay

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


Research on offenders with intellectual disability (ID) has continued at a reasonable pace over the years 1998–2012 and has established the importance of certain variables in the pathways into offending for people with ID. Previous aggression, a diversity of index behaviors, adversity in childhood such as sexual abuse, physical abuse and deprivation and a childhood diagnosis of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder/conduct disorder all emerge as important variables in pathways to offending. The influence of societal changes is evident with far greater proportions of referrals in recent years coming from criminal justice sources. Risk assessment has developed considerably with established, static risk instruments showing predictive validity at least as good as that shown with mainstream offenders. More recent studies have suggested that dynamic, proximal assessments may have particular utility with this group of offenders leading to the possibility of more effective risk management strategies. Treatment studies have been evaluated using the “what works” criteria and only anger treatments fulfill the more rigorous standards while treatments for sex offending and other aspects of criminal behavior remain promising.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationChallenging behavior
EditorsRichard Hastings, Johannes Rojahn
Place of PublicationOxford
PublisherAcademic Press
Number of pages38
ISBN (Print)9780124016620
Publication statusPublished - 2013

Publication series

NameInternational Review of Research in Developmental Disabilities
PublisherAcademic Press
ISSN (Print)2211-6095


  • Intellectual disabilities
  • Offenders
  • Pathways
  • Risk assessment
  • What works


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