Criminal justice system involvement among people with schizophrenia

Greg Greenberg, Robert A. Rosenheck, Steven K. Erickson, Rani A. Desai, Elina A. Stefanovics, Marvin Swartz, Richard S.E. Keefe, Joseph Patrick McEvoy, T. Scott Stroup

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


There is growing concern that people with schizophrenia and other severe mental illnesses are increasingly at risk for unnecessary criminal justice system (CJS) involvement. There has been limited examination, however, of which individual characteristics predict future CJS involvement. This study uses data from the Clinical Antipsychotic Trials of Intervention Effectiveness on sociodemograhic characteristics, baseline clinical status, and service use among patients diagnosed with schizophrenia to prospectively identify predictors of CJS involvement during the following year. A series of bivariate chi-square and F tests were conducted to examine whether significant relationships existed between CJS involvement during the first 12 months of the trial and baseline measures of sociodemographic characteristics, psychiatric status, substance abuse, and other patient characteristics. Multivariate logistic regression analysis was then used to identify the independent strength of the relationship between 12-month CJS involvement and potential risk factors that were found to be significant in bivariate analyses. Multivariate logistic regression analyses indicated that past adolescent conduct disorder, being younger and male, symptoms of Akathisia (movement disorder, most often develops as a side effect of antipsychotic medications), and particularly drug abuse increase the risk for CJS involvement. Since CJS involvement among people with schizophrenia was most strongly associated with drug abuse, treatment of co-morbid drug abuse could reduce the risk of stigma, pain, and other adverse consequences of CJS involvement as well as save CJS expenditures.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)727-736
Number of pages10
JournalCommunity Mental Health Journal
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 2011


  • Criminal justice system
  • Mental disorder
  • Schizophrenia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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