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Legalbewährung nach elektronischer Aufsicht im Vollzug der Freiheitsstrafe : Eine experimentelle Rückfallstudie zum baden-württembergischen Modellprojekt


Meuer,  Katharina Jelena
Criminology, Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law, Max Planck Society;

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Meuer, K. J. (2019). Legalbewährung nach elektronischer Aufsicht im Vollzug der Freiheitsstrafe: Eine experimentelle Rückfallstudie zum baden-württembergischen Modellprojekt. Berlin: Duncker & Humblot.

Cite as: https://hdl.handle.net/21.11116/0000-0004-E680-7
In July 2009, the state parliament of Baden-Wuerttemberg passed the Act on electronic monitoring during the enforcement of imprisonment. The Act specifically legalized the use of electronic monitoring (EM) for a pilot project that ran from October 2010 until March 2012.The overall aim of the pilot project was to determine whether EM is a viable alter-native sanction for certain target groups. To assess the long-term efficacy of EM, the results presented in this volume analyze the recidivism trajectories of individuals involved in the EM pilot project after it ended. GPS-based EM is considered to reduce reoffending, first and foremost, because of its deterrent effect: continuous monitoring increases the risk of a crime being detected. Furthermore, it is assumed that EM also reduces recidivism risk situations by stymieing opportunities to commit offences: the supervised persons have a strict schedule that must be adhered to, meaning that they have to stay at home or at work, thereby limiting a possible exposure to criminogenic influences and places. Further-more, it is expected that the supervised person might internalize this adjustment to a fixed daily routine and, thus, gain a level of lasting self-control. This internalization might explain why EM may reduce recidivism not only while it is in place, but also once the period of monitoring has ended. Lastly, EM aims at reducing or even pre-venting prisonization and stigmatization through early release from prison or the avoidance of imprisonment altogether. It is posited that this will reduce the likelihood of reoffending after the cessation of EM. The pilot project was designed as a randomized controlled trial (experimental study). The subjects – who came from five different state prisons – were randomly assigned to an experimental group (whose subjects were electronically monitored) and a control group (where regular prison sentencing practices were applied). The use of EM and its effect with regard to recidivism was investigated in two application fields: early release preparation (house arrest) and electronically monitored work release. A mixed-methods study was conducted by using both a quantitative and a qualitative approach. To measure post-monitoring recidivism, official data from the Federal Central Criminal Register were obtained and evaluated within a follow-up period of three years. In addition, data from official prison files were collected, e.g. concerning the prisoners’ family statuses, education, previous convictions, and drug and alcohol abuse. Furthermore, the participants were interviewed at different stages of the project. The post-EM recidivism rates between the two comparison groups (experimental vs. control) did not significantly differ, neither concerning electronically monitored house arrest nor electronically monitored work release. In order to minimize the in-fluence of possible methodological artefacts (such as the considerable loss of sub-jects), a second control group was created by means of a matched-pair method. This allowed for additional comparisons to be made between the experimental group of the randomized controlled trial and the matched-pair group. This second analysis confirmed the findings of the randomized study. The results are discussed within the context of theoretical assumptions, practical implications, and basic rights.