In 2005, the Maine Department of Corrections (MDOC), with support from the National Institute of Corrections, began implementing a series of evidence-based principles in community corrections with the goal of improving the effectiveness of offender management in the community. This study was conducted to determine the types, extent, and frequencies of adult probation recidivism in Maine before and during the implementation period. The study finds that recidivism rates of offenders who entered probation in 2004, 2005, or 2006 did not change significantly across annual cohorts, but lower risk offenders appeared to have improved outcomes in 2006. Higher risk probationers performed worse over the three year period, as they faced greater supervision and case planning requirements. The study concludes that without sufficient cognitive based therapy services, management's increased focus on higher risk offenders will only mean increased supervision, and could lead to higher recidivism outcomes.
Cutler Institute for Health and Social Policy
Probation in Maine: Setting the Baseline
July 1, 2009