Date of Conferral





Health Services


Magdeline Aagard


This qualitative multiple-case study sought to provide an in-depth understanding of how children living in broken families-due to the wrongful conviction of parent(s)-developed psychosocial issues. The theoretical frameworks applied to this study were the social learning theory, the social control theory, the role-modeling theory, and the general theory of crime. A purposeful sample of 13 adults who were children at the time of their parents’ wrongful incarceration were drawn for phone and in-person interviews. The data were transcribed and analyzed to code, sort, and organize; to analyze connections in the information, and to compare and contrast cases. The multiple-case study data were analyzed using 1st and 2nd cycle coding. Among the 10 themes identified in this study were these 5: family structure and activities, behavioral issues associated with the wrongful conviction of their parents, wrongful conviction effects on education, mental health impacts of a parental wrongful conviction on left-behind children and bullying in school and at home. This implications for positive social change are that the findings raise awareness of the psychosocial issues experienced by children whose parent(s) were wrongfully imprisoned for government officials, community leaders, policymakers, and justice reform advocates who can use them to implement programs to provide psychosocial assistance to all children of incarcerated parents.