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Concern about sex offenders and their behavior is understandably a topic of great public interest. Numerous public policy proposals target the management of sex offenders in prisons and in communities post‐release. Recent examples of such proposals include, but are not limited to, enhanced sanctions for convicted and repeat sex offenders, civil commitment for predatory sex offenders, the development of sex offender registries, and the use of advanced technology to monitor sex offenders and residency restrictions.1 Unfortunately, the quality and extent of the body of knowledge concerning sex offender behavior has not kept pace with either the sophistication or potential cost of some of these proposed policies.

The purpose of this report is to shed light on trends in sex offending and the recidivism of sex offenders in Maine, by replicating the methods of Bureau of Justice Statistics special report, Recidivism of Sex Offenders Released from Prison in 1994. That study followed prisoners released from prison in 15 states during 1994 over a three year period, examining their patterns of incarceration. This report seeks to replicate, to the degree possible, the analysis and resulting data tables for sex offenders released from Maine’s state prisons over a five year period, from 2004‐2008.

This report also examines sex offenders admitted to probation from 2004‐2007. The rationale for this inclusion is that offenders under community correctional supervision are a population of special interest, and that determining the progress of a group which had been subjected to supervision in the community might also have important policy implications. Each group was followed for a period of three years to identify re incarcerations.


For more information about this report:

The Sexual Assault Trends and Sex Offender Recidivism in Maine (2010) was created under the auspices of the State Justice Statistics Program, Bureau of Justice Statistics (BJS), Department of Justice (DOJ).

Funding for this report was provided by BJS Grant 2008‐BJ‐CX‐K034. The opinions, findings, and conclusions expressed in this publication are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the view of the Department of Justice.



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