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DO STATIC RISK FACTORS PREDICT DIFFERENTLY FOR ABORIGINAL SEX OFFENDERS? A MULTI-SITE COMPARISON USING THE ORIGINAL AND REVISED STATIC-99 AND STATIC-2002 SCALE
Kelly M. Babchishin, Julie Blais, and Leslie Helmus
Carleton University and Public Safety Canada
There is much concern about the extent to which risk assessment tools designed to predict recidivism are equally valid for both Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal offenders. The current study compared Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal male sex offenders on items and total scores of the original and revised Static-99 and Static-2002 scales. The study included five independent Canadian samples with Static-99 and Static-99R scores (319 Aboriginals and 1,269 non-Aboriginals), three of which also had Static-2002 and Static-2002R scores (209 Aboriginals and 955 non-Aboriginals). Aboriginal sex offenders scored significantly higher than non-Aboriginal sex offenders on total scores and items indicative of general criminality and tended to score lower on items indicative of sexual deviancy. Static-99/R total scores and items generally predicted sexual recidivism with similar accuracy for Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal sex offenders. In contrast, significant differences were found for Static-2002/R total scores and several of their items, with lower predictive accuracy for Aboriginals. The results suggest that at least some items of the Static scales are not as predictive for Aboriginal as for non-Aboriginal sex offenders, with differences found on Static-2002/R rather than Static-99/R scales.
CAUSAL ATTRIBUTIONS OF CRIME AND THE PUBLIC'S SENTENCING GOALS
Laura J. Templeton
Timothy F. Hartnagel
Department of Sociology, University of Alberta
This article tests linkages between internal and external attributions of crime and the public's goals of sentencing (i.e., deterrence, incapacitation, retribution, and rehabilitation). Responses from 1,006 Canadians were obtained from telephone interviews. As expected, respondents who made internal attributions rated deterrence as more important and rehabilitation as less important, while respondents who made external attributions did the opposite. Also as hypothesized, null associations between retribution and external attributions as well as between incapacitation and external attributions were found. However, contrary to expectations, respondents who endorsed internal attributions also rated incapacitation and retribution as more important.
THE IMPACT OF MEDIA ON FEAR OF CRIME AMONG UNIVERSITY STUDENTS: A CROSS-NATIONAL COMPARISON
Steven A. Kohm
University of Winnipeg
Courtney A. Waid-Lindberg
North Dakota State University
University of Winnipeg
Tara O'Connor Shelley
Colorado State University
Rhonda R. Dobbs
University of Texas at Arlington
Fear of crime has been the focus of considerable research in Canada and the United States over the past five decades. An enduring question for researchers is the impact of various forms of media on fear of crime. Specifically, do the salience of specific media types and the amount of exposure to specific news media – newspapers, television, radio, and Internet – affect fear of crime? Using survey data collected at three universities in the United States and one in Canada, this article comparatively examines the impact of media on fear of crime among university students. The results show distinct differences between Canadian and U.S. students, with Canadian students reporting significantly higher levels of fear, particularly of violent crime. The impact of media on fear was inconsistent between the two groups, but media tended to exert a broader range of influence on the American students' fear of crime.
AN INVESTIGATION INTO THE FUNDAMENTAL REGULARITIES OF CO-OFFENDING FOR VIOLENT AND PROPERTY CRIME CLASSIFICATIONS
Martin A. Andresen
School of Criminology, Institute for Canadian Urban Research Studies, Simon Fraser University
Department of Criminal Justice, Texas State University;
Institute for Canadian Urban Research Studies, Simon Fraser University
Co-offending research has generated two fundamental regularities. First, co-offending is most prevalent during youth and then decreases as offenders age. Second, the average number of offenders per criminal incident is also highest in youth and decreases as offenders age. These regularities, and co-offending in general, are often explained with reference to a developmental approach: youth spend more time in groups than adults for their activities and crime is simply one of those activities. We investigate these empirical regularities by single years of age, 12–29, with a detailed crime classification in a large sample from British Columbia. These empirical regularities prove to be far from monolithic, being less notable as offenders age for several violent crime classifications.
CONDITIONAL RELEASE AND HUMAN RIGHTS IN CANADA: A COMMENTARY
Carleton University, Department of Law
Liberty interests and human rights are at stake when granting, denying, suspending, or revoking conditional releases of prisoners. An evidence-based program of gradual conditional release is the best way of reducing recidivism and enhancing public safety. The “get tough on crime” approach affects the degree to which conditional release is used and relied upon by correctional and parole authorities. This commentary reviews key concerns regarding the accountability of both Parole Board Canada and the Correctional Service of Canada when making decisions about conditional release. Factors that have influenced the diminishing contribution to early release are discussed. The “changing profile” of the federal prisoner population is used to identify important failures in Canadian public policy and in upholding the human rights of prisoners.