Early physical abuse and later violent delinquency: A prospective longitudinal study.
Lansford, J. E., Miller-Johnson, S., Berlin, L. J., Dodge, K. A., Bates, J. E., & Pettit, G. S. (2007). Early physical abuse and later violent delinquency: A prospective longitudinal study. Child Maltreatment, 12, 233-245. (Chosen as Article of the Year by the journal’s Editorial Board, with award presented at the American Professional Society on the Abuse of Children colloquium, 6/20/08.)
In this prospective longitudinal study of 574 children followed from age 5 to age 21, the authors examine the links between early physical abuse and violent delinquency and other socially relevant outcomes during late adolescence or early adulthood and the extent to which the child's race and gender moderate these links. Analyses of covariance indicated that individuals who had been physically abused in the first 5 years of life were at greater risk for being arrested as juveniles for violent, nonviolent, and status offenses. Moreover, physically abused youth were less likely to have graduated from high school and more likely to have been fired in the past year, to have been a teen parent, and to have been pregnant or impregnated someone in the past year while not married. These effects were more pronounced for African American than for European American youth and somewhat more pronounced for females than for males.