Offender Risk Assessment and Risk Level Classification Issues

The development and proliferation of risk assessment tools have allowed corrections professionals to assess an offender’s risk to reoffend and determine the needs underlying his or her criminality. Not only are risk tools the engine that drive effective interventions with offenders, but they help agencies be more efficient by helping them identify those offenders that need the most intensive intervention and that pose the most risk to reoffend.

Current risk assessment instruments help agencies identify who should receive the most supervision or intervention to reduce their risk of recidivism (i.e., higher risk offenders) and determine what specific factors should be targeted to change criminal behavior. These factors are called criminogenic needs (i.e., factors that are strongly correlated with criminal behavior and are dynamic in nature). Through ...

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