- The Oxford Handbooks in Criminology and Criminal Justice
- The Oxford Handbook of Sex Offences and Sex Offenders
- List of Contributors
- What is sex crime?
- Exploring the methods behind sexual violence estimates: The Composition and Findings from National and International Surveys
- The explanation of sexual offending
- Sexual offenders and human rights: Protecting Victims
- Rape and domestic sexual assault
- Sexual homicide and violent offenders
- Child sexual abuse
- Alcohol and drugs in relation to sexual offending
- Commercial sexual exploitation of children
- Victim–offender overlap among sex offenders
- Female sex offenders
- The juvenile sex offender: Criminal Careers and Recidivism Risk
- A developmental life-course perspective of juvenile and adult sexual offending
- Victimization and revictimization
- The role of policy in preventing sexual violence
- The policing of sexual activity
- Sentencing high-risk sex offenders: Policy and Legislation
- The aftermath of sex offender registration and other controls
- Risk assessment of sex offenders
- Treatment of sex offenders: Concepts and Empirical Evaluations
- Informal social control of sex offenders: The Family and Other Forms of Support
- Restorative justice and sex offending
- Public perceptions of sex crimes and sex offenders
- The media response to sex crimes
- The paedophile in popular culture: Fictional Representations of Sex Crime
- Social media, cyberspace, and sex crime: Deviant and Democratizing Spaces
- The criminalization of sexuality
- Prostitution and sex work
- Sex trafficking and control
Abstract and Keywords
This essay focuses on the media’s response to sex crimes, how news reporting can affect people’s perceptions of sex offenders, and how all of these issues are connected to the development of law. The rate of sex crimes has been steadily declining for the past 20 years, and official rates of recidivism for sex offenders are actually low compared to other types of offenders, but the media tend to ignore these facts. Many people become oversaturated by the news, and continuous reporting can cause panic in viewers. The type of information that the media report increases people’s concern that they, or a close family member, might become a victim of a sex offense. With the fear increased—making the topic relevant in our culture—media outlets then spend more time reporting on such issues because people are interested and the stories will sell.
Jennifer L. Klein is an Assistant Professor of Criminal Justice at the University of Texas at Tyler.
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