The role of partners and parents in young persistent offenders’ struggles to desist from crime [2020]

This article explores the role of partners and parents of young adult repeat offenders in the process of desistance from crime. First, we conducted in-depth interviews with 22 young adults who had been involved in persistent criminal activity since adolescence but had since stopped. Some, but by no means all of them, stated that their partner had played an important role in this. In contrast, hardly any of them had any doubt about the importance of their parents’ role. We then investigated whether the same views were also found among young adult offenders where it was unclear whether or not they had desisted from crime. Based on in-depth interviews with 21 young adults, we conclude that this was indeed the case except for a minority who continued to offend. This article throws new light on the role of both partners and parents in the process of desisting from crime.

Ido Weijers
European Journal of Probation, August 17, 2020