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The Dangerous Mentally Ill Offender Program: Three-Year Felony Recidivism and Cost Effectiveness

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Jim Mayfield, David Lovell - February 2008

In 1999, legislation was passed to better identify and provide additional mental health treatment for mentally ill offenders who were released from prison, who pose a threat to public safety, and agree to participate in the program. A “Dangerous Mentally Ill Offender” (DMIO) is defined by the legislation as a person with a mental disorder who has been determined to be dangerous to self or others.

As part of its legislative mandate, the Institute has published a series of reports that evaluate the DMIO program. Reports published in 2005 and 2007 demonstrated that the DMIO program significantly reduced felony recidivism, and this 2008 follow-up report finds that reductions in felony recidivism were sustained at the 3-year mark. The benefit-cost analysis in this report indicates that the reductions in DMIO recidivism generated greater financial benefits than program costs.

Report ID: 08-02-1901

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Children’s services
Criminal justice: Adult corrections
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