The Probabilities of Sex Offender Rearrest

Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health, Vol. 13, pp. 125-143, 2003

23 Pages Posted: 2 Aug 2012

See all articles by Roderic Broadhurst

Roderic Broadhurst

Australian National University (ANU); ANU Cybercrime Observatory; School of Regulation & Global Governance (RegNet)

Nini Loh

The University of Western Australia

Date Written: February 3, 2003

Abstract

Estimates of the probabilities of rearrest for sex offenders apprehended (n=2,785) in Western Australia between 1984 and 1994 are reported. Subjects on average were followed up for 5.7 years and assessed by criminal record, Aboriginality, bail status, age, occupation and penal intervention. Three criteria, rearrest for any, repeat sex or a violent offense are used to summarize the ‘careers’ of sex offenders. Overall ultimate probabilities of rearrest for any offense were 0.61, for a repeat sex offense 0.33 and for a violent offense 0.51. Probabilities of rearrest for non-Aboriginal offenders were lower for all definitions. Younger offenders, Aborigines and those with prior arrest for non-sex offenses had higher probabilities for any or violent rearrest but older offenders tended to have higher probabilities of repeat sex offending. Community supervision and imprisonment significantly reduced the ‘rate’ or speed of rearrest. The utility of actuarial risk assessment for low probability high consequence events such as dangerous recidivism and the evaluation of penal interventions for criminal justice policy are discussed.

Keywords: sex offenders, recidivism, longitudinal study, actuarial risk assessment

Suggested Citation

Broadhurst, Roderic and Loh, Nini, The Probabilities of Sex Offender Rearrest (February 3, 2003). Criminal Behaviour and Mental Health, Vol. 13, pp. 125-143, 2003. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2122181

Roderic Broadhurst (Contact Author)

Australian National University (ANU) ( email )

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 2601
Australia

ANU Cybercrime Observatory ( email )

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 0200
Australia

School of Regulation & Global Governance (RegNet) ( email )

Canberra, Australian Capital Territory 0200
Australia

Nini Loh

The University of Western Australia ( email )

35 Stirling Highway
Crawley, Western Australia 6009
AUSTRALIA

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