Date of Award

Spring 6-2022

Document Type

Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

Department/Program

Criminal Justice

Language

English

First Advisor or Mentor

Kevin Wolff

Second Reader

Frank Pezzella

Third Advisor

Heath Grant

Abstract

Previous research has found that adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) can affect delinquent behavior in various ways. This study aims to explore the associations between gender, race/ethnicity, violent offending, and adverse childhood experiences among a sample of justice-involved youth. 9,655 youth referred to the Florida Department of Juvenile Justice were given the Community Assessment Tool (CAT), a risk assessment that also reports adverse childhood experiences. Secondary data analysis was conducted using the information provided to test the expectations of the Childhood Trauma Model (CTM). The study finds associations between gender, race/ethnicity, violent offending, and adverse childhood experiences. Notably, ACEs had a significant relationship with violent offending among White females. The results suggest a need for intervention among White female youth, which differs from the assumptions of the CMT. The limitations of this study and recommendations for future research have been discussed as well.

Available for download on Tuesday, April 25, 2023

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