SAGE Journal Articles

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Wright, K. A., Pratt, T. C., & DeLisi, M. (2008). Examining offending specialization in a sample of male multiple homicide offenders. Homicide Studies, 12(4)381–398.

The American public’s fascination with multiple homicide offenders--individuals who seemingly transcend the heinousness of “regular” homicide offenders because of their multiple victims--has grown during the past few decades. Such growth has not, however, been matched by a proportional increase in serious scholarly attention concerning whether those who kill repeatedly are, or are not, “generally” deviant. As a way of moving beyond this problem, the current analysis builds on recent work concerning multiple homicide offenders to investigate the degree to which such offenders are, in fact, more specialized in their offending careers than are other homicide offenders. The implications for continued theoretical development and empirical research are discussed.

Ostermann, M., & Matejkowski, J. (2014). Estimating the impact of mental illness on costs of crimes: A matched samples comparison. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 41(1)20–40.

This study uses a propensity scoring and matching approach to compare the costs of crimes committed by former inmates with mental illness (MI) and without MI. Our findings indicate that the recidivism costs of those with MI over the course of 3 years of follow-up are nearly 3 times as large as similar reintegrating former inmates without MI. However, prior to matching on mental health indicators, the costs of the reoffense patterns of the average reintegrating individual with MI are less than half those of the average former prisoner without MI. Our discussion centers on the identification of relevant groups that corrections officials should focus their rehabilitative resources on and whether those with MI should be a group they focus on during this process.

Kaskela, T., & Pitkänen, T. (2016). The effects of gender and previous sentence on the risk of committing crime among a substance-abusing population. Crime & Delinquency. Prepublished December 11, 2006. doi:10.1177/0011128716682229

Is the gender gap theory in criminology valid for substance abusers who have been imprisoned? We analyzed the risk of committing a crime between 2006 and 2010 using a Cox regression analysis. The data from Finland consisted of 2,034 women and 4,537 men substance abusers divided into groups based on prior imprisonment. Overall, men had a greater risk of committing any crime than women did. However, the gender gap hypothesis was not valid in the specific case of property crimes in a substance-abusing population with prior incarcerations. Women with prior convictions differ profoundly from other substance-abusing women. This raises a question if imprisonment had a wider marginalizing effect on women than on men.

Corsaro, N., Brunson, R. K., & McGarrell, E. F. (2013). Problem-oriented policing and open-air drug markets: Examining the Rockford pulling levers deterrence strategy. Crime & Delinquency, 59(7)1085–1107.

Problem-oriented policing strategies have been regarded as promising approaches for disrupting open-air drug markets in vulnerable communities. Pulling levers deterrence interventions, which are consistent with the problem-oriented framework, have shown potential as an effective mechanism for reducing and preventing youth, gun, and gang violence. This study examines the effect of a strategic, pulling levers intervention that was implemented by law enforcement officials in Rockford, Illinois, to address drug markets in a high crime neighborhood. The initiative builds on a similar effort developed in High Point, North Carolina, and represents an extension of pulling levers that was originally developed in Boston. The impact evaluation uses a mixed method of quantitative hierarchical growth curve models and qualitative interviews with residents. Study findings suggest that the Rockford strategy was associated with a statistically significant and substantive reduction in crime, drug, and nuisance offenses in the target neighborhood. Results from this examination have implications for both research and public policy.