Project Director, Center for the Integration of Research and Practice (CIRP), National Development and Research Institutes, Inc. (NDRI), New York, U.S.A.
Violent offenses associated with co-occurring substance use and mental health problems: Evidence from CJDATS†
Article first published online: 20 JAN 2009
Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Behavioral Sciences & the Law
Volume 27, Issue 1, pages 51–69, January/February 2009
How to Cite
Sacks, S., Cleland, C. M., Melnick, G., Flynn, P. M., Knight, K., Friedmann, P. D., Prendergast, M. L. and Coen, C. (2009), Violent offenses associated with co-occurring substance use and mental health problems: Evidence from CJDATS. Behav. Sci. Law, 27: 51–69. doi: 10.1002/bsl.850
This paper has not been published elsewhere nor has it been submitted simultaneously for publication elsewhere. This study was funded under a cooperative agreement from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, National Institutes of Health, National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIH/NIDA). The authors gratefully acknowledge the collaborative contributions by NIDA, the Coordinating Center (Virginia Commonwealth University/University of Maryland at College Park, Bureau of Governmental Research), and the Research Centers participating in CJDATS (Brown University, Lifespan Hospital; Connecticut Department of Mental Health and Addiction Services; National Development and Research Institutes, Inc., Center for Therapeutic Community Research; National Development and Research Institutes, Inc., Center for the Integration of Research and Practice; Texas Christian University, Institute of Behavioral Research; University of Delaware, Center for Drug and Alcohol Studies; University of Kentucky, Center on Drug and Alcohol Research; University of California at Los Angeles, Integrated Substance Abuse Programs; and University of Miami, Center for Treatment Research on Adolescent Drug Abuse). The contents are solely the responsibility of the authors and do not necessarily represent the views of the Department of Health and Human Services, NIDA, or other CJDATS participants. Views and opinions are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect those of Department of Health and Human Services, the National Institutes of Health, NIDA, or of other participants in CJDATS.
- Issue published online: 20 JAN 2009
- Article first published online: 20 JAN 2009
The present study examines the relationship between substance use, mental health problems, and violence in a sample of offenders released from prison and referred to substance abuse treatment programs. Data from 34 sites (n = 1,349) in a federally funded cooperative, the Criminal Justice Drug Abuse Treatment Studies (CJDATS), were analyzed. Among parolees referred to substance abuse treatment, self-reports for the six-month period before the arrest resulting in their incarceration revealed frequent problems with both substance use and mental health. For most offenders with substance use problems, the quantity of alcohol consumed and the frequency of drug use were associated with a greater probability of self-reported violence. Mental health problems were not indicative of increases in violent behavior, with the exception of antisocial personality problems, which were associated with violence. The paper emphasizes the importance of providing substance abuse treatment in relation to violent behavior among offenders with mental health problems being discharged to the community. Copyright © 2009 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.