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NCJ Number: 65559 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: RETARDED OFFENDER AND CORRECTIONS (FROM MENTAL RETARDATION AND THE LAW, 1978, BY PAUL FRIEDMAN - SEE NCJ-65558)
Author(s): M B SANTAMOUR; B WEST
Corporate Author: US Executive Office of the President
President's Committee on Mental Retardation
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 13
Sponsoring Agency: US Executive Office of the President
Washington, DC 20201
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: AT LEAST THREE TIMES AS MANY RETARDED PERSONS ARE FOUND IN U.S. PRISONS AS ARE FOUND AMONG THE GENERAL POPULATION BECAUSE THE RETARDED PERSON IS AT A GREATER DISADVANTAGE IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM.
Abstract: DESPITE STUDIES INDICATING THAT IN 1976 THERE WERE 23,700 RETARDED PERSONS IN PRISONS NATIONWIDE, THE CONDITION OF RETARDATION AND BEHAVIOR DESIGNATED CRIMINAL ARE NOT NECESSARILY SYNONYMOUS. RATHER, MENTALLY RETARDED PERSONS ARE AT A DISTINCT DISADVANTAGE IN THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM AND ARE (1) MORE LIKELY TO BE CONVICTED, (2) LESS LIKELY TO RECEIVE PROBATION OR PAROLE, AND (3) MORE LIKELY TO RECIDIVATE THAN THEIR NONRETARDED COUNTERPARTS. CONFUSION ABOUT MENTAL RETARDATION IS FURTHER COMPOUNDED BY VARYING LEGAL DEFINITIONS, A LACK OF LEGAL DISTINCTION BETWEEN MENTAL ILLNESS AND MENTAL RETARDATION, AND THE ISSUE OF MENTAL COMPETENCY. THE NEED FOR ACCEPTANCE ALSO PLACES RETARDED PERSONS AT A DISADVANTAGE WHEN THEY ARE ACCUSED OF BREAKING THE LAW. FINDINGS SHOW THAT RETARDED SUSPECTS PLEAD GUILTY MORE READILY AND MORE FREQUENTLY THAN THEIR NON-RETARDED COUNTERPARTS. IN ADDITION, BECAUSE OF THEIR LACK OF SKILLS AND EDUCATION, RETARDED PERSONS ARE LESS LIKELY TO RECEIVE PROBATION AND PAROLE. FURTHER, RETARDED OFFENDER PROGRAMS ARE EITHER ENTIRELY LACKING OR ILL-SUITED TO THE SPECIAL NEEDS OF INDIVIDUAL OFFENDERS. RETARDATION MAY MOST CONSTRUCTIVELY BE VIEWED AS A PROBLEM OF DEPENDENCY WHICH INVOLVES PHYSICAL, SOCIAL, ECONOMIC, AND RESIDENTIAL FACETS. PROGRAMS FOR RETARDED OFFENDERS SHOULD INCLUDE DIAGNOSIS, EVALUATION AND CLASSIFICATION, DEVELOPMENT OF PERSONAL, PHYSICAL, EDUCATIONAL, AND VOCATIONAL SKILLS, COURSES IN HUMAN SEXUALITY, AND THE DEVELOPMENT OF SOCIAL VALUES AND INDEPENDENT LIFE SKILLS. THE BASIC ASSUMPTION UNDERLYING THIS GOAL IS THAT OF THE RETARDED PERSON'S RIGHT TO EQUAL OPPORTUNITIES FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF FULLEST POTENTIAL. A BIBLIOGRAPHY IS INCLUDED.
Index Term(s): Inmate Programs; Mental defectives; Offenders with Intellectual or Developmental Disabilities; Out-of-state juvenile treatment; Persons with cognitive disabilities; Persons with Disabilities; Prisoner's rights; Socially challenged; Vocational training
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=65559

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