Developing a Sentencing Risk Assessment Tool: Identifying Recidivism Predictors for Level 5 Offenders
The Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing is working with the Justice Center to conduct a recidivism study of the most severe offenders. The goal is to learn more about which offender characteristics best predict future recidivism, especially for violent crimes.
- Principal Investigator: Matthew DeMichele, Ph.D.
- Graduate Assistant: Julia Laskorunsky, M.A. (firstname.lastname@example.org)
About the Project
- The Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing (PCS) was mandated by the Pennsylvanian Legislature to develop a risk assessment tool to guide sentencing decisions.
- In response to this mandate, the PCS is working with the Justice Center for Research to conduct a recidivism study of individuals sentenced as level 5 offenders (most severe; pose greatest threat to public safety).
- Which offender characteristics best predict future recidivism?
- Specifically, which characteristics predict recidivism for a violent crime?
- The Justice Center is using sentencing data and several offender characteristics from the Department of Corrections’ database to analyze offender characteristics.
- The findings from this project will contribute to criminological theory and methods, and have direct policy-relevance by informing judges of the risks of recidivism.