Incarceration and recidivism among sexual offenders.
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The relationship between incarceration and recidivism was investigated in a sample of 627 adult male sexual offenders. Incarceration for the index offense was unrelated to sexual or violent recidivism. This was the case whether incarceration was examined as a dichotomous variable (incarceration vs. community sentence) or as a continuous variable (length of incarceration). Risk for sexual recidivism was assessed with a modified version of the Rapid Risk Assessment for Sexual Offense Recidivism. There was no evidence that the relationship between incarceration and recidivism was confounded or moderated by risk or that length of incarceration and recidivism were non-linearly associated. Sentencing sexual offenders to terms of incarceration appears to have little, if any, impact on sexual and violent recidivism following release.
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