n Acta Criminologica: Southern African Journal of Criminology - The significance of a criminological report in understanding contributory factors to aggressive and violent behaviour : a case study analysis

Volume 18, Issue 1
  • ISSN : 1012-8093



Whether for pre-sentencing and/or for custodial purposes, forensic (with the view of assisting the court) reports should contribute to the process of informed decision-making (Terblanche 1999:111-112). Factors that are already known to officials in the Criminal Justice System should be avoided and foci should rather be on the origin and onset of criminal behaviour, contributory factors to criminal behaviour, triggers, personal, social and environmental influences, personality traits, high-risk situations and the probability that such a person might re-offend. These factors should be sustained by recent and relevant research findings as well as a scientific, contemporary theoretical explanation (See for instance S v Manka, 2003 (2) SACR 515; S v Mokoena, 2003 (2) SACR 521).

Forensic reports can be utilised for both pre-sentence and custodial purposes. In South Africa, criminological reports are mostly used for presentencing purposes. However, this article argues that forensic reports can be utilised effectively for custodial purposes to contribute to an inter-disciplinary approach to offender management and rehabilitation where a proactive approach can no longer be applied. A case study pertaining to violent and aggressive behaviour is analysed from a criminological perspective. Relevant contributory factors, triggers, high-risk situations and intervention indicators are examined to assist correctional officials to understand and manage dangerous offenders. A scientific explanation is also provided to explain aggressive and violent behaviour. Furthermore, the contribution of peer victimisation to violent and aggressive behaviour is illustrated in this report.

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


Article metrics loading...


This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was a Success
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error