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Continuity in Offending: Persistence
Continuity in Offending: Persistence

The criminal career begins with onset. For many offenders it ends soon thereafter: for any given group, prevalence in crime peaks during the teenage years when criminal offending is very common, and then it dramatically decreases. Between ages 20 and 29, the vast majority of offenders desist from crime and move into a conventional, adult life (Farrington, 2003). As Benson (2013: 123) notes, the

vandalism, shoplifting, petty thefts, fist fights, illegal drug use, and drunkenness that are so common among teenagers that they are statistically normal become decidedly abnormal for a substantial majority of people after the age of 25.

Only a small portion of all offenders develop a persistent criminal career. These offenders, while they constitute somewhere between ...

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