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Marital Dissolution and the Development of Criminal Behavior

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Abstract:

Marriage is considered to be an important life-course event that can reduce an individual’s criminal activity and even lead to desistance from crime. Although this idea takes a prominent place in life-course criminology, almost no attention has been paid to a strongly related life-course event: marital dissolution. If marriage indeed reduces crime, divorce can be expected to have the opposite effect. A divorce disrupts existing social bonds, and therefore may enhance criminal behavior.
This paper aims to investigate the relationship between divorce and criminal behavior. First, we are interested in offenders’ divorce rates. To what extent do offenders divorce? Are chances to divorce higher if offenders are married to a criminal partner? Second, we are interested in the effects of divorce. To what extent does a marital dissolution influence the development of criminal behavior? To what extent does this depend on the criminal history of the spouse?
To analyze the relationship between marriage, spousal criminality, and criminal convictions, we use a unique longitudinal dataset: The Criminal Career and Life-course Study (CCLS). The CCLS contains data on the officially registered criminal careers and life-courses of almost 5,000 Dutch offenders and their marriage partners, covering ages 12 to 72.
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Association:
Name: ASC Annual Meeting
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http://www.asc41.com


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p372592_index.html
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MLA Citation:

van Schellen, Marieke., Nieuwbeerta, Paul. and Poortman, Anne-Rigt. "Marital Dissolution and the Development of Criminal Behavior" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the ASC Annual Meeting, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Philadelphia, PA, Nov 04, 2009 <Not Available>. 2014-11-28 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p372592_index.html>

APA Citation:

van Schellen, M. , Nieuwbeerta, P. and Poortman, A. , 2009-11-04 "Marital Dissolution and the Development of Criminal Behavior" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the ASC Annual Meeting, Philadelphia Marriott Downtown, Philadelphia, PA <Not Available>. 2014-11-28 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p372592_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: Marriage is considered to be an important life-course event that can reduce an individual’s criminal activity and even lead to desistance from crime. Although this idea takes a prominent place in life-course criminology, almost no attention has been paid to a strongly related life-course event: marital dissolution. If marriage indeed reduces crime, divorce can be expected to have the opposite effect. A divorce disrupts existing social bonds, and therefore may enhance criminal behavior.
This paper aims to investigate the relationship between divorce and criminal behavior. First, we are interested in offenders’ divorce rates. To what extent do offenders divorce? Are chances to divorce higher if offenders are married to a criminal partner? Second, we are interested in the effects of divorce. To what extent does a marital dissolution influence the development of criminal behavior? To what extent does this depend on the criminal history of the spouse?
To analyze the relationship between marriage, spousal criminality, and criminal convictions, we use a unique longitudinal dataset: The Criminal Career and Life-course Study (CCLS). The CCLS contains data on the officially registered criminal careers and life-courses of almost 5,000 Dutch offenders and their marriage partners, covering ages 12 to 72.


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