Psychiatric Comorbidity of Sex Offenses in a Military Forensic Sample

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Objective: To examine the prevalence of psychiatric disorders among service members charged with sexual offenses.

Methods: The sample comprised service members charged with any type of sexual offense and referred for forensic evaluation (N = 67). Forensic mental health evaluations (competency to stand trial, criminal responsibility, risk assessment) of service members charged with sexual offenses were examined and the assigned clinical diagnoses (according to DSM-IV or -5) were enumerated to provide natural frequencies and percentages. Data were collected from February 2018 to May 2018.

Results: Findings suggest that alcohol use disorder is the most prevalent disorder both at the time of offense (28%) and time of the forensic evaluation (38%). The 2 most prominent diagnostic categories were substance use disorders and trauma-and-stress–related disorders.

Conclusions: Identification and treatment of psychiatric disorders among service members charged with sexual offenses may facilitate rehabilitation, reduce recidivism, and offer public health benefits. This topic should be further studied in a larger sample to effectively address this public health problem.

Prim Care Companion CNS Disord 2019;21(1):18m02349

https://doi.org/10.4088/PCC.18m02349