Risk Factors for Intimate Partner Violence : A Comparison of Antisocial and Family-Only Perpetrators


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Publication Details

Author list: Petersson, Joakim

Publication year: 2019

Start page: 219

End page: 239

Number of pages: 21

ISSN: 0886-2605

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1177/0886260516640547

View additional information: View in Web of Science


Subtyping male perpetrators of intimate partner violence (IPV) based on their generality of violence could facilitate the difficult task of matching perpetrator subtype with efficient risk management strategies. As such, the aim of the present study was to compare antisocial and family-only male perpetrators of interpersonal violence in terms of (a) demographic and legal characteristics, (b) risk factors for violence, and (c) assessed risk and the importance of specific risk factors for violence. A quantitative design was used in this retrospective register study on data obtained from the Swedish police. Risk assessments performed with the Swedish version of the Brief Spousal Assault Form for the Evaluation of Risk (B-SAFER) and police registers were used. A sample of 657 male alleged IPV perpetrators were classified as antisocial (n = 341) or family-only (n = 316) based on their generality of violence. The results showed that the antisocial perpetrators were significantly younger, as well as more psychologically abusive. Antisocial perpetrators also had significantly more present risk factors for IPV, and were assessed with a significantly higher risk for acute and severe or deadly IPV, compared with the family-only perpetrators. The subtypes also evidenced unique risk factors with a significant impact on elevated risk for acute and severe or deadly such violence. Key findings in the present study concerned the subtypes evidencing unique risk factors increasing the risk for acute and severe or deadly IPV. Major implications of this study include the findings of such unique ""red flag"" risk factors for each subtype. To prevent future IPV, it is vital for the risk assessor to be aware of these red flags when making decisions about risk, as well as risk management strategies.


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