Journal article

Sentencing offenders with mental impairment: The case of arsonists with intellectual disability

A Curtis, K McVilly, A Day

Journal of Intellectual Disabilities and Offending Behaviour | Published : 2014


Purpose: Offenders with intellectual disability (ID) who commit arson and other acts of fire setting are over-represented in the criminal justice system in Australia, as in many other jurisdictions. The purpose of this paper is to provide insight into the judicial considerations that influence sentencing in these cases. Design/methodology/approach: Case law was utilised to locate and analyse judges’ sentencing remarks for offenders with ID found guilty of an offence of arson. These data were subject to Inductive Content Analysis to establish the major judicial considerations in sentencing. Findings: Seven common issues emerged: general deterrence, seriousness of arson, rehabilitation, senten..

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