Intellectual, behavioral, and personality correlates of violent vs. non-violent juvenile offenders

Tom D. Kennedy, Kent F. Burnett, William A. Edmonds

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


The overall aim of this study was to examine the relationship between offender status (violent vs. nonviolent) and selected predictor variables from personality, behavioral, and intellectual domains. The two main sub goals were (a) to determine which variables from these domains were most closely associated with offender status, and (b) to construct a stepwise logistic regression model that could help identify which juveniles were more likely to be incarcerated for violent vs. nonviolent offenses. The participants for this investigation were juvenile offenders referred to the Juvenile Court Assessment Center by the Juvenile Justice Division of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit. The court-ordered assessment included the following measures: (a) The Millon Adolescent Clinical Inventory (MACI), (b) the Behavior Assessment System for Children (BASC), (c) the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test-Third Edition (PPVT-III), (d) the Wide Range Achievement Test-Third Edition (WRAT-III), (e) the Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test (K-BIT), and (f) records of school achievement. The ten variables that had the strongest association with offender status were entered into the stepwise logistic regression analysis; five of these strategically chosen predictor variables accurately differentiated violent from nonviolent offenders 86.3% of the time. Reading Percentile (β=-051), PPVT-III (β=-059), MACI-Inhibition (β=-033), MACI-Eating Dysfunction (β=051), and BASC-Sense of Inadequacy (β=-072). Gender differences were explored.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)315-325
Number of pages11
JournalAggressive Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jul 1 2011


  • Female offenders
  • Juvenile delinquency
  • Serious offenders
  • Stepwise logistic regression
  • Violent crime

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychology(all)


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