Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2153292
 


 



Controlling Sexually Violent Predators: Continued Incarceration at What Cost?


Tamara Rice Lave


University of Miami, School of Law

2011

New Criminal Law Review, Vol. 14, No. 2, pp. 213-280, Spring 2011

Abstract:     
Sexually violent predator (SVP) laws are inherently suspicious because they continue to incarcerate people not because of what they have done, but because of what they might do. I focus on three major criticisms of the laws. First, I use recent recidivism data to challenge the core motivation for the SVP laws-that sex offenders are monsters who cannot control themselves. Second, I situate the laws theoretically as examples of what Feeley and Simon call the "new penology." I argue that the SVP laws show the limited promise of the new penology -- that we can use science to predict risk accurately --because the actuarial instruments used in SVP determinations make many mistakes. In making this argument, I focus particularly on the most commonly used such instrument, the Static-99. Finally, I argue that the Static-99 fails to meet the constitutional criteria laid out by the U.S. Supreme Court in Kansas v. Hendricks because it does not link an individual's mental illness to his dangerousness.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 69

Keywords: Sexually Violent Predators, Static 99, Recidivism, False Positives, Actuarial Instruments, Kansas v. Hendricks

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Date posted: September 27, 2012  

Suggested Citation

Lave, Tamara Rice, Controlling Sexually Violent Predators: Continued Incarceration at What Cost? (2011). New Criminal Law Review, Vol. 14, No. 2, pp. 213-280, Spring 2011. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2153292

Contact Information

Tamara Rice Lave (Contact Author)
University of Miami, School of Law ( email )
P.O. Box 248087
Coral Gables, FL 33146
United States
HOME PAGE: http://www.law.miami.edu/facadmin/tlave.php
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