To read this content please select one of the options below:

PTSD, panic disorder and alcohol use disorder as a triple threat for violence among male jail detainees

Alexa J. Barrett (Department of Psychology, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina, USA)
Stephanie L. Taylor (Department of Psychology, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina, USA)
Albert M. Kopak (Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice, Western Carolina University, Cullowhee, North Carolina, USA)
Norman G. Hoffmann (Evince Clinical Assessments, Waynesville, North Carolina, USA)

Journal of Criminal Psychology

ISSN: 2009-3829

Article publication date: 8 December 2020

Issue publication date: 11 March 2021

146

Abstract

Purpose

Despite ranking among the most prevalent mental health conditions and their likely contributions to violent offending, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), panic disorder (PD) and alcohol use disorder (AUD) have not been examined closely among adult males detained in rural jails. The purpose of this paper is to assess the prevalence of co-occurring PTSD, PD and AUD within this population and identify their associations with violent offenses.

Design/methodology/approach

The sample consists of 349 males recently booked into local jails. The Comprehensive Addictions and Psychological Evaluation – 5 was administered to assess mental health conditions. Bivariate statistics and multivariate logistic regression were used to examine associations between PTSD, PD, AUD and violent offenses.

Findings

A disproportionate number of participants met criteria for PTSD, PD and AUD. Co-occurrence was prevalent among detainees booked for violent offenses with 25% reporting symptoms of all three disorders. PD emerged as the strongest single condition associated with violence, while the combination of PTSD, PD and AUD significantly increased the likelihood of violent offenses.

Practical implications

A better understanding of the relationship between mental health conditions and violent offenses is essential for efficacious assessment and treatment. Appropriately informed mental health care for jail detainees can increase public safety and guide practices for addressing these conditions within criminal justice populations.

Originality/value

There is limited research on mental health within the rural jail detainee population. To the authors’ knowledge, this is the first study to examine the association between PTSD, PD, AUD and violent offenses drawn from local detention centers.

Keywords

Acknowledgements

This research was supported by the C4 Recovery Foundation and the Bureau of Justice Assistance.

Citation

Barrett, A.J., Taylor, S.L., Kopak, A.M. and Hoffmann, N.G. (2021), "PTSD, panic disorder and alcohol use disorder as a triple threat for violence among male jail detainees", Journal of Criminal Psychology, Vol. 11 No. 1, pp. 21-29. https://doi.org/10.1108/JCP-07-2020-0029

Publisher

:

Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2020, Emerald Publishing Limited

Related articles