The purpose of this study was to examine judges' written reasons for sentencing in preventative detention hearings and the expert risk assessment reports presented, to determine the level of reliance placed on expert risk assessment reports and to examine the presence of partisan allegiance within the Canadian context. Results demonstrated that judges' decisions were consistent with expert assessments in terms of risk, treatment amenability, and risk management. Experts' ratings of treatment amenability and risk management were also significant predictors of the designation outcome, indicating that judges rely on this information in making their final decision. Finally, there was evidence of partisan allegiance, with prosecution-retained Psychopathy Checklist-Revised scores being significantly higher than defense-retained experts' scores. The results have implications for the development of consistent guidelines for the communication of risk, treatment amenability, and management information.

Additional Metadata
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1002/bsl.2155
Journal Behavioral Sciences and the Law
Citation
Blais, J. (2015). Preventative Detention Decisions: Reliance on Expert Assessments and Evidence of Partisan Allegiance within the Canadian Context. Behavioral Sciences and the Law, 33(1), 74–91. doi:10.1002/bsl.2155