The relationship between sexual recidivism and posttreatment denial and minimization was examined among 436 sex offenders followed up for an average period of more than 5 years. Treatment completion status and psychopathic traits, both established predictors of sexual recidivism also associated with denial and minimization, were included in survival analyses to remove their confounding influence on the focal relationships. The potential role of actuarial risk as a moderating variable was also investigated. A dichotomous variable reflecting denial and minimization failed to predict sexual recidivism. However, among a subset of 102 sex offenders who received no additional treatment after completing an initial program, the interaction between actuarial risk and scores on a continuous measure of minimization predicted sexual recidivism. Implications for assessment, particularly the need to move beyond dichotomous operationalizations of denial and minimization, and treatment were discussed.

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Criminal Justice and Behavior
Department of Psychology

Langton, C.M. (Calvin M.), Barbaree, H.E. (Howard E.), Harkins, L. (Leigh), Arenovich, T. (Tamara), McNamee, J. (Jim), Peacock, E.J. (Edward J.), … Marcon, H. (Heidi). (2008). Denial and minimization among sexual offenders: Posttreatment presentation and association with sexual recidivism. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 35(1), 69–98. doi:10.1177/0093854807309287