[Source: Time Magazine]
A survey of 197 youth offenders in England — boys aged 11 to 19 who have been incarcerated — found that they are three times more likely to have had a traumatic brain injury (TBI) than their non-offending counterparts. About half of the 197 youths reported a brain injury, in keeping with another English survey of adult prisoners that found a rate of TBI of 60%.
Traumatic brain injury has long been associated with adult prisoners: the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) found that between 25% and 87% of men and women imprisoned for violent crimes have suffered a TBI prior to incarceration. That’s a big range, but even at its low end, it is about three times higher than the rate of TBI in the general population (8.5%). (More on Time.com: Amnesia and a Camera: Photos as Memories)
The new British study also found that youth offenders with multiple brain injuries were more likely to have carried out more violent crimes. The researchers said that while brain injury alone was unlikely to have spurred criminal behavior, it appeared to play a role in children who were already at risk of committing crimes.