The relationship between attention deficit hyperactivity disorder in childhood and criminality in adolescence and adulthood was examined in 89 hyperactive and 87 normal control subjects studied prospectively at the Division of Child Psychiatry, Oregon Health Sciences University, Portland, OR. Hyperactive subjects had significantly higher juvenile and adult rates of arrest and incarceration compared to controls. Comorbid conduct problems during childhood and serious antisocial behavior in adolescence predicted later criminality in adulthood. [1]

COMMENT. Hyperactive children are at an increased risk for criminal behavior and arrest in adolescence and in adulthood. Childhood conduct problems and adolescent antisocial behavior are predictors of later arrest for criminality. Hyperactive children have a five times normal rate of developing conduct disorders and a subsequent increased risk of criminality. Stealing from other children, and telling lies to get out of trouble are conduct problems that appear minor but may lead to more serious antisocial behavior in adolescence unless treated by early intervention counselling. Multimodal treatment of ADHD in childhood results in improved academic achievement and less antisocial behavior compared to drug-only treated patients.