Call Us: US - +1 845 478 5244 | UK - +44 20 7193 7850 | AUS - +61 2 8005 4826

Adolescence-limited and life-course-persistent antisocial behavior

We obtained unique identification numbers for all individuals ages 15 (the age of criminal responsibility) and older who committed a violent crime from 1988 to 2000 from the national crime register. Of the 205,846 violent convictions, only 105 (0.001%) were without a personal identification number and were excluded from subsequent analyses. For the purposes of this study, a violent crime was defined as homicide and attempted homicide, aggravated assault (an assault that is life-threatening in nature or causes severe bodily harm), common assault, robbery, threatening behavior, harassment, arson, and any sexual crime. We used conviction data because, in Sweden, in common with only a few countries in the world, individuals with mental disorders who are charged by the courts are convicted as if they did not have mental disorders (i.e., regardless of their mental state at the time of the offense), although sentencing does take mental health issues into account. Therefore, conviction data included those for which a court ordered detention in a psychiatric hospital or a noncustodial sentence and determined legal insanity (in someone who suffered from “psychosis regardless of aetiology” at the time of the offense established by a court-ordered forensic psychiatric evaluation). It also included cases in which the prosecutor issued a warning of caution or a fine (e.g., in less serious violent crimes or some juvenile cases). In addition, because plea bargaining is not permitted in the Swedish legal system at the conviction stage, the crime register more accurately reflects the burden of officially resolved criminality in the population than in most other countries. Sweden does not substantially differ from other members of the European Union in the rates of violent crime and their resolution