Offender Reentry–New Research: Crime News

Dear Gentlereaders: Although we would love to read more about the research listed below, it’s contained in a document that requires a subscription even though it was funded by tax paid research. Crime in America staff.

Braga, Piehl, and Hureau evaluated the Boston Reentry Initiative (BRI). The BRI is an interagency initiative designed to prevent former violent offenders from engaging in criminal behavior by helping them transition from jail back to their Boston neighborhoods. The initiative involves the development of individual reintegration plans during and after offenders’ incarceration. Case workers and mentors draw on a variety of programs to support the transition into the community, including substance abuse and mental health treatment and vocational development.

The authors utilized a quasiexperimental design to evaluate the crime prevention efforts of the BRI, comparing the recidivism patterns of BRI participants and an equivalent comparison group. The recidivism measures used in this study were any new arrests and arrests for after release from jail. Despite having high rearrest, the results indicate that the BRI participants had lower rearrest rates than those in the comparison group. While these differences narrowed over time, the BRI participants had lower rearrest rates at one, two and three years post-release than the comparison group.

The full study, Violent Offenders Released to the Community: Evaluation of the Boston Reentry Initiative and Delinquency at:  the November 2009 issue of Journal of Research in Crime