Sample Criminal Justice Paper on Understanding the Female Offender

Female Offenders

In the article “Understanding the Female Offender”, Cauffman identifies victimization and trauma as the principal causes of female offending. Cauffman (2008) agrees that abuse and female offending are intertwined because majority of women engaging in crime are those that suffered from abuses in the past. In this manner, juvenile female offenders engage in crimes because they perceive it as an opportunity to necessitate survival in a perilous and cruel society. Consequently, in the article “Women and Girls in the Criminal Justice System,” Friedman (2008) identifies mental illness, substance abuse, and victimization as the principal risk factors linked to feminine offender’s criminal behaviors. For that reason, the mentioned risk factors precipitate stress and mental disorders promoting juveniles to commit crimes.

Female and male offenders share similarities and equally exhibit differences. With regard to differences, female offenders are less involved in serious crimes compared to men who actively engage in grave crimes such as murder or burglary. This means that women engage in less crime such as prostitution and shoplifting among other petty crimes. Cauffman (2008) claims that female juvenile offenders are less likely to be repeat offenders compared to men who repeatedly engage in criminal activities. Significantly, male and female offenders bear similarities relating to the principal causes of offending. Friedman (2008) points out abuses resulting into victimization and trauma as the principal factors responsible for both male and female offending. As such, feminine offending is marked by physical and sexual abuse, as well as low self-esteem while male offending is marked by stress relating to fathering responsibilities. Thus, it can be deduced that female offenders’ criminal behaviors results from mental disorders embodied in past abuses while men attempt to fulfill their fatherly responsibilities.

Prevention and treatment of criminal acts differs among male and female offenders. As such, feminine juvenile offenders require prevention and treatment programs that foster development in a safe environment. According to Cauffman (2008), female juvenile offenders need ongoing moral and mental support after interacting with the justice system. Friedman (2008) affirms that parental training and counseling envisage the crime prevention and treatment for male offenders. The male offenders are particularly concerned about the welfare of their children or siblings.




Cauffman, E. (2008). Understanding the female offender. Future Child, 18(2), 119-142.

Friedman, S. (2008). Women and girls in the criminal justice system: Policy issues and practice strategies. Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 36 (3) 421-422.