New Directions in Community Supervision: Should We Target High Risk Offenders, High Risk Times, and High Risk Locations?

  • James M. Byrne (Professor, Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology, University of Massachusetts, Lowell. Email:

This paper addresses a simple question: what have researchers in the United States and other countries learned about probation performance generally and the effectiveness of specific
probation practices in particular? While the „science‟ derived from the evaluation studies is still weak, it has been argued that probation could be organized along three risk dimensions, targeting high-risk times, high-risk offenders and high-risk locations. Research examining these
risk dimensions is presented here, and the implications for an emerging desistance-based probation paradigm are considered

Keywords: Community corrections, Evidence-based practice, Effectiveness, Desistance

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