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Stability, Continuity & Criminal Behavior

Updated on March 6, 2018

Criminal behavior is a very difficult trait to analyze. This is due to the fact that there are so many variables which come into play concerning the issue. Stability of crime over time is consistent with life course criminality. Continuity of crime often defines problematic underlying factors which have gone unattended.

Concerning the subjects of continuity and stability lies Asendorpf’s reference to both; continuity applies to maintenance while stability is better associated with consistency (Asendorpf, 1992). In our text Wright mentions that consistency of certain characteristics; such as impulsivity and daringness, measured early in life can be predictors of later criminal behavior thus per our earlier definition of stability are these consistent characteristics solidified into valid predictors of future criminal conduct (Wright et al., 2008).

It has been proven that youth that show high levels of antisocial behavior or very low levels of antisocial behavior patterns that these patterns tend remain stable over time. Also, it has been said that pro-social behavior is the strongest and most stable measurable trait over time (Wright et al., 2008).

Wherefore from the research studied in this report it appears that stability and continuity of antisocial behavior, and its’ relationship usually remain relatively stable over time. These variables are also often strong predictors of future criminal conduct.

Works Cited

Caspi, A., & Silva, P. A. (1995). Temperamental qualities at age three predict personality traits in young adulthood: Longitudinal evidence from a birth cohort. Child development, 66 (2), 486-498.

Loeber, R. (1982). The stability of antisocial and delinquent child behavior: A review. Child Development, 53 (6), 1431-1446.

Olweus, D. (1979). Stability of aggressive reaction patterns in males: A review. Psychological Bulletin, 86, 852-875.

Petersilia, J. (1980). Criminal career research: A review of recent evidence. Crime and Justice, 2, 321-379.

Wright, J. P., Tibbetts, S. G., & Daigle, L. E. (2008). Criminals in the making. Criminality across the life course.

Cool Criminal Justice Book

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