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Criminological research has identified both stability and change in criminal behavior over time. While most youth mature out of delinquency in their late teens and early adulthood, there is a small group of individuals whose criminal behavior persist into young adulthood and beyond, oftentimes increasing in both frequency and seriousness. Criminologists are confronted with the question of why some youth continue their criminal offending over time, when the majority of their peers have made the transition to conformity. This is a critical question not only because it leads to the discovery of protective factors, but also because it points to risk factors for recidivism and persistent offending.