Browsing by Subject "CRIME"

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  • Lind, Kalle; Kääriäinen, Juha Tapio (2018)
    Previous studies have suggested strongly that early engagement in gambling anticipates severe gambling problems. Problem gambling and gambling addiction are linked to financial difficulties, depression and weakened life control. One social consequence of excessive gambling is property crime. In this study, we analyze screening data (N = 1573) from a problem gambling self-help program to locate predictors of such criminal behaviour. We applied logistic regression to determine the relationship between problem gambling and both reported cheating and stealing. Our objective was to create an empirically-based model of the different risk factors related to such criminogenic gambling. Our models suggest that self-reported gambling-related cheating and stealing is related to young age, low education, low income, a high rate of depression, a long history of problem gambling, and negative subjective perception of one's financial situation.
  • Yu, Rongqin; Aaltonen, Mikko; Branje, Susan; Ristikari, Tiina; Meeus, Wim; Salmela-Aro, Katariina; Goodwin, Guy M.; Fazel, Seena (2017)
    Objective: Despite recent research demonstrating associations between violence and depression in adults, links in adolescents are uncertain. This study aims to assess the longitudinal associations between young people's depression and later violent outcomes. Method: We used data from three cohorts with different measurements of depression exposures and subsequent violent outcomes. In a Dutch community cohort Research on Adolescent Development And Relationships (RADAR; N = 623) and a population-based British birth cohort Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC; N = 4,030), we examined the longitudinal links between adolescent depressive symptoms and violent behaviors from age 13 to 17 years. In a total Finnish birth cohort (FBC 1987; N = 57,526), we estimated risk of violent convictions in individuals clinically diagnosed with depression from age 15 to 27 years. Results: During a mean follow-up period of 4 years, the adjusted odds ratio (aOR) of violent behaviors per unit of increase in depressive symptoms was 1.7 (95% CI = 1.2-2.5) in the Dutch RADAR community sample and 1.8 (95% CI = 1.4-2.3) in the British ALSPAC birth cohort. In the FBC 1987 cohort, the aOR of violent convictions was 2.1 (95% CI = 1.7-2.7) among individuals with a depression diagnosis compared with general population controls without depression. All risk estimates were adjusted for family socioeconomic status and previous violence. Conclusion: Consistent findings across three longitudinal studies suggest that clinical guidelines should consider recommending risk assessment for violence in young people with depression. The benefits of targeting risk management in subgroups by gender need further investigation.
  • Backman, Heidi; Laajasalo, Taina; Jokela, Markus; Aronen, Eeva T. (2018)
    Friendships and romantic relationships may function as protective and risk factors for psychopathic traits. To better understand potential causal associations, we investigated whether within-individual changes in relationship characteristics were related to changes in psychopathic traits over time. Data were derived from ten repeated measurements of the Pathways to Desistance longitudinal study of 1354 offending adolescents (14.3% female; 40.1% Black). Analyses were adjusted for age, gender, ethnicity, self-reported offending and living facilities. Relationships of high quality were associated with lower psychopathic traits, whereas antisocial behavior and antisocial influence in relationships were related to higher psychopathic traits. Within-individual analysis indicated that time-invariant individual characteristics did not confound these associations. The findings suggest that the quality and antisocial activities of interpersonal relationships can affect positively or negatively on the levels of psychopathy.
  • Kalle, Lind; Johanna, Järvinen-Tassopoulos (2019)
    Purpose The purpose of this paper is to explore the prevalence of potential problem gambling among Finnish prisoners; the associations between problem gambling and demographics, substance use and crime-related factors; and problem gamblers’ support preferences.Design/methodology/approach Prisoners (n=96) from two Finnish prisons were recruited between December 2017 and January 2018. The estimated response rate was 31 percent. Gambling problems were measured using the Brief Biosocial Gambling Screen. The participants were asked to report their gambling both for one year prior to their incarceration and for the past year. The independent variables were demographics (age, gender and marital status), substance use (alcohol, smoking and narcotics) and crime-related factors (crime type, prison type and previous sentence). Statistical significance (p) was determined using Fischer’s exact test.Findings Past-year pre-conviction problem gambling prevalence was 16.3 percent and past-year prevalence 15 percent. Age, gender, smoking, alcohol or illicit drug use were not associated with past-year problem gambling before sentencing. One-third of the prisoners (33.3 percent) who were sentenced for a property crime, financial crime or robbery were problem gamblers. One-quarter (24 percent) of all participants showed an interest in receiving support by identifying one or more support preferences. The most preferred type of support was group support in its all forms.Research limitations/implications It is recommended that correctional institutions undertake systematic screening for potential problem gambling, and implement tailored intervention programs for inmates with gambling problems.Originality/value This study provides a deeper understanding of problem gambling in prisons. Problem gambling is associated with crime and also seems to be linked with serving a previous sentence. Early detection and tailored interventions for problem gambling may help to reduce reoffending rates.
  • Thomson, Annika; Tiihonen, Jari; Miettunen, Jouko; Sailas, Eila; Virkkunen, Matti; Lindberg, Nina (2015)
    Background: Psychopathy, a severe disorder of personality, is well represented in the criminal and forensic psychiatric population and is significantly associated with increased risk of violence and crime. Fire-setting is a major source of property damage, injury, and death in many Western countries. The primary aim of this study was to evaluate psychopathic traits in a consecutive sample of Finnish male pretrial fire-setting offenders. Further, we wanted to investigate whether fire-setting recidivists show higher traits of psychopathy than one-time firesetters and whether exclusive firesetters show lower traits of psychopathy than those with criminal versatility. Methods: The forensic psychiatric examination statements for male firesetters who underwent a pretrial forensic psychiatric evaluation during a 10-year period (1989 - 1998) were reviewed. The sample comprised 129 firesetters with normal IQ, 41 of whom were fire-setting recidivists. Fifty men were exclusive firesetters. Assessment of psychopathy-like personality character was performed using the 20-item Hare Psychopathy Checklist-Revised. Results: Two individuals (1.6%, 95% CI: 0.0-3.7) scored >= 30 points and 19 (14.7%, 95% CI: 8.6-20.8) >= 25 points on the PCL-R. The mean PCL-R total score was 16.1 (SD 6.88), the mean Factor 1 score 5.0 (SD 3.41), and the mean Factor 2 score 9.9 (SD 3.86). No significant differences emerged between the recidivists and the one-time firesetters. The versatile firesetters exhibited significantly higher mean total and factor scores than the exclusive ones. Conclusion: Among firesetters, there is a subgroup of persons with significant psychopathic traits, which should be recognized in legal and health care organizations. Although psychopathy was associated with greater criminal versatility, it bore no relationship to fire-setting recidivism.
  • Sariaslan, Amir; Arseneault, Louise; Larsson, Henrik; Lichtenstein, Paul; Fazel, Seena (2020)
    Importance Key outcomes for persons with psychiatric disorders include subjection to violence and perpetration of violence. The occurrence of these outcomes and their associations with psychiatric disorders need to be clarified. Objective To estimate the associations of a wide range of psychiatric disorders with the risks of subjection to violence and perpetration of violence. Design, Setting, and Participants A total of 250 419 individuals born between January 1, 1973, and December 31, 1993, were identified to have psychiatric disorders using Swedish nationwide registers. Premorbid subjection to violence was measured since birth. The patients were matched by age and sex to individuals in the general population (n = 2504 190) and to their full biological siblings without psychiatric disorders (n = 194 788). The start date for the patients and control groups was defined as the discharge date of the first psychiatric episode. The participants were censored either when they migrated, died, experienced the outcome of interest, or reached the end of the study period on December 31, 2013. Data were analyzed from January 15 to September 14, 2019. Exposures Patients with common psychiatric disorders (eg, schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, depression, and anxiety) were differentiated using a hierarchical approach. Patients with personality disorders and substance use disorders were also included. Main Outcomes and Measures Subjection to violence was defined as an outpatient visit (excluding a primary care visit), inpatient episode, or death associated with any diagnosis of an injury that was purposefully inflicted by other persons. Perpetration of violence was defined as a violent crime conviction. Stratified Cox regression models were fitted to account for the time at risk, a range of sociodemographic factors, a history of violence, and unmeasured familial confounders (via sibling comparisons). Results Among 250 419 patients (55.4% women), the median (interquartile range) age at first diagnosis ranged from 20.0 (17.4-24.0) years for alcohol use disorder to 23.7 (19.9-28.8) years for anxiety disorder. Compared with 2504 190 matched individuals without psychiatric disorders from the general population, patients with psychiatric disorders were more likely to be subjected to violence (7.1 [95% CI, 6.9-7.2] vs 1.0 [95% CI, 0.9-1.0] per 1000 person-years) and to perpetrate violence (7.5 [95% CI, 7.4-7.6] vs 0.7 [95% CI, 0.7-0.7] per 1000 person-years). In the fully adjusted models, patients with psychiatric disorders were 3 to 4 times more likely than their siblings without psychiatric disorders to be either subjected to violence (adjusted hazard ratio [aHR], 3.4 [95% CI, 3.2-3.6]) or to perpetrate violence (aHR, 4.2 [95% CI, 3.9-4.4]). Diagnosis with any of the specific disorders was associated with higher rates of violent outcomes, with the sole exception of schizophrenia, which was not associated with the risk of subjection to violence. Conclusions and Relevance In this study, persons with psychiatric disorders were 3 to 4 times more likely than their siblings without psychiatric disorders to have been subjected to violence or to have perpetrated violence after the onset of their conditions. The risks of both outcomes varied by specific psychiatric diagnosis, history of violence, and familial risks. Clinical interventions may benefit from targeted approaches for the assessment and management of risk of violence in people with psychiatric disorders.
  • Tanskanen, Maiju Aliisa; Aaltonen, Mikko (2022)
    Purpose: The purpose of the current study was to examine the tendencies toward specialization and generalist offending among intimate partner violence (IPV) offenders and to assess whether some well-known correlates of criminal offending are differentially associated with various offending patterns. Method: We use large-scale register-based data from Finland including all offenders in police-recorded cases of IPV between 2015 and 2019 (N = 19,030). Two different analytic approaches suggested for research on offense specialization are used: the multilevel item response theory (IRT) approach and latent class analysis (LCA). Results: Significant tendencies toward both specialization and generalist offending were found in the data using both analysis methods. In addition, the correlates were differentially associated with specialized versus versatile offending patterns. Specialization in IPV was associated with, for example, female gender, older age, higher socioeconomic status, and having an immigrant background. The findings also show IPV specialization and generalist offending to be differentially associated with different victimization types. Conclusions: The findings suggest that the idea of IPV offenders as specialists who do not engage in violence and crime in other contexts is not empirically fully accurate. Implications for future research, theory, and prevention policies are discussed.
  • Oksanen, Atte; Miller, Bryan L.; Savolainen, Iina; Sirola, Anu; Demant, Jakob; Kaakinen, Markus; Zych, Izabela (2021)
    Drugs are sold on both dark web services and on social media, but research investigating these drug purchases online is still emerging. The aim of this study is to analyze risk factors associated with buying drugs online. Utilizing theories of criminology and addiction research, it was hypothesized that social bonds, low levels of self-control, and poor mental health are associated with buying drugs online. Additionally, it was predicted that purchases of drugs online would mediate the relationship between low self-control and regular drug use. Participants of this nationwide study were 15 to 25 years old living in the United States (N= 1,212) and Spain (N= 1,212). Measures of impulsivity, a sense of mastery, social belonging, psychological distress, excessive behaviors (drinking, gambling and internet use) were utilized to predict purchasing drugs online. Two percent of the U.S. and Spanish respondents reported buying drugs online with 77% of them utilizing social media services to buy drugs. Results from multinomial logistic regression, penalized maximum-likelihood logistic regression, and binary mediation regression models indicated that buying drugs online was associated with lower self-control, higher psychological distress, and excessive gambling behavior and excessive Internet use. Having online friends was not a risk factor, but having strong social bonds with offline friends served as a protective factor. Additionally, buying drugs online mediated the relationship between low self-control and regular use of drugs. Results indicate that more focus should be placed on mainstream social media services as sources of drug acquisition as online drug buyers have multiple self-control and mental health problems.
  • Vuorela, Miikka Harri Johannes (2018)
    The purpose of the article is to provide an overview to the trends in crime and crime control in Finland and Sweden during the past 150 years, systematically comparing the two countries. The secondary objective of the study is to introduce a Nordic data collection project aiming to compile coherent comparative criminal justice time series from the early nineteenth century to the present, and to present the first collection of data, the Finnish justice statistics 1842–2015. The study examines the long-term development of homicide, assault, rape, defamation, prison population, and penal severity. Historical statistics provide opportunities to examine the crime trends and the society’s responses to them keeping in mind that the statistics do not necessarily reflect changes in total criminality. As such, the study does not provide conclusive explanations on the development of crime and punishment but rather opens new questions to be answered in future research.
  • Lehti, Martti Mikael; Sirén, Reino (2020)
    The article explores the statistical association between annual alcohol consumption and homicide mortality in Finland, Sweden and Norway from the early 19th century to 2013. The results show statistically significant impacts on overall and male homicide mortality in Finland and on male homicide mortality in Sweden. In Norway, we found no significant impacts. The results suggest that changes in the level of alcohol consumption have had a stronger impact on homicide rates in Finland, characterized by a heavier drinking culture, than in Norway or Sweden. The strength of the association between alcohol consumption and homicide levels seems also to vary over time and to be conditioned by economic and socio-political factors.