Variations in sexual behavior as predictors of juvenile criminality: Implications for object relatedness

Bonnie Chwast, Pace University


The purpose of this study was to assess whether knowledge of the characteristics of incarcerated adolescents' sexual behavior and attitudes has utility in predicting the scope of their criminal activity. The subjects were 52 male adolescent inmates, adjudged free of mental illness and awaiting trial in an inner city jail. Data concerning sexual behaviors (e.g., number of sex partners, number of cohabiting relationships, use of contraception, incidence of infidelity) and criminal histories (e.g., number of arrests, number of violent charges) were selected from a self-report questionnaire designed for another study. A stepwise multiple regression analysis demonstrated that several of the selected sexual behaviors had utility in differentiating more chronic and more violent offenders from their inmate peers. Specifically, those who were arrested most frequently, used contraception less and cheated on steady partners more often as was true of offenders with the most charges for violent crimes. Additionally, this latter group placed less importance on understanding feelings within an ongoing sexual relationship. The link between opportunistic sexual behavior and criminality is discussed in the context of object relational pathology with a particular emphasis on its relationship to psychopathy.

Subject Area


Recommended Citation

Chwast, Bonnie, "Variations in sexual behavior as predictors of juvenile criminality: Implications for object relatedness" (1994). ETD Collection for Pace University. AAI9413772.



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