Original Research

Risk for traumatization among violent crime victims in an urban community sample in South Africa

K Peltzer
Curationis | Vol 23, No 4 | a734 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/curationis.v23i4.734 | © 2000 K Peltzer | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 27 September 2000 | Published: 27 September 2000

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K Peltzer, Department of psychology, University of the North, South Africa

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Abstract

This study intended to investigate risk factors for the development of trauma symptoms as a consequence of violent crime in an urban South African community. The sample included 128 adult victims of violent crime chosen by snowball sampling. The adults were 36 (28.1%) males and 92 females (71.9%) in the age range of 18 to 52 years (M age 36.6 yr., SD -8.9). Results indicate that the most common violent crimes experienced among the participants were rape (attempted rape), followed by physical assault, armed robbery, attempted murder and threat in that order. The majority of the victims scored high on the Kolner Risk Index (for traumatization) - several case examples are given. Analysis of Variance indicated that almost all factors of the Kolner Risk Index seem to be significantly correlated with PTSD outcome measures (PTSS- 10, IES-R, Peritraumatic Dissociation and Trauma Belief). It is concluded that the Kolner Risk Index can be a useful tool for identifying crime victims at risk for the development of trauma symptoms, especially in (mental) health care settings.

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