ACEs are predictive of criminal and antisocial behaviour later in life

ACEs theory is consistent with theories of crime which have proven links between childhood factors and adulthood criminality and victimisation (Agnew, 1985; Farrington et al, 2006)

Prolonged exposure to stress in childhood disrupts healthy brain development. This can manifest as emotional and conduct problems in childhood, and risk-taking and criminal behaviour in adulthood. (Levenson et al, 2016)

  • People with 4+ ACEs are:
    • 4x more likely to become a high-risk drinker
    • 5x more likely to commit violence against another person
    • 6x more likely to have or cause unintended teenage pregnancy
    • 14x more likely to have been a victim of violence in the past year
    • 20x more likely to be incarcerated at any point in their lifetime

  • Every additional ACE increases the risk of becoming a serious, chronic, violent juvenile offender by more than 35%

    (From the original Felitti/Anda Study carried out in 1995-97)

    Taking a trauma informed approach in USA has led to:

    • Wisconsin - a 50% reduction in incidents leading to youths being placed in solitary confinement

    • San Francisco - an 86% reduction in school incidents of physical aggression

    • Walla Walla - a 59% reduction in youth suicide attempts