Monitoring and reporting public safety outcomes are key parts of the agency’s efforts to enhance the safety of youth and the community. DYRS regularly assesses its performance using a host of public safety indicators, including reconviction and re-arrest rates. In addition to helping the agency determine whether it is meeting its public safety mission, evaluating these outcomes allows DYRS to develop targeted strategies for improving its supervision and treatment services.
This section presents the agency's most current outcomes with respect to reconviction and re-arrest trends.
One way to measure DYRS’ performance toward meeting its public safety mission is to determine how many of the agency’s youth are found involved, or guilty, of a new offense. This is the "recidivism rate." The formal definition of recidivism used in this and other DYRS reports is:
A committed youth has recidivated if he or she is convicted in Washington, DC, of a new juvenile or adult offense which occurred within one year of being placed in or returned to the community.
Although there are different ways to measure recidivism, the agency’s method—re-adjudication or re-conviction within one year of community placement—is consistent with other jurisdictions and the recommended definition set forth by juvenile justice experts.
Reconviction Rates by Initial Placement Type
The re-conviction rates within one year of community-placement for youth committed to DYRS, by fiscal year of commitment to the agency and initial placement type.
|All Community-Based Placements||37%||30%||30%||31%||21%|
|Community-Based Residential Facilities||35%||28%||30%||31%||22%|
|All Secure Placements||40%||30%||39%||44%||TBD|
|Residential Treatment Centers||42%||29%||38%||38%||TBD|
Reconviction Rates by Type of Re-Offense
The rate of youth re-convicted within one year of community-placement, by fiscal year of commitment to the agency and type of re-offense.
|Unauthorized Use of Vehicle||4%||3%||3%||2%||1%|
|Persons in Need of Supervision||1%||0%||0%||1%||0%|
While DYRS uses the one-year re-conviction rate as its primary recidivism measure, in 2012 the agency also began to track, in the aggregate, all arrests of DYRS youth. Unlike the standard recidivism measure, however, re-arrest rates do not account for the fact that young people are innocent until proven guilty in a court. Last year, fewer than half of all re-arrests of DYRS youth resulted in a re-conviction, which demonstrates the importance of considering final outcomes when using re-arrest to measure public safety performance. Nevertheless, comparing arrest rates from year to year can provide a snapshot of change in new contacts with the justice system.
Re-Arrest Rates of DYRS Youth as a Portion of Citywide Arrests of Individuals Age 20 and Younger
Re-arrests of youth committed to DYRS as a percentage of citywide arrests of individuals age 20 and younger. The table indicates both percent of all arrests and percent of individuals arrested each calendar year.
|% of Citywide Arrests||9.1%||6.6%||6.0%||6.3%||5.1%|
|% of All Youth Arrested Citywide||8.5%||6.4%||5.2%||5.2%||4.3%|
Re-Arrest Rates of DYRS Youth as a Portion of All DYRS Committed Youth
The percentage of youth committed to DYRS who are arrested each calendar year.
|% of DYRS Committed Youth Arrested||33.0%||25.0%||29.7%||33.1%||27.6%|
Re-arrest Rates by Offense Type
The number of unique DYRS youth re-arrested, by offense type, each calendar year. Because an individual youth may have multiple arrests with different offense types, the total count of youth arrested may be smaller than the sum of youth arrested for specific offense types.