The Validity of Violence Risk Assessment in Young Adults: A Comparative Study of Juvenile and Adult Risk Assessment Tools

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Few studies have addressed the application of violence risk assessment for individuals transitioning from youth to adulthood. For 202 young adults released from Dutch juvenile justice institutions this study investigated the predictive validity and potential disparities in impact of juvenile risk assessment tools (i.e., SAVRY [Structured Assessment of Violence Risk in Youth], and SAPROF-YV [Structured Assessment of Protective Factors for violence risk-Youth Version]), and comparable adult risk assessment tools (i.e., HCR-20V3 [Historical Clinical Risk management-20 Version 3], and SAPROF [Structured Assessment of Protective Factors for violence risk]). Assessments with juvenile and adult risk assessment tools yielded similar predictive validity for violent and non-violent recidivism. Risk and protective factors related to treatability, parents, community participation, resilience, and personality showed individual predictive validity. These findings offer flexibility when applying risk assessment in clinical practice. The choice between youth and adult assessment tools should be made considering the individual’s developmental stage.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1409-1422
Number of pages13
Issue number6
Early online date2023
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2023


  • HCR-20
  • emerging adults
  • predictive validity
  • protective factors
  • risk assessment

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