Community Supervision of the Sex Offender: An Overview of Current and Promising Practices
Despite recent legislative changes and sentencing practices that increase
the likelihood and length of incarceration for convicted sex offenders,
many of these offenders are supervised in the community. A U.S. Department
of Justice study (Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1997) reports that approximately
265,000 adult sex offenders are under the care, custody, or control of
correctional agencies in the United States. Of these, almost 60 percent
are under some form of community supervision. Most offenders who are convicted
of one or more sex crimes will be supervised in the community at some point—either
immediately following sentencing or after a period of incarceration in
jail or prison. These offenders present unique challenges to probation
and parole departments that are primarily responsible for supervising them.
Because of the potentially volatile community responses to sex offenders,
and the irrefutable harm that re-offenses would cause potential victims,
the community supervision of sex offenders is of critical importance to
criminal justice agencies and the public.
The primary objective of this brief is to provide an overview and discussion
of emerging practices and lessons in communities across the country in
the management of sex offenders under community supervision. A core assumption
appears to underlie these emerging practices: the primary goal of managing
sex offenders in the community is the prevention of future victimization.
To that end, a comprehensive approach to sex offender management includes
several key elements:
Collaboration. Collaboration among those agencies and
individuals charged with initiating and implementing effective supervision
and treatment practices is essential to managing sex offenders safely in
the community. Given the secrecy, manipulation, and deception that characterizes
sex offending behavior, there also must be a clear set of operating norms
for all involved to minimize the ability of offenders to circumvent the
goals of supervision.
Victim-Centered Approach. Since a primary goal of supervision
is the protection of victims and the prevention of future victimization,
supervision agencies should work closely with victim advocacy organizations
to ensure that their policies do not re-traumatize victims of sexual assault,
or inadvertently jeopardize the safety of others. While supervision agencies
have traditionally been offender-focused in their work, the most comprehensive
and responsible approaches to the community management of sex offenders
are those which focus on the needs and safety of both past and potential
victims of sexual assault. In this regard, concern for the protection of
the victim and the community guide policy development, program implementation,
and the actions and approaches of supervision agents and other practitioners
who are either working with victims of sexual assault or supervising perpetrators.
Sex Offender Specific Treatment. Mandated specialized
treatment as part of probation or parole conditions is an integral component
of effective community supervision. The notion that sex offenders should
be involved in treatment in no way suggests that they be allowed to escape
responsibility for their own actions—or that they should be "coddled."1
The offense-specific treatment that research has shown to be most effective
holds offenders accountable, is victim-centered, and is limited in its
confidentiality. It is based on the notion that if an offender can be taught
to manage successfully his propensity to sexually abuse, he becomes less
of a risk to past and potential victims.
Clear and Consistent Polices. Clear and consistent polices
at all levels (state, local, and agency) are crucial components of community
supervision. Clear policy defines how cases will be investigated, prosecuted,
and adjudicated. It also defines the method of community supervision, the
roles various agencies play in the supervision process, and the response
to indications of risk of relapse. Consensus-built policy establishes the
goals of the system and helps jurisdictions to identify clearly what role
each agency will play in managing these cases.
Building on these key elements, this paper describes community supervision;
emphasizes offender accountability; and underscores the need for those
who work with this population to understand the unique supervision, treatment,
and public safety challenges that these offenders pose. This document also
provides examples of promising approaches to adult sex offender supervision
in the country today.2
Sex Offenders: Who Are We Supervising?
Sex offenders have a wide variety of racial, ethnic, and socioeconomic
backgrounds, and vary significantly in age. While some sex offenders may
display behavior and characteristics that are similar to other types of
criminal offenders (e.g., a lack of education; unstable employment and
residence; drug and alcohol problems that interfere with daily life; frequent
altercations with families, friends, and strangers; and an overall resistance
to authority figures), the majority of them do not have extensive criminal
histories or "traditional" criminal lifestyles.
A study of sex offenders conducted in 1994 in the state of Oregon found
that the "typical" sex offender is male, a high school graduate, and more
likely than other criminal offenders to be employed. In addition, the majority
of sex offenders have probably not been under correctional supervision
previously and most have an established social support group in the community.
The Oregon study also confirmed that unlike other offenders who tend to
"age out" of their criminal behavior as they grow older, many sex offenders
continue to abuse throughout their lifetimes. Finally, the study revealed
that sex offenders frequently score in the low range on traditional correctional
risk assessment instruments, as these instruments do not address many of
the areas that are indicators of risk for sex offenders.3
A Shift in Perspective: A Victim-Centered Approach
to Sex Offender Management
Since the primary goals of supervision should always include the protection
of past victims and the prevention of future victimization, it is critically
important for supervision agents, treatment providers, and other stakeholders
to understand the nature and scope of sexual victimization in this country
today. Sexual assault and abuse research reveals clearly that the problem
is one of substantial proportions4 and
reinforces the recognition that all sex offenders must be supervised as
effectively as possible.
Although supervision agencies have traditionally focused on criminal
offenders, a shift from this focus to recognizing and addressing the needs
of victims has evolved in some jurisdictions. One jurisdiction that has
successfully integrated a victim perspective into both the policy development
and case management levels is New Haven, Connecticut, one of the Center
for Sex Offender Management’s (CSOM) National Resource Sites.5
In New Haven, a unique relationship has evolved between the Court Support
Services Division (which manages probation), local sex offender treatment
providers, and a statewide victim advocacy organization. The victim advocate,
hired with Court Support Services funds and supervised by the Connecticut
Sexual Assault Crisis Services, Inc. (CONNSACS), serves as a full-time
member of New Haven’s sex offender supervision team.
The victim advocate in New Haven, Connecticut
has a number of roles. The advocate supports supervision activities
by accompanying probation officers on home and field visits, attending
multi-disciplinary case review meetings, and leading the victim empathy
component of treatment groups. She also initiates contact with the
victim and/or victim’s family, provides referrals for counseling and other
victim services, and maintains contact with victims for as long as it is
necessary. The advocate furnishes information to and raises concerns
with probation officers and treatment providers throughout the supervision
process, and reviews background information from the probation files of
each sex offender being supervised by the unit. She also gathers
feedback from victims and the offender’s significant others and family
members regarding a sex offender’s behavior while they are being supervised.
At the policy level, CONNSACS is also extremely supportive of the
work of the New Haven unit. Representatives from CONNSACS have testified
before the Connecticut Legislature regarding the efficacy of the New Haven
program. The Executive Director of CONNSACS states that: "It is very powerful
when a victim advocate testifies before the Connecticut State Legislature
regarding the effective work of the probation department with sex offenders.
Conversely, it is also very powerful when a probation officer testifies
regarding the multiple benefits of including a victim advocate on a sex
offender supervision team."6
The Central Role of Collaboration in Managing Sex Offenders
in the Community
Because of the multifaceted and complex nature of sex offending and
its irrefutable impact on victims and society, it is imperative that collaborative
efforts to manage sex offenders venture beyond the traditional, cooperative
relationships associated with case management. This requires that the supervision
agency work closely with the treatment agency, the victim advocacy community,
polygraph examiners, and, if possible, others involved with the management
of sex offenders in the community (e.g., law enforcement officers, defense
attorneys, judges, prosecutors, school and social services officials, offenders’
families, and others).7
These entities must not only share information about each offender, but
should also work together to evaluate continually the offender’s progress
and discuss whether modifications should be made in the offender’s treatment
and supervision plan based on information they might learn from one another.
Supervision of sex offenders in some ways resembles "…putting a puzzle
together. Small pieces of information taken alone have little significance.
However, when the pieces are put together, the picture that emerges often
provides important information regarding the offender’s activities."8
True collaborative relationships foster a new and enhanced sense of awareness
among agencies and individuals regarding who the other parties are, what
motivates them, and the benefits that they will derive from working together.9
The following are key factors identified in implementing
and maintaining successful collaborative efforts:
effective communication and cooperation among the criminal justice system
and other professionals;
assessment of collaborative needs;
clear definition and delineation of roles;
efficient and streamlined coordination of agency tasks;
routine and regular flow of information and data; and
participation and accountability by all parties involved in the process.
Establishing a Framework for Effective Supervision
The Pre-Sentence Investigation
An examination of the needs and risks of sex offenders and a careful
review of the capacity of the existing management system to supervise this
population effectively is a vital function of the supervision agency. The
ideal time to begin this evaluation process is during the development of
pre-sentence investigation (PSI) reports. The primary purpose of these
reports, which should be completed for all sex offenders prior to sentencing,
is to provide information about a sex offender to the court to assist in
the disposition of the case. The PSI presents an opportunity for a probation
officer to make a recommendation for or against community supervision;
assess amenability to treatment; and to recommend specialized conditions
of supervision based on the offender’s criminal and sexual history and
their risk to reoffend.10
Critical Elements of Pre-Sentence Investigation Reports
Ideally, PSI reports should be generated by specialized probation officers
who have an extensive working knowledge of sex offenders and their patterns
of behavior. These reports should include:11
The police record which details the instant offense: PSI
writers should review thoroughly all charging documents that provide details
about the crime. Whenever possible and if applicable, writers should also
attempt to gain access to any police records detailing prior allegations
of sexual abuse.
The offender’s personal history: Obtaining the sex offender’s
family and personal history should occur during the initial interview
with the offender. Information gathered from the offender should include
their marital status, employment history, financial history, medical background,
military experience, and substance abuse history. Securing this type of
information allows the probation officer to discuss areas that are typically
non-threatening to the offender and provides an opportunity to establish
rapport before broaching the sexual aspects of the report. Other areas
that should be explored in greater depth when interviewing a sex offender
include the offender’s relationship history, past physical and sexual abuse
the offender has experienced, and the ages and genders of offender’s children
The offender’s sexual history: It is critical for probation
officers to ask probing questions about an offender’s deviant and non-deviant
sexual history. Interviewers should ask only open-ended questions with
positive assumptions, as this technique may evoke responses that provide
the detailed information that is needed to assess accurately the offender’s
patterns of sexually abusive behavior. For example, interviewers should
ask: "When did you begin touching your daughter inappropriately?" Rather
than "Did you ever touch your daughter inappropriately?"12
Sex offender specific evaluations: These evaluations, conducted
by psychologists or other trained clinicians, often contain an evaluation
of mental disorders, a history of drug and alcohol use, the results of
a medical screening, a comprehensive sexual evaluation (including a sexual
history, a summary of arousal patterns, and diagnosis of sexual deviancy),
and an evaluation of the offender’s levels of denial.
Collateral interviews: Probation officers should also interview
the offender’s family members, employer, friends, and any other individuals
with whom the offender interacts or has interacted with on a regular basis.
These individuals can often provide important information about the offender
that otherwise would not be known.
An evaluation of the offender’s amenability to specialized treatment:
In jurisdictions where sex offender specific evaluations are
not conducted and the probation officer must make a preliminary determination
about the offender’s amenability to treatment, supervising officers should
seek answers to the following kinds of questions: Does the offender admit
to the offense and accept responsibility for his actions? Does the offender
identify his sex offending behavior and express a desire to change? Since
sex offenders rarely take total responsibility for their actions at the
time of the pre-sentence report, the probation officer will be attempting
to evaluate where offenders are in the process of accepting responsibility
and their willingness to participate in specialized treatment.
Victim access: The offender’s access and threat to potential
victims is perhaps the most critical factor to consider when recommending
for or against community supervision. (It is not uncommon for child molesters
to be prohibited from having any contact with children of any age at the
beginning of their community supervision term, for example. Consideration
should be given to this issue with offenders convicted of other sexual
A victim impact statement: All jurisdictions should encourage
the inclusion of a victim impact statement in the PSI, if the victim wants
to provide such a statement. This statement should reflect the effects
(e.g., emotional, financial, or physical) that the assault has had on the
victim’s life. Supervision agents should work with a victim advocate whenever
possible to obtain information from a victim. If this is not possible,
PSI writers must take care not to challenge the validity of victims’ statements,
as most victims have already been interviewed about the details of their
assault several times prior to the PSI report.
The level of risk that the offender poses to the community: The
PSI’s summary recommendation regarding a sex offender’s level of risk to
the community should be based upon all of the information that the officer
has gathered and analyzed during the course of the investigation. Research
indicates that reoffense risk is most accurately measured by sex offender
specific actuarial risk assessment instruments. These instruments should
be utilized rather than solely relying on the judgment or impressions of
the pre-sentence investigator.
Corresponding recommendations regarding incarceration or community
supervision with special conditions: The recommendation section
of the report should include a brief synthesis of the following factors:
The PSI, therefore, should inform the sentencing decision and help set
the framework for community supervision, when community supervision is
the probability of reoffense;
recommendations regarding risk that were identified during the sex offender
factors gleaned from the investigation that tend to exacerbate risk (e.g.,
propensity for violence, easy access to victims, lack of treatment resources
in the jurisdiction where the offender may be released, and enabling attitudes
of family members and/or friends);
resources that are available which support the criminal justice system
management of the offender’s risk in the community (e.g., supportive family/friends,
specialized treatment, access to polygraph evaluations, sufficient supervision
resources, and ability to limit access to victims);
the degree of harm that might be expected if the offender were to commit
another crime (both sexual and non-sexual); and
a list of special conditions needed to monitor risk if probation is recommended;
probation officers must recommend conditions of probation that specifically
address the offender’s sexually abusive behaviors.
Sex Offender Classification
Probation and parole agencies have been using classification tools
to differentiate sub-populations of criminal offenders who need different
levels or types of supervision for many years. In general, classification
tools strive to distinguish offenders who pose differing levels of risk
and who have different treatment needs. As such, these tools are critically
important to agencies in order to prioritize their limited resources. There
is, however, no research or analysis that demonstrates the validity of
classification tools (unlike empirically validated tools that assess the
probability of re-offense in sex offenders). Therefore, it is not known
if classification tools accomplish precisely what they were created to
Optimally, classification for risk and need should be based upon the
results of empirically-based instruments that have been statistically validated
on a jurisdiction’s own criminal population. To do so assures that the
tools are valid in distinguishing varying levels of risk and need among
the offenders in a specific jurisdiction. Empirically-based instruments
that have been statistically validated provide jurisdictions with reasonable
and reliable sex offense risk prediction.
Unfortunately, most agencies do not have access to instruments that
have been both empirically tested and locally validated that can identify
those subsets of sex offenders on an officer’s caseload that present the
highest levels of risk and dangerousness. In the absence of these tools,
and in an environment in which decisions must be made regarding which offenders
should be supervised more intensively, many agencies must use their collective
experience to develop tools to help them make these classification decisions.
Development and Maintenance of a Case Plan
Case plans that guide the supervision of sex offenders are a key component
of a comprehensive approach to sex offender supervision.
The case planning process forms the basis for sex offender
supervision… It reflects all the available and relevant information regarding
the offender, including the special conditions of probation or parole…
During the life of supervision, the case plan will reflect information
that either supports the direction of the initial case plan or requires
the use of a different approach or strategy… The case plan is meant to
be a useful document, updated when changes occur and created in a format
that any staff person involved in the offender’s supervision can use.13
Case plans should explain the sex offender’s responsibilities while under
community supervision and eliminate confusion regarding the expectations
that probation/parole officers, treatment providers, and other stakeholders
have developed for the offender.
The development and maintenance of a comprehensive and up-to-date case
plan is a multi-faceted process that requires input and feedback from the
offender, the probation/parole agent, and other professionals who share
responsibility for sex offender management. In sex offense cases, it is
extremely important to involve the offender in the case planning process
in order to ensure that he is fully aware of, and accepts responsibility
for, the terms of his supervision. The supervision agent should also discuss
with the offender any changes or adjustments that are made to the case
plan. All plans should require the offender to sign and date the document,
thereby indicating his acknowledgement of having reviewed and understood
it, and indicate his willingness and commitment to abide by the conditions
outlined in the plan.
At a minimum, the case plan should include:
biographical data (e.g., name, date of birth, address, and/or employment);
the type of sex offense;
the level of risk (as determined by the results of an actuarial risk assessment
risk factors with an emphasis on dynamic—or changeable—risk factors and
acute dynamic factors (e.g., those that suggest imminent danger to reoffend,
such as intoxication);
special conditions of supervision;
how and when the offender is to fulfill specific responsibilities (e.g.,
completion of community service work and payment of fines or court costs);
information regarding the role of the supervision agency and how supervision
will be structured (e.g., with the use of electronic monitoring, drug/alcohol
testing, curfews, motor vehicle restrictions, and other restrictions on
All aspects of the case plan must be updated as changes occur in the offender’s
behavior, and as his compliance with his supervision conditions improves
or deteriorates. Using relevant documents (e.g., treatment progress reports
or job evaluations), information that is gleaned from their work in the
field (e.g., home visits or office visits in the community), and feedback
received from collaterals, supervision agents should continually monitor
the offender’s compliance with supervision conditions and the risks his
environment may present. Case plans should consider whether the current
supervision conditions adequately address the offender’s risks and needs
or allow the offender access to past or potential victims.
In the event of staff reassignment, a new supervision agent should be
able to use the case plan to understand an offender’s needs, issues, and
current supervision conditions. It is vital for supervising officers to
maintain clear chronological case notes that detail an offender’s progress-or
lack thereof-in supervision and treatment. Current and complete information
also fosters communication among other members of the supervision team
and can serve as a foundation for the formal and informal case management
Key Elements of Community Supervision
The experiences of probation and parole agencies across the nation indicate
that sole reliance on commonly used supervision practices (e.g., scheduled
office visits, periodic phone contact, and community service requirements)
does not adequately address the unique challenges and risks that sex offenders
pose to the community. In order to address these challenges, it is imperative
that convicted sex offenders receive, in addition to incarcerative sanctions
where appropriate, a period of community supervision. During this period
of supervision, the supervising agency is able to assess an offender’s
place of residence and employment, restrict contact with minors or other
potential victims, select appropriate treatment for the offender, and establish,
if necessary, other restrictions that diminish the likelihood of re-offense.
Sex offenders must be monitored intensively during community supervision
in order to evaluate their level of commitment to and compliance with all
imposed special conditions. This supervision typically should include:
ensuring that the offender is actively engaged in and consistently attending
an approved community-based treatment program;
verifying the suitability of the offender’s residence and place of employment;
monitoring the offender’s activities by conducting frequent, unannounced
field visits at the offender’s home, at his place of employment, and during
his leisure time (e.g., is he engaging in inappropriate, high risk behavior
such as collecting items that depict or are attractive to children?); and
helping the offender to develop a community support system—including friends,
family members, and employers who are aware of the offender’s criminal
history, are supportive of the community supervision plan, and can recognize
the sex offender’s risk factors.
Probation officers can further enhance their ability to monitor an offender’s
compliance with probation conditions by maintaining regular contact with
the offender’s family, friends, and other community members. This contact
also can provide an opportunity for community members to express concerns
they may have about an offender’s behavior.
Special conditions of supervision have been used to add restrictions
to the general terms and conditions of supervision. Although many traditional
methods of supervision (such as field visits, collateral contacts, surveillance,
drug and alcohol testing, and electronic monitoring) are appropriate to
utilize when supervising sex offenders, probation and parole conditions
should also address their sex offense histories and individual patterns
of offending. Thus, sex offender specific conditions have emerged as one
of the key tools in managing this particular population of offenders.
More intensive community supervision practices ensure that external controls
are imposed upon sex offenders and can, in some instances, interrupt an
offender’s sex offense cycle.15 There are
a number of supervision conditions that are generally accepted and widely
used with sex offenders. While these special conditions provide a foundation
for the development of a comprehensive case management plan, probation
and parole officers should tailor the specific supervision conditions in
each sex offender’s case plan to address individual risks and needs. Specialized
conditions for the supervision of sex offenders usually address:16
The State of Vermont has developed offense-specific conditions
which address directly the offender’s cycle of abuse:
Offenders may not use videotapes or film; or watch television programs
that act as a stimulus for their abusive cycle, or act as a stimulus to
arouse them in an abusive fashion. In other words, a pedophile may
not view programs whose primary character is a child.
Offenders may not use pornography or erotica, and may not patronize adult
bookstores, sex shops, topless bars, or massage parlors.
Offenders may not go where children congregate, such as parks, playgrounds,
Offenders may not possess a camera or videorecorder if they have photographed
their victim(s) in the past.
Disclosure: Signature on a waiver allowing shared communication
among treatment, probation/parole, district attorney’s office, and the
court; and disclosure to others (e.g., schools and employer) as deemed
Treatment: Participation in and payment for evaluation and
approved sex offender specific treatment covered by a signed contract.
Victim Contact and Restitution: No contact of any kind with
the victim(s) or their families (including contact through third parties)
and payment for victims’ counseling. Some jurisdictions (including the
CSOM Resource Sites in Jackson County, Oregon, and Maricopa County, Arizona)
have defined specifically the meaning of "no contact."
No Contact with Children: Restriction from any intentional
or prolonged contact with children, regardless of the age and gender of
the offender’s prior victims.
Driving and Travel: No unapproved driving after dark or when
children are going to and from school except for employment; no connection
with hitchhiking; and travel to another jurisdiction only with authorization
and a letter signed by local authorities.
Daily Living: Residence only in the supervising jurisdiction;
no unapproved visits with family; and maintenance of established curfew
Social/Sexual Behavior: No sexual contact or unchaperoned
contact with anyone under the age of 18; full appropriate dress when public
view is possible; may not spend time in locations where individuals under
the age of 18 are likely to be; no non-therapeutic contact with convicted
sex offenders; and no view, purchase, or possession of adult-oriented materials.
Work (paid or volunteer): No such activity where contact
with those under the age of 18 is likely.
Alcohol/Drugs: No purchase, possession, or consumption; testing
Polygraph, Plethysmograph, and Other Tests: Offender must
agree to submit to polygraph, plethysmograph,17
and other physiological tests as directed by the supervising officer.
In addition, some jurisdictions have imposed additional special
conditions of supervision that address:18
Developing a supervision strategy to protect potential victims may also
involve random home checks after curfew; review of the offender’s driving
log; restriction of the offender’s access to vehicles; frequent contact
with the offender’s family members, roommates, friends, and employer; and
the administration of unscheduled polygraph examinations.
Computer/Internet Restrictions: Offenders must not use the
Internet without permission of their supervising officer and offenders
must submit to an examination and search of their computer to verify that
it is not utilized in violation of their supervision and/or treatment conditions.
Other Technology Restrictions: Offenders will not possess
a camera, camcorder, or videocassette recorder/player without the approval
of their supervising officer.
Other Employment Restrictions: Offenders cannot hold a position
that allows them to supervise women or children.
Special supervision conditions, when ordered by the court or the supervision
agent, are perhaps the most effective method of imposing external controls
on sex offenders. In order to reduce the likelihood of a sexual reoffense,
these restrictions must be designed to address the offender’s risk factors,
and supervision agents must consistently monitor the offender’s adherence
to all of the conditions of probation. Supervision agents should continually
assess whether the conditions assigned to sex offenders appropriately address
their current patterns of behavior (including social interactions) and
living conditions. For example, a supervision agent may discover during
a conversation with a family member that a child molester who has abused
strangers is routinely riding a bus to and from work that is also transporting
children. The agent might then develop and impose an additional condition
that forbids the offender from riding public transportation that is likely
to have children as passengers (e.g., during the mornings and in the afternoons
and evenings before 9:00 p.m.) This ongoing and intensive evaluation of
an offender’s behavior will also reinforce that his actions are being constantly
Specialized vs. non-specialized Caseloads
A survey of sex offender supervision practices nationwide concluded
that "policies which promote the specialization of job duties for (probation
and parole) officers who manage sex offenders were found to accompany practices
associated with the effective management of sex offenders."19
The survey also revealed that specialized caseloads allow supervision staff
Specialized officers should have extensive supervision experience; be trained
in sex offender issues such as treatment, assessment and the polygraph;
be knowledgeable about victimization; and have interest in and a commitment
to working with this population.
gain expertise and training related to sex offender management;
ensure that sex offenders, who might have become "lost" on non-specialized
caseloads because of their seemingly compliant nature, are supervised intensively;
establish rapport with sex offenders in order to encourage them to talk
openly about their thoughts and activities;
promote feelings of camaraderie and support among officers who maintain
these caseloads in order to reduce secondary trauma;20
increase agency-wide consistency in sex offender supervision practices.
Specialized officers must, therefore, be willing to play a different
role in supervising sex offenders than other officers who are responsible
for non-specialized caseloads. They must be more involved in the offender’s
daily life and habits and be in contact with others knowledgeable about
the offender’s current attitudes and behaviors. Sex offender supervision
officers have found that the following practices enhance their ability
to monitor an offender’s behavior and state of mind:
At a minimum, the specialized supervision of sex offenders requires a probation
officer to be able to talk openly about sexuality and sexual deviancy;
to be knowledgeable about offender and victim issues; and to work collaboratively
with treatment providers and other stakeholders to ensure compliance with
community supervision and treatment requirements. "Specialization means
that no longer will a sex offender slip in the door just before 5 p.m.,
spend five minutes in the probation office talking about his job and last
night’s basketball game, pay his fees, and leave."
open discussions with the offender regarding his progress in identifying
and avoiding pre-offense planning and behaviors and his understanding and
use of relapse prevention strategies;
detailed discussions of any contact the offender may have had with past
or potential victims followed by verification of that information with
the offender’s family or others in his support network;
close monitoring of the offender’s employment; and
recognition of treatment progress or other positive achievements.21
The nationwide survey concluded that mixed probation and parole caseloads
can also be an effective way to manage sex offenders, as long as sex offenders
are assigned only to probation officers who receive ongoing, specialized
training.23 Regardless of whether the caseloads
are mixed or sex offender specific, supervision agencies are urged to minimize
the number of sex offenders on an officer’s caseload to the extent possible.24
Minimum Standards of Supervision
Throughout the course of the offender’s supervision, supervising agents
must, at a minimum, be able to:
The level of supervision should never be so low as to exclude routine field
visits to monitor an offender’s behavior in the community.
check an offender’s residence and place of employment;
maintain contact with the offender’s therapist, employers, family members,
friends, and other community members, including victims;
establish and maintain contact with an offender’s associates, significant
others, employers, Alcoholics Anonymous sponsors, and others to ensure
that they are aware of the offender’s history and risk factors; and
continue to monitor the offender’s adherence to the conditions of supervision–which
likely will include ensuring that the offender has no access to potential
victims, is not in possession of pornography or using the Internet, drugs,
or alcohol, and that he is employed and living at an approved residence.
Some jurisdictions also employ surveillance officers who work closely
with probation and parole officers to assist with monitoring an offender’s
compliance with supervision conditions.
In Maricopa County, Arizona, the Adult Probation Department has teamed
probation officers with sex offender surveillance officers. The surveillance
officers work full-time in the community and are assigned flexible and
rotating shifts, allowing officers to be in the community seven days a
week and 24 hours a day. Surveillance officers monitor sex offenders’ whereabouts
and activities in the community; verify addresses; assure that residences
are in compliance with program standards and regulations; and communicate
often with probation and parole officers and treatment providers. They
have access to considerable technology to maintain close contact with their
colleagues and the department’s dispatcher, and to assure their own safety
while in the field.
Engaging Others to Assist in the Supervision of Sex
Offenders in the Community
Another method that has proven to be especially promising in managing
sex offenders is the use of a case management team, or groups of individuals
who can augment the management provided by a supervision officer. Meetings
between a sex offender and his supervision officer only can provide a snapshot
of the offender’s life. In the limited amount of time associated with such
meetings, sex offenders may attempt to portray themselves, their behavior,
and their compliance with supervision conditions in the best light possible.
The use of the case management team allows the probation officer to communicate
routinely with others who are more familiar with the offender’s day-to-day
Where utilized, the case management team typically consists of a supervision
agent, treatment provider, and polygraph examiner. However, variations
of these teams exist in communities around the nation.
The following are examples of how some jurisdictions
have expanded supervision networks to include family members and volunteers.
In Vermont, in addition to creating support networks of
family, friends, AA sponsors, and others, the Department of Corrections
trains volunteers to work with sex offenders in the community. Volunteers
serve as support to their assigned offenders as they attempt to reintegrate
themselves into the community, and provide community corrections staff
with information about the offender’s daily life and progress. A
positive support system has been found to be an important factor in reducing
recidivism in Vermont.
Spokane, Washington is well known for community policing
efforts, and has established a network of community volunteer sites across
the city. Trained volunteers serve as sources of information about
sex offender movement, changes in residence and behavior, or any other
factors that might suggest a heightened risk to the community. These
volunteer sites, known as “COPS Shops,” serve as a significant adjunct
in the surveillance of sex offenders.
Tarrant County, Texas operates a “chaperone” program in
which significant others and family members of sex offenders are taught
about the dynamics of sex offending behavior and victimization, are informed
about the offender’s sex crimes, and trained to recognize and identify
when an offender is engaging in sexually abusive thoughts and behavior.
Equipped with this knowledge, the chaperones—often those most intimately
involved in a sex offender’s life—are able to intervene if they believe
the offender is in danger of committing a new sexual offense or has lapsed
into sex offending tendencies.
While there is no method of supervision that guarantees a sex offender
will not re-offend, jurisdictions that employ the case management team
approach have demonstrated that many sex offenders can be monitored safely
in the community. Open information sharing and consultation among the various
agencies charged with the management of sex offenders, proactive and intensive
community monitoring, and ongoing, offense-specific treatment can equip
some sex offenders with the necessary skills to interrupt their sex offense
cycle and control their sexually abusive behaviors.
Sex Offender Specific Treatment
Sex offender specific treatment is another critical component of a comprehensive
approach to sex offender management. Appropriate treatment can assist sex
offenders to learn control over their sexually abusive behavior.
The most effective sex offender treatment programs assist in preventing
victimization because they require offenders to acknowledge their crimes
and the harm that they have caused their victims, and to participate actively
in the treatment process. Successful participation in and completion of
sex offense specific treatment is a very common condition of probation
and parole supervision.
Effective sex offender treatment is markedly different from traditional
mental health counseling or psychotherapy. Notable differences between
traditional psychotherapy and sex offender specific treatment include:
Sex offender treatment providers must, therefore, be willing to work beyond
the confines of the traditional psychotherapy model, understand the unique
treatment needs of sex offenders, and develop therapy programs accordingly.
the primary focus is the protection of the community;
considerable attention is directed toward understanding the harm the offender
has caused the victim;
sex offenders’ thinking errors that contribute to their offending patterns
are revealed, examined, and challenged;
offenders participate in professionally facilitated group sessions; these
sessions provide an opportunity for offenders to challenge one another
regarding their denial, distortions, and manipulation; and
information discussed in group is shared with supervision agents, polygraph
examiners, and other stakeholders as deemed necessary.
In many jurisdictions, supervision agents are encouraged to attend treatment
groups periodically to learn more about the offender and to reinforce the
close working relationship between supervision staff and sex offender treatment
providers. In some jurisdictions, supervision agents co-facilitate treatment
groups with therapists.
The Use of Physiological and Monitoring Tools in Sex
The polygraph, a technology that is effective in detecting deception,
is being used increasingly as a mechanism to assist in managing sex offenders.
"The value of the post-conviction polygraph seems undisputed among those
who use it"26 and those jurisdictions that
now use it report that they could not get along without it.27
The polygraph has become an important asset in treatment and supervision,
providing independent information about compliance and progress. Where
an offender is engaging in non-compliant behavior, the polygraph provides
information that informs the case plan and/or the need to take other action
to prevent relapse and encourage success. In many jurisdictions, the polygraph
examiner is a key part of the case management team.
In the early 1980’s, Oregon became the first state to begin the systematic
use of the polygraph as a treatment and supervision tool for sex offenders.
Results of a 1994 national survey of probation and parole agencies on sex
offender management indicated that 11 percent of probation and parole offices
surveyed used the polygraph as a monitoring tool.28
In 1995, the Tennessee legislature passed a law that made polygraph testing
mandatory for sex offenders on probation. Since January 1996, Colorado
has required the use of the polygraph in treatment and monitoring of all
sex offenders who are serving community sentences. On July 1, 1998, Wisconsin
removed statutory barriers to the use of the polygraph with sex offenders.29
As is the case with sex offender treatment providers, polygraph examiners
who administer tests to sex offenders should be specially trained to work
with this population.30
Three types of post-conviction polygraphs are commonly administered
to sex offenders under probation or parole supervision:
One of the most significant challenges associated with using the polygraph
as a sex offender supervision tool is that not all states have licensing
laws or procedures for post-conviction sex offender testing. When a supervising
agent or a treatment provider identifies a polygraph examiner with whom
to work, he or she should inquire about the training that the examiner
has received and, more specifically, if the training has been endorsed
by the American Polygraph Association (APA).34
Full Disclosure or Sexual History Examination: The primary
purpose of this examination is to ensure complete disclosure by the offender
of his sexual history. This examination is typically administered after
an offender has been in treatment from three to six months.
Specific Issue Examination: This examination evaluates a
specific behavior or allegation during supervision. It is also used when
an offender is either in complete denial or maintains that he did not commit
the crime of conviction (in particular, offenders who were sentenced under
an Alford Plea31 or offenders who continue
to minimize their responsibility for the abuse despite their conviction).32
Maintenance or Monitoring Examination: The primary function
of this examination is to verify the offender’s compliance with treatment
and supervision conditions. Maintenance or monitoring examinations are
administered on a periodic basis, usually every six months. In most cases,
offenders are not tested more than three times per year.33
The penile plethysmograph is a physiological instrument that measures
an offender’s erectile response to various stimuli. It typically is used
in two ways: to measure the offender’s sexually deviant interests, so that
a behavioral program to decrease the deviant arousal can be developed,
and as an evaluation tool to measure the success or failure of the treatment
The penile plethysmograph is considered to be one of the more invasive
techniques used in the field of sex offender management. None the less,
deviant sexual arousal is a significant contributing factor in sex offending
(research indicates that deviant sexual arousal is positively correlated
with re-offense35), and the self-report
of offenders regarding their sexual arousal often is not reliable. The
Association for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (ATSA) has developed guidelines
for the use of the plethysmograph with sex offenders.36
Drug and Alcohol Testing, and Electronic Monitoring
While many jurisdictions use drug/alcohol testing and/or electronic
monitoring for their obvious benefits in reducing chemical abuse and providing
information about offenders’ whereabouts, neither should substitute for
a more specialized approach to sex offender management that includes inter-disciplinary
and agency collaboration and sex offender specific treatment.
The jurisdictions that have found these technologies to be most helpful
use them in a manner that addresses specific sex offender risk factors.
For example, it may not be appropriate to drug and/or alcohol test an offender
who, because of a serious medical condition, cannot and does not consume
these substances. In addition, it may not be the best use of limited resources
to electronically monitor an offender who is surrounded and supervised
closely by a group of supportive adults (e.g., an employer, a mother and
father, neighbors, or other relatives). In such instances, the resources
associated with using these technologies should be applied to offenders
who have past histories of substance abuse or have not shown the ability
or willingness to abide by court-imposed curfews and other restrictions
Family reunification, the process by which a convicted sex offender
is allowed to return to live in his home with his victims or alleged victims,
is an especially controversial issue. Although the stakes involved in returning
a known sex offender to a home in which he could again offend are extremely
high, many sex offenders, including incest offenders, will seek to be reunified
with their families. The most prudent family reunification policies ensure
that a known child molester, in particular, is initially separated from
all children and is required to engage in ongoing and specialized sex offender
treatment before any efforts to reunify the offender with his family are
Family reunification policies also should require that the non-offending
parent and other members of the family be aware of the offender’s sexually
abusive behavior, participate as needed in the offender’s supervision and
treatment, recognize the impact that the abuse has had on the victim, and
ensure that they are unequivocally willing to monitor the safety and well-being
of the victim. Community supervision agents are essential to the family
Officers are empowered to enforce what the therapist recommends,
but at the same time probation officers who are trained to ask the right
questions can demand accountability from those family therapists who want
to reunify prematurely. The teamwork between therapist and probation in
a reunification case can make the difference between mere survival for
victims or emotional health, recovery, and growth. Well-designed guidelines
for family reunification should be a part of sex offender supervision.37
Probation staff also must work with the victim, the victim’s family, and,
when possible, the victim’s therapist and a victim advocate, to ensure
that the victim is willing and prepared for the offender’s return. Since
the offender is generally a person who is a parent, family member, or friend
of the victim, it is imperative to realize that some victims may not oppose
reunification. This can happen for many reasons, including that the victim
may care for the offender, or might be frightened that they may alienate
a non-offending parent or other family member by objecting to reunification.
Some jurisdictions, including Maricopa County, Arizona, have established
family reunification policies in an attempt to ensure the safety and well
being of the family members with whom the offender will be residing. Reunification
should be a gradual process that is planned and monitored carefully-by
community supervision staff, treatment providers, victim advocates and
therapists, polygraphers, and the families of the offenders and victims-in
order to avoid further traumatization of the victim and other family members.
Sex Offender Supervision Legislation
Lifetime supervision is another form of sex offender supervision that
has been implemented in a number of states. Lifetime supervision
provides for ongoing community supervision of offenders convicted of certain
sex crimes throughout the course of their life. The rationale for lifetime
supervision is based on several assumptions, including:
Proponents of lifetime supervision assert that sex offending is multi-generational
in nature and that future victimization may be avoided through ongoing
and extended surveillance and treatment. Such close supervision and surveillance
may also improve supervision officers' ability to prevent or detect changes
in offenders' behavior patterns, crossover to other types of sex offending,
lifestyle changes, or a shift to a new victim group.38
sex offending can be a life-long, chronic pattern of abusive behavior;
sex offenders often can control sex offending behavior, but do not always
voluntarily choose to;
lengthy probation or parole terms allow supervising officers to respond
diligently to offender risks and needs; and
it is wiser to decrease probation terms as offenders progress than to lack
the ability to increase them when more supervision and surveillance is
According to representatives from Maricopa County, Arizona, "the lifetime
nature of the probation sentence, combined with its special conditions
and the use of the polygraph, makes this sentence acceptable to many victims
of sex offenses."39 Given the relatively
recent emergence of lifetime supervision practices, data regarding the
effectiveness of this approach is not yet available.
Community notification legislation enacted around the nation mandates
that law enforcement and other officials notify various community members
(the scope of community members who are notified typically varies based
on sex offenders’ perceived levels of risk to reoffend) when a convicted
offender is living in their neighborhood.40
Community notification can be implemented as a component of a successful
approach to community supervision.
While methods vary among jurisdictions, one innovation in community
notification involves assigning probation or parole agents—the very individuals
who will be responsible for supervising sex offenders in the community—to
conduct community notification. This approach can guarantee that a knowledgeable
community corrections agent will be given a forum in which he or she can
dispense sound information about offenders, their patterns of sex offending
behavior, and how community members can best protect themselves against
victimization. It also can empower the supervision agency to intervene
in any potential conflicts between the community and the offender, which
would likely be detrimental to the offender’s successful community reintegration.
This approach, in place in Jackson County, Oregon, leaves "discretion to
the parole or probation officer so a notification plan can be developed
according to the offender’s specific offending patterns."41
Supervision agents can also encourage community members to contact them
should any suspicious behavior or other questions or concerns surface.
Some jurisdictions are also using community notification as an opportunity
to involve victim advocates in the process of community education about
sex offenders. While probation or law enforcement officers can dispense
information to community members about notification laws, known offenders
living in their neighborhood, patterns of sex offending behavior, and whom
to contact if they notice suspicious behavior, advocates offer the community
a wealth of experience in prevention education. They can increase residents’
understanding of this crime; provide them with facts concerning who is
at risk for victimization and by whom (since convicted offenders represent
only a subgroup of the actual population of sex offenders); and discuss
practical strategies to reduce the risk of being sexually assaulted. They
can also assist justice system officials in addressing resident concerns,
while helping to allay fears and reduce the possibility of vigilantism
Adult Sex Offenders with Developmental Disabilities
Many jurisdictions around the country struggle with the issue of supervising
adult sex offenders with developmental disabilities. Developmentally disabled
sex offenders pose many of the same challenges to supervision agencies
as other adult sex offenders.
In addition, supervising this population entails:
As an example of how one jurisdiction has addressed this area, the Colorado
Sex Offender Management Board has expanded the state’s guidelines for supervising
adult sex offenders to include specific guiding principles for working
with sex offenders who have developmental disabilities. These principles
evaluating the offender’s level of cognitive impairment in order to gauge
his suitability for community supervision;
contracting with treatment providers who are well versed in sex offending
behavior and developmentally disabled individuals; and
working intensively with departments of mental health, social services,
group home staff, and others that may be involved closely in the offender’s
Given the emerging research in this highly specialized field, Colorado’s
principles are intended to "add to existing standards by better addressing
the specific needs and risks of sex offenders with developmental disabilities…
they are based in best practices known today for managing and treating
sex offenders with developmental disabilities."43
Sex offenders with developmental disabilities pose as clear a threat to
public safety as sex offenders without developmental disabilities.
There is nothing inherent in the presence of developmental disabilities
that causes sexual offending.
Sex offenders with developmental disabilities shall be offered treatment
that is appropriate to their developmental capacity, their level of comprehension,
and their ability to integrate treatment material and progress.
The Tribal Response to Sex Offending
The Navajo Nation, the Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes at Fort Peck, Montana,
and the Yankton-Sioux Tribe in South Dakota are among the tribal jurisdictions
working to address the issue of supervising sex offenders on tribal lands.
In all of these sites, probation officers must grapple with jurisdictional
issues among tribal, state, and federal entities.
Many offenders are sentenced by federal courts and are supervised by
federal—or federal and tribal—probation officers. In addition, tribal codes
may call for relatively short periods of supervision. These factors, coupled
with the lack of staff and financial resources necessary to supervise sex
offenders adequately, present unique challenges to tribal jurisdictions.
Tribal jurisdictions around the country have sought to mitigate these problems
by maintaining ongoing collaboration with the various disciplines involved
in the management of sex offenders in their communities. This communication
serves not only to advise members about specific case management issues,
but also to refocus the teams’ energy and commitment to victims of sexual
assault and to enhance their ability to share resources and to develop
solutions to problems that have a negative impact on more than one agency.
The Navajo Nation in Tuba City, Arizona has developed
a subcommittee comprised of representatives from the Tribal Court, Tribal
Probation, the Tribal Council, the Tribal Prosecutor’s office, law enforcement,
mental health providers, local schools, child advocates, community members,
and others to examine what resources are available to treat and supervise
sex offenders and to provide restoration to victims of sexual assault.
These entities work together on an ongoing basis in order to ensure that
they are capitalizing on their resources in the most effective way possible
and avoiding duplication of their efforts.
The Yankton-Sioux Tribe in South Dakota convenes a monthly multi-disciplinary
team meeting, during which individuals from Tribal Probation, Tribal Schools,
the Tribal Council, local child advocacy organizations, the U.S. Attorney’s
office, and others join together to address the problems they all face
in the management of sex offenders in their community.
The Assiniboine and Sioux Tribes at Fort Peck, Montana hold monthly
Child Protection Team meetings at the local rape crisis center. Representatives
from the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the Tribal Court, Indian Health Services,
the FBI, the Criminal Investigators, and others participate in these meetings,
used mainly as a venue to discuss their sex offender cases and explore
solutions to their common problems.
Many jurisdictions around the nation have embraced the concept that
supervising sex offenders in the community effectively requires a highly
specialized approach to community supervision. Although there are individual
variations in each community, the most promising approaches share several
key elements, including:
Such approaches also focus primarily on the safety and needs of victims
and the community and require that a wide array of individuals and agencies
work together to solve the problem of preventing further victimization.
thorough pre-sentence investigation reports (PSI);
complete offender assessments;
the use of empirically validated risk tools where possible;
the establishment of case management teams;
highly trained and specialized officers;
the use of sex offender specific conditions of supervision;
mandated sex offender specific treatment;
the use of the polygraph; and
individualized case plans.
A Note to Readers
The Center for Sex Offender Management is interested in learning more
about sex offender supervision and treatment programs in jurisdictions
around the country. We would be pleased to hear from your community.
For further information about the practices of any of the jurisdictions
contained within this document, please contact CSOM.
This document was authored by Leilah Gilligan and Tom Talbot, Program
Associates, Center for Sex Offender Management. Edited by Madeline M. Carter,
Project Director, Center for Sex Offender Management. The Center for Sex
Offender Management would like to thank Georgia Cumming for her significant
contributions to this document.
Center for Sex Offender Management
8403 Colesville Road, Suite 720
Silver Spring, MD 20910
Phone: (301) 589-9383
Fax: (301) 589-3505
1 Cumming, G., and Buell,
M. (1997). Supervision of the Sex Offender. Safer Society Press,
Brandon, VT., p. 2.
2 This publication refers
exclusively to adult male sex offenders. Juvenile and female sex offenders
pose somewhat different management challenges. For more information regarding
juvenile sex offenders, see: Center for Sex Offender Management (1999).
Understanding Juvenile Sex Offenders: Emerging Research, Treatment Approaches
and Management Practices. Silver Spring, MD.
3 Law and Policy Associates
(1994). Adult Sex Offenders in Oregon:Trends and Characteristics.
Oregon Criminal Justice Council, Aloha, OR., pp. 26-28.
4 Freeman-Longo, R. and
Blanchard, G. (1998). Sexual Abuse in America: Epidemic of the 21st
Century. Safer Society Press, Brandon, VT., p. 13.
5 The Center for Sex Offender
Management Resource Sites are sixteen jurisdictions that have shown innovation
in their management of sex offenders. For more information about these
sites, see Center for Sex Offender Management (1999). Case Studies on
the Center for Sex Offender Management’s National Resource Sites. Silver
Spring, MD. For more information about partnerships with the victim
advocacy community, contact CSOM to obtain a copy of Engaging Advocates
and Other Victim Service Providers in Managing Sex Offenders in the Community
6 English, K., Pullen,
S., and Jones, L. (1996). Managing Adult Sex Offenders on Probation
and Parole: A Containment Approach. American Probation and Parole Association,
Lexington, KY., p. 2-14.
7 Cumming and Buell, p.
8 Seymour, A. (1999).
Collaboration for Victims’ Rights and Services. National Victim
Assistance Academy Text. U.S. Department of Justice, Office for Victims
of Crime, Victim Assistance Legal Organization, Washington, D.C., p. 18-3.
9 Cumming and Buell, pp.
10 Ibid., pp. 3-31.
11 For a more detailed
description of the types of questions that are useful in obtaining an accurate
picture of an offender’s sexual history, see "Questions Related to Sexual
History" in Cumming and Buell, pp. 4-5.
12 Ibid., pp. 44 and 49.
13 Ibid., p. 44.
14 The sexual offense
cycle is defined as the pattern of specific thoughts, feelings, and behaviors
that often lead up to and immediately follow the acting out of sexual deviance.
15 These conditions have
been adapted from the Maricopa County, Arizona; Westchester County, New
York; and the Jackson County, Oregon, Probation Departments.
16 For a description of
both the polygraph and plethysmograph and their application, see pages
11-12 of this document.
17 These conditions have
been adapted from Dane County, Wisconsin, and the State of Connecticut.
18 English, K., Colling-Chadwick,
S., Pullen, S., and Jones, L. (1996). How are Adult Felony Sex Offenders
Managed on Probation and Parole? A National Survey. Colorado Division
of Criminal Justice, Department of Public Safety and the National Institute
of Justice, Washington, D.C., p. 15.
19 Described as the "disruptive
psychological effects of working with perpetrators of sexual abuse." Pullen,
C. and Pullen, S. (1996). Secondary Trauma Associated with Managing
Sex Offenders. In English, K. Pullen, S., and Jones, L. (eds.) Managing
Adult Sex Offenders: A Containment Approach. American Probation and Parole
Association, Lexington, KY.,
20 p. 10-3.
21 Scott, L.K. (1997).
Community Management of Sex Offenders. In Schwartz, B. and Cellini,
H. (eds.) The Sex Offender (2), p. 16-4.
23 English, Colling-Chadwick,
Pullen, and Jones, p.15.
24 An analysis of the
caseload size of eight of CSOM’s National Resource Sites (Maricopa County,
Arizona; Jefferson County, Colorado; New Haven, Connecticut; the Commonwealth
of Massachusetts; Westchester County, New York; Jackson County, Oregon;
the State of Vermont; and Spokane, Washington) reflects an average sex
offender caseload size of approximately 47 sex offenders per officer.
25 Cumming and Buell,
26 English, K. (1999).
The Containment Approach: An Aggressive Strategy for the Community Management
of Adult Sex Offenders. Psychology, Public Policy and Law (4), p. 228.
27 Scott, p. 16-6.
28 English, Pullen, and
Jones (eds.), p. 15-3.
29 English, pp. 228-229.
30 See Ethical Standards
and Principles for the Management of Sexual Abusers, The Association
for the Treatment of Sexual Abusers, 1997, p. 52, for a more detailed discussion
of suggested standards for the use and administration of the polygraph.
31 An Alford Plea is defined
as a "plea that allows the offender to admit that there is enough evidence
to convict him at trial without admitting the offense of record." This
type of plea often subverts treatment since it is difficult to treat a
sex offender who has not admitted responsibility for the offense.
32 Morris, J. (1997).
Defining Clinical Polygraph Examinations. National Association of
Polygraph Specialists in Sex Offender Testing/Monitoring Manual, (150),
33 The Association for
the Treatment of Sexual Abusers (1997). Ethical Standards and Principles
for the Management of Sexual Abusers. Beaverton, OR., p.
34 The APA has developed
standards for post-conviction polygraph testing of sex offenders and offers
a 40-hour block of instruction for polygraph examiners who are interested
in working with sex offenders. For more information about the APA, contact
their national office at (800) APA-8037 or visit their website at www.polygraph.org.
35 Hanson, R.K. and Bussiere,
M.T. (1998). Predicting Relapse: A Meta-Analysis of Sex Offender Recidivism
Studies. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology (66), p. 351.
36 The Association for
the Treatment of Sexual Abusers, pp. 52-57.
37 Scott, p. 16-9.
38 Center for Sex Offender
Management (In Press). Lifetime Supervision for Sex Offenders: Emerging
Practices and Their Implications. Silver Spring, MD.
39 English, Jones, and
Pullen (eds.), p. 6-5.
40 See the Center for
Sex Offender Management’s publication An Overview of Sex Offender Community
Notification Practices for a more thorough discussion of community
notification laws and practices.
41 English, Pullen, and
Jones (eds.), p. 5-9.
42 Center for Sex Offender
Management (In Press). Engaging Advocates and Other Victim Service Providers
in Managing Sex Offenders in the Community. Silver Spring, MD.
43 Colorado Sex Offender
Management Board (1999). Standards for Community Entities that Provide
Supervision to the Management of Sex Offenders who have Developmental Disabilities.
Established in June 1997, CSOM’s goal is to enhance
public safety by preventing further victimization through improving the
management of adult and juvenile sex offenders who are in the community.
A collaborative effort of the Office of Justice Programs, the National
Institute of Corrections, and the State Justice Institute, CSOM is administered
by the Center for Effective Public Policy and the American Probation and
This project was supported by Grant No. 97-WT-VX-K007,
awarded by the Office of Justice Programs, U.S. Department of Justice.
Points of view in this document are those of the authors and do not necessarily
represent the official position or policies of the U.S. Department of Justice.
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