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NCJ Number: 200793 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Assessing Risk Among Sex Offenders in Virginia
Corporate Author: Virginia Criminal Sentencing Cmssn
United States of America
Project Director: Ernest P. Gates
Date Published: January 2001
Page Count: 94
Sponsoring Agency: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
Virginia Criminal Sentencing Cmssn
Richmond, VA 23219
Sale Source: NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America

Virginia Criminal Sentencing Cmssn
100 N. Ninth Street
Richmond, VA 23219
United States of America
Type: Policy/Procedure Handbook/Manual
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This report from the Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission discusses the development of a risk assessment instrument for examining sex offender recidivism and sex offender treatment.
Abstract: The Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission was requested by the Virginia General Assembly in 1999 to develop a sexual offender risk assessment instrument. Risk assessment occurs both formally and informally throughout various stages of the criminal justice system; criminal risk assessment is the estimation of an individual’s likelihood to repeat criminal behavior and the classification of offenders in terms of their relative risk of such behaviors. A literature review summarizes prior research on recidivism, in general, and sex offender treatment and recidivism, specifically. Existing risk assessment instruments, include the Rapid Risk Assessment for Sex Offense Recidivism, the Violence Risk Appraisal Guide, the Sexual Violence Risk Instrument, the Minnesota Sex Offending Screening Tool-Revised, the Washington State Sex Offender Risk Level Classification Screening Tool-Revised, and the Colorado Sexually Violent Predator Risk Assessment Screening Instrument. Detailing their research methodology, the authors discuss a sample of 600 felony sex offenders convicted and sentenced between 1996 and 1997 selected from the Pre-Post Sentence Investigation database. Discussing recidivism of sex offenders, defined in this report as the re-arrest and re-conviction of sex offenders for felony and misdemeanor sexual offenses and crimes against persons, the authors present offender and offense characteristics and recidivism rates of 579 individuals released from incarceration from 1990 to 1993. In order to develop and apply a risk assessment instrument to sexual offenders, the authors describe a vast range of factors predicting recidivism. The authors discuss the application of the proposed risk assessment instrument in order to test the usefulness of the instrument as a screening tool to gauge the risk of dangerousness of sex offenders. This report proposes adjustments to the guidelines accounting for offender risk, prison recommendations for high-risk offenders, adding a risk assessment worksheet, informing judges of risk, and providing pre-sentencing investigation reports. A series of references and appendices presenting the complete risk assessment data collection form, the research methodology technical supplement, and case examples using the sex offender risk assessment instrument complete this report.
Main Term(s): Sex offenders; Threat assessment
Index Term(s): Instrument validation; Program design; Program evaluation; Recidivism; Recidivism causes; Recidivism prediction; Risk management
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