Academic Publications

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Childhood Victimization, Attachment, Psychological Distress, and Substance Use Among Women on Probation and Parole

Childhood Victimization, Attachment, Psychological Distress, and Substance Use Among Women on Probation and Parole

Published: | Author: Katherine M. Winham, Malitta Engstrom, Seana Golder, Tanya Renn, George E. Higgins, and TK Logan

The present analysis was guided by a gendered pathways-based theoretical model and examined relationships between childhood victimization and current attachment, psychological distress and substance use among 406 women with histories of victimization who were on probation and parole in an urban Kentucky county. Structural equation modeling examined relationships among childhood victimization, attachment, psychological distress, and substance use. 

Category: Incarcerated Women, Reentry, Trauma, Probation and Parole
Assessing Attitude and Reincarceration Outcomes Associated With In-Prison Domestic Violence Treatment Program Completion

Assessing Attitude and Reincarceration Outcomes Associated With In-Prison Domestic Violence Treatment Program Completion

Published: | Author: Annelise M. Mennicke, Stephen Tripodi, Christopher Veeh, Dina Wilke, Stephanie Kennedy

Studies indicate that as many as 30%–56% of incarcerated men have perpetrated domestic violence, and that factors related to domestic violence perpetration are associated with long-term recidivism after release. The current study evaluates the effectiveness of an in-prison domestic violence treatment program called STOP and Change Direction to increase positive attitudes toward women, decrease levels of criminal thinking, and reduce general recidivism rates for program completers. 

Category: Trauma, In-Prison Intervention
Examining Dose–Response Relationships Between Childhood Victimization, Depression, Symptoms of Psychosis, and Substance Misuse for Incarcerated Women

Examining Dose–Response Relationships Between Childhood Victimization, Depression, Symptoms of Psychosis, and Substance Misuse for Incarcerated Women

Published: | Author: Stephanie Kennedy, Stephen Tripodi, Carrie Pettus-Davis, Jaime Ayers

The current study uses the dose–response model to examine the relationships between childhood victimization events and subsequent depression, symptoms of psychosis, and substance misuse in a sample of 230 randomly selected incarcerated women in the United States. Results on the frequency of victimization were mixed. In this sample, both frequency of physical abuse and frequency of sexual abuse significantly predicted current symptoms of psychosis, but only frequency of physical abuse significantly predicted substance misuse.

Category: Trauma, Mental Health, Substance Use
A Longitudinal Outcome Evaluation of a Prison-Based Sex Offender Treatment Program

A Longitudinal Outcome Evaluation of a Prison-Based Sex Offender Treatment Program

Published: | Author: Melissa D. Grady, Daniel Edwards, Carrie Pettus-Davis

Sex offender outcome studies continue to produce mixed results. A common critique of these studies is their lack of methodological rigor. This study attempts to address this critique by adhering to the standards established by the Collaborative Outcome Data Committee (CODC) aimed at increasing the quality and confidence in outcome studies. We examined recidivism outcomes for a sample of formerly incarcerated sex offenders who participated in a state prison-based cognitive-behavioral-skills-based treatment program.

Category: Reentry, Sex Offenders, Recidivism
Using Randomized Controlled Trials to Evaluate Interventions for Releasing Prisoners

Using Randomized Controlled Trials to Evaluate Interventions for Releasing Prisoners

Published: | Author: Carrie Pettus-Davis, Matthew Owen Howard, Allison Dunnigan, Anna M. Scheyett, Amelia Roberts-Lewis

We focus on factors related to sampling frame, participant eligibility, sample size, engagement, and attrition. We conclude with general recommendations related to project delays, compromised research sites, and retention. This article provides guidance based on lessons learned from an RCT of a social support intervention with releasing prisoners and their loved ones. Barriers discussed and recommendations presented here will help interventionists develop and implement RCTs in prison to community contexts.

Category: In-Prison Intervention
Acceptability of a Social Support Intervention for Re-entering Prisoners

Acceptability of a Social Support Intervention for Re-entering Prisoners

Published: | Author: Carrie Pettus-Davis, Matthew Owen Howard, Vithya Murugan, Amelia Roberts-Lewis, Anna M. Scheyett, Claire Botnick, Michelle Vance

A relatively unexplored area of prisoner reentry programs involves actively engaging the prisoner’s naturally occurring social support in the reentry interventions. Most reentering prisoners rely on loved ones for social support, but that support is often fragile. Interventions that strengthen the sustainability of social support are crucial to a successful reentry. This study evaluates the acceptability of a social support intervention for male prisoners with substance-use disorders who are reentering the community. 

Category: Reentry, Social Support, Substance Use
Emphasis on Rehabilitation: From Inmates to Employees

Emphasis on Rehabilitation: From Inmates to Employees

Published: | Author: Stephen Tripodi

There is evidence that over the past few years, there is a paradigm shift occurring regarding correctional rehabilitation. Paradigm shifts represent a shift in the basic assumptions that guide our thoughts and behaviors. Since the end of rehabilitative ideals in the 1970s, the focus has been to be “tough on crime” by having long-term incarceration and very little rehabilitative programming. This era of mass incarceration has not led to the positive outcomes we desire, such as lowered recidivism rates.

Category: Rehabilitation
Is Positive Social Support Available to Re-Entering Prisoners? It Depends on Who You Ask

Is Positive Social Support Available to Re-Entering Prisoners? It Depends on Who You Ask

Published: | Author: Carrie Pettus-Davis, Anna M. Scheyett, Misty Lewis

Re-entering prisoners have complex needs. Growing attention has turned to the role of informal social support in successful post-release outcomes. Research indicates informal supports are available to re-entering prisoners, yet this support can be experienced negatively and contribute to poor outcomes. We examined anticipated and received quality, source, and types of support for re-entering prisoners from perspectives of 60 re-entering prisoners and corrections professionals. We found re-entering prisoners anticipated and received what they considered positive support.

Category: Reentry, Social Support
Social support among releasing men prisoners with lifetime trauma experiences.

Social support among releasing men prisoners with lifetime trauma experiences.

Published: | Author: Carrie Pettus-Davis

High rates of lifetime trauma experiences exist among men incarcerated in US state and federal prisons. Because lifetime trauma experiences have been linked to problematic behavioral and psychiatric outcomes for incarcerated populations, trauma-informed interventions could improve post-release well-being of releasing men prisoners with trauma histories. Social support has consistently been found to have a positive impact on trauma-related outcomes in non-incarcerated populations.

Category: Reentry, Trauma, Social Support
Substance Use Among Victimized Women on Probation and Parole

Substance Use Among Victimized Women on Probation and Parole

Published: | Author: Seana Golder, Martin T. Hall, TK Logan, George E. Higgins, Amanda Dishon, Tanya Renn, Katherine M. Winham

Victimized women within the criminal justice system are an important group and understanding their substance use is critical. Substance use was examined among 406 victimized women on probation and parole in an urban community from 2010 to 2013. Ninety-three percent reported lifetime use of an illicit substance, while 58% and 45% reported use of at least one illicit substance in the past two years and 12 months, respectively. Among probationers, having been in a controlled environment was associated with a higher prevalence of illicit substance use as compared to parolees.

Category: Substance Use, Incarcerated Women
The relationship between childhood abuse and psychosis for women prisoners: Assessing the importance of frequency and type of victimization.

The relationship between childhood abuse and psychosis for women prisoners: Assessing the importance of frequency and type of victimization.

Published: | Author: Stephanie Kennedy, Stephen Tripodi, Carrie Pettus-Davis

This study examines the relationship between childhood victimization and self-reported current symptoms of psychosis in an incarcerated female population in the United States. Participants are 159 randomly selected women incarcerated in two North Carolina state prisons. Participants completed a battery of self-report measures to assess childhood victimization and current and lifetime experience of audio/visual hallucinations and delusions.

Category: Trauma, Mental Health, Incarcerated Women
To What Extent Is Criminal Justice Content Specifically Addressed in MSW Programs?

To What Extent Is Criminal Justice Content Specifically Addressed in MSW Programs?

Published: | Author: Matthew Epperson, Leslie Roberts, Andre Ivanoff, Stephen Tripodi, Christy Gilmer

This study examined the extent to which criminal justice content is addressed in all CSWE-accredited MSW programs in the United States (N = 192). Criminal justice content was measured in three areas: (1) dual or joint degree programs, (2) concentrations or specializations, and (3) coursework. Excluding social work and law classes, 22% of all MSW programs offered a course specific to criminal justice. Nine programs (5%) offered a concentration or specialization in criminal justice. Only 1% of MSW programs offered all three areas of criminal justice content.

Category: Criminal Justice System
Nonfatal Suicidal Behavior Among Women Prisoners: The Predictive Roles of Childhood Victimization, Childhood Neglect, and Childhood Positive Support

Nonfatal Suicidal Behavior Among Women Prisoners: The Predictive Roles of Childhood Victimization, Childhood Neglect, and Childhood Positive Support

Published: | Author: Stephen Tripodi, Eyitayo Onifade, Carrie Pettus-Davis

Women entering prison report high rates of childhood victimization. Women in prison also report higher rates of nonfatal suicidal behavior (self-reported suicide attempts) than women in the general population and similar rates to their male counterparts despite having significantly lower suicide rates than males in the general population. Yet, there is a dearth of research that addresses the relationship between childhood victimization and suicidality for women prisoners in the United States. 

Category: Trauma, Social Support, Mental Health, Incarcerated Women
Effects of personality disorder and impulsivity on emotional adaptations in prison among women offenders.

Effects of personality disorder and impulsivity on emotional adaptations in prison among women offenders.

Published: | Author: Senik Mahmood, Stephen Tripodi, Michael Vaughn, Kimberly Bender, Rachel Schwartz

The present study sought to better understand the influence of personality disorders and impulsivity on women's ability to adapt to incarceration. We analyzed the influence of personality disorders as screened with the structured clinical interview for personality disorders, and impulsivity as assessed with the Barratt impulsivity scale on depression and anxiety, sleeping problems, and feeling afraid of being attacked in prison among a large sample of women incarcerated in a Virginia prison.

Category: Mental Health, Incarcerated Women
Histories of childhood victimization and subsequent mental health problems, substance use, and sexual victimization for a sample of incarcerated women in the US.

Histories of childhood victimization and subsequent mental health problems, substance use, and sexual victimization for a sample of incarcerated women in the US.

Published: | Author: Stephen Tripodi, Carrie Pettus-Davis

Women are entering US prisons at nearly double the rate of men and are the fastest growing prison population. Current extant literature focuses on the prevalence of the incarceration of women, but few studies exist that emphasize the different trajectories to prison. For example, women prisoners have greater experiences of prior victimization, more reports of mental illness, and higher rates of illicit substance use. 

Category: Incarcerated Women, Trauma, Mental Health, Substance Use