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​Sex Offender Characteristics

  • Most offenders commit multiple crimes against multiple types of victims with whom they have varying types of relationships (adults, children, male, female, known, and unknown). This behavior is known as crossover.

  • Sex offenders rarely commit just one type of offense. Many offenders have NO criminal history or sex crime history of any kind.

  • There is no such thing as a "typical" sex offender; however, all tend to be manipulative, deceptive, and secretive. Sex offenders come from all backgrounds, ages, income levels, and professions.

  • The majority of offenses (78-90%) are committed by someone the victim knows.

  • Sexual deviancy often begins in mid to late adolescence (Abel 1995).

  • Sex offenders do not usually commit their crimes impulsively. They usually employ careful planning and preliminary steps that, if interrupted, can prevent an actual crime (CSOM).

  • The vast majority of sex offenders are male; only 20% of child sex offenses are committed by women (ATSA 1996).