Applying the Criminal Narrative Experience Framework to Young Offenders [2018]

The present study applied the Criminal Narrative Experience for the first time with young offenders (N = 23). The analysis was based on young people serving a community sentence and attending a Youth Offending Team. Participants completed questionnaires relating to their roles and emotions during a typical offence and data were examined with Smallest Space Analysis (SSA) to identify if the themes were replicated. Three themes were identified: Calm Professional, Elated Hero, and a combined theme of Distressed Revenger and Depressed Victim. Correlation indicated links between Narrative Experience and static and dynamic risk factors. Findings suggest that the Calm Professional theme correlates with Neighbourhood risk factors, the Elated Hero with Attitudes to Offending, and the Distressed Revenger/Depressed Victim theme with Living Arrangements and Family and Personal Relationships. Potential reasons for identifying three rather than four themes with this sample are discussed. Implications of findings in preventing reoffending are highlighted.

Maria Ioannou, John Synnott, Emma Lowe, Calli Tzani-Pepelasi
International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology, Vol 62, Issue 13, 2018