Anna-Kari Sjödin

Characteristics of offenders of dating violence with focus on aggressive antisocial behavior
Being of young age (adolescence or young adulthood) is a risk factor of becoming an offender or victim of violent crimes generally, and young women are at most risk of becoming victims of partner violence during the ages of 16-24. Partner violence among the young  have typically been studied in socially adjusted samples such as college or university students, however, a lot of the risk factors for partner violence offending describe a socially estranged or marginalized youth. With special concern taken to the poor outcome of batterer intervention in prison, it is urgent to address the gap of knowledge regarding young men in prison, convicted of violent crimes towards their partner.

The aims of this study were to

    1. characterize young dating violent offenders (DVO),
    2. identify groups with different patterns of intimate partner abuse (IPV) (i.e., psychological and physical abuse) with special focus on aggressive antisocial behavior.

We have used data from the Development of Aggressive Antisocial Behavior Study, in all 264 young men, 18 to 25 years, convicted of violent crimes and imprisoned in the Western Region of the Swedish Prison and Probation Services. Preliminary results imply that there is a lack of specific offender type characteristics, however, the results point to an association between measures of aggression, hostility and partner abuse, thus defining a cluster of high partner abuse and aggression, which to a large part has an etiology in early onset conduct disorder.

Anna-Kari Sjödin, University of Gothenburg, began her academic career  with studies in theology (Lund University from 1981 to 1986), and later, studies in social work (University of Gothenburg, 1993-1996). Since 1996 she has been working as a forensic psychiatric social worker at the National Board of Forensic Medicine in Sweden, being involved in pre-trial psychiatric evaluations and clinical research of offenders of violent and sexual crimes. During the autumn of 2012, she began doctoral studies at the University of Gothenburg, Institute of Psychiatry and Neurochemistry, Sahlgrenska Academy. She also belong to the Center of Ethics, Law and Mental health at the University of Gothenburg, Celam. The main goal of Celam is to contribute and support research of mental health, aggressive behaviour, moral and criminal responsibility in an interdisciplinary context. Her research area focuses on men convicted of violent crimes against their partner; offender characteristics, aggressive antisocial behaviour and recidivism.