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Statistics and Research
Relevant to Sex Offender Issues
This is our our new Statistics page, you may still see our old-statistics-page and this message will be eliminated when we get everything to our new format. Thank you.
Criminal Justice and Mental Health Research Sections:

      General Recidivism Studies:       State-by-State Recidivism Studies:

      Studies on Therapy:       Misc. Studies:       Female Offenders:

--- General Recidivism Studies ---
Recidivism of sex offenders released in 1994 Washington, DC: Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report, Langan, P. A., & Levin, D. J. NCJ-198281
Pub: November 2003: Presents, for the first time, data on the rearrest, reconviction, and reimprisonment of 9,691 male sex offenders, including 4,295 child molesters, who were tracked for 3 years after their release from prisons in 15 States in 1994. The 9,691 are two-thirds of all the male sex offenders released from prisons in the United States in 1994. The study represents the largest followup ever conducted of convicted sex offenders following discharge from prison and provides the most comprehensive assessment of their behavior after release.
Recidivism of prisoners released in 1994: Washington, DC: Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report, Langan, P. A., & Levin, D. J. NCJ-193427
Pub: June 2002:Reports on the rearrest, reconviction, and reincarceration of former inmates who were tracked for 3 years after their release from prisons in 15 States in 1994. The former inmates represent two-thirds of all prisoners released in the United States that year. The report includes prisoner demographic characteristics (gender, race, Hispanic origin, and age), criminal record, types of offenses for which they were imprisoned, the effects of length of stay in prison on likelihood of rearrest, and comparisons with a study of prisoners released in 1983.
Recidivism of prisoners released in 1983: Washington, DC: Bureau of Justice Statistics Special Report, Langan, P. A., & Levin, D. J. NCJ-116261
Pub: April 1989: An analysis of the criminal records of more than 16,000 men and women, representing the almost 109,000 offenders who were released from prisons in 11 States during 1983. The study links correctional data with Federal and State criminal history records to provide a complete portrait of criminal careers for more than a half of the State prisoners released during 1983. About 47% of the former prisoners were convicted of a new crime and 41 percent were sent back to prison or jail. 4/89 NCJ 116261.
Measuring Recidivism:The Criminal History Computation of the Federal Sentencing Guidelines U.S. Sentencing Commission, Research Series on the Recidivism of Federal Guideline Offenders, Release 1
Pub: May 2004:The recidivism study data are composed of a stratified, ramdom sample of 6,062 U.S. Citizens who were sentenced under the federal guidelines in fiscal year 1992. ... ... Recidivism was defined as: A) Primary Definition, a re-conviction, or, a re-arrest, or, a supervision revocation; -OR- B) A re-conviction within two years of release. Recidivism rates were calculated for each group.
Recidivism and The "First Offender" U.S. Sentencing Commission, Research Series on the Recidivism of Federal Guideline Offenders, Release 2
Pub: May 2004:The "first offender" philosopy generally encourages lower sentences for offenders who have little or no prior criminal conduct. However, sentencing guidelines are designed to treat offender fairly based upon their prior criminal conduct, with "first offenders" this creates a problem. The commission opted for looking at the "first offender" prior contacts with the criminal justice system in developing a point system. This study collected data from 6,000 offenders sentenced in 1992.
Canada Releases Study on the Reconviction Rate of Federal Offenders: Solicitor General Canada
Pub: June 2003: Recidivism is an important and widely used performance measure for correctional programs, but there is no single, standard measure of recidivism. The report notes that it is often difficult to compare recidivism rates because various methods are used and these produce different results.

Using the RCMP's criminal records to measure all new offences, the study found that reconviction rates for federal offenders released in three consecutive fiscal years -1994/95, 1995/96 and 1996/97 - were 44 per cent, 43 per cent, and 41 per cent, respectively. Non-violent offences accounted for the majority of reconvictions. The violent reconviction rate was approximately 13 per cent, and the sexual reconviction rate was very low (0.7 per cent to 1.7 per cent).

The major goal of the present study was to derive a standard measure of recidivism for use by the Portfolio of the Solicitor General. After weighing the advantages and disadvantages of different measures of recidivism, the Committee chose a new conviction for an offence committed within two years as the most acceptable measure from the choices available.

However, a choice had to be made as the public deserves a uniformly reported measure of recidivism rather than the confusing range of statistics presently offered. We hope that by outlining the limitations of the present methodology and the reasons for choosing reconviction as our measure of recidivism we give a common language to the correctional agencies of the federal government..(James Bonta, Tanya Rugge, Mia Dauvergne, Solicitor General Canada)
Predicting Relapse, A Meta-Analysis of Sexual Offender Recidivism Studies: Corrections Research Department of the Solicitor General of Canada, by R. Karl Hanson
Pub: April 1998: ABSTRACT Evidence from 61 follow-up studies was examined to identify the factors most strongly related to recidivism among sexual offenders. On average, the sexual offense recidivism rate was low (13.4%; n = 23,393). There were, however, subgroups of offenders who recidivated at high rates. Sexual offense recidivism was best predicted by measures of sexual deviancy (e.g., deviant sexual preferences, prior sexual offenses) and, to a lesser extent, by general criminological factors (e.g., age, total prior offenses). Those offenders who failed to complete treatment were at higher risk for reoffending than those who completed treatment. The predictors of nonsexual violent recidivism and general (any) recidivism were similar to those predictors found among nonsexual criminals (e.g., prior violent offenses, age, juvenile deliquency). Our results suggest that applied risk assessments of sexual offenders should consider separately the offender's risk for sexual and nonsexual recidivism.
Age and Sexual Recidivism: A Comparison of Rapists and Child Molesters: R. Karl Hanson, Department of the Solicitor General Canada
Pub: June 2001: This study examines the relationship of age to sexual recidivism using data from 10 follow-up studies of adult male sexual offenders (combined sample of 4,673). Rapists were younger than child molesters and the recidivism risk of rapists steadily decreased with age. In contrast, extrafamilial child molesters showed relatively little reduction in recidivism risk until after the age of 50. The recidivism rate of intrafamilial offenders in the 18 to 24 year old age group, whose recidivism risk was comparable to that of rapists and extrafamilial chjild molesters. The results are discussed in terms of developmental changes in sexual drive, self-control, and opportunities to offend.
Three State Recidivism Study: Submitted to the Office of Correctional Education, United States Department of Education by Dr. Stephen J. Steurer, Dr. Linda Smith, and Dr. Alice Tracy
Pub: September 2001: The Correctional Education Association conducted the Three State Recidivism Study for the United States Department of Education Office of Correctional Education. The study was designed to see if education, independent of other programs, could have significant impact on the behavior of inmates after release. Data on about 3,200 inmates, who were released from Maryland, Minnesota and Ohio prisons in late 1997 and early 1998, are reported in this longitudinal study. The analysis of the data indicates that inmates who participated in education programs while incarcerated showed lower rates of recidivism after three years. For each state the three measures of recidivism, re-arrest, re-conviction and re-incarceration were significantly lower. The employment data shows that in every year, for the three years that the study participants were followed, the wages reported to the state labor departments were higher for the education participants compared to the non-participants. These results cannot be generalized to states beyond Maryland, Minnesota and Ohio because certain factors such as statutory definitions of crime, sentencing guidelines, and employment data may be different for other states. However, the study does prove that, those who participated in educational programs while in prison, did have a lower rate of recidivism after reentering the community.
Recidivism Among Federal Prisoners Released in 1987: Miles D. Harer Ph,D. Research Analyst, Federal Bureau of Prisons, Office of Research and Evaluation, Washington, D.C.
Pub: August 1994:Within 3 years of their release from the Federal Bureau of Prison (BOP) in 1987, 40.8% of those inmates had been either, rearrested or had their parole revoked, that is, recidivated. This finding is based upon 1,205 BOP inmates released into the community during the first 6 months of 1987. This study examines the characteristics of those inmates, and the characteristics of the community environment they were released into, and determines recidivism percentages by the community characteristic. Highlights: Persons living with spouses had a lower recidivism rate than those living in other arrangements; Those who had arranged post-release employment had half the recidivism rate of those who had no employment arrangements; etc. This study identifies several two-way associations such as those and provides recidivism rates.
Conditional Treatment and Its Effect on Recidivism: Herman J. Bierens Pennsylvania State University, USA & Tilburg University, The Netherlands; Jose R. Carvlho Federal University of Ceara, Brazil
Pub: November 2002: The objective of this paper is to evaluate the effect of the 1985 "Employment Services for Ex-Offfenders (ESEO)" program on recidivism. Initially, the sample has been split randomly in a control group and a treatment group. However, the actual treatment (mainly being job related counseling) only takes place conditional on finding a job, and not having been arrested, for those selected in the treatment group. We find that the program helps to reduce criminal activity, contrary to the result of the previous analysis of this data set. This finding is important for crime prevention policy.
The Effects of Punishment on Recidivism: Smith, P., Goggin, C., & Gendreau, P. (2002); The effects of prison sentences and intermediate sanctions on recidivism: General effects and individual differences. (User Report 2002-01). Ottawa: Solicitor General Canada
Pub: May 2002: Method: A meta-analytic review of the literature on the effects of criminal justice sanctions on recidivism was conducted. Meta-analysis provides a quantitative synthesis of the research literature and this method is widely regarded as superior to the more traditional narrative literature review. The literature search identified 111 studies that examined the association between various criminal justice punishments and recidivism. Over 442,000 offenders were involved in these studies. The review included studies of imprisonment and intermediate sanctions. Noteworthy in the review were analyses of the findings with different types of offenders (e.g., juveniles, women, minorities). Answer: The overall findings showed that harsher criminal justice sanctions had no deterrent effect on recidivism. On the contrary, punishment produced a slight (3%) increase in recidivism. These findings were consistent across subgroups of offenders (adult/youth, male/female, white/minority).

--- Sex Offender Studies Focusing on "Therapy" Issues ---
State Sex Offender Treatment Programs: 50 State Survey: Prepared by Paula Wenger, Consultant for the Colorado Department of Corrections (495pg PDF)
November 2000:Formal sex offender treatment programs are being conducted in 39 states. There were 154,518 sex offenders incarcerated in 43 states that provided statistics, among those states sex offenders represented 26% of the total prison population. Thirty four states provided the duration of their programs: 28 offer 1+ years, of those, 19 are 3-year programs, and 8 are over 3 years long. States were unanimous in using cognitive behavioral treatment with relapse prevention as the focus. The 12-states without any prison sex offender therapy program are: Alabama, California, Delaware, Dist. of Columbia, Florida, Idaho (under consideration), Maine, Mississippi, Nevada (informal one running), Oregon, West Virginia (under review), and Wyoming (in transition).
UPDATE:State Sex Offender Treatment Programs: 50 State Survey: Prepared by Colorado Department of Corrections (2pg PDF)
February 2002:This is the largest (in physical size) statistical chart I have ever seen, 45" by 25" inches, it is very hard to deal with without a magnifier. Good luck, if you can read it, but there are ways, it is a very valuable update. There are STILL 10-states without any prison sex offender therapy programs are: Alabama, California, Florida, Idaho, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Mississippi, North Dakota (unknown), Oregon.
SEX OFFENDER TREATMENT PROGRAMS: by John Howard Society of Alberta Canada
Pub: ____ 2002: Although the number of convicted sex offenders grew from 2,768 in 1990 to 3,875 in 1995, the rate of reported sexual offences generally declined in recent years. In 1997, the rate of reported sexual offences was 101 per 100,000 people, a massive decline from a high of 135 per 100,000 people in 1993. Furthermore, there is an increasing amount of research that supports the idea that sex offenders can be treated successfully to allow them to lead crime free lives upon release. For example, one recent meta-analysis found that, across several studies, 19% of treated sex offenders and 27% of untreated sex offenders sexually recidivated. Given research such as this and the experience of the John Howard Society in working with sex offenders, the rest of this paper rests on the presumption that sex offenders are treatable and treatment programs do work. The question is: How can sex offenders be treated most effectively? Overall, research has found that sexual recidivism for all sex offenders is quite low, with rates of only 10% to 15% five years after release. Also, research has found that sex offenders can be categorized into three groups that have different recidivism rates and, thereby, require different treatments. These groups are incest child molesters who victimize related children, rapists who victimize adult women and non-incest child molesters who victimize unrelated children.
Sexual Offender Treatment Efficacy Revisited: by Margaret A. Alexander, Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment, Vol. 11, No.2, 101-116, 1999
Pub: April 1998: ABSTRACT Several authors have recently addressed current views of sexual offender treatment efficacy. Some maintain that offenders can gain from treatment while others argue that the vast majority cannot. Some researchers say that the field of sexual offender treatment is to new to be able to determine whether or not treatment works. This latter group notes that most studies in this field have not yet reached the point at which meta-analytic techniques can be applied; for this reason no definitive statements can be made about the utility of treatment. The present analysis examines the issues from a slightly different perspective. Data from a large group of studies are combined to identify patterns which can be examined later in more detail. More specifically, 79 sexual offender treatment outcome studies are reviewed, encompassing 10,988 subjects. Recidivism rates for treated versus untreated offenders are investigated according to age of offender, age of victim, offense type, type of treatment, location of treatment, decade of treatment, and length of follow-up. Each study is used as the unit of analysis, and studies are combined according to the number of treated versus untreated subjects who reoffended in each category. Clinical implications are drawn from these results.
Sex Offender Treatment Program: Initial Recidivism Study: by Anchorage: Alaska Department of Corrections, Offender Programs, and Alaska Justice Statistical Analysis Center, Justice Center, University of Alaska Anchorage
Pub: August 1996: The Alaska Department of Corrections, in conjunction with the University of Alaska Anchorage Justice Center, recently completed a study of sex offenders in the treatment program at Hiland Mountain Correctional Center during the period of January 1987 to August 1995. The study included analysis of descriptive characteristics of the participants; treatment variables such as length of time in program, reason for discharge and treatment stage at discharge; and re-offense data. The treatment group was compared with three other groups, including a motivated control group, an unmotivated control group, and a group of non-sex offenders (generics). There were several significant findings from the study: A treatment effect was clearly demonstrated. Treated sex offenders lasted longer in the community before they re-offended than offenders in any of the comparison groups. Even under varied definitions of re-offense, the treatment group lasted longer without re-offense regardless of the definition applied.

--- Miscellaneous Sex Offender Studies ---
EDUCATOR SEXUAL MISCONDUCT: A Synthesis of Existing Literature-2004: by Charol Shakeshaft, Ph.D., Professor, Foundations, Leadership and POlicy Studies, Hofstra University and Managing Director, Interactive, Inc. Washington, DC: Bureau of Justice Statistics, Planning and Evaluation Service, Office of the Undersecretary U.S. Department of Education: Special Report
Pub: March 2004: Section 5414 of the "Elementary and Secondary Education Act of 2001," as amended, in the "No Child Left Behind Act" authorizes a national study of educator sexual misconduct. This synthesis reviews existing data which relate to educator sexual misconduct including the methods used to collect that data. The phenomena examined in this synthesis include behavior by an educator that is directed at a student and intended to sexually arouse or titillate the educator or the child. Educator inlcudes any person, older than 18, who works with, or for, a school or other educational or learning organization. Adults covered by this review might be teachers, counselors, school administrators, secretaries, bus drivers, coaches, parent volunteers, lunchroom attendants, tutors, music teachers, special education aides, or any other adult in contact in a school related relationship with a student.
JUVENILES WHO HAVE SEXUALLY OFFENDED: A Review of the Professional Literature: by Sue Righthand and Carlann Welch; Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention
Pub: March 2001: The findings of this literature review indicate that juveniles who have committed sex offenses are a hetero-geneous group who, like all juveniles, have developmental needs, but who also have special needs and present special risks related to their abusive behaviors. Existing studies suggest that a substantial proportion of these juveniles desist from committing sex offenses following the initial disclosed offense and intervention. The literature clearly supports the importance of interventions that are tailored to the individual juvenile. Risk management strategies likely to be most effective are those that address the needs underlying a juvenile's behavior and make the most of the juvenile's existing strengths and positive supports. Although efficacy has not been established for many sex offender interventions considered standard and required, there are a wide range of interventions with more of an empirical basis, particularly within the juvenile delinquency field (such as multisystemic therapy), that may be effective. It also should be remembered that some juveniles may require minimal interventions once their sex offending has been disclosed. An additional and important caution is that treatment efforts should not be harmful. Lastly, it should be remembered that although the goal when working with juveniles who have committed sex offenses is to help them stop their abusive behaviors, they are children and adolescents first. They are young people who have committed offenses and who deserve care and attention.
Sex Offenses and Offenders: An Analysis of Data on Rape and Sexual Assault by Lawrence A. Greenfied, Statistician, Bureau of Justice Statistics, NCJ-163392
Pub: February 1997:Draws on more than two dozen statistical datasets maintained by the Bureau of Justice Statistics and on data from the Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program of the FBI to provide a comprehensive overview of current knowledge about the incidence and prevalence of violent victimization by sexual assault, the response of the criminal justice system to such crimes, and the characteristics of those who commit sexual assault or rape. Findings include the following:

Convicted rape and sexual assault offenders serving time in State prisons report that two-thirds of their victims were under the age of 18, and 58% of those--or nearly 4 in 10 imprisoned violent sex offenders--said their victims were aged 12 or younger.

In 90% of the rapes of children less than 12 years old, the child knew the offender, according to police-recorded incident data.

Among victims 18 to 29 years old, two-thirds had a prior relationship with the rapist.

Four datasets (the FBI's UCR arrests, State felony court convictions, prison admissions, and the National Crime Victimization Survey) all point to a sex offender who is older than other violent offenders, generally in his early 30's, and more likely to be white than other violent offenders. 1/97 NCJ 163392.
Sex Offender Recidivism: A Simple Question by Andrew J. R. Harris and R. Karl Hanson, Public Safety and Emergency Preparedness Canada
Pub: March 2004:This study examines sexual recidivism, as expressed by new charges or convictions for sexual offences, using the data from 10 follow-up studies of adult male sexual offenders (combined sample of 4,724). Results indicated that most sexual offenders do not re-offend sexually, that first-time sexual offenders are significantly less likely to sexually re-offend than those with previous sexual convictions, and that offenders over the age of 50 are less likely to re-offend than younger offenders. In addition, it was found that the longer offenders remained offence-free in the community the less likely they are to re-offend sexually. Data shows that rapists, incest offenders, "girl-victim" child molesters, and "boy-victim" child molesters recidivate at significantly different rates. These results challenge some commonly held beliefs about sexual recidivism and have implications for policies designed to manage the risk posed by convicted sexual offenders.

The basic question about sexual offender recidivism is usually phrased along the following lines: "what percentage of sexual offenders commit another sexual offence once they've been released from prison?" This question is not as easy to answer as one might believe. First, we must define "recidivism". In some studies, recidivism is defined as a reconviction for a sexual offence (e. g., Hanson, Scott & Steffy, 1995). In other studies, recidivism includes all offenders who were charged with a new sexual offence, whether or not they were convicted (e. g., Song & Lieb, 1995). Including charges along with convictions should, of course, lead to higher estimates of recidivism (Prentky, Lee, Knight & Cerce, 1997). Other studies have used expanded definitions of sexual recidivism that include informal reports to child protection agencies, self-report, violations of conditional release conditions, and simply being questioned by police (e. g., Marshall & Barbaree, 1988). All else being equal, the estimated recidivism rate should increase with each expansion of the definition; the broader the definition, the larger the recidivism estimate should appear. Consequently, it is important to specify the recidivism criteria in any recidivism estimate (e. g., "what percentage of sexual offenders are either charged with, or convicted of, another sexual offence once they've been released from prison?")

Another factor to consider is the length of the follow-up period. As the follow-up period increases, the cumulative number of recidivists can only increase. It is important to remember, however, that an increase in the number of recidivists is not the same as an increase in the yearly rate of recidivism. For all crimes (and almost all behaviours) the likelihood that the behaviour will reappear decreases the longer the person has abstained from that behaviour. The recidivism rate within the first two years after release from prison is much higher than the recidivism rate between years 10 and 12 after release from prison. Consequently, any estimate of sexual re-offending must be "time-defined" or "time limited" (e. g., "over the first five years, post-release from prison, what percentage of sexual offenders are either charged with, or convicted of, another sexual offence?")

A third factor to consider is the diversity among sexual offenders. We know that incest offenders recidivate at a significantly lower rate than offenders who target victims outside the family (Hanson & Bussière, 1998). We also know that child molesters with male victims recidivate at a significantly higher rate than child molesters that only have girl victims (Hanson & Bussière, 1998). By considering the type of sexual offender, our simple question becomes, once again, more complex: (e. g., "over the first five years, post-release from prison, what percentage of child molesters with male victims are either charged with, or convicted of, another sexual offence?")

Many sexual offences are never reported to police; this is the same for all violent offences except murder. Our best estimates of unreported sexual offending come from victimization studies. In a typical study a random sample of people are telephoned and asked if they have been a victim of a crime within the last year. One recent victimization study found that there were approximately half a million sexual assaults (499,000) committed in Canada in 1999 (Besserer & Trainor, 2000). Although reports to police of violent and sexual crimes were steadily declining in Canada between the years 1993 and 1999; the years 2000 and 2001 saw 1% increases in violent and sexual crimes (Savoie, 2002). Sexual victimization rates based upon victimization surveys appear to have remained basically unchanged across this same time period (Besserer & Trainor, 2000). The Besserer and Trainor (2000) study showed that sexual assault had the highest percentage of incidents that were not reported to police (78%). When respondents were asked why they did not report sexual victimization to the police, 59% of the respondents stated that the "incident was not important enough" to report. Consequently, readers may wonder what counts as a sexual assault.

The Besserer and Trainor (2000) victimization study used a very broad definition of sexual assault. They counted all attempts at forced sexual activity, all unwanted sexual touching, grabbing, kissing, and fondling, as well as threats of sexual assault (Jennifer Tuffs, personal communication, January 15, 2003). Their broad definition undoubtedly included some behaviours that do not conform to the popular image of a sexual offence. All unwanted sexual advances are wrong, possibly criminal, and have the potential to do psychological harm to the victim. As a society, however, we need to decide whether we wish to count an unwanted touch on the buttocks as an unreported sexual crime. Coming to an agreement on what constitutes a sexual crime will be a difficult task. Setting the bar too low would criminalize social clumsiness and over-state the problem of sexual assault. Setting the bar too high would devalue those victims who, while sustaining no overt signs of trauma, may have truly suffered at the hands of a sexual assailant. A detailed examination of the relationship between observed and undetected sexual offences is beyond the scope of the current paper. Readers should be aware, however, that the answer to the simple question of sexual offence recidivism requires specifying the nature of the offences being considered. In the analyses that follow, recidivism is defined as sexual offences reported to police that are credible and sufficiently serious to justify charges or convictions. The above review indicates that the simple question is not so simple.

--- Female Offender Studies ---
Women Offenders: by Lawrence A. Greenfield and Tracy L. Snell, Bureau of Justice Statisticians NCJ-175688
Pub: December 1999: Violent victimizers: During an average year, based on the period 1993-97, victims of violence attributed the crimes they experienced to an estimated 2.1 million female violent offenders and 13.1 million male violent offenders. About 1 out of 7 violent offenders described by victims was a female. Women accounted for 1 in 50 offenders committing a violent sex offense including rape and sexual assault, 1 in 14 robbers, 1 in 9 offenders committing aggravated assault, and more than 1 in 6 offenders described as having committed a simple assault. Nearly 3 in 4 violent victimizations committed by female offenders were simple assaults; just over half the violence of male offenders is described as simple assault.

The prevalence of imprisonment among women: The most recent BJS estimate of the lifetime chance of being sent to Federal or State prison at least once indicates that overall about 11 women out of 1,000 will be incarcerated at some time in their lives. The estimates further show that about 5 out of 1,000 white women, 36 out of 1,000 black women, and 15 out of 1,000 Hispanic women will be subjected to imprisonment during their lifetime. For males, BJS estimates indicate that about 90 out of 1,000 males will be incarcerated during their lives; 44 white males, 285 black males, and 160 Hispanic males for every 1,000 in the general population will serve time in a Federal or State prison.
Recidivism Among Female Offenders: by Research and Statistics Branch, Correctional Service of Canada, 340 Laurier Avenue West, Ottawa, Ontario KJA 0P9
Pub: June 2004: Female offenders make up a much smaller proportion of the inmate population than male offenders. In Canada, persons sentenced to terms of two years or more serve their sentence in a federal institution; sentences of less than two years are served in provincial institutions. In this study, we included all women serving their first sentence in a federal institution who were released in the 10-year period between 1 January 1978 and 31 December 1988. We followed up these 968 offenders until 30 June 1993 to find out whether they were readmitted to federal custody at any time following their release. Of the 968 released female offenders, 213 were returned to federal custody during the follow-up period for an overall recidivism rate of about 22%. The Sample Most (81.4%) of the 968 female offenders in the sample were non-native; 13.7% were native. Information was missing or not known for 4.9% of the sample.

When first admitted to federal institutions, these offenders were between 17 and 71 years old; the average age was 30. About 40% of the offenders were between the ages of 18 and 25, another quarter (25%) were between 26 and 30, and about 28% were between 31 and 45. The most common major admitting offences (the one for which they received the longest sentence) were drug-related (29.1%), homicide-related (17.7%), robbery (16.5%) and property-related (11.9%). (Please note that homicide-related offences include manslaughter, first- and second-degree murder, and capital and non-capital murder.) Only 1.2% were sex offences.

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