NewScientist.com: Sex offenders unlikely to commit second crime
06 July 2008, Magazine issue 2663
SEX crime statistics tend to make depressing reading, but now there is some good news from the most populous state in the US. Just 3.2 per cent of more than 4000 sex offenders released on parole in 2002 were re-imprisoned for another sex offense in the subsequent 5 years, according to new figures from California.
While experts know that sex offenders are less likely to reoffend than most other criminals (New Scientist, 24 February 2007, p 3), the very low rate of re-imprisonment in the new study will challenge public perceptions about the risks these criminals pose.
The figures are broadly consistent with a 2007 Minnesotan study, which found that 3.2 per cent of sex offenders released from 1990 to 2002 had been re-imprisoned for a further sex crime within 3 years of their release.
What's more, sex offenders in Minnesota are even less likely to reoffend ...
The complete article is 322 words long.(subscription required)
Editorial: The uncomfortable truth about sex crimes
24 February 2007, Magazine issue 2592
SEX offenders are a breed apart, notorious recidivists who are driven by deviant sexual desires. That, at least, is the common perception. The facts are rather different. Most sex offenders do not fit any psychiatric diagnosis related to sexual deviance. Reconviction rates for this group as a whole are relatively low compared with other types of criminals. Most importantly, the majority are not a breed apart.
The label "sex offender" is a rag-bag term that covers individuals who have committed a wide range of offenses. Some are nasty opportunists for whom rape or child abuse is just one in a long string of diverse crimes. Most knew their victims: they assaulted acquaintances, family members or friends. Others are young men who had sex with under-age girlfriends. The stereotypical predator, persistently targeting vulnerable strangers, is rare.
While it is true that convicted sex offenders are more likely to commit a further ...
The complete article is 715 words long.(subscription required)
April 2007 Minnesota Sex Offender Recidivism Report:
which found that 3.2 per cent of sex offenders released from 1990 to 2002 had been re-imprisoned for a further sex crime within 3 years of their release.