Study Shows Bay State Sex Offenders Repeat Crimes

July 7, 2008 - 7:02 PM

Boston, MA - ( - The findings of a 10-year study of more than 3,000 Massachusetts' pedophiles, rapists and other sexual offenders shows fewer than 10 percent of them are responsible for more than one-third of all sexual assaults and that nearly 20 percent of the offenders committed at least one other sexual offense.

The report, released earlier this week, was carried out by the Massachusetts Commissioner of Probation and tracked all Bay State residents who were charged with a sexual crime in 1998.

The survey determined that 18 percent of all offenders eventually returned to court to face charges of another sexual offense and that, by 1998, the 3,200 offenders has been arraigned for nearly 68,000 crimes. Of that figure, 10,108 were sexual crimes.

The study showed 70 percent of all sex crimes involved violence and intimidation and that violence occurred in nearly every case involving a child. In addition, 52 percent of all reported rapes involved minor children.

According to the study, children and the mentally challenged were victims in 76.1 percent of recorded sexual assaults. Nearly 43 percent of the offenders were charged with a sex crime against children, and nearly 66 percent of offenders had a prior criminal record.

According to the report, 95 percent of sexual offenders were males between the ages of 10 and 81. The median age was 29.

"Unfortunately, the finding are not at all surprising, "said Middlesex County District Attorney Martha Coakley. "Someone who has a sexual predilection for children is going to continue to act until they're incarcerated or put into treatment.

"It's not some guy in a rain coat, and it's not the guy who made the mistake just once." It's the guy who does it many times but just may not have gotten caught. It's a sexual deviance that's very hard to control," Coakley added.

According to the district attorney, her office is involved in as many as 800 child abuse cases each year with as many as 90 percent involving some form of sexual assault.

"This is a group of people who may not be very nice. They use a lot of violence and intimidation in their crimes," said Carmen Cicchetti, the probation department's director of research.

"This reinforces what I have been saying all along. It's a small number of people who are committing these crimes, and they go after the most vulnerable members of our society," said Robert Curley, whose 10-year-old son, Jeffrey, was killed by two pedophiles in October, 1997. The two men were convicted of murder and are serving life sentences.