Paraphilias with co-morbid psychopathy: The clinical and legal significance to sex offender assessments

Fabian M. Saleh, H. Martin Malin, Albert J. Grudzinskas, Michael J. Vitacco

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

11 Scopus citations


This article briefly discusses the historical development of the constructs of paraphilia and psychopathy. An overview of recent developments in the assessment of these constructs for legal purposes is also provided. The historical, clinical, legal, and ethical obligations of clinicians who work with persons suffering from paraphilias and comorbid psychopathy is then reviewed. An emphasis of the current article is integrating recent developments in the construct of psychopathy into a discussion of sex offender risk assessment and treatment. The co-morbidity of psychopathy and paraphilias as factors in predicting risk of recidivism is reviewed. The need for practitioners to remain cognizant of language requirements in both legal and clinical contexts is addressed. Finally, this article reviews the legal history of sex offender legislation and its evolution into current United States Supreme Court jurisprudence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)211-223
Number of pages13
JournalBehavioral Sciences and the Law
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2010
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Law


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