This study examined the relationship between recidivism and ratings of response to specialized cognitive behavioral treatment conducted in a prison setting among 418 sex offenders released to the community for an average follow-up period of over 5 years. As well as testing for a main effect for treatment ratings, the potential role of psychopathy assessed using the Psychopathy Checklist—Revised (PCL-R) as a moderator of response to treatment was investigated. Ratings of response to treatment failed to predict either serious (violent including sexual) or sexual recidivism. For the more inclusive outcome of serious recidivism, there was no significant interaction between psychopathy and treatment ratings; however, the ubiquitous effect of psychopathy on recidivism was found to be significant. For sexual recidivism, psychopathy was not significant as a main effect, but a significant interaction between psychopathy and treatment ratings was found. Among sex offenders with PCL-R scores of 25 or higher, those with ratings reflecting a more negative response to treatment recidivated sexually at a faster rate than others. This interaction effect was not significant when treatment noncompleters were removed from the data set. The results were discussed in terms of the methodology involved in the assessment of response to treatment among sex offenders.
Sexual Abuse: A Journal of Research and Treatment – Springer Journals
Published: Apr 6, 2006
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