CONTINUING TO DISPLAY EFFECTIVENESS

AN EVALUATION REPORT ON THREE YEARS OF THE IRIS PROJECT

Dr Colin. H. Roberts Centre for Criminology University of Oxford August 2007
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Foreword
The sophistication of initiatives to reduce criminal offending continues to develop as the benefit of true partnership between agencies evolves. No one approach can cause a lasting change, nor on its own instigate a momentum for the transformation in the lifestyle of recidivists. Traditional approaches by Police and other enforcement bodies have their place and overt displays of law enforcement have a reassuring effect upon the community. However, it is essential that a variety of methods are applied and continual learning leads to change and development. The Intensive Recidivist Intervention Scheme (IRIS) has been a cornerstone of social crime reduction in Oxford for four years. The focus on long term, lifestyle change for persistent and prolific offenders is seen as key in tackling the disproportionately small number of people who commit a large number of offences leaving numerous victims of crime in their wake. It is a small group of people that all the authorities involved are proud of and in 2004 the IRIS team received the Shrievalty Award for the three counties comprising Thames Valley. The work of this small but dedicated team links together those involved in offender management as well as proving a catalyst, where necessary for enforcement activity. The first evaluation report in November 2005 by Dr Colin Roberts of the Centre for Criminology at the University of Oxford provided an immensely informative and useful review of the early days of the IRIS team that led to the continual development of the role that was sought. After four years, this evaluation of a more mature scheme is immensely encouraging. Whilst recorded crime data must always be treated with caution, in the past four years acquisitive crime in Oxford has fallen 32.8% and is marginally greater than the 30.1% reduction in the remainder of the Thames Valley police area. This is at a time when Oxford City has one of the fastest growing populations in the region. Reduction in theft from vehicles, a key local priority has been immensely impressive during this period, largely due to the concentration on prolific offenders. It is imperative in modern policing with the focus on cost-effectiveness, value for money and seeking productivity gains that informed evaluation identifies those areas of policing that really work. This study by Dr Roberts contributes greatly to informing that debate. I am extremely grateful for his valued work in further evaluation of the IRIS Project. Shaun Morley Chief Superintendent BCU Commander, Oxfordshire Thames Valley Police.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS The analysis, opinions and conclusion in this report are mine alone and independent of those of the IRIS project staff or local police and probation managers. But the report could not have been prepared without the help and support of a wide range of people in Oxford and the Thames Valley. This report is the result of genuinely collaborative effort sustained over more almost four years to carefully and rigorously trace the development and work of the IRIS project, and consistently monitor and record their work and the known criminal activities of all the offenders subject to IRIS supervision and oversight. The report could not have been prepared if all members of the IRIS team both in the past and currently working in it had not been open and willing to constantly answer questions, provide detailed and accurate information and data returns, and be committed to collecting a wide range of evidence of both their work and the lives and activities of all the offenders. I am very grateful to them all, and have been greatly impressed over the past four years by their commitment to all their work and their high level of professional skills and expertise. I also have been greatly assisted by the many other police officers of all ranks at St Aldates police station, who provided me with a wide variety of information and who were willing to advise me and be interviewed directly. A number of civilian staff at the station also provided essential data and information, in particular Mr David Simmonds and Mr Daniel Bowen who provided data on local crime data and the analysis of specific offenders offending histories, and Mrs Cheryl Woodward on financial costs and salaries. From the start of the project the work of Ms Pat Peters the civilian drugs co-ordinator (now retired), was critical in building provision into IRIS for research and analysis. The former Divisional Commander, Chief Superintendent Dave McWhirter was not only totally supportive of the whole IRIS project, but was particularly committed to having an independent and objective evaluation of its outcomes, and this report is a direct result of his foresight and professional expertise in guiding the development of this innovative police-led projects. The IRIS project has been continued to be fully supported by the new Divisional Commander, Chief Superintendent Shaun Morley who has also enabled me to continue the process of evaluation, and kindly wrote the foreword to this report. Finally I want particularly to acknowledge my gratitude to Acting Inspector Emma Garside, who has been the team leader of IRIS throughout this research and has been responsible for developments across the county of prolific offender work including that with juvenile offenders. She has undertaken a large amount of additional work to obtain material, records and data to enable me to examine in detail the evidence of the outcomes of the work of the IRIS team and the offending activities of the prolific offenders studied for this report. She has also made a large contribution to the analysis and the completion of this report, but any shortcomings or errors in it are my responsibility alone. Dr Colin H. Roberts. August 2007. 3

CONTENTS Page number Foreword ............................................................................................................... 2 Acknowledgements 1. Introduction ............................................................................................. 3 ............................................................................................... 5

2. Research Methodology ............................................................................. 5 3. Characteristics of the first thirty five offenders given IRIS status ......... 5 4. Recorded offences which occurred in the 24 months before the selected offenders commenced on IRIS .................................................. 6 5. Recorded offences which occurred in the 24 months after the 35 offenders commenced on IRIS ............................................................ 9 6. Compliance with court orders, community sentence requirements, and prison licences ................................................................................... 13 7. Explaining the significant reductions in re-offending and the emergence of three sub-groups of offenders on IRIS ......................... 15 8. Costs of the IRIS project for the first three years of operation ............. 22 9. Estimating the economic and social costs of offences known to have been committed by the 35 IRIS offenders .................................... 26 10. Cost benefit analysis of the work of IRIS in respect of the first 35 offenders under supervision ................................................................. 31 11. Summary of findings .............................................................................. 33 12. Conclusion .............................................................................................. 37 References ........................................................................................................... 38

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INTRODUCTION

This research report is a follow-up to earlier reports on the progress of and outcomes from the IRIS project. The first was a much longer reported completed in September 2005 (Roberts, 2005) on the first year of the IRIS project, which related to the first twenty offenders on IRIS and a small comparative sample of matched offenders. A second and briefer report which included some additional qualitative and quantitative analysis and which briefly summarised the first report was published in January 2006, entitled Displaying Effectiveness (Roberts, 2006). This report is based on the first, second and third years of the IRIS project and follows the progress of the first thirty five offenders who were given IRIS status. Each offender was followed up for twenty four months each after they commenced on IRIS, to identify their re-offending, compliance with court orders and their time at liberty in the 24 month period. It also includes an analysis of the estimated costs of IRIS in these first three years of operation and estimates its probable cost-benefits in respect of these thirty five prolific offenders. 2 RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

Data was made available to the author by the Thames Valley Police from the Police National Computer (PNC) system and from the Thames Valley Police CEDAR (Crime Evaluation Data Analysis Record) system, on the first thirty five offenders to be given IRIS status. These data sources provided detailed records of; police charges, convictions in criminal courts, offences taken into consideration (TICs), sentences passed in criminal courts, times when offenders were at liberty or incarcerated due to remands in custody, prison recalls or new prison sentences, and court findings for breaches of bail, community sentences, non-payment of fines and court ordered costs and compensation, recalls to prison for breaches of licenses, and breaches of curfews (including electronic tags). It was not possible to collect a reliable matched comparison group, as it had been for the two first reports prepared. Further information on the costs of the IRIS project were supplied by the police, and Home Office reports were used to calculate the estimated costs of different types of criminal offences. Further information was obtained from IRIS staff from their own computer system and records, about the progress of each individual case. 3. CHARACTERISTICS OF THE FIRST THIRTY FIVE OFFENDERS GIVEN IRIS STATUS The group of thirty five offenders consisted of thirty three men and two women. Two of the men were black/minority ethnic (BME). One other case was excluded from the analysis because he had died whilst on remand in prison some months after he commenced on IRIS. The ages of these offenders at the commencement of their IRIS status varied from 18 to 41 years of age, and their mean age was 24½ years. The majority had had their first court convictions in their early teenage years, with a range from twelve to twenty one years old, and a mean of 15½ years. All of them had been formally cautioned by the police prior to their first court convictions. 5

Before their commencement on IRIS these 35 offenders had amassed 684 separate court appearances for sentencing over their criminal careers, ranging from 7 in three cases to 41 in one case, with a mean of 19.5 court sentencing appearances per person. They had collectively been convicted in court of 1,482 separate criminal offences (excluding summary only road traffic offences and any TICs) with a range from 14 in two cases to 104 in one case, with a mean of just over 42 separate offences per person. Between them they had served138 separate periods of imprisonment, ranging from only one in one case, to nine in one case, with a mean of almost four per person. Prior to their IRIS status they had in addition collectively had 201 separate court findings against them for breaches of bail, breaches of community sentence requirements, prison license requirements violations and breaches of curfew conditions, ranging from 2 in one case to 17 in another, with a mean number of nearly 6 per person over their criminal careers. By any standards they could be considered to prolific and persistent offenders, not only in respect of the IRIS system of scoring the most prolific local offenders in their last 18 months at liberty, but also in respect of their whole previous criminal careers, their risk of re-offending scores using OGRS2 and the OASys Probation/Prison assessment instrument (Home Office, 2002) and the evidence of their failure in the past to desist from offending following numerous different types of community sentences, and numerous previous periods in young offender institutions and adult prison establishments. 4. RECORDED OFFENCES WHICH OCCURRED IN THE 24 MONTHS BEFORE THE SELECTED OFFENDERS COMMENCED ON IRIS Each of the 35 individual offenders had their known offending record examined in detail for the 24 months prior to their commencement on IRIS. For offenders who had been in prison immediately prior to IRIS, the 24 months was taken from the last date they were at liberty. Firstly it was determined how long they had been actually at liberty during this 24 month period, and how much of the time they had been in custody on remand or under sentence, thus enabling account to be taken of the obvious incapacitation effects of incarceration. In the 24 months before they individually commenced IRIS the 35 offenders had been at liberty for 488 months out of a maximum period of 840. One offender had only been at liberty for 7 of the 24 months and three had been at liberty for 21 months, but not one single offender had been at liberty for all of the previous 24 months. The mean period at liberty for the 35 offenders was almost 14 months, and they had collectively spent 58% of the their time in the community in the previous two year period before they came in contact with the IRIS Project. Counts were made of each separate type of offence (excluding summary only road traffic offences) in respect of which each individual offender had: (i) been charged by the police under the Police and Criminal Evidence Act (1984), (ii) been convicted in a criminal court, either by pleading guilty or having been tried and found guilty, (iii) admitted committing it and had it taken into consideration when sentenced by a 6

court. These counts provided the soundest and most reliable evidence of the number of separate criminal offences any individual was known and /or admitted to having committed. How many other offences they might have committed at any time could not be estimated in any reliable way, but most if not all of them were suspected by the local police to have been involved in numerous other criminal offences, in many instances going back several years. In total the 35 offenders had been charged with 740 separate offences in the previous 24 months, ranging from only 6 in one case and 7 in three cases, to 96 in another case and 55 in the next highest case. There was a mean of just over 21 offences charged per person. When account is taken of the length of time at liberty, it was calculated to be 1.52 offence charges per month at liberty per person. The offenders admitted to a further total of 520 separate offences to be taken into consideration (TIC) in the previous 24 months, ranging from none in three cases to 102 in one case and 51 in the next highest case. The mean number of TIC offences was almost 15 offences per person and 1.07 offences TIC per month at liberty per person. The same offenders were collectively convicted in court of 702 separate offences in the previous 24 months, ranging from 6 in one case and 7 in three cases, to 89 in one case and 54 in the next highest case. There was a mean of 20 convicted offences per person, averaging 1.44 convicted offences per month at liberty per person. This rate is almost three times that of a mean of 0.51 convictions per offender per month reported in the large sample of almost 8,000 offenders, collected by Home Office researchers (Dawson and Cuppleditch, 2007) of prolific offenders on schemes across England and Wales in the autumn of 2004. If one combines the number of separate offences of which the offenders were convicted in court with the number they had taken into consideration (TIC), one has the most reliable and precise number of offences which these 35 prolific offenders are known to have committed in the 24 month period immediately prior to their IRIS status. Given the prolific nature of their offending activities, the number of unknown criminal offences they may have committed could undoubtedly increase this total. But based on those offences they are known to have committed, the 35 offenders accounted for 1,222 separate known offences in the 24 month period prior to their IRIS commencements, ranging from 7 in one case and 9 in another, to 140 in one case and 123 in the next highest case. There was a mean of 35 known offences per person in the previous 24 month period, and was calculated to be 2.5 known offences per month at liberty per person. Calculations were made of seriousness of the offences that the 35 offenders were known to have committed, using the Home Office Offence Seriousness Scale Scores (Home Office, 2004) which gives each type of offence a score between 8 and 1. In this scale example scores are: Burglary in a dwelling - 6, Robbery – 6, Aggravated vehicle taking – 5, Assault occasioning actual bodily harm – 5, Possession of Class A drug – 5, Driving whilst disqualified – 5, Vehicle taking (TWOC) – 4, Fraud – 4, Making off without payment – 4, Theft – 3.Two measures were produced; the first based on the most serious offence (the highest scoring on the Home Office Seriousness Scale) each individual offender was known to have committed in the 7

previous 24 month period, and the second on the mean of the cumulative scores for all the known offences the offenders had committed using the Court Convicted and TIC offences. Both could be represented as mean scores within the Home Office scale. The mean most serious offence score was calculated to be 5.2 for the 24 month period prior to their commencement on IRIS, and the mean score for all their known offences was 3.9 over the same time period. Table 1 gives details of the types of offences the 35 offenders were recorded as having committed in the 24 month time period immediately prior to their commencement on IRIS, broken down into offences charged by the police, those TIC and those which resulted in court convictions. The most common offences were those of dishonesty and theft, of which 100 ( 8%) were thefts from shops, 233 (19%) were thefts from vehicles, 99 (8%) were deceptions or frauds, and 268 (22%) were other types of thefts, including handling and receiving stolen goods, and making off without paying for goods or services. However these 35 offenders had also collectively committed many other serious types of offences. These included 165 (13.5%) cases of theft of/or taking cars without consent (TWOCs) including 26 aggravated car takings. They had committed 118 (9.5%) cases of dwelling house burglaries including one aggravated burglary and 110 (9%) cases of non-dwelling house burglaries. Some had committed violent offences including 8 (0.6%) cases of robbery and 30 (2.5%) other violence offences, including assaults on the police and other people, wounding and grievous bodily harms, threats to kill, affrays and possession of offensive weapons. Many had also committed serious driving offences, consisting of 46 (4%) separate convicted offences, including disqualified driving, excess alcohol and dangerous driving. Drug possession offences had occurred in 14 (1%) cases. Some offenders had also committed 14 (1%) offences of criminal damage and arson, mostly involving motor vehicles. Seventeen other criminal offences had been committed, the most common being to pervert the course of justice. There were almost twice as many deceptions and frauds TIC’d than there were convictions, and there were marginally more thefts of cars (TWOCs) TIC’d than there were convicted offences. But in the case of theft from vehicles there were five times more TIC offences than there were convicted ones, due largely to the criminal activities of two offenders who had respectively 102 and 48 thefts from cars TIC. However for all other types of offences there were more convicted offences than offences TIC.

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TABLE 1 Number of Different Types of Offences which resulted in Police Charges, TIC’s and Court Convictions for the 35 Offenders in the 24 Months before IRIS. Court Convictions Types of Offences Police Taken into & TIC’s Charges Consideration Convictions Shop Theft 90 (12.2%) 13 (2.5%) 87 (12.4%) 100 (8.2%) Other Theft/Receiving 201 (27.2%) 79 (15.2%) 189 (26.9%) 268 (21.9%) Deception/Fraud 40 (5.4%) 64 (12.3%) 35 (5.0%) 99 (8.1%) Theft from Vehicle 41 (5.5%) 198 (38.1%) 35 (5.0%) 233 (19.1%) TWOC 64 (8.6%) 77 (14.8%) 62 (8.8%) 139 (11.4%) Aggravated TWOC 17 (2.3%) 10 (1.9%) 16 (2.3%) 26 (2.1%) Burglary of Dwelling 91 (12.3%) 27 (5.2%) 90 (12.8%) 117 (9.5%) Aggravated Burglary 1 (0.1%) 0 1 (0.1%) 1 (0.1%) Burglary Non-Dwelling 73 (9.9%) 39 (7.5%) 71 (10.1%) 110 (9.0%) Robbery 8 (1.1%) 4 (0.8%) 4 (0.6%) 8 (0.6%) Assault/Affray/Possess weapon 26 (3.5%) 5 (1.0%) 25 (3.6%) 30 (2.5%) Serious Driving/Disqualified 46 (6.2%) 0 46 (6.6%) 46 (3.8%) Drug Offence/Possession 15 (2.0%) 0 14 (2.0%) 14 (1.1%) Arson/Criminal Damage 11 (1.5%) 3 (0.6%) 11 (1.6%) 14 (1.1%) Other Offences, Pervert Justice 16 (2.2%) 1 (0.2%) 16 (2.3%) 17 (1.4%) Totals 740 (100%) 520 (100%) 702 (100%) 1222 (100%) 5. RECORDED OFFENCES WHICH OCCURRED IN THE 24 MONTHS AFTER THE 35 OFFENDERS COMMENCED ON IRIS. Each of the 35 offenders who had been identified as being prolific and persistent offenders and became subject to supervision and oversight by the IRIS Project had their subsequent known criminal activities rigorously analysed. Exactly the same data sources, classifications and offence types were used and the same counting rules were employed to compare their known offending behaviour before and after they started IRIS. As with the period before IRIS, not all the offenders were at liberty for all the period post IRIS, because some were recalled to prison, remanded in custody awaiting court hearings and re-sentenced to periods of imprisonment. The amount of time at liberty was calculated for each individual offender, so that the incapacitation effects of being in custody could be taken account of in any comparisons made. In the post IRIS period the 35 offenders had been at liberty for collectively 704 months out of the maximum possible of 840 months or 84% of the possible time. This was a large increase in their collective time at liberty compared with the pre-IRIS 24 month period of 24 months, with a mean of just over 20 months at liberty. This represents a 26% increase in the amount of time these 35 offenders had collectively spent in the community and a mean increase of 6 months per offender at liberty compared with their collective 24 month time prior to their involvement in IRIS. However individual periods at liberty still varied widely: some offenders still spent less than 50% of their time at liberty, but 13 individuals spent the whole period at liberty and another individual spent 23 of the 24 months at liberty. 9

There had been an overall significant reduction in all the types of known offences committed by the 35 offenders in the 24 month period after the commencement of their IRIS status (see Table 2). They had collectively been charged by the police with 192 separate offences, ranging from none in 3 cases and only one in another 4 cases, to 15 in one case and 13 in two cases. There was a mean of 5.5 police charges per person and 0.27 police charges per month at liberty. They had had 180 separate offences taken into consideration (TIC), ranging from none in 19 individual cases to 49 in one case, 46 in another case and 31 in a third case. There was a mean of 5 TIC offences per person and 0.25 TIC offences per month at liberty. The 35 offenders had accumulated between them 185 separate court convicted offences, ranging from none in 5 cases and only one in another 2 cases, to 14 in one case and 13 in another one. There was a mean of just over 5 court convictions per person and 0.26 court convictions per month at liberty. When the court convicted offences and the TIC offences were combined to give the most reliable measure of the number of known offences committed, the 35 offenders had collectively been responsible for 365 new offences in the 24 month post-IRIS period. Individually this ranged from none in 5 cases and only one in another 2 cases, to 60 in one case, 57 in another case and 37 in a third case. The mean was almost 10.5 offences per person and 0.52 offences per month at liberty. TABLE 2. Pre and Post Iris Periods: Comparison of Offence Seriousness, Police Charged Offences, TIC Offences and Court Convicted Offences, and Months at Liberty % 24 months 24 months post-IRIS reduction pre- IRIS Total months at liberty Mean score* of most serious offence committed Mean* of the cumulative seriousness of all offences Number of offences charged by police Mean offences charged per month at liberty Number of offences taken into consideration Mean offences TIC per month at liberty Number of offences convicted at court Mean convicted offences per month at liberty Number of offences convicted and TIC Mean offences convicted & TIC per month at liberty 488 5.20 3.88 740 1.52 520 1.06 702 1.44 222 2.50 704 4.36 3.32 192 0.27 180 0.25 185 0.26 365 0.52 16% 14% 74% 82% 65% 76% 74% 82% 70% 79%

*Home Office Seriousness Scale gives a score for every type of offence from between 8 (most serious) to 1 (least serious).

Table 2 shows that there has been a significant reduction on all the measures of known offences committed by the 35 offenders. Offences charged by the police had 10

fallen from 740 to 192 offences, a reduction of 74%. TIC offences had fallen from 520 to 180 offences, a reduction of 65%. Offences convicted at court had fallen from 702 to 185 offences, a reduction also of 74 %. Combined offences convicted at court and TIC had fallen from 1,222 to 365 offences, a reduction of 70%. In respect of the seriousness of offences known to have committed, there were also reductions post-IRIS compared with pre-IRIS (see Table 2). The mean of the most serious offence score per offender dropped from 5.20 pre-IRIS to 4.36 post- IRIS, a 16% reduction. For the cumulative seriousness of all known offences committed the mean score dropped from 3.88 pre-IRIS to 3.32 post-IRIS, a reduction of 14 % in overall offence seriousness. While both these reductions in the seriousness of offences are moderate in themselves, when they are combined with the much greater reductions in the volume of criminal offences which are known to have been committed by these 35 offenders, they do contribute a further valuable piece of evidence of the positive impact the IRIS project appears to have had on the known criminal behaviour of this group of prolific offenders When account is taken of the incapacitation effects of custodial incarcerations by examining periods only when the offenders were at liberty, then the results show marginally greater reductions in the overall amount of criminal offences known to have been committed by these offenders after IRIS became engaged with them. In respect of offences charged by the police, the mean number of offences per month at liberty fell from 1.52 per month to 0.27 per month, a reduction of 82%. The TIC offences per month at liberty fell from 1.06 to 0.25 per month, a reduction of 76%. The offences convicted at court per month at liberty fell from 1.44 to 0.26 per month, a reduction also of 82%. The combined offences convicted and TIC per month at liberty fell from 2.50 to 0.52 per month, a reduction of just over 79%. If the same method of calculation is used as employed in the large Home Office sample study of prolific offenders on schemes across England and Wales (Dawson and Cuppleditch, 2007), then the outcomes for IRIS are considerably better. In the Home Office study (op.cit) the average rate of offending fell from 0.51 convictions per month per offender in the 12 months prior to entry onto the schemes to 0.39 for the 12 months following entry, a reduction of 24%. Using the same time periods in the IRIS sample for the 35 offenders, the rate fell from 0.84 to 0.22, a reduction of 74%, more than three times that recorded in the national study.

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TABLE 3. Types of offences charged by police, taken into consideration and convicted at court in the 24 month period after the 35 offenders commenced IRIS Court Convictions Offence Type Police Taken into & TIC’s charges consideration Convictions
Shop theft Other Theft/ Receiving Deception/Fraud Theft from vehicle TWOC Aggravated TWOC Burglary of dwelling Aggravated burglary Burglary non-dwelling Robbery Assault/affray/possess weapon Serious driving/disqualified Drug offence/ possession Arson/criminal damage Pervert course of justice Totals 47 (24.5%) 34 (17.7%) 4 (2.1%) 15 (7.8%) 10 (5.2%) 2 (1.0%) 15 (7.8%) 0 11 (5.7%) 4 (2.1%) 14 (7.3%) 27 (14.1%) 7 (3.6%) 1 (0.5%) 1 (0.5%) 192 (100%) 16 (8.9%) 31 (17.2%) 22 (12.2%) 66 (36.7%) 11 (6.1%) 0 6 (3.3%) 0 24 (13.3%) 0 0 4 (2.2%) 0 0 0 180 (100%) 46 (24.9%) 34 (18.4%) 4 (2.2%) 15 (8.1%) 10 (5.4%) 2 (1.1%) 13 (7.0%) 0 11 (5.9%) 3 (1.6%) 14 (7.6%) 25 (13.5%) 6 (3.2%) 1 (0.5%) 1 (0.5%) 185 (100%) 62 (17.0%) 65 (17.8%) 26 (7.2%) 81 (22.2%) 21 (5.7%) 2 (0.5%) 19 (5.2%) 0 35 (9.6%) 3 (0.8%) 14 (3.8%) 29 (7.9%) 6 (1.6%) 1 (0.3%) 1 (0.3%) 365 (100%)

Table 3 shows the types of offences known to have been committed by the 35 offenders after they commenced on IRIS. As in the pre-IRIS period the most common offences were those of dishonesty, with thefts from vehicles being the largest at 81 (22%) offences, followed by 65 (18%) other thefts, handling and receiving stolen goods and making off without payment, 62 (17%) thefts from shops, and 26 (7%) deceptions and frauds. A minority of the offenders still committed other serious offences, of which the most prevalent were: 23 (6%) takings of vehicles (TWOC) including 2 aggravated TWOC, 19 (5%) burglaries of dwellings, and 35(10%) non-dwelling burglaries. There were also some further violence offences committed including 3 (1%) robberies and 14 (4%) other violent offences of assault and possession of offensive weapons. There were 29 (8%) serious motoring offences including one fatal offence of causing death by dangerous offending, but the majority were disqualified driving offences. In addition there were 6 (2%) drug possession offences, one offence of criminal damage to a vehicle and one of perverting the course of justice. Thefts from vehicles were again most prevalent among the TIC offences with 66 (37% of all TIC offences), due to the criminal behaviour of two individuals who admitted 62 offences between them. Overall TIC offences constituted a slightly higher proportion of known offences in the post-IRIS period than they had done in the pre-IRIS 24 months, with 180 TIC offences comprising 49% of the known offences post-IRIS, compared with the 520 TIC that comprised 42% of the pre-IRIS known offences. When comparisons are made of the number and type of offences committed pre and post- IRIS by these 35 offenders some interesting differences emerge. Overall as already reported (see Table 2) there was a 70% reduction in the number of known offences which resulted in court convictions or were TIC, but the large reduction was 12

not equally distributed across all the offence types. The largest proportionate reductions were in respect of TWOC where there were 142 fewer offences (a reduction of 86%), and burglaries of dwellings where there were 99 fewer offences and a reduction of 84%. The other large reductions were in respect of other thefts and receiving and handling offences where there were 203 fewer offences (a reduction of 76%), deceptions and frauds where there were 73 fewer offences (a reduction of 74%), non-dwelling house burglaries where there were 75 fewer offences (a reduction of 68%), and thefts from vehicles where there were 152 fewer offences (a reduction of 65%). However in relation to two types of offences the reductions were significantly less: in the case of thefts from shops there were only 38 fewer offences (a reduction of only 38%), and in the case of serious driving offences there were only 17 fewer offences (a reduction of only 37%), both well below that achieved for all the other types of offences. 6. COMPLIANCE WITH COURT ORDERS, COMMUNITY SENTENCE REQUIREMENTS, AND PRISON LICENCES. One objective of the IRIS project was to improve the compliance of the offenders with court orders (including bail and any conditions of bail), specific requirements in community sentences (including drug testing and treatment orders), post-custody licence conditions, and curfews (often electronically tagged). The majority of the IRIS offenders had long histories of poor compliance with such orders and requirements, well documented in the Police National Computer (PNC) and probation records. It was possible to obtain information about compliance for all 35 offenders from the PNC records and from the IRIS computer record system. Table 4 shows the number of breaches classified into four different types, and the mean number per offender per month at liberty. The bail conditions breached included attendance at court, residence requirements of bail and other conditions. The community sentences that were breached include all types of community sentence - rehabilitation and punishment orders, unpaid work, requirements to attend accredited programmes, hostel residence, and drug testing and treatment orders. The types of licence breached include young offender institution licences, ACR licences, DCR licences and conditions and early release conditions. Curfew breaches include some court ordered curfews (with or without electronic surveillance) but the majority in these cases were on curfews as a condition of early release from prison with electronic tagging. Table 4 shows the number of breaches and the proportionate change between the two 24 month time periods for the 35 individual IRIS offenders. Overall there was a large fall in the number of breaches found in court against this group of offenders. The largest fall was for breaches of court bail conditions which reduced from 74 to 11, a reduction of 85%, followed by different types of community sentence breaches, which fell from 63 to 14, a reduction of 78%. It should however be recognised that a considerable proportion of these reductions were as a consequence of the offenders being reconvicted of offences less frequently and therefore being in court for hearings and sentence on 62% fewer occasions during the post IRIS period. The group of offenders also received fewer custodial sentences post-IRIS, 36 separate sentences compared with 54 Pre-IRIS, a reduction of 33%, which largely explains 13

why collectively they were at liberty for 44% more time. There was a fall in the number of prison licence breaches from 19 to 10, a reduction of 47% which was also largely due to fewer prison sentences having been given to these offenders postIRIS, and slightly fewer curfew breaches (all of which were part of early releases from custody) all due to reduced numbers of early releases with electronically monitored tags. So although the data shows large reductions of breaches overall, a large part of it but not all, is a direct consequence of them collectively being reconvicted less frequently. However it does appear that possibly as much as a third of the reduction was due to more compliant behaviour amongst those IRIS offenders who did in fact commit further offences, whilst subject to IRIS supervision. The IRIS team deliberately attempted to improve compliance and responded to any non-compliance quickly, resulting in some offenders rapidly re-appearing in court, or being re-called to prison. Therefore there was as a result of the greatly increased intensity of contact by the IRIS team with the offenders, a far greater probability of them being breached if they did not comply. While improved compliance rates clearly followed from reductions in known re-offending, the evidence from the poorer compliance of the small comparison group examined in the earlier reports (Roberts, 2005 & 2006) and the additional evidence from this analysis of a slightly larger sample of IRIS offenders over two years, provides some clear evidence of the positive impact the IRIS team had on compliance even amongst those offenders who continued to commit offences. These improvements in compliance had real benefits for many of the 35 offenders in that they were less likely to be re-sentenced for breaches of court orders and licences, and less likely to return to custody. Improved compliance also has benefits for all parts of the criminal justice system, in that hearings are less delayed, court staff time is more effectively used, and also importantly the time of those members of the public and local police officers who are required to give evidence in court, is also less likely to be wasted.

TABLE 4. Compliance with Bail Condition, Community Sentences, Prison Licences and Curfews for the 24 months Pre and Post-IRIS Type of Breach PrePost- IRIS % Change IRIS Breach of bail condition 74 11 -85% Breach of community sentence 63 14 -78% requirement Breach of prison licence condition 19 10 -47% Breach of curfew requirement 10 8 -20% Total number of breaches 166 43 -74% Number of total months at liberty 488 704 +44% Mean number of breaches per month at 0.28 0.06 -79% liberty

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7. EXPLAINING THE SIGNIFICANT REDUCTIONS IN RE-OFFENDING AND THE EMERGENCE OF THREE SUB-GROUPS OF OFFENDERS IN IRIS. There was clear evidence of reduced levels of known re-offending by the first 35 IRIS offenders, and evidence of many far less serious offences committed by them. As demonstrated in the use of a small matched comparison group in the two earlier research evaluations on IRIS (Roberts, 2005 & 2006), reductions do occur naturally and in such groups of prolific offenders are probably the result of “regression to the mean”, where offenders selected or targeted when their offending is at a high peak of frequency, reduce naturally to lower levels after the peak, irrespective of what form of interventions occur. There are several research studies which have produced evidence of this effect, including the recent large study of the Intensive Supervision and Surveillance Programme (ISSP) undertaken for the Youth Justice Board of England and Wales, by a team of researchers led by the author of this report, from the Centre for Criminology at the University of Oxford (Moore et al,2004; Gray et al,2005 and Sutherland et al, 2007). These studies of more than four thousand young offenders on ISSP had a comparison group totalling nearly a thousand other young offenders. The studies showed that reductions as high as 45% in the frequency of reoffending in two years after ISSP could be accounted for by natural regression. Reductions above those levels however were found in only a minority of ISSP schemes and were found to have strong associations with particular types of interventions and in the quality and consistency of staff performance. The few previous research studies on Prolific Offender Projects (POPs) have also reported some positive outcomes. In the first such project in the UK in Burnley and Blackpool in Lancashire which started in the late 1990s, the researchers from Huddersfield University (Chenery, Pease & Deakin, 2000 & 2003) report that the number of crimes attributable to the targeted offenders “almost halved”. Research into similar projects in Staffordshire by Keele University reported that a project in Newcastle-under-Lyme had had “a beneficial impact on re-offending rates of over 50%” (Worrall & Walton, 2000), and a project in Stoke-on-Trent reported that “a participant may be 45% less likely to be re-convicted than he/she would have been if they had not gone on the project” (Worrall et al, 2003). The recent Home Office report (Dawson & Cuppleditch, 2007) on the impact of Prolific and other Priority Offender Programmes was based on a sample of 7,500 offenders who were on programmes between September and November 2004. It states that “comparing the total number of convictions in the 17 months before and following the programmes shows that there has been a 43% reduction in the offending of the entire cohort with the rate of their re-offending per month falling from 0.51 convictions per month in the 12 months prior to entry onto the scheme to 0.39 convictions for the 12 months following entry, a reduction of 24%”. This recent Home Office study (op.cit) did not however allow for differences in the length of time the offenders were at liberty in these reported findings which may have slightly skewed the findings, probably by slightly reducing the proportionate reduction in the rate. The findings from all these other POP studies have similarities with these findings in respect of IRIS. None of the studies can pronounce with absolute certainty that POPs have been shown to directly produce significant reductions in re-offending rates, due to the limited size of most of the studies and reliable comparison groups, the lack of random-controlled experimental conditions and research designs, and the probable 15

influences of other intervening variables on the offenders’ decisions to offend or not in particular circumstances. But the empirical findings so far do certainly shows strong associational links between such projects and large reductions in re-offending rates. While so far only relatively small numbers of prolific offenders have been supervised by the IRIS project, these findings show by some way the largest proportional improvement of any of the existing published evaluations. While some of the reductions are almost certainly a result of regression to the mean, falls of typically 70% in the number of known re-offences and nearly 80% in the rate of offences per offender per month at liberty, are undoubtedly well beyond any amount which might be wholly and rationally explained by natural regression. The strongly positive results which are clearly associated with the existence and work of the IRIS project do however require some further examination, analysis and explanation. The Home Office PPO programme which started in September 2004 has three “complementary strands”, two of which are directly applicable to the main objectives of the IRIS project and fit well with the “carrot and stick” approach it has adopted in all its work: (i) Catch and Convict, that aims to reduce offending by prolific offenders through apprehension and conviction, and through licence enforcement, by ensuring a swift return to the courts for those who continue to offend; (ii) Rehabilitate and Resettle, that aims to rehabilitate prolific offenders and enable them to abstain from substance abuse, gain legal employment, become re-settled and stabilised into the local community and lead more fulfilling lives. This strand requires a multi-agency approach with closer work between all relevant agencies and local organisations. In the first Burnley project (Chenery & Pease, 2000) the emphasis on Catch and Convict was clearly delineated and the researchers argued that “both re-convictions and non-reconvictions could be counted as successes” and that “in the real world, reconviction of those who persist in criminality despite help offered constitutes a success as far as public protection is involved”. Part of the success of IRIS is probably because the team has been able to integrate the two strands very closely. Not only have the IRIS staff been able to respond quickly and effectively themselves to re-offending, but equally importantly they have provided police colleagues with a wider and more reliable range of useful intelligence and evidence, to assist in swifter and more reliable re-arrests and successful prosecutions. The contribution IRIS has made to the work of specialist detection squads such as auto-crime and burglary is considerable, simply because some the IRIS offenders have continued to be of major interest to such squads. IRIS contributes regularly and consistently to local police tasking decisions. In some cases they have enabled offenders under their supervision to admit to previously committed offences and have them properly taken into consideration. Also because of the emphasis in IRIS on improving compliance with court orders and prison licences, they have been able to respond quickly to noncompliance as soon as it started, and have had the active support of other police and probation colleagues in getting non-complying offenders back before the local courts and where necessary recalled to prison. A wide range of qualitative information as well as the quantitative data supports the view that particularly with the IRIS offenders who have continued to offend, the existence of IRIS has ensured swifter and more certain prosecutions and convictions in the majority of the cases, and thereby made a significant contribution to crime reduction in the local area, specific 16

detailed evidence of which was documented by in the first evaluation report on IRIS (Roberts, 2005). Many other projects report greater problems in achieving and demonstrating the positive contribution POPs can make to the Rehabilitate and Resettle strand of their objectives. With IRIS it is possible to demonstrate from the content of the IRIS contact logs and other forms of feed-back, that the range of work undertaken by the project staff made a major and direct contribution to enabling a significant number of the offenders to change their life-styles and personal circumstances. Because the work of the probation officer has been so strongly linked into the work of the rest of the team and because they have their own dedicated and experienced support worker, they have been able not only to offer a wide range of direct support to the offenders and their families directly themselves, but have also been able to ensure a fast and high quality response from many other services, agencies and organisations in and around Oxford. In their collaborative work with different providers of services to drug users they have been able to offer offenders a range of real options to reduce drug dependency, and have been able to get some offenders access to good residential drug treatment very rapidly. They have achieved some important improvements in the housing and accommodation circumstances of a number of cases, via close collaboration with local authority housing, housing associations and local hostels. Education, skills training and other services have been provided for some offenders and a number have been assisted to entering part-time and full-time employment, all after years of unemployment. The IRIS team has also done some valuable work in ensuring correct benefits are received and that advice on financial management problems and debts has been available to the offenders where necessary. Many other aspects of their daily lives and problems have been addressed including: physical and mental health, family relationships and contacts with children, pets and personal property, being victims of crimes, sporting activities and interests/ hobbies. The interventions are entirely individual with different offenders receiving appropriate help and support when needed and when requested. The IRIS project has clearly been able to achieve a good balance between its “carrot and stick” objectives, ensuring that all the offenders were seen regularly and in different locations, and contacted by ‘phone sometimes daily. In some cases reoffending or non-compliance disrupted any progress they were being assisted to make in their lives, but also breakdowns in their progress were often indicative of likely re-offending and/or resumed contacts with known criminal associates. Therefore the dual strand approach adopted by the IRIS team, because it was fully integrated in their working style, has had an impact on both the crime reduction and swifter processing objectives, and the rehabilitation objectives with each individual offender in different ways and to different extents. Even some of prolific individual offenders who have not given up their criminal activities and life-style were still being influenced to some extent by their IRIS involvement, in ways that appeared at least to reduce the frequency of their re-offending. To be able to explore what differential effects or direct influence the IRIS project was having on the offenders required a detailed analysis of each individual case. Once this was done and put into a dedicated data base for analysis, it became clear that the 35 offenders could confidently be sub-divided into three groups; a “Desisting” group who had very few subsequent police charges, TIC’s and court convicted 17

offences and would appear to be actively avoiding criminal activity, a “Slowing Down” group who still had some charges, TIC’s and court convicted offences but had far fewer and often less serious reconvictions than in their previous criminal careers, and a “Persisting” group who are still very criminally active but in most cases with a reduced volume of known re-offending, but whose reconvictions were often still as serious as their previous pre-IRIS offences. Table 5 provides a detailed quantitative comparison of these three small sub-groups. Table 5. Comparisons of Known Pre and Post-IRIS Offending in three subgroups of the first 35 offenders Desisters N = 16 Period Total months at liberty Offences charged by police Mean per offender Mean charged per offender per month at liberty Offences TIC Mea per offender Mean offences TIC per month at liberty Offences convicted at court. Mean per offender Mean offences convicted at court per month at liberty Offences convicted & TIC Mean per offender Mean offences convicted & TIC per month at liberty PreIRIS 274 385 24.1 1.41 256 16.0 0.93 368 23.0 1.34 624 39.0 2.28 PostIRIS 380 28 1.8 0.07 2 0.1 0.00 26 1.7 0.07 28 1.8 0.07 Slowing down N=7 Pre- PostIRIS IRIS 127 140 18.1 1.10 40 5.7 0.31 131 18.7 1.03 171 24.4 1.35 142 49 7.0 0.34 10 1.4 0.07 48 6.9 0.33 58 8.3 0.40 Persisters N = 12 PreIRIS 187 215 17.9 1.15 224 18.7 1.20 203 16.9 1.09 427 35.6 2.28 PostIRIS 182 115 9.6 0.63 168 14.0 0.92 111 9.3 0.61 279 23.3 1.53 All cases T 35 PreIRIS 488 740 21.1 1.52 520 14.9 1.07 702 20.1 1.44 1222 34.9 2.50 Post IRIS 704 192 5.5 0.27 180 5.1 0.25 185 5.3 0.26 365 10.4 0.52

The “Desisting” group, consisting of 16 of the 35 offenders, showed dramatic reductions in known reoffending on all the measures used. Three of them had not been charged by the police with any offences and four had only been charged once in the 24 months since they commenced on IRIS. Two of them had had solitary offences taken into consideration. In total this group had convictions and TICs for a total of only 28 offences, compared with the 624 offences convicted and TIC in the 24 months prior to start of their IRIS supervision, a reduction of 96%. Thirteen of the offenders had been at liberty for the whole of the 24 months since they commenced on IRIS, and the remaining three had single custodial sentences the longest of which was for 3 months. The offences which they were known to have committed were on average far less serious than those they had committed pre-IRIS, with thefts from shops (9 offences) and disqualified driving (7 offences) being the most common. 18

Only two burglaries and one TWOC offence were the subject of court convictions. However two of these offenders had faced charges for two other serious offences, one of which did not result in a prosecution by the Crown Prosecution Service and other resulted in an acquittal at trial in the Crown Court. Of those who had been reconvicted, in the majority of cases they had occurred soon after the commencement of IRIS, so most of them had achieved long periods of no known criminal activity. When comparisons are made taking account of the amount of time they were at liberty, the rate of known re-offences per month at liberty fell from 2.28 Pre-IRIS to 0.07 Post- IRIS, a reduction of 97%. The “Slowing Down” group consisted of only seven offenders. They showed a considerable reduction in both the rate and the seriousness of their known reoffending, but did continue to be reconvicted at regular intervals. They had cumulatively been charged by the police with 49 subsequent offences in the 24 months since commencing on IRIS compared with the 149 charges in the pre-IRIS period, a reduction of 65%. Between them they had been convicted in court and had had TIC 58 separate offences compared with 171 in the pre-IRIS period, a reduction of 66%. Four of the offenders had been at liberty for 21 of the 24 months, one had been at liberty for 20 of the months and the two had been at liberty for 19 months. This compared with an average of only 18 months at liberty in the pre-IRIS period. So although at liberty for longer periods they were known to have re-offended significantly less frequently during the time of their IRIS status. Overall their known re-offending was slightly less serious than it had been but a few more serious offences had were committed. Thefts from shops (19 offences) and other thefts, handlings and receiving (19 offences) were their most frequent known re-offences, but the more serious offences included 4 burglaries, 3 robberies and 6 serious driving offences (one an aggravated TWOC). They all received one subsequent custodial sentence, three for 6 months, three for 5 months and one for 4 months. When comparisons are made taking account of time at liberty, the rate of known reoffences per month at liberty went from 1.35 pre- IRIS to 0.40 post- IRIS, a reduction of 70 %. The “Persisting” group consisted of 12 offenders. They showed some important reductions in the frequency of their known re-offending but little or no falling off in the seriousness of their re-offences. They had been cumulatively been charged by the police with 115 subsequent offences in the 24 months since commencing on IRIS, compared with 215 charges in the pre-IRIS period, a reduction of 46%. The number of TIC offences had fallen from 224 pre-IRIS to 168 post-IRIS, a smaller proportional fall of 25%. Therefore between them they had been convicted in court and had had TIC 279 separate offences, compared with 427 offences pre-IRIS, a reduction of 35%. However this group of offenders had spent much less time at liberty than the other two groups, in that they had been at liberty for 182 months out of a maximum number of 288, or 63% the 24 month period post-IRIS. The longest that any of them had been at liberty in the community were two offenders each for 17 months, but one offender had only spent 10 of the 24 months at liberty. When the 24 month post-IRIS period came to an end three were serving custodial sentences of more than three years, two were serving 18 month and two 12 month year prison sentences. The shortest custodial sentence any of them had received was for 6 months. So this group had had marginally less liberty in the post-IRIS 24 month period than they had had pre-IRIS. The types of offences they were known to have committed were as 19

equally serious as those they had committed pre-IRIS. They were known to have been responsible for 76 thefts from cars (due largely to the activities of two individual offenders), 16 dwelling house burglaries, 32 non-dwelling burglaries, 21 TWOCs including two aggravated TWOCs, and 20 serious driving offences including one of causing death by dangerous driving. When comparisons are made taking account of time at liberty, the rate of their known re-offences per month at liberty did in fact go down from 2.88 Pre- IRIS to 1.53 Post-IRIS a fall of 47%, but it was a significantly smaller reduction than in the other two groups of (97% and 70% respectively). These three sub-groups were examined to see if there were any important predisposing factors which may help to explain the sharply different rates of reductions in re-offending between them. Their mean ages when they commenced IRIS were quite similar at: 25 years of age for the Persisting Group, 24½ years of age for the Desisting Group and 24 years of age for the Slowing Down Group, but the Desisting group did include the three oldest offenders age, 33 years, 36 years and 41 years of age respectively. The oldest person in the Persisting group was aged 31 years old and in the Slowing Down group the oldest was aged 30 years old. In larger samples of offenders it is common to find both a slowing down in the rate of offending behaviour and preliminary evidence of desistance in offending behaviour, as they get past the peak age of offending. However, this cohort was too small to demonstrate this clearly. There was some evidence that the sub-groups were better differentiated when their whole criminal careers were compared, rather than just the 24 month period before they commenced on IRIS. All three groups typically commenced their criminal careers at a young age, with their mean age at their first court appearance was just over 15 years for the Slowing Down group, 15½ years for the Persisting group and just under 16 years for the Desisting group. But over their careers the Persisting group had accumulated the most court sentencing occasions, had been convicted in court of more separate offences, had on average served more previous custodial sentences, and had had marginally more findings against them for breaches of court orders (see Table 6). The Persisting group had on average appeared in court for sentencing 41% more times than the Desisting group and 29% more times than the Slowing Down group. They had also accumulated on average 44% more convicted offences than the Desisting group and 29% more than the Slowing Down Group. In terms of separate prison sentences, the Persisting group had been sentenced to imprisonment 34% more often than the Desisting group and 22% more often than the Slowing Down group. So the Persisting group were on average over their criminal careers more prolific and more frequently sentenced, with the Slowing Down group being somewhat less prolific and slightly less often sentenced, and the Desisting group the least prolific and sentenced of the three. The Persisting group had on average served more separate previous periods of time in custody, and the Desisting group had on average served fewer prior custodial sentences. When individual cases are looked at it emerges that the individual who had served the most separate prison sentences was in the Desisting group and was not surprisingly the oldest of all the 35 offenders on IRIS. The most prolific individual offender pre-IRIS (and in the Persisting group), with 123 convictions and TIC’s in 18 months at liberty pre-IRIS was still the most prolific post-IRIS with 60 subsequent convictions and TIC’s, in 14 months at liberty in the 24 months post-IRIS. So some factors about the previous offending careers may indicate the greater likelihood of continued offending, but even 20

in the most prolific and persistent offenders there appears to have been some reductions in the frequency of known re-offending. TABLE 6. Offending career characteristics of the three sub-groups with different levels of re-offending post- IRIS Persisting Total Desisting Slowing Group Down group Group N = 35 N=7 N = 16 N = 12 Mean age at start of IRIS 24.6 24.1 25 24.6 Mean age at first court appearance 15.9 15.1 15.6 15.6 Mean number of court sentencing 15.3 18.4 25.7 19.5 occasions Mean number of separate convicted 31.9 40.6 57.3 41.7 offences Mean number of separate prison 3.2 3.9 4.9 3.9 sentences Mean number of breaches of court 2.1 2.6 2.8 2.5 orders When the individual situations of the “Desisting” group were examined qualitatively in more detail, it was clear that the majority of them were making major changes in their life-styles and social circumstances. All except two had had significant drug usage problems, but 24 months after they had commenced on IRIS, three of them had successfully completed residential drug treatment programmes and one had completed a Methadone reduction programme. All except two were known to be either drug free or were only on legally prescribed drug treatment. All had been unemployed before they commenced on IRIS, but by the end nine were in some form of employment and two had completed trade skills training courses. In eight cases there had been significant improvements in their accommodation circumstances, and four were re-established living at home with parents. Seven of them were in stable long term relationships, and three had restored links with their children from other earlier relationships. Overall the lifestyles of fourteen of them had changed significantly, with breaks in their contacts with known criminal associates, and evidence of more positive attitudes to their futures, with real longer term chances or little or no re-offending. IRIS staff had been involved in different ways in helping and supporting the areas of the changes, but it should be recognised that the offenders’ personal motivation and desire to change was a critical factor. Some of them had taken considerable time before they trusted the IRIS staff, often being sceptical at the beginning of the help and support offered by the project. In many of the cases a vast amount of effort had been deployed to ensure they got the right type of help and assistance, and in some cases very substantial and careful inter-agency work had been used to support them positively. All except two of them were no longer subject to IRIS supervision, and these two were considered to be still criminally active, although neither has been convicted of a criminal offence. In the seven “Slowing Down” group cases, five of them remained active drug users and one had a chronic alcohol abuse problem. None of them had been willing to undertake a residential drug rehabilitation programme while on IRIS. None of them 21

was in permanent employment, but two been assisted in obtaining improved accommodation circumstances. One had a more stable partnership relationship and was spending more time away from previous criminal associates, and another had moved away from Oxford and had temporarily broken links with local criminal associates. Their life-styles had changed far less dramatically than most of those in the “Desisting” group, but there were indications in most of them of less active criminal behaviour. In the “Persisting” group there was little evidence of any major changes to their lifestyles or social circumstances. Eleven of the twelve were active drug abusers, and nine of them were using heroin and “crack” cocaine, although most were or had been prescribed Methadone users. The one other had a chronic alcohol abuse problem. Five of them had commenced residential drug treatment programmes during IRIS but none of them had completed the residential period successfully. Only one had been employed on a temporary basis. Most had long-term accommodation problems and frequently lived in local hostels or were found to be “sofa surfing” with friends who were fellow offenders and drug users. Some came from families in which other siblings were criminally active, and from which they received no encouragement to desist from offending. Most had chaotic personal relationships, and were often unable to have contact with their children. Their frequent remands and prison sentences significantly interrupted any little progress they made and meant they lost the chances of making any real improvements in their personal lives. Their attitudes to continued offending made them unwilling to contemplate other life-styles and mostly reluctant to accept the positive support offered by IRIS or other agencies.

8. COSTS OF THE IRIS PROJECT FOR THE FIRST THREE YEARS OF OPERATION Thames Valley Police provided detailed information on the set-up costs and the running costs for each of the first three years of its operations. The set-up costs of IRIS were estimated to be just over £68,000, spent wholly in the year prior to its start in October 2003. The set-up costs included the salaries of Thames Valley Police staff, (a drugs co-ordinator, an acting detective inspector and an experienced woman police officer). There were also costs incurred in the development of a specific data base for IRIS, and a series of development meetings and visits to other projects. The details are presented in Table 7. The costs of running IRIS in its first year of operation included the salaries of a police sergeant, two experienced police officers, a locally experienced support worker and a seconded probation officer (wholly funded by the Thames Valley Police for the Project). A quarter of the time of the local police drug co-ordinator was included in the costs for the first year, as she had responsibility for the overall development of IRIS. In addition for six months in the first year the project paid for the part-time attachment of a drugs worker (an employee of SMART, the local substance misuse arrest referral team). Also included in the first year were costs for the independent evaluation and consultancy, and new computers to host the IRIS data base.

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The costs of running IRIS in its second year of operation included 2/3rds of the time of the police sergeant who managed the project in Oxford City (the other third was spent on setting up PPO schemes in the rest of the County of Oxfordshire), three police officers, one dedicated support worker, and the seconded probation officer. A quarter of the time of the drugs coordinator was employed working for IRIS. The costs of running IRIS in its third year of operation included 2/3rds of the time of the police sergeant (who had become an acting inspector and was managing the project across the whole county), three police officers (one of which was working with young offender PPO’s,) one support worker and the seconded probation officer. Thames Valley Police provided the funding for the set-up and first year running costs of IRIS. In the second and third years of operations the Oxfordshire Police BCU and Oxford City, Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership (CDRP) jointly provided the funding for the ongoing running costs of IRIS. They funded the seconded Probation Officer and the Support worker posts and contributed £6,000 per year for day to day running costs. In the last two months of the third year the Thames Valley Probation Area took over responsibility for the funding of the probation officer post working directly with the IRIS team. TABLE 7. Costs of setting up the IRIS project Set-up Costs: 2002-2003. Salaries of police staff who worked part-time on development Costs of IRIS data base development Development meetings and visits to other projects Total Running Costs: October 1st 2003 – September 30th 2004 Salaries of full and part-time IRIS staff Transport Evaluation/consultancy, computer and other equipment Steering group meetings Miscellaneous costs Total Running Costs: October 1st 2004 – September 30th 2005 Salaries of full and part-time staff Transport Miscellaneous costs Total Running Costs: October 1st 2005- September 30th 2006 Staff salaries Transport Miscellaneous costs Total Total Running Costs for the first three years 2003 - 2006 Set-up Costs in 2002-2003 Total expenditure on IRIS up to the end of September 2006 £67,242.00 £545.00 £525.00 £68,307.00 £186,760.00 £3,860.00 £13,125.00 £347.00 £1,662.00 £205,754.00 £181,465.00 £3,870.00 £2,130.00 £187,465.00 £180,710.00 £3,900.00 £2,100.00 £186,710.00 £579,929.00 £68,307.00 £648,236.00

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In the first year of operations the caseload on IRIS grew rapidly as prolific offenders were initially identified from a Core Persistent Offender (CPO) list and then underwent a more complex scoring analysis using a matrix system based on local CDRP priority crime categories of offences, in which individual offenders were scored on detected offences only. By the end of the first year 22 offenders had been identified and 20 had started to be supervised by the IRIS team. In the second year the rate of the identification of new suitable cases inevitably slowed down, but still by the mid-point in the second year IRIS was actively supervising 28 offenders. However also in the second year some of the original cases had begun to show clear evidence of desistance from known further offending, and when they had gone a full 12 months without any charges or convictions for new offences they were taken off their IRIS status, so reducing the rate of growth in active cases on IRIS. By thirty months from the start of IRIS 14 offenders had lost their IRIS status and one had died in custody, and the caseload numbers fluctuated at around about 27-29 current cases. By the end of September 2006 IRIS had in total supervised 45 adult offenders over the previous 3 years, and had a current caseload of 28 prolific offenders. The economic analysis was based on the set-up costs and the running costs for the first three years operations, to determine the economic costs of offences known to have been committed by only first 35 IRIS offenders (the one who had died shortly after he commenced on IRIS was excluded from calculations). From a month by month costing for the cases that were subject to IRIS supervision, it was possible to estimate that the 35 offenders studied in detail had taken up 78% of the resources of IRIS over the third year of operations, 96.5% in the second year and 97.5% of the resources in the first year (see Table 8A). These percentages take account of new starters on IRIS who are not part of this study. It was also possible to determine that the total cost over three years of supervising the 35 offenders was almost £527,000 (91% of the total running costs in those years). It should be noted, however, that individual offenders were subject to the project for different periods, each with their own start date and (where relevant) finishing date. The convention of a two year follow up period should not be taken to imply any correspondence with the periods that the individual offenders were IRIS subjects.

Table 8A. Proportionate running costs for supervision of first 35 offenders subject to IRIS, and related additional costs for residential drug treatment IRIS costs only All costs for % costs spent Costs for all offenders on 35 offenders 35 offenders 1st Year of operation £205,754 97.5% £200,610 nd 2 Year of operation £187,465 96.5% £180,903 3rd Year of operation £186,710 78.0% £145,634 All 3 years £579,929 90.9% £527,147 Costs of residential drug £56,950 treatment - 134 weeks@ £425 per week for 9 of 35 0ffenders Total Costs of IRIS and £584,097 residential drug treatment

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Table 8B. Costs per offender per year and per month, of IRIS and related residential drug treatment, for the first 35 offenders For first 35 offenders on IRIS Costs per offender Costs per offender per year per month IRIS costs for all 3 years £5,020 £418 IRIS costs for 2nd & 3rd years only £4,665 £389 IRIS + Residential Drug £5,563 £464 Treatment costs for all 3 years IRIS + Residential Drug Treatment costs £5,207 £434 for 2nd & 3rd years only It should be noted that the costs per offender are mean costs, and produce an average per offender per month of £408 per offender across all three years. However, if only the running costs in the second and third years are included, when the IRIS project was operating at its optimum capacity of 27-29 active offenders subject to supervision, then the cost per month per offender reduces to £389. It should be recognised that the precise costs per offender will in fact vary from offender to offender depending on two key factors: firstly how quickly they showed evidence of desistance from criminal activity and therefore came off the caseload, and secondly for how long they were in imprisoned or remanded in custody and not subject to community supervision and surveillance by the IRIS team (offenders in custody did in fact retain their IRIS status, were contacted while serving a prison sentence and usually visited by IRIS staff close to their re-release from prison). In addition to the costs of the operation of the IRIS team (including the full salary costs of the seconded probation officer in the first three years), the active involvement of the team in organising drug treatment opportunities for many of the offenders attracted related costs for some offenders to receive residential treatment at centres in different parts of the country. In the first year IRIS received a grant from the Drug Action Team (DAT), which was fully spent on residential treatment for 5 individual offenders from the cohort (including one offender who went twice. In the second year and third years the responsibility for paying for residential drug treatment lay with the local Probation Service substance misuse team, and during this period a further four of the cohort went to residential drug treatment centres. The cost of such residential treatment is approximately £400-450 per offender per week, but not all offenders completed the six months of residency. In all 9 of the 35 offenders went on residential drug treatment, but only 3 completed the treatment fully and successfully. In total, these 9 offenders were in residential treatment for 134 weeks at a total cost of approximately £56,950. The costs of residential drug treatments for some of the offenders have been included as additional related costs and included in overall known costs. When the costs of residential drug treatment are included, then the costs per offender rise to £464 per offender per month for all three years and £434 per offender per month in the second and third years of the operation of the IRIS project.

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9. ESTIMATING THE ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COSTS OF OFFENCES KNOWN TO HAVE BEEN COMMITTED BY THE 35 IRIS OFFENDERS. The Home Office in 2000 and 2005 (Home Office Research Studies 217/2000 and 30/2005) published research results of the economic and social costs of crime against individuals, households and businesses, and produced robust and reliable estimations of the different costs and full economic costs of many different types of crimes. The Home Office studies break down the economic costs into three broad sub-groups: (i) Anticipation Costs which include defensive arrangements and insurance costs, (ii) Consequential Costs which include costs to individual victims including replacement values of goods stolen or damaged, costs of injuries caused to victims and loss of consequent earnings, and costs to health services for the treatment of victims injuries and necessary treatments, (iii) Criminal Justice System Costs including the costs of the response to the crimes and any subsequent prosecution, and court related costs. The full economic costs are the combination of all three of these sub-groupings. Using these Home Office Studies it was possible to estimate the component economic costs of the majority of the offences which the first 35 IRIS offenders were known to have committed, and it was therefore also possible to estimate the cost savings consequent upon the less frequent and less overall seriousness of the reoffending of this group of prolific offenders after they came on to the IRIS Project. Table 9 shows the estimated costs of the offences which the 35 IRIS offenders were convicted of in court and had TIC, in the 24 month period prior to their commencement on IRIS, broken down by offence types. Only 31(2.5%) of the 1,222 offences which they were known to have committed could not be allocated an economic value, including drug offences. The full economic costs added up to almost £2,200,000, of which 63% were costs to victims and 19% were costs to the Criminal Justice System response.

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TABLE 9. Estimated costs of offences known to have been committed by the 35 IRIS offenders in the 24 month period pre-IRIS Offence types Number of Cost to Cost of CJS Costs to Offences Victims System Victims & Response CJ System Theft from shop 100 £30,000 £30,100 £60,100 Theft, receiving 268 £138,288 £58,156 £196,444 Fraud, deception 99 £51,084 £21,483 £72,567 Theft from vehicles 233 £126,286 £34,950 £161,236 TWOC, aggravated TWOC 165 £498,795 £32,835 £531,630 Burglary dwelling 118 £206,026 £134,166 £340192 Other burglary 110 £168,850 £54,450 £223,300 Robbery 8 £37,280 £20,808 £58,088 ABH, other wounding 5 £35,380 £4,890 £40,270 Assault, poss’ off’ weapon 25 £29,625 £6,375 £36,000 Serious driving offences 46 £54,510 £14,720 £69,230 Arson not endangering life 3 £2,595 £360 £2,955 Criminal damage 11 £7,667 £1,320 £8,987 Totals for all costed offences 1191 £1,386,386 £414,613 £1,800,999 Total offences not costed 31 (2.5%) Table 10 provides comparable information about the costs of the known re-offending of the same 35 IRIS offenders over the 24 month period immediately after they commenced on IRIS. In this period of time the combined estimated economic costs to victims and the criminal justice system reduced to almost £470,000, the costs to victims went down to about £350,000 and the costs to the criminal justice system reduced by almost £120,000. When the costs for the two 24 month periods are compared, it shows that the costs to victims fell by £1,037,442 ( 75%), and the costs to the CJ System fell by £297,607 a reduction of 72%. The combined costs to victims and the CJ System fell by £1,335,049, a reduction of 74%, as a result of the significantly reduced level of known offences.

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TABLE 10. Estimated costs of offences committed by the 35 IRIS offenders in the 24 month period after they commenced IRIS Costs of CJS Costs to Offence types Number Costs to Victims system victims of response & CJ System offences Thefts from shops 62 £18,600 £18,662 £37,262 Thefts, receiving 65 £33,540 £14,105 £47,645 Fraud, deception 26 £13,416 £5,642 £19,058 Thefts from vehicles 81 £43,902 £12,150 £56,052 TWOC, aggrav’ TWOC 23 £69,529 £4,577 £74,106 Burglary dwelling 19 £32,927 £21,603 £54,530 Other burglary 35 £53,725 £17,325 £71,050 Robbery 3 £13,980 £7,803 £21,783 ABH, other wounding 3 £21,228 £2,934 £24,162 Assault, poss. off. weapon 11 £13,035 £2,805 £15,840 Serious driving offences 29 £34,365 £9,280 £43,645 Arson not endangering life 0 Criminal damage 1 £697 £120 £817 Totals of all costed offences 358 £348,944 £117,006 £465,950 Total offences not costed 7 (1.9%) When the costs per offender per month are compared for the two periods, they fall from £2,144 per offender per month to £555, a reduction of £1,589 (74%) (see Table 11). If the number of months they were at liberty is considered, which takes proper account of the incapacitation effects of time when they were in custody, then the reductions are even greater. The costs per offender per month at liberty fall from £3,691 pre-IRIS to £662 post-IRIS, a saving of £3,029 or a reduction of 82%. TABLE 11. Estimated Economic Costs to Victims and the Criminal Justice System of offences known to have been committed by the 35 offenders preand post-IRIS Costs for convicted and Pre-IRIS PostReduction in Difference TIC offences IRIS costs Total Costs £1,800,999 £465,950 £1,335,049 - 74% Cost per month per £2,144 £555 £1,589 - 74% offender Cost per month at liberty £3,691 £662 £3,029 - 82% per offender Total months at liberty 488 704 Table 12 provides detailed information on the reductions in victim costs only, by offence types and comparing the pre and post-IRIS 24 month periods. The largest cost reductions were for car theft of just over £433,000 or 87%, and the next largest was for burglaries of just over £288,000 or 77%. The lowest proportional cost falls were for serious motoring offences, and thefts from shops. The overall reduction in

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victim costs was almost 75%, and the saving per offender per month at liberty was even greater at almost 83%. TABLE 12. Estimated costs to victims of known offences committed by the 35 offenders pre and post-IRIS by offence type Offence Types Pre- IRIS Post-IRIS Reduction Percentage period period in costs reduction costs Costs Thefts from shops £30,000 £18,600 £11,400 38.0% Thefts, receiving £138,288 £33,540 £107,748 77.9% Fraud, deceptions £51,084 £13,416 £37,668 73.7% Thefts from vehicles £126,286 £43,902 £82,384 65.2% TWOC, aggravated TWOC £498,795 £69,529 £433,266 86.9% All forms of burglary £374,876 £86,652 £288,224 76.9% Robberies £37,280 £13,980 £23,300 62.5% All violence offences £65,005 £34,263 £30,742 47.3% Serious motoring offences £54,510 £34,365 £20,145 37.0% Arson/criminal damage £10,262 £697 £9,565 93.2% Total £1,386,386 £348,944 £1,037,422 74.8% Cost per offender per month £1,650 £415 £1,235 74.8% Cost per offender per month at £2,841 £493 £2,348 82.6% liberty The estimated cost reductions result in significant benefits for the whole of the criminal justice system, as already clearly demonstrated in Tables 9, 10 and 11, where the savings are almost £300,000 or 72% comparing the two 24 month periods for the same 35 offenders. This includes savings for the Crown prosecution service, legal aid funds, the magistrates and Crown courts, the probation service, the prison service and other statutory and voluntary organisations providing services directly for offenders. However the major beneficiary within the criminal justice system is the police service itself, whose resources can be redeployed to other offenders and to other areas of peace keeping, law enforcement and public safety. Table 13 shows the estimated savings for police costs. This however does not include the costs of the one offence of causing death by dangerous driving committed by one of the IRIS offenders, which could be well have incurred costs in excess of £500,000, depending on the location and the economic costs of the loss of life and the consequential costs of the accident (Department of Transport, 2007). In an economic analysis this should be considered to be an individual outlier and not included in cost calculations. Without this case the costs of police activity resulting from the known criminal behaviour of these 35 offenders fall from £307,485 to £88,106, a drop of £219,379 or 71%. The area of greatest savings in police activity time was in respect of burglaries (just over £100,000) followed by auto-thefts (TWOC’s & theft from vehicles) with savings of just over £44,000 and other thefts and receiving offences (almost £39,000).

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TABLE 13. Estimated savings in police costs arising from reductions in known offending by the 35 IRIS offenders Offence type Theft from shops Theft, receiving Fraud, deception Theft from vehicles TWOC/ Aggrav’TWOC All forms of burglary Robberies All violence offences Serious motoring offences Arson/criminal damage Total/average Police costs per offence £134 £191 £191 £131 £171 £576 £878 £412 £285 £102 £307 % CJ system costs 45% 88% 88% 87% 86% 51% 35% 42% 89% 85% 70% Pre-IRIS costs £13,400 £51,188 £18,909 £30,523 £28,215 £131,328 £7,024 £12,360 £13,110 £1,428 £307,485 PostIRIS costs £8,308 £12,415 £4,966 £10,611 £3,933 £31,104 £2,634 £5,768 £8,265 £102 £88,106 Savings £5,092 £38,773 £13,943 £19,912 £24,282 100,224 £4,390 £6,592 £4,845 £1,326 219,379

In some economic studies it is also possible to analyse additional wider benefits, to determine whether a particular form of intervention or support is achieving additional economic and social benefits in both the short and longer term. Although the detailed information on individual offenders which the IRIS project collected was collected consistently and reliably, it was not feasible to do an economic analysis on the range of different changes in life-style and personal circumstances which had occurred particularly amongst the offenders in the “Desisting” group. However it is clear that at least in the “Desisting” group there was specific evidence of some changes which undoubtedly were having at least short term economic benefits for both individual offenders and their families and the wider public. In respect of legitimate paid employment, calculations based on minimum wage rates of pay would show a income before deductions of just over £9,600 per annum per offender in full-time employment. For those who were drug free and those who had stabilised their prescribed drug usage, there would be significant individual savings to local health services. Those in more stable and permanent housing would be achieving economic benefits, compared with the costs of hostel and other forms of temporary subsidised accommodation. Those in more stable partnership relationships and those back in contact with their parents and/or children, would also be achieving some considerable social and marginal short-term economic benefits. So in addition to measurable economic benefits from reduced known re-offending, the additional benefits of positive changes in life-style and personal circumstances for a sub-group of the IRIS offenders could contribute to both short-term and potentially even greater longer term social and economic benefits.

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10. COST BENEFIT ANALYSIS OF THE WORK OF IRIS IN RESPECT OF THE FIRST THIRTY FIVE OFFENDERS UNDER SUPERVISION In the previous two sections it was possible to make estimations of the economic costs of setting-up IRIS and the running costs for the first three years. It was also possible to estimate the running costs for the supervision by IRIS of the first 35 offenders on the project on a per monthly basis. Estimations were also calculated of the economic costs in respect of victim costs and criminal justice system costs for the 24 months pre-IRIS and the 24 months post-IRIS. While the running costs take account of economic inflation, the estimates of the costs of the known offences were based on calculations done by the Home Office for 2003/4. Therefore to properly account for inflationary effects on costs an additional 2% per year of offence costs has been added to the offence costs for calculations of the cost benefits of the work of the IRIS project. This inflationary addition for two years increases the estimated costs of the offences to victims and the criminal justice system from £465,950 (see Table 11) to £478,064 for the 24 month period Post-IRIS, but the pre-IRIS costs remained at £1,800,999. In respect of the economic cost benefits to victims only, the costs due to inflation increased from £348,944 (see Table 12) to £358,016 for the post-IRIS period, but the pre-IRIS costs remained at £1,386,386. The estimated reduction in the victim and criminal justice system economic costs of offences known to have been committed by the 35 IRIS offenders over a 24 month period is £1,322,935, which is £55,122 per month or £37,798 per offender. The economic benefits are calculated to be £1,575 per offender per month. If only the economic cost benefits to victims are calculated, then offence costs reduce to £1,028,370, which is £42,849 per month, £29,382 per offender and £1,224 per offender per month. Tables 8A and 8B show the calculations of the estimated costs of running IRIS over 3 years for the first 35 offenders. The costs of running IRIS for all the first three years were calculated to be £5,020 per offender per year or £418 per offender per month, but if only the costs of the second and third years are included (when IRIS was running at its optimum capacity) the costs reduce to £4,665 per offender per year and £389 per offender per month. When the costs of residential drug treatment for some of the 35 offenders are included as related consequential costs, the costs per offender increase to £5,563 per offender per year and £464 per offender per month for all three years of operation, and £5,207 per offender per year and £434 per offender per month for only the second and third years. The goal of any cost-benefit analysis is to calculate the internal rate of return of the investment in a particular operation or project. The generation of a positive costbenefit ratio implies that the monetary value of the benefits achieved by the project has more than offset the amount of resources invested in it. If the estimated cost benefits only of reductions in known offending can be confidently attributed to the direct effects of IRIS then the cost-benefit ratios are those shown in Table 14 below. The ratios generated by these calculations range from 4.05 to 2.64, depending on which benefits from reduced offences are included and which running and related costs are used. The accepted convention in cost-benefit analysis would normally only include running costs, but would include additional related costs such as the costs of 31

residential drug treatment for some of the offenders. Using this convention, the economic benefits ratio for IRIS is between 3.39 and 3.63, or an economic return of around £3.50 for every £1 invested in the work of IRIS towards crime reduction with known prolific offenders. Table 14. Cost benefit ratios associated with IRIS work with first 35 offenders Unit Cost-benefit ratio Cost-benefit ratio cost from reductions in from reductions in costs for victims & costs for victims only CJ system Average cost of Iris (3 £418 3.77 2.93 years) per offender per month Costs of running IRIS (2rd & £389 4.05 3.15 3rd years) per offender per month Running costs of IRIS plus £464 3.39 2.64 residential drug treatment (3 years) per offender per month Running costs of IRIS plus £434 3.63 2.82 residential drug treatment (years 2 & 3) per offender per month These positive cost-benefit ratios demonstrate the tangible benefits from the work of the IRIS team and a further sensitivity analysis showed that even if only a half of the reductions in known re-offending in these 35 offenders is directly attributable to the existence of IRIS, then the cost-benefit ratio was still about 1.76, and if only a third of the reductions were attributable to IRIS the ratio was still positive at about 1.17. Only when a quarter or less of the reductions were estimated as being due to IRIS, did the ratio fall below one at about 0.89. It is recognised in all the studies of prolific offender schemes and many more on the effectiveness of intensive interventions with offenders (Worrall & Mawby, 2004 and Moore. et al, 2006) that it is very difficult to reliably and accurately demonstrate the specific effectiveness of any form of intervention with any absolute confidence. This evaluation of IRIS is no exception to the problems encountered in almost all other studies, but the economic sensitivity analysis does allow a fairly safe conclusion that if only a limited proportion of the reductions in re-offending are due to the work of the project, then it can still be demonstrated that it is achieving economically beneficial results in the short term at least. There are probably even greater hidden economic benefits in relation to criminal offences, if it were possible reliably to take account of the unknown or nonattributable offences committed by these 35 offenders. In a third of the cases there was no local police intelligence to indicate that they were still criminally active 24 months after they commenced on IRIS. The same third also showed considerable changes in their life-styles, and thereby also generated other wider economic benefits by becoming legitimate wage earners, making less demand on health 32

services as they reduce or abstain from drug usage, contributing to their accommodation costs, receiving less benefit and even becoming net tax payers in some cases. These longer term benefits arising from a movement away from criminal life-styles are difficult to measure, but undoubtedly add additional range of economic benefits from such successful engagement with prolific offenders. The IRIS project demonstrate that swift and rigorous attention to criminal behaviour, immediate responses to non-compliance, improved and extended contributions to local police intelligence, and real assistance and high quality help and support in changing the lives of targeted prolific offenders, can produce substantial reductions in criminal activities. Such reductions in criminal behaviour and marked changes towards prosocial attitudes and behaviour can produce considerable short-term economic benefits as demonstrated by the IRIS project in only three years of operations.

11. SUMMARY OF FINDINGS 1. The criminal career characteristics of the first 35 offenders given IRIS status and supervised by the project in its first three years of operations, demonstrate clearly that the system employed did accurately identify and engaged with local prolific offenders. Over the first three years IRIS has consistently and rigorously adhered to a locally valid scoring system and there is no evidence that in its selection of suitable offenders it has “net widened” the intake, or become overloaded with unmanageable numbers of inappropriate offenders. The past criminal records of the offenders on IRIS indicate the extensive and persistent nature of their known criminal behaviour and the prolific volume of their recent offending activities. They also show that they all had served custodial sentences (an average of four each) without any apparent effect on their propensity to re-offend, and had also been subject to a wide range of community sentences, also without achieving any apparent reductions in their subsequent criminal behaviours. The range of types of offences they were known to have committed included 233 thefts from vehicles, 265 offences of vehicle takings (including 26 aggravated TWOCs), 228 burglaries, 8 robberies and 46 serious driving offences, out of a total of 1,222 offences. The offenders on IRIS had almost three times the mean number of convictions per offender per month before they commenced on the project, compared with the mean rate reported in the large Home Office sample of prolific offenders on other schemes across England and Wales. 2. There was a steady build up of prolific offenders on IRIS and some were gradually removed due to desistance from crime. Over time the proportion of all the prolific offenders on the project at liberty actually increased. The number of offenders on the project grew gradually in the first year and by its end 20 offenders had started on IRIS. By the end of the second year it was operating at its optimum capacity, with 28 offenders under supervision. During the second and third years 14 offenders had lost their IRIS status having gone 12 months without charges or convictions for new offences. By the end of the third year the project had supervised 45 individual prolific offenders and had a current caseload of 28 offenders. In the two years 33

before they commenced on IRIS all the offenders had spent some time in custody and had collectively been at liberty for 59% of that time, whereas Post-IRIS they had collectively been at liberty for 84% of the two years, and a third of them had spent no time in custody at all. 3. There was a significant reduction in all types of known offences committed by the 35 offenders on IRIS in the two years after they commenced being on IRIS. Collectively they were known to have committed 365 offences, 70% fewer than in the Pre-IRIS period. The offences committed were 16% less serious as measured by the Home Office Seriousness Scoring scale. If account was taken of the amount of time the offenders were at liberty (so taking account of the incapacitation effect of periods in custody) then the reduction per month at liberty was 79%. In the post-IRIS period 7% more of the known offences were TIC. The largest proportionate reductions were in respect of TWOCs, with 142 fewer offences (a reduction of 86%), and burglaries of dwellings with 99 fewer offences (a reduction of 84%). The smallest reductions were in respect of theft from shops with 38 fewer offences (a reduction of 38%), and serious driving with 17 fewer offences (a reduction of 37%). Using the same methods of calculation as used in the large Home Office (Dawson and Cuppleditch, 2007) study of prolific offenders on schemes across England and Wales, there were 74% fewer convictions per offender per month, more than three times greater than the 24% reduction found in the Home Office study. 4. There were large reductions in non-compliance, particularly in respect of breaches of court bail and conditions of community sentences. There were lower proportional reductions in respect of breaches of prison licences and curfew orders in the IRIS offenders. Most of this reduction was a direct consequence of the reductions in known re-offending which resulted in far fewer court hearings collectively by the 35 offenders. However there was evidence that up to a third of the improvements in compliance with court orders, community sentences and prison licences by those who had reoffended were the product of the work of the IRIS team to actively improve compliance. 5. A detailed analysis of individual cases produced evidence of three distinct sub-groups within the 35 IRIS offenders: (i) A “Desisting” group of sixteen offenders, who showed dramatic reductions in known re-offending, accumulated only 28 further offences and had a 96% reduction in known re-offences. They had collectively spent 34% more of their time at liberty than before IRIS, and thirteen of them had served no subsequent custodial sentences. Most of them had made considerable life-style changes and IRIS had directly assisted them in making positive improvements in their circumstances. Three had successfully completed residential drug treatment programmes, and most were drug free or had stabilised prescribed drug use. Many were in better accommodation situations and were in improved close personal relationships. 34

(ii)

(iii)

A “Slowing Down” group of seven offenders who showed considerable reductions in both the frequency and seriousness of their known re-offending, but did continue their offending activities and had accumulated 58 subsequent offences, a reduction of 66%. All had all served subsequent custodial sentences but collectively they had been at liberty for 13% more time than they had been before IRIS. Six of them continued to have drug abuse problems. None were in permanent employment but two had improved accommodation circumstances. Two were making real efforts to stabilise their partnerships and two appeared to be avoiding previous criminal associates. A “Persisting” group of 12 offenders who had showed some reductions in the frequency in their known re-offending but not in seriousness. They had collectively committed 35% fewer offences but had been at liberty for 3% less time. All of them had served subsequent custodial sentences and the longest any of them had been at liberty was 17 out of the 24 months. Three were serving prison sentences of over 3 years, two of 18 months and two of 12 months, by the end of the 24 month post-IRIS period. There was little evidence of changes in life-style in this group, with eleven of them remaining active drug abusers. Five of them had started residential drug treatment programmes but none had completed them successfully. Most had chaotic relationships, accommodation problems, and retained numerous criminal associates.

When the characteristics of three groups were explored it became evident that they all collectively commenced their criminal careers at similarly young ages and were at on average of similar ages when they commenced on IRIS. However when their whole criminal careers were considered, it became clear that “Persisting” group was the most prolific and more frequently sentenced, and had served considerably more prison sentences per head. The “Desisting” group had collectively the least previous convictions and sentences, and had served on average fewer previous custodial sentences. 6. The set-up costs were just over £68,000, and the full running costs for the first three years of operations were almost £580,000. During the second and third years the average costs per year had reduced to £187,000. The costs for the first 35 offenders were calculated to be £418 per offender per month for all three years and £389 per offender per month in the second and third years only. When the costs of additional residential treatment for nine of these offenders on IRIS was added to the overall costs, the costs increased to £464 per offender per month for all three years, and to £434 per offender per month in the second and third years only. 7. The economic and social costs of the offences known to have been committed by the first 35 IRIS offenders in the 24 month period before IRIS were estimated to have cost victims £1,386,000 and the criminal justice system a further £415,000. The highest costs were for thefts of vehicles and burglaries of dwellings. In the 24 month period post-IRIS the 35

costs for victims fell to £349,000 and to the criminal justice system to £117,000, a reduction of 74% for the combined costs. The offence costs which fell most were those for vehicle thefts and all burglaries. The estimated police activity costs fell by almost £220,000, a reduction of just over 71%. The wider economic and social benefits from desistance and changes in life-style by a third of the offenders could not be estimated reliably, but this additionally does represent further short and longer term economic benefits associated with the work of the IRIS project. 8. A cost benefit analysis showed that the IRIS project had achieved positive ratios of between 3.39 and 3.63, or an economic return of about £3.50p for every £1 invested, based on all direct costs and on savings for victims and the criminal justice system. An economic sensitivity analysis showed that even if only a third of the benefits in reduced reoffending were a direct result of the work of the IRIS project, there would still be sufficient evidence to support the conclusion that IRIS was achieving positive cost benefits. 9. Some of the reductions in known re-offending may well be accounted for by natural regression, which was shown to occur in a small matched comparison reported on in previous reports ( Roberts, 2005 and 2006) and demonstrated in recent larger studies of young offenders on ISSP (Moore et al, 2004 and Gray, et al, 2005). But the reductions achieved with the IRIS offenders was at least three times greater those shown to have occurred in a large Home Office study of prolific offender schemes across England and Wales (Dawson and Cuppleditch, 2007) over a similar time period. 10. A third of the offenders had made major life-style changes directly associated with almost total desistance from further offending, which the IRIS project had clearly directly assisted in achieving. In a smaller sub-group there was evidence of considerable reductions in the frequency and seriousness of re-offending, but less obvious life-style changes. The “Persisting” group were known to have re-offended less often, but they remained persistent and still committed some serious offences. However IRIS had made a major direct and indirect contribution with those who persisted in re-offending, mainly by providing good intelligence on them to police colleagues and leading to more prompt re-arrests and court appearances. Even with the persisting offenders the interventions of the IRIS project achieved improved compliance with court orders and prison licences. Most of the persisting offenders actually spent more time in custody post-IRIS than they had before IRIS. So there is clear evidence of both a qualitative and quantitative kind that IRIS was making a significant contribution to the “catch and convict” objectives of prolific offender projects as well to the “rehabilitate and re-settle” aims.

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12

CONCLUSION

Overall IRIS has undoubtedly achieved major advances in improving engagement with and the management of identified prolific offenders. By rigorously combining its care and control functions, and offering high quality work on surveillance, intelligence gathering, assistance and support for each individual offender under its supervision, it has been able to enable some offenders to desist from further offending and discourage further offending in most of the others. If offenders did not comply with court orders or prison licences, they were more swiftly warned and/or breached. If they re-offended the IRIS staff contributed to more certain re-arrests and reappearance before the courts, or direct recall to prison. Each offender was not only seen and contacted very frequently, but was also offered high quality support and tangible opportunities to improve their personal circumstances and life-styles. Prolific offenders with such extensive previous criminal careers do not change their behaviour rapidly or easily. But the IRIS project demonstrates that by the application of intelligence-led policing allied to meaningful offender management in the community, even prolific offenders can be enabled to reduce their frequency and seriousness of offending and change their lives in a positive direction, to their own benefit and that of their families, and most importantly for the good of the wider public.

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Chenery, S and Pease, K (2000) The Burnley/ Dordecht Initiative Final Report. University of Huddersfield/Safer Cities Partnership, Burnley, Lancashire Chenery, S and Deakin, E (2003) Evaluation of the Blackpool Tower Project: Final Report. Blackpool Community Safety Partnership, Blackpool, Lancashire Dawson, P (2005) Early Findings from the Prolific and other Priority Offenders evaluation. Home Office Development and Practice Report 46, London Dawson, P and Cuppleditch, L (2007) An Impact Assessment of the Prolific and other Priority Offender Programme. Home Office Online Report 08/07, London Department of Transport (2007) Highways Economics Note Number 1. 2005 Valuation of the Benefits of the Prevention of Road accidents and Casualties. Online Report, London Dubourg, R., Hamed, J and Thorns, J (2005) The economic and social costs of crime against individuals and households. Home Office Online Report 30/05; London Farrall, S., Mawby, R., and Worrall, A.(2007) Prolific/persistent offenders and desistance pp322-380 in Gelsthorpe, L and Morgan, R (eds) Handbook of Probation, Willan Publishing, Cullompton, Devon Gray, E., Taylor, E., Roberts, C., Merrington, S., Fernandez, R. and Moore, R. (2005) ISSP: the Final Report. Youth Justice Board, London H. M. Chief Inspector of Constabulary, et al. (2004). Joint Inspection into Persistent and Prolific Offenders. Joint Criminal Justice Inspectorates, London Home Office (2002) Offender Assessment System: OASys Manual. Probation Service and H.M. Prison Service, London National

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Mawby, R and Worrall,A. (2004) “Polibation” revisited: policing, probation and prolific offender projects. International Journal of Police Science and Management 6, 2, 63-73. Moore, R., Gray, E., Roberts, C., Taylor, E., and Merrington, S. Managing Persistent and Serious Offenders in the Community, Willan Publishing. Cullompton, Devon Moore, R., Gray, E., Roberts, C., Merrington, S., Waters, I., Fernandez, R., Hayward, G., and Rogers, R. (2004) ISSP: the initial report. Youth Justice Board, London Roberts, C (2004). IRIS Interim Evaluation Report, Probation Studies Unit, Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford, Oxford Roberts, C (2005). Final Evaluation Report on the First Year of the IRIS Project Probation Studies Unit, Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford, Oxford Roberts, C (2006) Displaying Effectiveness: An evaluation report on the IRIS Project, Thames Valley Police and Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford, Oxford Sutherland, A., Taylor, E., Gray, E., Merrington, S., and Roberts, C. (2007). Piloting 12-Month ISSP: Evaluation and research findings, Youth Justice Board, London Worrall, A. and Walton, D. (2001) When the carrot meets the stick: Combating prolific offending in North Staffordshire. Staffordshire Police, Staffordshire Probation Area and Keele University, Staffordshire. Worrall, A., Mawby, R., Heath, G., Hope, T., (2003) Intensive Supervision and Monitoring projects . Home Office Online report 42/03, London Worrall, A. and Mawby, R. (2004) Intensive projects for prolific/persistent offenders. In Bottoms, A., Rex, S., and Robinson, G. Alternatives to Prison: options for an insecure society, Willan Publishing, Cullompton, Devon.

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