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Are Youth 12 and Under Truly Competent to Proceed with Trial? Adjudicative Competency in Juveniles

An evaluation of over 600 archived juvenile competency to proceed evaluations in Colorado reveals that examiners were more likely to opine incompetence in adolescents with an intellectual disability or neurodevelopmental disorder. Furthermore, youth aged 12 and younger were more likely to be opined incompetent and were rated as having a poorer prognosis for restoration compared […]

That’s Not What the Doctor Ordered; When PRN Medications are Regularly Administered

In a sample of patients from a forensic psychiatric hospital in Finland, pro re nata (PRN) medications were administered more frequently for both psychiatric and physical reasons in patients who were female, had more severe psychiatric symptoms, and functioned at a lower level. The prevalent use of PRN medications for physical reasons was not explained […]

Importance of targeting criminal risk factors in psychotherapeutic interventions

To be most successful, when treating criminal justice–involved persons with mental illness, practitioners should assess and treat not only symptoms associated with their mental illness but their criminal risk as well. This is the bottom line of a recently published article in Law and Human Behavior. Below is a summary of the research and findings […]

Don’t Shoot: Examining firearms laws and the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution

Laws that limit potential shooters’ access to firearms by requiring permits may reduce the incidence of mass shootings, and laws that limit the number of shots that can be fired before reloading may reduce the severity of mass public shootings when they do occur. This is the bottom line of a recently published article in […]

Correlation – not Causation: Traumatic Brain Injury and Aggressive Behavior in Detainees

In a sample of Dutch inmates, a history of traumatic brain injury (TBI) was found to be related to aggressive behavior and verbal aggression. However, a TBI history did not differentially affect behavior in detainees and a control group of non-incarcerated individuals. This is the bottom line of a recently published article in The Journal […]

A Cross-Cultural Evaluation of the MMPI-2-RF in Sexual Violence Risk Assessment

In a sample of German inmates in a psychological treatment setting, externalizing scales on the MMPI-2-RF had the strongest associations with measures of violence and sexual violence risk assessment. Thus, the externalizing scales are useful in examining more dynamic, rather than static, risk factors, in conjunction with other dynamic and static risk assessment tools in […]

A Rare Look Into Post-Index Offense Incidents of Aggression

The majority of the incidents of aggression committed by this sample of Canadian forensic psychiatric patients did not lead to court findings of guilt. The incidents that were linked to court findings, however, were significantly associated with province, presence of a personality disorder, fewer prior aggressive incidents, and incidents involving strangers. This is the bottom […]

What not to use in assessing risk for institutional violence: The case against the PCL-R in capital cases

Experts in the field of violence risk assessment and psychopathy caution against the use of the PCL-R in predicting institutional violence among high-security custodial settings. This is the bottom line of a recently published article in Psychology, Public Policy, and Law. Below is a summary of the research and findings as well as a translation […]