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Failure to Register as a Sex Offender: Is it Associated with Recidivism?

NCJ Number
Justice Quarterly Volume: 27 Issue: 3 Dated: June 2010 Pages: 305-331
Date Published
June 2010
27 pages
This study investigated the relationship between failure to register (FTR) as a sex offender and sexual recidivism.
The purpose of this study is to investigate the relationship between failure to register (FTR) as a sex offender and subsequent recidivism (N = 2,970). No significant differences were found between the sexual recidivism rates of those who failed to register and compliant registrants (11 percent vs. 9 percent, respectively). There was no significant difference in the proportion of sexual recidivists and nonrecidivists with registration violations (12 percent vs. 10 percent, respectively). FTR did not predict sexual recidivism, and survival analyses revealed no significant difference in time to recidivism when comparing those who failed to register (2.9 years) with compliant registrants (2.8 years). Results fail to support the supposition that sexual offenders who fail to register are more sexually dangerous than those who comply with registration requirements. The punitive emphasis on registration enforcement may not be justified and might divert limited resources away from strategies that would better facilitate public protection from sexual violence. Tables, figures, and references (Published Abstract)

Date Published: June 1, 2010