Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Social Work

First Advisor

Sarah Kye Price


Child sexual assault is a problem of epidemic proportions in the United States with some research suggesting up to one fifth of our nations children being victimized before reaching adulthood. Research has suggested females could be responsible for up to 20% of child sexual abuse cases, and at the same time only represent only 1% of sexual offenders incarcerated the US. This creates a situation where a large group of relatively under-researched offenders are evading detection. Numerous calls for further research have been made, but relatively few studies have had the ability to shed significant light on this phenomenon on a national level. This project utilizes a dataset of virtually every reported child protective services case in the United States for the fiscal year 2010 in order to investigate the dynamics of perpetrator gender on child sexual offending in substantiated cases. Offense characteristics, as well as case level components, were assessed to investigate not only the differences in offending behavior but also the ways gender affects how offenders enter and exit our child protective systems and the services they receive while there. Extensive differences were uncovered as related to perpetrator gender. Models were informed by the female sexual offending literature. Practice and policy implications are discussed.


© The Author

Is Part Of

VCU University Archives

Is Part Of

VCU Theses and Dissertations

Date of Submission

April 2013

Included in

Social Work Commons