Re-Offense Rate Drops in New CDCR Report

The rate at which registered citizens on parole commit a second sex offense has dropped to 1.8 percent according to a new report issued by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR). 

“The rate of re-offense for registered citizens on parole is an important fact for the public to know,” stated CA RSOL President Janice Bellucci.  “It debunks the myth that registered citizens ‘always’ re-offend.”

The report also noted a rise in parole violations from 86.9 percent to 88 percent.  Parole violations can be minimal including consumption of a single alcoholic beverage or the presence of a toy in a car or home.

In addition to parole violations, the CDCR report notes that registered citizens are returned to prison for new non-sex crimes at a rate of 7.3 percent and failure to register at 3 percent.  The total number of registered citizens covered by the report was 6,218.  

The CDCR report, Outcome Evaluation Report, is issued by the state agency on an annual basis.  Its purpose is to “provide new insights to policy-makers and correctional stakeholder that will be useful in moving the State forward with regard to efforts that increase public safety….”, according to CDCR Secretary Jeffrey Beard.

California Department of Corrections And Rehabilitation – 2013 Outcome Evaluation Report (p. 25)


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Well I wonder if this study will make the news ? I am sure the information will be presented by the amount of parole violations in RSO’s on parole rather than the fact that re-offense of paroled RSO’s is down. We shall see if any news agency will publish these new CDCR reports. I for one think this is great news but it might get twisted and the hard liners will take credit for the decrease and use this as a victory for themselves.

1.2% for homicide. So close to being the lowest.

This is great information. It just needs to get out so people can see it and can become educated. Then they will be more able to come to their own conclusions based on facts not what is fed to them through the media. Any ideas on how we could do that?

I also note the the fail to register went down, as did non sex crimes amongst registrants. What did go up is the parole violations, maybe that is due to those idiotic GPS devises, “operation boo” and the fact that we are more closely scrutinized for any minor parole violations, than any other former offender class.

I think we need to be careful how we use this report. It shows a recidivism rate for RSO at almost 70% which is higher than any other kind of crime. 88% of those who return to prison are for parole violations. Many of the parole violations are petty and entirely inconsequential. But some of the violations might not be another crime, but indicate a real problem.

I don’t believe we can objectively look at this report and say that the re-offense rate for RSO is 1.8%. There is not enough data in the report to say that. We know that of the 8,942 sex offenders released, 6,218 returned to prison within 3 years. 111 of those cases were for new sex offenses. What we don’t know is what happened to the others after they were released from parole. What happens after the extreme parole conditions end. That is the more credible number–which we don’t have.

The 1994 DOJ study is a 10 year study over many states and sets the number at 5.3%, which I think is a much more credible number. Of course, there are so many variables with all these studies, a 3-4% error rate is probably baked into the study.

The overall point is clear: All of the oppressive laws (Megan’s Law, Jessica’s Law, etc.) that shred the Constitution and make our lives miserable are borne of a myth. To actually reform sex offender laws (what a catchy phrase) we need to kill the myth. This report is a tool, but a tool with some limits.