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Emerging Adults With Psychiatric Disabilities Involved With the Criminal Justice System

NCJ Number
International Journal of Offender Therapy and Comparative Criminology Volume: 54 Issue: 5 Dated: October 2010 Pages: 756-768
Stephanie W. Hartwell; William H. Fisher; Maryann Davis
Date Published
October 2010
13 pages
This article examines the features that should be considered in developing treatment and prevention services for young adults with psychiatric disabilities involved with the criminal justice system.
Experiencing serious psychiatric problems during the transition from adolescence to adulthood intensifies the perils emerging adults confront. Emerging adults whose childhood and adolescent experiences include significant contact with the public mental health or criminal justice systems have numerous additional hurdles to overcome. Disruptions in education, few opportunities for involvement with nonpsychiatrically involved peers, and limited life experiences reflect difficulties developing normative social control, skills, and networks. This article examines the impact of age and multiple stigmatized statuses by comparing an emerging adult and older cohort of psychiatrically disabled offenders. It explores whether there are features (demographic, clinical, and criminal) that distinguish emerging adults that should be considered in creating appropriate community services for treatment and prevention and subsequent desistance from continued criminal involvement. Tables, notes, and references (Published Abstract)