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Criminal victimisation

What is criminal victimisation? 

Criminal victimisation refers to a person being the victim of a violent crime (rape or sexual assault, robbery, aggravated or simple assault) or a property crime (burglary and theft). People with a severe mental illness may be at higher risk of criminal victimisation. This may be a result of possible cognitive impairment (e.g. poor reality testing, judgment, social skills, planning, and problem solving), and sometimes compromised social situations (e.g. poverty, unemployment, homelessness, and social isolation).

What is the evidence for criminal victimisation?

Moderate quality evidence found increased rates of criminal victimisation in people with schizophrenia compared to general population rates. Between 43% and 83% of women with schizophrenia reported domestic violence by a partner.

In people with any psychotic disorder, rates of victimisation were around 20%. Criminal activity showed a medium to large association with increased victimisation. Small associations were found with having delusions, hallucinations, or mania symptoms. Being unemployed, homeless, or using drugs or alcohol also increased the risk of victimisation.

August 2020

Last updated at: 4:43 am, 11th August 2020
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Fact Sheet Technical Commentary

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