An Examination of the Relationship Between Desistance and Attitude Towards Life Sentence Punishment Among a Sample of Incarcerated Aged-Delinquent Offenders Housed at the Louisiana State Penitentiary

Geraldine Doucet


This study examines the relationship between desistance and attitude towards life sentence punishment among a sample of incarcerated aged-delinquent offenders housed at the Louisiana State Penitentiary. The study utilized a cross-sectional-survey research design and a primary data source. The primary data source comes from the Louisiana State Penitentiary based on self-reported face-to-fact survey interviews initially taken May 2007 and followed by face-to-fact interviews officially obtained data over the period of a year and eight months regarding the same sample population.  Results suggested that in the Before study, using self-reported data, that human capital variables were not statistically reliable in distinguishing desistance among the sample of aged delinquents. There were only two social capital variables that were statistically reliable in distinguishing desistance among inmates. These variables were relationship with mother, which had the most predictive power regarding desistance process, followed by the who raised the inmate variable. The strongest of all variables in this study was the punishment adjustment, in particularly the psychological coping one. Further, the data suggested that inmates’ attitudes toward a life-sentence punishment were not as statistically reliable in distinguishing desistance. The After-study results showed no predictability with respect to desistance among any of the predictor variables. When comparing the desisters among the aged delinquents, juvenile lifers (younger group) desisted less than young adult lifers (older group), although no significant differences were found in the desistance rate of these aged-delinquents’ subgroups in the sample population.

Keywords:Offenders, Age, Demographics, Desistance, Delinquents, Crime, Juvenile, Punishment, Incarceration, Offenders, and Justice system.

DOI: 10.7176/PPAR/11-7-03

Publication date:August 31st 2021

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ISSN (Paper)2224-5731 ISSN (Online)2225-0972

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