After a Guilty verdict


After a Guilty Verdict


  • Emplyment- Gillis & Nafekh
  • Suicide- Dooley
  • Prison- Zimbardio 
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Employment- Gillis & Nafekh

Aim: Investigate effect on recidevism rates of a community 

Procedure: Content analysis of Canada's Offender Management system; 23,525 individuals relaseased between Jan 1998 and Jan 2005; 95% male; Matched pairs based on gender, risk level, release year, sentance length, substance abuse and emotional orientation; Comparison between group employed by special programme and those unemplyed


  • 70% employed remained out of prison compared to 55% who were not on the special empolyment scheme 
  • Median return time to jail longer for the employed group (37 months comapred to 11)

Conclusions: Employment programmes do work and do reduce likelihood of re-offending

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Aim: Investigate unnatural deaths that occured in prisons in England and Wales between 1972 and 1987

Procedure: Content analysis of Prison Departement; Checklist that included social, psychiatric and forensic history used to analyse data; Groups recorded as suicide were compared to those not recorded as suicide 


  • 442 natural deaths
  • 300 suicide
  • 142 variety verdicts 
  • 52 consciously self inflicted injury
  • Most deaths at night; CSI group female; More suicide group on remand

Conclusions: The increase in suicide and unnatural deaths is attributed to overcrowding and prisoners' stress; Many prisoners suffer from mental ilnesses and substance addiciton so these play a part too

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Haney and Zimbardo

Summarising change over last 25 years: Ronald Reagans republican war on drugs means more people behind bars; Rehabilitation was discredicted and punishment implmented; Rigid sentencing; New prisons built; Racial bias as 48% afro-caribbean men; Supermax prison 

Suggestions for Improvements: Prison should be used sparingly as they are psychologically damaging; Prison should take into account individual differences especially to confinement; Rehabilitation programmes needed to teach prisoners sills to cope ince they are released; Prisoner assesments include an assement of sitioational factors; Reforms needs to coem from people outside of prison system; Psychological knowledge should be used to improve condtions

Dispositional explanation is used wrongly in the prison sysemt!

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Alternatives to Imprisonment

  • Probation- Mair and May 
  • Restorative justice- Sherman and Strong
  • Looking death worthy- Eberhardt
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Mair and May

Aim: Investigate experiences of offenders on probabtion orders across england and wales

Procedure: 3299 offenders chosen at random; 22 probation officers; Represented all age groups and offences; 40% drop out rate; Independent researchers conducted study; closed multiple choice questions with likert scale


  • 88% felt probation was useful
  • 60% thought probation officers will help them indvidually
  • 37% said probation officers will stop the re-offending

Conclusion: Probation is seen as useful by offenders; 1/3 of offenders went on to re-offend; Socio econonomic status, unemployment, family and other factors also need to be considered

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Sherman and Strang

Aim: Look at restorative justice in practise and measure its effectiveness in terms of re-offending

Procedure: Content analysis on 424 academic papers on retsorative justice; 36 studies were found that compared re-offending rates for those who were part of restorative justcie and programme and those that are not


  • Restorative justice is more effective when there is a personal victim and tends to work for violence and property crime
  • Not efective in all cases
  • Benefits victim by reducing PTSD

Conclusion: Strong evidence to suggest restorative justice is effective in some cases; Support of increased use in young 1st time offenders 

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Aim: investigate whether there was support for the hypothesis that black offenders with stereotypically black features were more likely to get the death sentence than white offenders.

Procedure: Analysis of database of death-eligible cases in Philadelphia between 1979-1999; 44 cases black man killed a white victim; photographs of these shown to 51 rates to rate extent to stereoptypical black features (1-11); rates mostly whiter and few other ethnicities 


  • Most sterotypically black offenders = 57.5% likely to get death penalty 
  • less stereotypical = 24.4%
  • Second study showed victims also black ha sno significant effect shoing black vicitm was less important

Conclusions: More sterotypical black men = More death worthy  

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  • CBT- Falshaw & Friendship
  • ANger Management- Ireland 
  • Ear Acupuncture- Wheatley 
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  • Reported re-offending rates for prisoners who recieved CBT were 14% lower 
  • Falshaw and Friendship failed to find a significant difference
  • Issue with CBT: Must be delivered by competant therpists and prisoners must have IQ of at least 80 and have good literacy skills as well has high motivation 
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Aim: Assess whether anger management programmes work with young male offenders

Procedure: Quasi experiment; 50 prisoners who had completed CALM; compared with 37 who were suitable not completed CALM; given CBT interview; Prisoner officers completed WBC rating 29 behaviour with scores of 0,1 or 2; Self-report questionaire on anger management with 53 questions 

Results: Prisoners who completed CALM rated themselves lower on the anger questionaire and rerated lower by prison officers than control group; 92% showed improvement on at least one measure of agresion and anger

Conclusion:In short term, the treatement seemed effective; But no re-offending data

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Aim: Evaluate effectiveness of ear acupuncture 

Procedure: 350 prisoners; 6 high security prisons recieved acupuncture and FOCUS standard care prgrammes; Compared with control group who just recieved FOCUS; 2 trained practioners worked with group of 10-15 prisoners in a relaxed setting with needles inserted into five acupuncture points in ear and prinsoners relaxed of for 40 minutes


Qualitative data: Prisoners reported better sleep; better relaxtion; able to cope; Reduce nicotine cravings; Cognitive and health improvements; Staff reported better communication with staff and families and calmer atmosphere with less use of healthcare facilities

Quantitative data: 70% reduction in drug related incidents 6 months after treatment; 41% serious incidents reports; 42% reduction in positive drug tests; 33% reduction in positive drug test 

Conclusion: Wheatley believes there is enough evidence to expand the delivery of acupuncture throughout prison system; Works best as complimentary therpay alongside other programmes

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