McAuliffe: Fewer VA Inmates Returning to Prison

NBC29.com 

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) – Fewer Virginia inmates are being sent back to prison for new crimes committed after their release.

Gov. Terry McAuliffe says the state’s recidivism rate has dropped to 22.8 percent, the state’s lowest rate on record. He says this means Virginia’s prison system is returning offenders to their communities better prepared to be productive citizens.

Virginia calculates its official recidivism rate as the percentage of offenders who return to prison within three years of being released. The latest figure counts inmates who were released in 2009 and were back in prison in 2012. The previous year’s recidivism rate was 23.4 percent.

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Office of Governor Terry McAuliffe

RICHMOND– Governor Terry McAuliffe today announced that Virginia’s re-incarceration rate has dropped to 22.8 percent, the state’s lowest rate on record.

“Long-term public safety is critical to Virginia’s future,” said Governor Terry McAuliffe. “This reduction in the recidivism rate means our children are safer, our state is more attractive to businesses, and we are returning offenders to their communities better prepared to be productive, contributing citizens.”

About ninety percent of individuals incarcerated in Virginia will one day be released back into their communities. Like most states, Virginia counts its official recidivism rate as the percentage of offenders who return to incarceration within three years of being released.

“A lower re-incarceration rate means fewer crimes, fewer victims, and less taxpayer money that must be allocated to repeat offenders,” said Virginia Department of Corrections Director Harold Clarke.

Virginia’s recidivism rate has dropped to its lowest on record. Those inmates who were released in fiscal year 2009 had a recidivism rate of 22.8 percent, as measured through 2012. The previous year’s cohort of offenders released in fiscal year 2008 and measured through 2011 had a recidivism rate of 23.4 percent, and the recidivism rate the year before that was 26.1 percent.

“We commend the Department of Corrections’ staff for their hard work, as well as the offenders who are turning their lives around and those employers who give them a second chance,” said Secretary of Public Safety and Homeland Security Brian Moran.

In Virginia, reentry preparation begins the day the VADOC receives an offender, starting with a risk and needs assessment. From offender training and education programs, work programs, resource fairs, veterans’ programs, and offender savings accounts to a partnership with the Department of Motor Vehicles to get offenders DMV-issued state identification before they leave prison, the VADOC is operating a multitude of successful reentry programs.

More information on the VADOC can be found at www.vadoc.virginia.gov.