Changing trajectory: an integrated theoretical view of the Roman Catholic priest sex abuse scandal
Birzer, Michael L., 1960-
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Alexander, Ryan; Birzer, Michael L., 1960-. 2016. Changing trajectory: an integrated theoretical view of the Roman Catholic priest sex abuse scandal. Deviant Behavior, vol. 37:no. 9:pp 977-988
The sexual abuse of children by Roman Catholic priests across the United States is a direct result of access to children, and that access changes across the life-course of individual priests. Turning points affect not only an individual priest's motivation to commit the crime, but also the suitability of a target. Guardianship of the victim and the surveillance of the offender play a salient role in facilitating the opportunity for the sexual assault of a child. Two criminological theories are germane to how contextual elements of the abusive situation can fluctuate across the life course: (1) Life Course Theory and (2) Routine Activity Theory.
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