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NCJ Number: 221696 Find in a Library
Title: Offenders with Mental Illness in the Correctional System
Journal: Journal of Offender Rehabilitation  Volume:45  Issue:1/2  Dated:2007  Pages:81-104
Author(s): Maureen L. O'Keefe; Marissa J. Schnell
Date Published: 2007
Page Count: 24
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This exploratory study was designed to examine characteristics of offenders with mental illness (OMIs) in the Colorado correctional system.
Abstract: The incidence of mental illness among Colorado’s prison population models nationwide trends. As of June 2005, 16 percent of the Colorado Department of Corrections’ (CDOC) offenders were identified with a serious and pervasive psychiatric disorder. An additional 9 percent were classified as having mental health needs. Altogether, 25 percent of Colorado inmates presented with mental health issues. Among the incarcerated, mental illness was more common among females than males. Although the seriously mentally ill offenders receive the most attention, this study suggests that those who have mental health needs but do not meet strict diagnostic criteria should not be neglected. Effective management and treatment of offenders with mental illness (OMIs) may be costly, but without these, the price paid by prisons and society may be even more costly. The ever present challenge of reducing rising rates of mentally ill persons in the criminal justice system suggests the necessity to learn more about this subgroup of offenders. The present study is exploratory, designed to examine characteristics of OMIs in the Colorado correctional system. Prevalence, release, and recidivism data were investigated to understand the rates of OMIs entering, releasing, and returning to prison. The study profiles mentally ill offenders across demographic, criminal history, psychological, and needs areas as well as some prison adjustment factors to determine how OMIs differ from the general prison population. Tables, figures, references
Main Term(s): Mentally ill offenders
Index Term(s): Colorado; Inmate treatment; Mentally ill inmates; Offender mental health services; Offender profiles; Offenders; Psychological evaluation; Special needs offenders
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