We now have added "Informational Posts" which are tidbits of information that may come in handy at some point.

IN- Recidivism Rates Compared, 2005 – 2007

2008 Indiana:

Recidivism Rates Compared, 2005 – 2007, is the first comprehensive report published by the Indiana Department of Correction that details the recidivism rates of offenders released from incarceration in Indiana. This report presents recidivism rates for offenders released from the custody of the Indiana Department of Correction for the time period 2002 through 2004. This report defines recidivism as a return to incarceration in the Indiana Department of Correction within three years of the offenders release date. For example, offenders released in calendar year 2004, who returned to prison for either a new conviction or technical violation during 2004, 2005, 2006, or 2007, but within three years of release, would be counted in the recidivism rate for 2007.

Across the United States, definitions of recidivism vary, making comparisons on a state or national level difficult to ascertain. There has been no national standard created that would unify the definition of recidivism throughout. Therefore, the Indiana Department of Correction has relied on its own definition, further detailed on page five, which happens to be in line with the definition used by the Association of State Correctional Administrators.

Over time, the Research and Planning Division of the Indiana Department of Correction will continue to track recidivism rates for offenders released each year and subsequently produce and publish a report that details the results of each recidivism study.

The Indiana Department of Correction defines Recidivism as an offender’s return to incarceration within three (3) years of their release date from a state correctional institution.

An offender is included in this study when they are released via one of the following avenues: Community Transition Program (CTP), Probation, Parole, or Discharged.

Once released, an offender is verified as a Recidivist if they return to the institutional custody of the Indiana Department of Correction for a new conviction or a technical violation of post-incarceration supervision. In instances where offenders have multiple releases within the same year, the earliest release date is used to determine the offender’s recidivism status. Therefore, the statistics listed throughout this report reflect the number of unique releases per year.

In 2007, recidivism rates decreased for the second consecutive year, resulting in 37.8% of offenders being re-committed to the Indiana Department of Correction (IDOC) within 3 years of their release date. Rates for 2005 and 2006 were 39.2% and 38.6% respectively. Male offenders had a higher recidivism rate when compared to female offenders across all three years. 38.6% of male offenders released in 2004 returned to IDOC, versus 32.6% of female releases. On average throughout all 3 years, 46% of African American offenders returned to the Department of Correction, a higher rate than any other race.

Nearly 50% of all offenders released in 2002, 2003, or 2004 for a Weapons related crime as their most serious offense, returned to incarceration within three years of release. Offenders released in 2002, 2003, or 2004 with a Class C Felony as their most serious offense were most likely to return to incarceration within three years of release.

Offenders who recidivate are returned to IDOC for the commission of a new crime at a slightly higher rate than those returned for a technical violation of post-release supervision.

Overall, offenders identified as a sex offender who were released in 2002, 2003, or 2004, returned to IDOC at a higher rate than all other offenders.

While technically a true statement, certain facts not taken into consideration make this VERY MISLEADING:

A) Recidivism is defined as including "technical violations" which are not crimes but mere violations of simple rules such as drinking, failure to report when required, walking where one is not allowed (sex offenders), and other similiar technical factors;

B) Sex offenders have a higher rate of technical violations (see page-21) than any other crime type. This is due to all the new community oriented rules placed on all sex offenders whether they are applicable to that person or not.

Finally, given the 75% technical violation rate, and subtracting that, sex offenders have the lowest rate of recidivism next to murderers. Nothing like trying to confuse the public which is common with DOC's nationally.

For the rest of this report: Prepared by: Aaron Garner, Research Analyst, IDOC

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