Gender differences in violent outcome and risk assessment in adolescent offenders after residential treatment

H. Lodewijks, C. de Ruiter, T. Doreleijers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


In light of the increase of violence in female adolescents during the past few decades, not only preventive, but also remedial strategies are important to mitigate this trend. Once high-risk female adolescents enter the juvenile justice system, it is important to be able to use reliable and valid instruments to predict reoffending. However, only a few studies have focused on risk assessment specifically addressing female adolescents. This prospective study examined gender differences in violent recidivism over an average follow-up period of 18 months after discharge, making use of the Dutch version of the Structured Assessment of Violence Risk in Youth (SAVRY). The SAVRY was coded for 35 female adolescents and a comparison sample of 47 male adolescents on the basis of file information before their release. The juvenile court had referred all these juveniles to a juvenile justice facility, because of violent offending and severe behavioral problems. Data on recidivism were retrieved from the Identification Service System of the National Police Services. Significant differences were found between the two gender groups on a number of SAVRY items. The predictive validity of the SAVRY for violent recidivism was good for girls (AUC = .85) and for boys (AUC = .82). However, false positives for girls were found more frequently than for boys. Implications for gender specific risk assessment and risk management in clinical practice are discussed. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2009 APA, all rights reserved) (from the journal abstract)
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)133-146
JournalInternational Journal of Forensic Mental Health
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2008

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