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Comparison of Pretrial Intervention Offenders and Non-Offenders on Selected Psycho-Social Instruments

NCJ Number
R J Klein
Date Published
463 pages
This study focuses on an examination of two sets of variables which are commonly used as subjective criteria for making screening intake decisions with referred pretrial intervention offenders.
The two primary study objectives were to systematically and empirically investigate selected psychosocial variables that were capable of differentiating between the accepted and rejected pretrial intervention offenders and nonoffenders, and to obtain some indices as to how a segment of the community believed that selected legally described offenses should be handled. The research design was ex post facto. Two groups of pretrial intervention offenders were tested against a nonoffender sample comprised of college students. A second group of college students rated a criminal index that was used to obtain community perceptions about offenses. Multiple linear regression analysis was used to calculate significant relationships between the various groups. Chi-square analysis and t-test analysis were also implemented. Research instruments included the Psychological Screening Inventory, the Test of Social Insight, the Attitude Scale of the Career Maturity Inventory, the Environmental Deprivation Form, and the Continuum of Criminal Offenses Instrument. Results indicated that the accepted pretrial intervention offenders were found to be significantly different from the nonoffenders on three psychosocial variables. Rejected pretrial intervention offenders were significantly different from the nonoffender group on seven variables. Data suggest that accepted offenders were more similar to the nonoffender group than the rejected offenders. Thus, any type of treatment strategy and supervision must take into consideration these differences. Data focusing on community perceptions revealed that crimes were rated in order of seriousness as follows: assaultive crime, narcotics crime, nonassaultive crime, and public order crime. It is suggested that screening intake procedures should incorporate community perceptions of how offenders should be treated. Extensive tables, appendixes presenting study instruments. and methodology, and over 70 references are included. (Author abstract modified)