A Comparison of Psychopathic Trait Latent Profiles In Service Members

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This study used latent profile analysis (LPA) to identify differing classes of psychopathic traits in a large sample of military personnel (90.7% Army National Guard) and examined how membership across profiles can be differentiated by mean scores on external correlates relevant to psychopathy and/or to military service (e.g., aggression, posttraumatic stress symptoms, impulsivity). Psychopathy was operationalized via the three-factor model of the Levenson Self-Report Psychopathy Scales (LSRP; Brinkley et al. 2008; Levenson et al. 1995). LPA revealed optimal fit for a four-profile solution. Three profiles had roughly equivalent within-profile means across the three factors, characterized by below average, average, and above/high average LSRP scores. The fourth profile emerged as qualitatively different: high on LSRP-Callous but below average on LSRP-Egocentricity and LSRP-Antisocial. The four profiles were differentiable based on their mean scores on external correlates, suggesting varied implications for externalizing and internalizing features across psychopathic trait configurations in a military sample. Implications for studying psychopathy in military and other novel samples are discussed.

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Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment

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