Research & Analysis Unit

Timothy Lavery, Research Director

Welcome to the Research & Analysis Unit of the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority. The Research & Analysis Unit serves as Illinois’ Statistical Analysis Center (SAC). State SACs provide objective analysis of criminal justice data for informing statewide policy and practice. The Illinois SAC is affiliated with and supported by the Justice Research and Statistics Association, a national nonprofit organization that promotes collaboration and exchange of information among state SACs, and acts as a liaison between state agencies and the U.S. Department of Justice.

Center for Community Corrections Research

Lynne Mock , Manager

The Center for Community Corrections Research conducts research and evaluation projects on interventions designed to divert individuals from prison; and, to improve re-entry for persons returning to their communities after incarceration. The goal is to expand the use of effective community interventions using evaluation, research, and implementation science. Center staff collect and analyze a variety of data including administrative, qualitative and quantitative. Research and evaluation reports are designed to influence Illinois policies regarding the use of interventions such as problem-solving courts, probation, behavioral and medical treatments; and, to evaluate the effectiveness of these interventions to reduce prison recidivism in diverse populations. The Center develops data visualizations and dashboards to assist with program management and improvements. Center staff publish research and evaluation reports, work in collaboration with external evaluators, and provide research presentations.

Center for Criminal Justice Data and Analytics

Justin Escamilla, Acting Manager

The Center for Criminal Justice Data and Analytics continually collects, analyzes, reports on, and disseminates crime and risk factor statistical information for strategic planning, policy decisions and public education. Staff has developed a repository of these data on the ICJIA website, along with various online tools for data display and analysis. In partnership with the State Police, the Center is responsible for the dissemination of state criminal history record information (CHRI) data for research purposes, including in-house analytic use. The Center provides technical assistance in statistical methods, database design, data analysis and presentation.

Center for Justice Research and Evaluation

Jessica Reichert, Manager

The Center for Justice Research and Evaluation conducts applied research and evaluation projects that examine critical criminal and juvenile justice topics and criminal justice program implementation and outcomes in Illinois. Staff collect data through multiple research methods, conduct advanced statistical analyses, and summarize findings in publications that aim to inform policy and practice. The center also conducts presentations and offers technical assistance to help state and local programs and initiatives use data to inform and improve their work.

Center for Sponsored Research & Program Development

Tracy Hahn, Manager

The Center for Sponsored Research & Program Development secures experts in the field to conduct research and evaluate programs that inform policy, support evidence-based practices, and guide decision-making. Staff review and select programs and other priority criminal justice-related topics viable for evaluation and further research. Researchers are selected through a competitive process and are awarded federal grant subcontracts to conduct studies. The center also provides technical assistance to programs supported with Authority-administered grant funds as they refine program objectives, develop data collection tools, and assess program performance.

Center for Victim Studies

Anne Kirkner, Manager

The Center for Victim Studies designs and conducts research examining the nature and scope of victimization in Illinois and evaluates programs that address victim needs. Center staff use a variety of research methods and analyses to explore victimization and victim services in order to improve policy, programming, and practice throughout the state. The center also coordinates presentations and disseminates reports, translating promising research into implications for policy and practice for stakeholders and victim service providers. Staff also provide technical assistance to help victim service programs collect data to inform how to best meet the multifaceted needs of victims. Finally, staff manage the InfoNet System, a web-based data collection and reporting system used by more than 100 victim service providers in Illinois. The system is one of only a few known central repositories in the country for statewide, standardized victim service data. Click here to learn more about InfoNet.

Center for Violence Prevention and Intervention Research

Justin Escamilla , Manager

The Center for Violence Prevention and Intervention Research reviews scientific literature, designs and conducts studies, and collects and analyzes data on violent crime in Illinois to help inform and enhance the state’s criminal justice response to violence through timely research publications, presentations and discussions. Center staff examine environmental, social, and individual factors that contribute to the occurrence of violent crime and seek collaboration with a diverse set of stakeholders to understand the scope of existing prevention and intervention efforts and guide future strategies more broadly.

ICJIA’s Research Hub marks the latest iteration of ICJIA’s ongoing effort to bring criminal justice data and research to the public. ICJIA Research Hub encompasses the spirit of the Federal Government’s Open Data Policy and the ideals of open data, open research, and open government.

Click to go to the Research Hub

Sharyn Adams | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | (312) 793-8550 |

  • Bachelor of Arts, Anthropology, University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana
  • Master of Science, Sociology, DePaul University

Human trafficking, drug task forces, corrections

Paola B. Baldo

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Justin Escamilla | Full Bio 

Manager, Center for Violence Prevention and Intervention Research | 312-793-8550 |

Alysson Gatens | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Jacquelyn Gilbreath | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Fernanda Gonzalez | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Emilee Green | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Karl Gruschow | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Bachelor of Science, Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Master of Arts, Social Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Doctorate of Philosophy, Social Psychology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Social Psychology, Cultures of Honor, Criminal Justice

Tracy Hahn | Full Bio 

Manager of the Center for Sponsored Research & Program Development | (312) 793-8550 |

  • Bachelor of Science, Legal Studies, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale
  • Master of Public Administration, Southern Illinois University at Carbondale

Criminal justice research, program evaluation, and performance management

Jennifer Hiselman | Full Bio 

Infonet Manager | (312) 793-8550 |

  • Bachelor of Arts, Criminal Justice, University of Illinois Chicago
  • Master of Science, Criminal Justice, University of Illinois Chicago

Victim services, domestic violence, and sexual assault 

Anne Kirkner | Full Bio 

Manager, Center for Victim Studies |

Timothy Lavery | Full Bio 

Research Director |

Morgan McGuirk | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Ernst Melchior

Computer Support Specialist | (312) 793-8550 |

  • Bachelor of Arts, Mathematics, Vanderbilt University
  • Master of Computer Science, Computer Science, DePaul University
  • Master of Liberal Arts, University of Chicago
Database design, data simulation, and automated statistical analysis

Lynne Mock, Ph.D. | Full Bio 

Adult Redeploy Illinois (ARI) Research Manager | 312-793-8550 |

Stephanie Nguyen | Full Bio 

Research Assistant | 312-793-8550 |

Stephanie L. Nguyen | Full Bio 

Research Assistant | 312-793-8550 |

H. Douglas Otto | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-4451 |

Idetta Phillips | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | (312) 793-8550 |

  • Bachelor of Arts, Criminal Justice, Illinois State University
  • Master of Arts, Guidance and Counseling, Northeastern Illinois University

Adult and juvenile reentry, reentry program operation, community corrections, and data collection

Jessica Reichert | Full Bio 

Manager, Center for Justice Research and Evaluation | (312) 793-8550 |

  • Bachelor of Science, Criminal Justice, Bradley University
  • Master of Science, Criminal Justice, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Behavioral health, policing, corrections/reentry, trauma/PTSD, and human trafficking

Caleb Schaffner | Full Bio 

InfoNet Research Analyst |

Erinne Smith | Full Bio 

Research Assistant | 312-793-8550 |

Amanda L. Vasquez | Full Bio 

Research Analyst |

  • Bachelor of Arts, Applied Psychology and Criminal Justice, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Master or Arts, Criminology, Law, and Justice, University of Illinois at Chicago

Violence against women, sexual assault, sex trafficking, commercial sexual exploitation of children, and intimate partner violence

Lauren Weisner | Full Bio 

Research Analyst | 312-793-8550 |

Loading publications…
An Evaluation of Transitional Housing Programs in Illinois for Victims of Domestic Violence and/or Human Trafficking
October 3, 2019 | Report | Victims
Research suggests violence against women is a leading cause of U.S. homelessness and housing instability for women and their children. Transitional housing programs offer stable housing to women and their children who have been harmed by violence. Researchers conducted a process evaluation of three Illinois transitional housing programs. Overall, the study revealed the programs provided a vital service to victims and staff and client statements reflected positively on the program. The study highlighted areas for program enhancement, including offering more education on tenant rights; expansion and engagement of victims; funding for additional services, such as food assistance, transportation, and childcare; and increased program awareness.
By Alysson Gatens
Provider-Reported Challenges & Opportunities in Supporting Young Victims of Crime
September 19, 2019 | Article | Victimization
The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority was awarded a grant from the Office for Victims of Crime for the Illinois Helping Everyone Access Linked Systems (Illinois HEALS) initiative. The six-year initiative seeks to improve the identification, connection, and service engagement of children, youth, and families impacted by violence in Illinois. Researchers analyzed documents and artifacts from series of 29 meetings for the Illinois HEALS initiative with representatives from several service domains (i.e., child welfare, education, healthcare, family and civil court, justice, social services, and victim services) in Illinois. Findings suggest that providers throughout the state are facing challenges in recognizing victimization experiences of children and youth, connecting young persons to appropriate and accessible resources, and engaging them in meaningful services. This article presents recommendations that explore strategies to build capacity in recognizing signs of victimization, broadening screening and assessment practices, supporting the well-being of staff, and fostering collaborations.
By Paola B. Baldo
How Illinois Service Providers Support Young Victims of Crime: Findings from an Illinois HEALS Survey
September 3, 2019 | Article | Victimization
The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority was awarded a grant from the Office for Victims of Crime for the Illinois Helping Everyone Access Linked Systems (Illinois HEALS) initiative. The six-year initiative seeks to improve the recognition, connection, and service engagement of children, youth, and families impacted by violence in Illinois. Illinois HEALS program staff surveyed agencies in Illinois serving children, youth, and families to better understand how they learn about client victimization and exposure to violence, services available to victims, and referral and collaboration processes. Survey findings revealed service providers use varying methods to learn about clients’ victimization, such as screening and assessment tools, and strategies for sharing information within and across agencies and systems, including collaboration networks and multidisciplinary teams. While many providers offer services to children and/or adults, victim-focused services are often not available for family members. Recommendations for how agencies can work to improve harm recognition, service connections, and service engagement are discussed.
By Amanda L. Vasquez
A Survey of Law Enforcement in Central Illinois to Guide Violence Reduction Strategies and Project Safe Neighborhoods
August 12, 2019 | Report | Police, Violent Crime
Project Safe Neighborhoods is a U.S. Department of Justice initiative to support prosecutor-led development of local, tailored initiatives to reduce gun and gang violence. In partnership with the Office of the U.S. Attorney’s Central Illinois District’s Project Safe Neighborhoods team, ICJIA conducted a survey of police and sheriff departments in Illinois’ Central region on violent crime. The survey included questions on characteristics of violent crime, involvement of guns and gangs in violent crime, and law enforcement efforts to reduce violent crime. Responses indicated domestic violence was the most prominent violent crime in the region and that gun and gang violence were concentrated in a small number of jurisdictions. Additionally, law enforcement respondents indicated they employed a variety of strategies to reduce violent crime, including focused deterrence, “hot spots,” and street stop approaches.
By Justin Escamilla
Alcohol-Impaired Driving in Illinois
July 23, 2019 | Article | Law Enforcement
Driving under the influence of alcohol (DUI) is a persistent but preventable problem that creates a risk of injury or death for all individuals on the road. This article provides an overview of policies to prevent and reduce alcohol-impaired driving, an analysis of related data from Illinois, and a review of existing research on interventions to combat driving under the influence. Researchers found the number of DUI arrests and alcohol-related fatal accidents in Illinois have remained stable or decreased in the past decade. However, further research is needed to fully understand the impact of law enforcement efforts and new technology to address alcohol-impaired driving.
By Alysson Gatens
Behavioral and Public Health Perspectives on Violence Prevention: A Survey of Illinois Practitioners
July 15, 2019 | Article | Violence Prevention
Violence is one of the top three leading causes of death for individuals between the ages of 15 and 34 in the United States, and the American Public Health Association and Centers for Disease Control have designated violence a public health crisis. Important to combating this crisis are behavioral and public health professionals and practitioners who directly work to prevent violence. The present study sought to understand behavioral and public health providers’ competencies, capacities, comfort, confidence, and preparedness in violence prevention. Results from a survey of 152 respondents indicated there are areas for improving the education and training around violence prevention, as well as legal and ethical liabilities among practitioners. Further, few practitioners reported receiving client referrals from law enforcement agencies.
By Lily Gleicher
A State and National Overview of Methamphetamine Trends
July 11, 2019 | article | Drugs
While most of the country has turned its attention to the opioid crisis, Illinois has seen a resurgence in methamphetamine misuse and related offending, particularly in rural areas. Researchers explored literature and data available on the extent and nature of state and national methamphetamine issues. Researchers found the arrest rate for methamphetamine-related offenses more than tripled between 2010 and 2017 in Illinois and the number of individuals in Illinois prisons for methamphetamine offenses increased 67 percent between 2012 and 2018. Further, treatment admissions for methamphetamine increased five-fold between 2000 and 2017.
By Lauren Weisner And Sharyn Adams
Illinois Helping Everyone Access Linked Systems Action Plan
July 1, 2019 | Report | Victimization
The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority was awarded a Linking Systems of Care for Children and Youth Demonstration grant from the Office for Victims of Crime. This six-year initiative seeks to improve the identification, connection, and service engagement of children, youth, and families impacted by violence in Illinois. Informed by a 15-month planning process, the Illinois HEALS Action Plan will guide the future work of the project to implement policies, practices, and programs that strengthen the capacity of Illinois’ communities to recognize when victimization has occurred and connect and engage young victims and families in needed services.
By Jaclyn Houston Kolnik, Megan Alderden, Reshma Desai, Amanda L. Vasquez, Jason Wynkoop, Sooeun Tiffany Kim, And Paola B. Baldo
Financial Assistance for Illinois Victims: Crime Victim Compensation Fund
June 24, 2019 | Article | Victimization
Crime victim compensation (CVC) fund programs are available in all 50 states to financially assist victims of violent crime. The following article summarizes the purpose of crime victim compensation, victim-centered principles in CVC programs, and the criteria for CVC in Illinois. Researchers identified data on CVC awareness and applications in Illinois to explore how these data compare with reported crime trends and victim characteristics. Results suggest that many victims, including family members of homicide victims, are potentially eligible but do not receive CVC. Implications for how to adapt CVC programs to be victim-centered and improve access to CVC funds are discussed.
By Anne Kirkner And Jaclyn Houston Kolnik
Probation Clients’ Barriers to Access and Use of Opioid Use Disorder Medications
June 17, 2019 | article | Probation
Some individuals on probation who have opioid use disorders (OUDs) cannot access effective, FDA-approved medications-methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone-to treat their disorders. This article shared finding from a survey of 26 Illinois probation department directors on how probation departments respond to clients with OUDs, focusing on the barriers to accessing OUD medications. The article noted that a majority of probation department leaders perceived barriers for probation client access to OUD medications including lack of medical personnel experience, cost, need for guidance on medications, and regulations prohibiting medication use. The article highlighted a need for training, interagency collaboration, and policy changes to increase access to, education on, and use of, medications for probation clients. Such efforts may result in positive outcomes such as reduced recidivism, increased quality of life, and reduced mortality.
By Jessica Reichert And Lily Gleicher
Protecting Participants of Social Science Research
June 17, 2019 | article | Research and Evaluation
Social science research, rooted in the scientific method, is the foundation on which to advance knowledge and society. Part of research can include the participation of individuals, or “human subjects,” to help further the understanding of society and issues within society. International, federal, state, and local regulations ensure individuals are protected from harm while participating in research. The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority and other federally funded agencies and individuals adhere to these regulations. This article provides an overview of federal regulations for human subject research protections in social science.
By Lily Gleicher
Factors Influencing the Sentencing of Convicted Felons in Illinois
June 11, 2019 | Report | Sentencing
The number of individuals under some form of correctional supervision for a felony conviction has more than doubled since the mid-1980s. This article examines individual characteristics that influence sentencing and how community context and characteristics may also play a role in whether a jurisdiction is more likely use prison as a sanction.
By Loyola University Chicago, Dr. David Olson, And Dr. Donald Stemen
Demystifying Program Evaluation in Criminal Justice: A Guide for Practitioners
June 4, 2019 | article | evaluation
Evaluation in criminal justice is vital to improving program effectiveness, increasing efficiency, and improving public safety. This article helps demystify the evaluation process and offers practical advice for practitioners endeavoring to evaluate a program. Processes for internal evaluation and external evaluation partnerships are described. Criminal justice practitioners are encouraged to understand the research process and conduct evaluations of their programs and practices.
By Jessica Reichert And Alysson Gatens
Entrepreneurship for the Formerly Incarcerated: A Process Evaluation of the Pathway to Enterprise for Returning Citizens (PERC) Program
May 28, 2019 | Report | prisoner reentry
Formerly incarcerated individuals may be unable to secure stable employment and struggle to acquire income; however, opening a small business may offer this population an alternative to the traditional job market. Researchers evaluated the Pathway to Enterprise for Returning Citizens (PERC) program, which offered training in entrepreneurship and other resources to those returning from Illinois prisons to Cook County. Researchers examined delivery of PERC’s entrepreneurship training, experiences of program participants and training staff, program completion among participants, and knowledge gains with information from focus groups, surveys, interviews, and administrative records. Feedback from staff and participants was mostly positive and the program increased entrepreneurship knowledge. However, engaging the 72 returning citizens in the program was a challenge—of all eligible participants, 16 attended the first week of training (22 percent) and only 12 graduated the program (17 percent).
By Justin Escamilla, Jessica Reichert, Lauren Weisner, And Christopher Mayer
Child and Youth Exposure to Violence in Illinois
March 18, 2019 | Article | Victimization
A large number of children and youth in the United States experience multiple forms of violence in their homes, schools, and community. These experiences can impact a child’s personality development, mental health, academic success, and interpersonal relationships. This article presents data on the prevalence of childhood victimization and exposure to violence in Illinois. Also discussed are the impacts of those experiences and their implications for policy and practice.
By Jaclyn Houston Kolnik And Paola B. Baldo
Examining the Extent of Recidivism in Illinois After Juvenile Incarceration
March 11, 2019 | Report | juvenile justice
Despite the juvenile justice system’s shift from punitive to rehabilitative correctional approaches, post-commitment youth recidivism continues to be a significant issue. While the number of incarcerated juveniles in Illinois has consistently decreased over the years, the recidivism rate remains high. To better understand the extent of Illinois youth recidivism, researchers measured three-year rearrest and reincarceration rates among a sample of youth released from state juvenile correctional facilities. Over the three-year period post-release from the juvenile state correctional facilities, 87 percent of youth were rearrested, 55 percent were recommitted to a state juvenile correctional facility, and 54 percent were committed to an adult correctional facility. While Illinois has made efforts to reform juvenile justice in the state, recidivism remains high for those who are sentenced to a juvenile correctional facility. These rates likely reflect that youth committed to juvenile corrections generally have more complex needs and require more intensive, individualized, wrap-around programs and services to be successful in the community.
By Lily Gleicher
Victimization and Help-Seeking Experiences of LGBTQ+ Individuals
January 23, 2019 | Article | Victimization
Lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer/questioning (LGBTQ+) individuals are at increased risk for experiencing violence and the negative impacts associated with violence, including stress, PTSD symptoms and injury. LGBTQ+ victims are an underserved victim population in Illinois despite these increased risks. Individuals from underserved victim groups, such as people of color, those who identify as LGBTQ+, or those who are homeless are less likely to seek, access, or receive services following victimization.[1] This article will explore how victimization and help-seeking experiences of LGBTQ+ victims in Illinois differ from those of non-LGBTQ+ victims, and how experiences may vary based on a victim’s LGB identity (i.e., lesbian/gay versus bisexual).[2] It concludes with implications for policy and practice and suggestions for how to improve victim service delivery for LGBTQ+ victims and highlights areas for further research to inform how the state can better meet the needs of underserved victim populations.
By Amanda L. Vasquez
The Victim-Offender Overlap: Examining the Relationship Between Victimization and Offending
January 9, 2019 | Article | Victims
The relationship between victimization and offending, also referred to as the victim-offender overlap, is widely documented. While crime victims do not always become offenders, most offenders have been victims. The victimization experience can produce negative physical, mental, and behavioral outcomes in individuals and some may go on to commit their own crimes. This article outlines leading theoretical explanations for the victim-offender overlap, factors that influence victimization and offending, and recommendations for practitioners to address violent victimization and prevent subsequent offending.
By Caitlin DeLong And Jessica Reichert
Law Enforcement Response to Mental Health Crisis Incidents: A Survey of Illinois Police and Sheriff’s Departments
December 14, 2018 | Article | Mental Health
Law enforcement agencies in Illinois and across the country are seeking ways to increase the safety and efficacy of interactions between officers and individuals experiencing a mental health crisis. Researchers conducted a statewide survey to learn more about how police and sheriff’s departments respond to mental health crisis incidents. This article describes responding departments’ policies and procedures to handle mental health crises in their jurisdictions and community resources available to help them address individuals’ mental health needs. Researchers found that mental health crises are a main concern of law enforcement in their communities, with a majority of respondents employing a specialized response to handle such incidents. Recommendations for policy and future research are discussed.
By Alysson Gatens
Addressing Opioid Use Disorders in Community Corrections: A Survey of Illinois Probation Departments
October 26, 2018 | Article | Probation
Nearly one-third of Illinois probationers suffer from an opioid use disorder (OUD). Despite evidence that FDA-approved medications methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone can effectively treat OUD, many probation departments do not allow their clients to use them, even when prescribed by a healthcare provider. ICJIA researchers surveyed probation departments across the state to better understand their familiarity with, and training on, the medications, as well as barriers to their clients’ access and use. This article summarizes the study’s findings.
By Jessica Reichert, Lily Gleicher, And Elizabeth Salisbury-Afshar
Criminal Justice Professionals Learn Promising Practices to Prosecute Domestic Violence Cases
October 19, 2018 | Research Report | Domestic Violence
Illinois law enforcement agencies reported 118,160 domestic-related crimes in 2016. The Illinois Family Violence Coordinating Council developed and provided training for police and other criminal justice practitioners to improve knowledge about domestic violence and apply this knowledge to support evidence-based approaches to prosecution and orders of protection. This article presents findings from 28 training evaluations held between September 2015 and September 2017. These evaluations provided evidence of some improvement post-training in confidence and knowledge of domestic violence and increased knowledge of promising practices to collect evidence for and investigate domestic violence and abuse cases.
By Lynne Mock
Illinois Arrests and Prison Admissions for Drug Offenses: Interactive Data
October 11, 2018 | Article | Drug Offenses
This interactive data on drug-related arrests and prison admissions allow users to explore the types of drug offenses for which individuals are arrested and admitted to prison, the locations in which different types of drug arrests and prison admissions occur in Illinois, and the characteristics of those admitted to prison for each type of drug offense.
By Justin Escamilla And Sharyn Adams
Co-occurring Mental Health and Substance Use Disorders of Women in Prison: An Evaluation of the WestCare Foundation’s Dual Diagnosis Program in Illinois
October 5, 2018 | Research Report | Prison
This brief shares findings from a process evaluation of a program that treats women prisoners in Illinois with co-occurring disorders—substance use and mental health disorders. Overall, feedback from clients and staff were positive and the program showed reductions in clients’ posttraumatic stress disorder symptoms and aggression after participation. In addition, researchers offer suggestions to improve the program’s physical space, as well as enhance program components and data collection.
By Jessica Reichert, Alysson Gatens, Sharyn Adams, Lily Gleicher, Lauren Weisner, And Christine Head
BetaGov Supports Practitioners and Evaluators in Conducting Randomized Control Trials to Test Criminal Justice Programs
October 2, 2018 | Article | Reentry
This article explores the use of randomized control trials (RCTs) to test criminal justice programs to measure effectiveness. BetaGov is a group that offers assistance to practitioners and researchers to conduct RCTs. An example of such a collaboration between ICJIA and Betagov is offered along with lessons learned.
By Justin Escamilla, Jessica Reichert, Maureen Hillhouse, And Angela Hawken
Addressing Opioid Use Disorders in Corrections: A Survey of Illinois Jails
September 7, 2018 | Article | Jails
Even with substantial efforts at the state and local levels, opioid overdoses in Illinois continue to rise. Many in jails and prisons suffer from opioid use disorders and some receive treatment. Upon release, the risk of overdose is enhanced due to reduced tolerance. This article presents findings from a survey of 36 Illinois jail administrators on the use of medication-assisted treatment for detainees with opioid use disorders, naloxone distribution to reduce post-release overdose, and policies to ensure safe withdrawal from opioids and other drugs.
By Jessica Reichert, Lauren Weisner, Tyler Marcheschi, Lily Gleicher, And Sharyn Adams
What’s Next for InfoNet? How a Statewide Case Management System is Shaping Responses to Illinois Victims
August 27, 2018 | Article | Victimization
InfoNet is a web-based, centralized statewide case management system for domestic and sexual violence centers maintained by the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (ICJIA). This article demonstrates InfoNet’s strengths and utility and how its data contribute knowledge about victimization and victim services. Also highlighted are the system’s future directions for growth, new functionalities, and broader applications to address victimization in Illinois.
By Jaclyn Houston-Kolnik And Jennifer Hiselman
The Cost of Justice: The Impact of Criminal Justice Financial Obligations on Individuals and Families
August 1, 2018 | Article | Criminal Justice System
Monetary penalties, such as court costs, fees, and fines, are common sanctions levied by the criminal justice system. While these sanctions are used to offset court operations’ costs, the financial burden disproportionately impacts those from lower socioeconomic levels and minority communities. This article summarizes survey findings gleaned from a population of justice-involved individuals to gain insight into the impacts of court costs, fees, and fines on individuals and families in Illinois. Most respondents reported receiving no explanation of their financial obligations, made less than $15,000, and had to forgo basic needs to pay legal debts.
By Lily Gleicher And Caitlin DeLong
Examining the Recidivism of Firearm Offenders Using State Criminal History and Mortality Data
July 31, 2018 | Article | Criminal Justice, Offenders, Recidivism
In this study, researchers compared recidivism rates of individuals initially arrested for gun charges with individuals arrested for other offenses. The researchers also used state criminal history records, state prison records, and death certificates to follow individuals for 10 years after their first firearm arrest. Findings offer relevant insights into first-time, firearm-involved arrestees, their recidivism patterns, and mortality rates, and inform policy and practice on the issue of guns and violence.
By Christine Devitt Westley And Bobae Kang
Collaboration in Criminal Justice: A Review of the Literature on Criminal Justice Coordinating Councils
July 19, 2018 | Article | Criminal Justice
The criminal justice system features multiple independent agencies working parallel to each other. Criminal justice coordinating councils foster agency collaboration to better address county criminal justice issues. This article describes criminal justice coordinating councils and examines the limited research available on their implementation and effectiveness.
By Lily Gleicher, Jessica Reichert, And Christine Head
The Intersection of Homelessness and the Criminal Justice System
July 3, 2018 | Article | Homeless
This article offers an overview of state and national homelessness including prevalence and causes of homelessness, criminal justice system contacts with the homeless, and recommendations to address homelessness with a focus on justice-involved populations.
By Christopher Mayer And Jessica Reichert
Focused Deterrence: A Policing Strategy to Combat Gun Violence
June 22, 2018 | Article | Law Enforcement
Gun violence continues to be a major criminal justice and public health issue. This article provides an overview of one strategy to reduce gun violence—focused deterrence. The strategy has been employed in many major U.S. cities, including in Illinois in Chicago, Peoria, and Rockford. Overall research on focused deterrence strategies has found statistically significant reductions in violent crime.
By Jessica Reichert, Vernon Smith, Sharyn Adams, Lily Gleicher, Laurel Hill, And Justin Escamilla
An Examination of Illinois and National Pretrial Practices, Detention, and Reform Efforts
June 7, 2018 | Article | Courts
This article provides an overview of the main issues driving a renewed focus on pretrial detention, the effects of overuse of pretrial detention, and potential areas of reform with a focus on Illinois law and practices when possible. Illinois has made some progress in pretrial reform including the passing of a Bail Reform Act which became effective in 2018. However, more data and research is needed in the area of pretrial practices.
By Jessica Reichert And Alysson Gatens
Opioid Prescribing in Illinois: Examining Prescription Drug Monitoring Program Data
May 21, 2018 | Article | Prescription Drug Use
Excessive opioid prescribing increases exposure to those drugs and increases their volume in communities. Over-prescribing has been associated with growing rates of opioid use disorder, overdose, and death. Opioid prescription rates are relatively low in Illinois compared to other states; however, prescription rates varies greatly by county, city, and medical practitioner. This article summarizes Illinois opioid prescription data from the Illinois Prescription Monitoring Program.
By Jessica Reichert, Alysson Gatens, And Elizabeth Salisbury Afshar
Illinois Opioid Prescription Data
May 21, 2018 | Article | Criminal Justice Data
By Justin Escamilla And Alysson Gatens
Trauma Types and Promising Approaches to Assist Survivors
April 10, 2018 | Article | Victims
Traumatic experiences and exposure to violence can leave a lifelong impact on an individual, especially when left untreated. Public health officials have recognized the need for comprehensive victim-centered approaches to understanding and addressing the impact of trauma. One such approach is trauma-informed care, which seeks to create a safe environment where individuals do not experience further trauma or harm in the process of receiving services and support, which may occur when providers engage in practices that are not sensitive to the impacts of trauma. This article provides an overview of trauma and traumatic stress reactions and how implementing a trauma-informed approach benefits both individuals with trauma histories and victim service providers in a multitude of settings.
By Keeley Kolis And Jaclyn Houston Kolnik
Responding to Individuals Experiencing Mental Health Crises: Police-Involved Programs
April 2, 2018 | Article | Mental Health
As many as 10 percent of police contacts involve individuals with mental health conditions. A growing number of police and sheriff’s departments have implemented specialized responses to mental health crisis incidents, including crisis intervention teams. Research indicates departments offering specialized responses show greater officer knowledge of mental health conditions and more positive police attitudes toward individuals with mental health conditions. This article examines specialized mental health responses with an emphasis on practices in Illinois and offers implications for future research and practice.
By Alysson Gatens
Victim Service Delivery: Illinois Providers’ Perspectives on Victim Service Barriers and Agency Capacity
January 30, 2018 | Research Report | Victimization
Researchers conducted a statewide study to better understand crime victim needs, identify service gaps, and measure the capacity of Illinois victim service providers. This report focuses on how victim service providers from across Illinois discussed their service delivery and capacity to meet victim need. Study findings have policy and practice implications for funders, victim service providers, and other service agencies that interact with victims in Illinois.
By Jaclyn Houston Kolnik And Amanda L. Vasquez
News Reporting on Human Trafficking: Exploratory Qualitative Interviews with Illinois News Journalists
January 16, 2018 | Article | Victims
Media—in particular news coverage—contribute toward shaping public understanding and opinion on societal issues, and influence policies, programs, and legislative action. While a small number of previous studies have explored journalists’ reporting on other social issues, very little is known about their perceptions and knowledge of human trafficking. In this exploratory study, researchers conducted 12 qualitative interviews with Illinois newspaper reporters to examine their understanding and work process in covering human trafficking. The results suggest that while many reporters understand the federal definition of trafficking, there remain gaps in knowledge about the complexity of the issue. Furthermore, the work process that reporters follow to report on human trafficking differs by their particular role and level of experience, with investigative stories on human trafficking being covered by more seasoned reporters who have the time and space to explore the issue in greater depth. The study findings highlight the importance of, and constraints upon, comprehensive news coverage on human trafficking.
By Jessica Reichert, Jaclyn Houston Kolnik, Amanda L. Vasquez, And Emma Peterson
Sex Offenses & Sex Offender Registration Task Force Final Report
January 2, 2018 | Research Report | Sex Offender
In 2016, the Illinois’ 99th General Assembly established the Sex Offenses and Sex Offender Registration Task Force to examine the implementation and impact of the state’s sex offender registration and residency restrictions. The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority provided the Task Force with administrative support. This report summarizes and concludes its work.
By Sex Offenses And Sex Offender Registration Task Force
Comprehensive Legal Services for Victims of Crime
December 13, 2017 | Article | Victimization
Illinois victims and victim service providers indicate that legal services are needed post-victimization, and for many victims in the state this need is left unmet. Meeting a victim’s legal needs is key to ensuring their safety and security and enabling them to continue to recover from their victimization experience. Crime victims can directly benefit from access to comprehensive legal services, including legal advocacy, civil legal services and victim rights enforcement. Numerous legal avenues are open to victims of crime, and legal advocates and attorneys are well-positioned to assist victims as they engage either the criminal justice or civil legal systems. This article explores types of victim legal services, the roles of legal service providers, the needs and potential remedies available to victims by crime type, and barriers to legal service access and delivery. Implications for both providers and funders to ensure comprehensive legal services to victims of crime also are discussed.
By Amanda L. Vasquez
An Overview of Problem-Solving Courts and Implications for Practice
December 11, 2017 | Article | Courts
Problem-solving courts have operated as separate courts or dockets as an alternative to adjudication or incarceration for more than 20 years. These programs offer clients court accountability, intensive supervision, drug testing, and treatment for substance use disorders, mental health conditions, and other issues. Drug, mental health, domestic violence, and veteran’s courts are the most common problem-solving models, with 3,000 in existence around the country. This article provides a state and national overview of problem-solving courts, components shown to reduce recidivism and increase public safety, and implications for policy and practice.
By Erica Hughes And Jessica Reichert
Evaluation of Illinois Multi-Jurisdictional Drug Task Forces
December 6, 2017 | Research Report | Law Enforcement
Drug trafficking constitutes a major threat to public health and community well-being. Multi-jurisdictional drug task forces, comprised of law enforcement officers in one or more counties that agree to pool resources, were designed to combat drug distribution and trafficking. Researchers evaluated 19 drug task forces in Illinois using quantitative and qualitative methods. Quantitative methods included analyzing administrative data and state arrest records. Qualitative methods included focus groups with members of 18 task forces and surveys of both staff and policy board directors. The study revealed Illinois drug task forces made proportionately more drug arrests carrying more serious felony and manufacture/delivery charges than their local police counterparts. The study also showed the task forces fostered collaboration with stakeholders, maintained fidelity to critical elements of drug task forces, and garnered support from their policy boards.
By Jessica Reichert, Erin Sheridan, Matthew DeSalvo, And Sharyn Adams
Exploring Effective Post-Opioid Overdose Reversal Responses for Law Enforcement and Other First Responders
November 29, 2017 | Article | Law Enforcement
First responders across the country are carrying and administering naloxone, successfully reversing countless overdose deaths. However, experiencing a revival isn’t always a deterrent for those suffering with opioid use disorder, as many continue to use, experience repeated overdoses, and repeatedly come into contact with local law enforcement. Some police officers are beginning to experience frustration with repeated calls for revival, as well as continued and frequent contacts with and arrests of the same individuals. Communities are learning overdose reversal is just the first step in opioid intervention. With opioid deaths on the rise and fentanyl deaths rapidly increasing, a crisis of this magnitude requires innovative responses at multiple intervention points, including post-overdose, as part of a comprehensive strategy to aid in the treatment of and recovery from opioid use disorders. This article explores law enforcement overdose reversal and post-resuscitation and treatment responses in the newly emerging field of pre-arrest diversion.
By Jessica Reichert And Jac Charlier
Procedural Justice in Policing: How the Process of Justice Impacts Public Attitudes and Law Enforcement Outcomes
November 7, 2017 | Article | Law Enforcement
An increasing number of widely publicized and divisive incidents between police and citizens suggest a need for police policies and practices to improve procedural justice. Procedural justice emphasizes the need for police to demonstrate their legitimacy to the public in four areas—voice, transparency, fairness, and impartiality. This article explains procedural justice and police legitimacy, examines the often racial divide between citizens and police, and offers implications for police policy and practice.
By Emma Peterson, Jessica Reichert, And Kaitlyn Konefal
Victim Need Report: Service Providers’ Perspectives on the Needs of Crime Victims and Service Gaps
November 3, 2017 | Article, Research Report | Victimization
Researchers conducted a statewide study to better understand crime victim needs, identify service gaps, and measure the capacity of Illinois victim service providers. Victim service providers from across Illinois identified the needs of violent crime victims. Providers also highlighted service gaps, or ways in which current service availability was unable to satisfy victim need. Study findings have policy and practice implications for funders, victim service providers, and other service agencies that interact with victims in Illinois.
By Amanda L. Vasquez And Jaclyn Houston Kolnik
Implementation Science in Criminal Justice: How Implementation of Evidence-based Programs and Practices Affects Outcomes
October 20, 2017 | Article | Evidence-Informed Practices
With increased attention on the criminal justice system’s use of evidence-based practices, focus is needed on the quality of practice implementation and its impact on outcomes. This article defines evidence-based practices, discusses the importance of effective implementation, and outlines the drivers for organizational and operational change.
By Lily Gleicher
Police-Led Referrals to Treatment for Substance Use Disorders in Rural Illinois: An Examination of the Safe Passage Initiative
October 3, 2017 | Article | Law Enforcement
Researchers conducted a process evaluation of Safe Passage, a police deflection model in which police departments become a referral point to treatment for individuals with substance use disorders. Through the model, individuals can walk into any participating police department and request and receive treatment without fear of arrest. In Illinois, Safe Passage has served 170 individuals in rural Lee and Whiteside counties since 2015. Researchers sought to understand how the initiative was developed and operated and gain perspectives of stakeholders, police officers, treatment providers, and clients involved in the program. While more research is needed, the initiative showed promise in its collaborative approach to connecting clients to treatment.
By Jessica Reichert, Lily Gleicher, Lynne Mock, Sharyn Adams, And Kimberly Lopez
Performance Incentive Funding For Prison Diversion: An Implementation Evaluation of the Winnebago County Adult Redeploy Illinois Program
September 27, 2017 | Article | Criminal Justice, Probation, Prison Diversion, Drug Court, Evaluation
ICJIA researchers conducted an implementation evaluation of the Adult Redeploy Illinois-supported Winnebago County Drug Court. Probation administrative data, criminal history data, interviews with program stakeholders and participants informed the evaluation and researchers developed implications for policy and practice for this and any other county or municipality interested in implementing a drug court.
By Lynne Mock, Risa Sacomani, And Sara Gonzalez
Fighting the Opioid Crisis through Substance Use Disorder Treatment: A Study of a Police Program Model in Illinois
September 7, 2017 | Article | Law enforcement
Seeking to more effectively help individuals suffering from opioid use disorder, police departments across the country are embracing a deflection model that offers treatment access to those in need. Researchers interviewed representatives of seven law enforcement agencies employing treatment program models in Illinois to better understand operations, leverage lessons learned, measure sustainability, and inform other agencies as they implement their own programs.
By Jessica Reichert
An Examination of Fear of Crime and Social Vulnerability in Chicago Neighborhoods
August 16, 2017 | Article | Community violence
Although there have been documented declines in U.S. crime rates in past decades, recent news headlines in Chicago often highlight incidents of, and concerns about, violence, particularly gun violence. Prior research has noted fear of crime in urban neighborhoods is associated with physical deterioration, as well as social disorganization and vulnerability. ICJIA researchers surveyed more than 1,000 Chicago residents in 16 neighborhoods on fear of crime and compared their responses to a measure of neighborhood social vulnerability. This study found an association between social vulnerability and fear of crime. In addition, half of the residents had greater fear than expected based on neighborhood social vulnerability and half had less fear of crime than expected. Future research can serve to understand the impact of, and ways to reduce, unwarranted fear that can have a negative impact on individuals.
By Jessica Reichert And Kaitlyn Konefal
A Comprehensive Model for Underserved Victims of Violent Crime: Trauma Recovery Centers
August 4, 2017 | Article | Victimization
Violent crime victimization can impact multiple areas of victims’ lives. Victims who are underserved or marginalized face unique individual, societal, and cultural hurdles that impact help-seeking. Models of service delivery that provide a single point of contact and comprehensive, evidence-based services hold promise to serve victims whose needs extend beyond traditional services. Comprehensive trauma recovery center (TRC) models have been shown to lead to positive survivor outcomes. TRC model expansion should be explored to assess how they might complement existing services and reach underserved individuals and groups.
By Jaclyn Houston Kolnik
Trauma-Informed and Evidence-Based Practices and Programs to Address Trauma in Correctional Settings
July 25, 2017 | Article | Corrections
The prevalence of trauma and posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is higher among individuals in prison and jail than in the general population. Research has shown a connection between trauma and criminality due in part to the coping mechanisms of aggression and substance misuse after a traumatic event. While the corrections environment itself may cause or exacerbate PTSD symptoms in some individuals, facilities can implement trauma-informed practices to minimize re-traumatization and reduce PTSD symptoms. This article documents the prevalence of trauma and PTSD within this population, and discusses how correctional facilities can implement trauma-informed practices and evidence-based approaches to assist individuals with trauma histories.
By Sharyn Adams, Jaclyn Houston Kolnik, And Jessica Reichert
An Examination of Traumatic Experiences and Posttraumatic Stress Disorder Among a Sample of Illinois Prisoners
July 25, 2017 | Article | Corrections
Research has found nearly all prisoners have experienced a traumatic event in their life and a high proportion suffer from PTSD. Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority and WestCare Foundation (Illinois) researchers surveyed 573 Illinois prisoners to understand the trauma they experienced and explore the relationship between trauma and substance misuse. Researchers found 89 percent of those surveyed had both experienced and witnessed more than one traumatic event during their lifetime. Almost one-fourth of the sample were identified as being symptomatic for PTSD (24 percent). In addition, researchers found a relationship found between greater PTSD symptoms and higher drug use. This article describes survey findings and provides implications for policy and practice in correctional facilities.
By Sharyn Adams, Lily Gleicher, Jessica Reichert, Kaitlyn Konefal, And Dustin Cantrell
An Overview of Medication-Assisted Treatment for Opioid Use Disorders for Criminal Justice-Involved Individuals
July 18, 2017 | Article | Treatment for Opioid Use Disorders (OUD)
There is a national opioid epidemic and one intervention to help those suffering from an opioid use disorder (OUD) is medication-assisted treatment (MAT). MAT is the use of medications in conjunction with behavioral therapy as part of a long-term treatment regimen. There are three main MAT medications used today—methadone, buprenorphine, and naltrexone. Research has shown MAT, in particular the use of methadone or buprenorphine, is considered an evidence-based practice to treat OUD. Studies indicate those in MAT have better outcomes than those who engage in therapy alone. This article provides an overview of MAT with a focus on use with criminal justice populations.
By Jessica Reichert, Lily Gleicher, And Elizabeth Salisbury Afshar
Juvenile Justice in Illinois, 2015
July 12, 2017 | Article | Juvenile Justice, Juveniles

Juvenile Justice in Illinois, 2015, provides a statistical overview of the juvenile justice system in Illinois across four decision points in which data were available: arrest, detention admissions, active probation caseloads, and new sentence admissions to corrections. Statewide and regional figures are provided with rates spanning from 2011 to 2015. In addition, population, demographic, and offense type information is provided for decision points in which data were available in 2015. Overall, rates for arrest, active probation caseload, detention admissions, and new sentence admissions to corrections have decreased between 2011 and 2015; however, the Central and Southern regions had slight increases in detention admission rates.

By Lily Gleicher
Community Violence Prevention, Intervention, and Suppression
June 21, 2017 | Article | Community Violence
Addressing street-level violence such as murders and aggravated assaults and batteries that occur on the public way and often involve firearms requires a multi-pronged approach. One effective model for addressing street violence, and, in particular, gang-related or group-involved street violence, is the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention’s (OJJDP) Comprehensive Gang Prevention, Intervention, and Suppression Model. The model involves implementing complementary and coordinated prevention, intervention, and suppression activities in a single community. This article provides examples of evidence-based practices and programs that strengthen youth resilience and build social capital and work to reduce threats or perceived threats using the OJJDP model as a framework. The article also highlights how the model is enhanced when community stakeholders consider how trauma has impacted residents and those targeted by intervention and suppression efforts.
By Megan Alderden
Study of Self-Reported Prescription Drug Use Among a Sample of Illinois Prisoners
June 15, 2017 | Article | Substance use disorders, corrections, prison, prescription drug use
While more than half of individuals incarcerated in U.S. jails and prisons meet the diagnostic criteria for a substance use disorder, little is known about their misuse of prescription drugs. In this study, Authority researchers, in collaboration with WestCare Foundation Illinois, surveyed 573 state prisoners on prescription drug use to examine prevalence, accessibility, motivation for use, and effects. Forty-six percent of the sample reported using prescription drugs to get high and 20 percent used prescription drugs daily in the year before their incarceration.
By Lily Gleicher, Jessica Reichert, And Dustin Cantrell
Victim Needs Assessment
April 18, 2017 | Article | Victim Services, Victimization
In 2016, the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority contracted with Aeffect, Inc. to conduct a statewide victim needs assessment. The study was designed to guide the ICJIA victim services planning process and provide insight into the prevalence of victimization, needs of victims, and their receipt and satisfaction with services. Major findings of the assessment are outlined.
By Tracy Hahn
Reducing Substance Use Disorders and Related Offending: A Continuum of Evidence-Informed Practices in the Criminal Justice System
April 7, 2017 | Article | Criminal Justice, Substance Use Disorders, Evidence-Informed Practices
By Lily Gleicher
Illinois Drug Threat Assessment: A Survey of Police Chiefs and County Sheriffs
March 9, 2017 | Report | Law enforcement
It is important for states to understand current drug and crime trends in order to be proactive. Local law enforcement can provide important contributions in identifying emerging drug and crime trends as frontline officers. To get the local law enforcement perspective, the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority administered a survey to Illinois police chiefs and county sheriffs to gain insight regarding drug trafficking in their jurisdiction. Eighty-three police chiefs and county sheriffs responded to the survey, most frequently identifying heroin and prescription drugs as the greatest drug threats in their jurisdictions. Methamphetamine was also reported as the greatest drug threat in the central and southern regions of Illinois. This article is a summary of key findings of the full report.
By Lily Gleicher And Jessica Reichert
Study of self-reported synthetic drug use among a sample of Illinois prisoners
February 17, 2017 | Article | Synthetic Drug Use
Synthetic drug use is a growing public health concern. Synthetics are often cheaper and more readily available than cannabis and amphetamines, making them attractive alternatives to other illicit drugs. In addition, the chemical formulas for these drugs are constantly changing, making them difficult to regulate, and their detection is limited in commonly used drug screenings. Authority researchers partnered with WestCare Foundation to survey 573 state prisoners on synthetic drug use to examine prevalence, accessibility, motivation for use, and effects. Thirty-six percent of respondents reported any synthetic drug use in their lifetime prior to incarceration. Findings suggested a proportion of the criminal justice population engages in synthetic drug use and the findings were consistent with other research on synthetic drug use.
By Lily Gleicher, Jessica Reichert, And Dustin Cantrell
An examination of juvenile sex offenders in the Illinois juvenile justice system
February 14, 2017 | Full Report | Juvenile Sex Offenders
Juveniles adjudicated delinquent for a sex offense can result in lifelong consequences, including sex offender registration. Further, there can be repercussions financially, emotionally, and socially for a juvenile and his/her family that extend throughout the individual’s life. Given the potential negative impact of sex offender registration, it is important to understand the implications of the registry within the larger context of youth development and juvenile justice. This report analyzes characteristics of youth arrested, detained, and admitted to corrections in Illinois in 2014 and associated trends from 2004 to 2014.
By Erica Hughes, Lily Gleicher, Susan Witkin, Vernon S. Smith, And Caitlin DeLong
Ad Hoc Victim Services Committee Research Report
January 31, 2017 | Report | Victims
The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority convened an Ad Hoc Victim Services Committee in January to review research to identify crime victim needs and service gaps and measure capacity of Illinois victim service providers. The Committee then set funding priorities to address those needs, gaps, and capacity issues. The priorities were later approved by the ICJIA Board and will guide notices of funding opportunity and statewide funding decisions for the next three years.
By Megan Alderden And Jaclyn Houston Kolnik
Rethinking Law Enforcement’s Role on Drugs: Community Drug Intervention and Diversion Efforts
January 25, 2017 | Article | Law Enforcement
Police administrators across the country are recognizing the need to connect individuals with whom they come into contact in the community to evidence-based treatment to better address the large social and economic burden of substance use disorders (SUD), a chronic and relapsing condition. Police frequently encounter substance using individuals and their families in the community, and often have repeat contacts with individuals suffering from SUD. The purpose of this article is to provide an overview of different police agency responses to individuals with SUD that are intended to prevent overdose deaths and divert individuals with SUD away from the criminal justice system and toward appropriate support and treatment.
By Jessica Reichert And Lily Gleicher
National and Illinois Youth Substance Use: Risk Factors, Prevalence, and Treatment
January 9, 2017 | Article | Drugs
During stages of ongoing, yet incomplete, cognitive development, youth may be more inclined to take risks and experiment with drugs and alcohol and are often heavily influenced by their peers, leading to negative outcomes. Nationally and in Illinois, traditionally high drug use categories of marijuana and alcohol appear to be stable or falling and youth use of other drugs remains relatively low.
By Jessica Reichert, Caitlin DeLong, And Kaitlyn Konefal
2016: Our Year in Review
January 6, 2017 | Article | Article
The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority took great strides in its mission of improving the administration of criminal justice in 2016. Here is a look back at the agency’s most notable initiatives and achievements for the year.
By Cristin Evans
Housing and Services After Prison: Evaluation of the St. Leonard’s House Reentry Program
December 18, 2016 | Report | Reentry
More than 500,000 individuals are released from prison each year. As they return to their communities, they face obstacles in finding employment and housing, as well as significant debt, outstanding fines, and restitution payments. Two-thirds of this population are arrested again within three years. St. Leonard’s House in Chicago offers voluntary, supportive housing for men exiting prison. Program clients receive housing, substance abuse treatment, psychological services, life skills, mentoring, and education and vocational services. Authority researchers used qualitative and quantitative methods of data collection, as well as quasi-experimental design and advanced statistical analysis, to examine outcomes after program participation, including arrests, convictions, incarcerations, and employment.
By Jessica Reichert, Mark Powers, And Rebecca Skorek
A state and national overview of the opioid and heroin crisis
November 16, 2016 | Article | Drugs
Opioid and heroin use is surging in Illinois communities and across the country with dramatic increases in the number of users and deaths by overdose. Communities, criminal justice practitioners, and public health professionals are struggling to help those suffering from opioid use disorders and, ultimately, save lives. This article provides an overview of the opioid epidemic and its causes, including the link between prescription opioids and heroin.
By Jessica Reichert And Vernon Smith
Preventing Youth Violence: An Evaluation of Youth Guidance’s “Becoming a Man” Program
November 15, 2016 | Article | Juveniles
Preventing youth violence and improving schooling outcomes for disadvantaged youth remain two of our nation’s most urgent challenges. The Becoming a Man (BAM) program is a violence-reduction strategy that uses cognitive behavioral therapy to help participants slow down their thinking in high-stakes situations. An evaluation of the program found improvements in both academic and behavioral outcomes of participating youth.
By University Of Chicago Crime Lab
Reentry support: Lessons learned from community-based programs
October 21, 2016 | Article | Reentry
In 2014, the Reentry Program, one of three components of Illinois’ Community Violence Prevention Program (CVPP) receiving funds through the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority, provided services to youth and young adults on parole and aftercare in 21 Chicago area communities in order to assist with their compliance with parole board orders and other aspects of successful community reintegration, such as educational enrollment and employment. Authority researchers examined the Reentry Program component of the Community Violence Prevention Program (CVPP) to ascertain how the program was meeting the reentry needs of Chicago area youth and young adults.
By Idetta Phillips, Christine Devitt Westley, And Jessica Reichert
About Uniform Crime Reporting Program data
September 27, 2016 | Article | Law enforcement
The FBI’s Uniform Crime Reporting (UCR) Program is the official source of nationwide crime data and can be used to examine current patterns and trends over time. The Illinois UCR Program provides state-specific data. Those who use the programs to study crime trends should become familiar with the data source, its method of collection, and caveats needed to ensure proper data context.
By Erica Hughes
Juvenile Justice in Illinois, 2014
September 14, 2016 | Report | Juvenile Justice
Juvenile Justice in Illinois, 2014 outlines juvenile justice statistics across the four process points in which data were available: arrest, detention, court, and corrections. Decreases in the statewide figures were noted across all of the data points examined, indicating that fewer youth were entering and moving through the system. This article highlights select key findings from the full report.
By Erica Hughes
Learning about probation from client perspectives: Feedback from probationers served by Adult Redeploy Illinois-funded program models
September 6, 2016 | Report | Probation
Satisfaction with the criminal justice system often reflects the opinions of the public rather than that of the offender. When probation clients are able to provide feedback in a meaningful way, they are less marginalized and alienated from a process attempting to make changes in their behavior and attitudes. Authority researchers interviewed probationers served by Adult Redeploy Illinois program models to gain their perspectives and make recommendations for program enhancement.
By Caitlin DeLong And Jessica Reichert
The impact of employment restriction laws on Illinois’ convicted felons
August 22, 2016 | Article | Convictions
Over the past three decades, at least 1.5 million men and women have been convicted of felony charges in Illinois. Even after they have satisfied their probation or prison sentence, they face a range of collateral consequences-—penalties, disabilities, and other disadvantages imposed as a result of a criminal conviction, some lasting a lifetime.
By Lynne Mock
Drug trends and distribution in Illinois: A survey of drug task forces
August 17, 2016 | Report | Law enforcement
In Illinois, the distribution of controlled substances is a significant problem and task forces were created to combat the distribution of controlled substances at the local level. This study sought to understand the extent of the drug problem in the jurisdictions covered by each drug task force. Authority researchers surveyed 19 Authority-funded drug task forces on types of drugs, frequency, trends, use, and distribution.
By Jessica Reichert
Probable posttraumatic stress disorder in a sample of urban jail detainees
August 11, 2016 | Article | Jails
Jails in the United States house large numbers of detainees who have urgent public and behavioral healthcare needs as well as various serious social, economic, and personal problems. Jails are often the primary (or only) settings for medical, psychiatric, and substance abuse treatment.
By Dawn Ruzich, Jessica Reichert, And Arthur J. Lurigio
24/7 Sobriety Program Summary
July 25, 2016 | Article | Probation
The 24/7 Sobriety Program uses a swift, certain, and moderate sanctioning approach to reduce alcohol and drug-involved driving among individuals who have been previously convicted of driving under the influence. First implemented in South Dakota in 2005, clients served through this program are tested at least twice per day using a breathalyzer test and subject to immediate jail time for positive test results. Evaluations conducted to date have found positive outcomes associated with the program. This article provides a summary of how the program works, prior research findings, and implementation considerations.
By Megan Alderden And Caitlin DeLong
Evaluation of Chicago Police Department’s Crisis Intervention Team for Youth training curriculum: Year 2
July 14, 2016 | Evaluation | Law Enforcement
The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority awarded several grants to the National Alliance on Mental Illness of Chicago to fund Crisis Intervention Training for Youth courses to officers at the Chicago Police Department. The program was the first 40-hour, five-day law enforcement youth crisis intervention training offered in the country.
By Rebecca Skorek And Christine Devitt Westley
Fidelity to the intensive supervision probation with services model: An examination of Adult Redeploy Illinois programs
June 16, 2016 | Article | Probation
Growing public support for prison reform has brought attention to community-based supervision alternatives, including intensive supervision probation for offenders who are at significant risk of being incarcerated. Researchers examined four intensive supervision probation with services programs supported by Adult Redeploy Illinois for fidelity to the evidence-based service model.
By Jessica Reichert, Caitlin DeLong, Risa Sacomani, And Sara Gonzales
Transitional housing for victims of intimate partner violence
May 3, 2016 | Article | Victims
Many victims of intimate partner violence find themselves at increased risk for homelessness as they make efforts to escape violence. The lack of stable, safe, and affordable housing is associated with negative outcomes for these victims. This article describes the relationship between housing instability and victim health and well-being, issues to consider when addressing housing stability for this population, and recommendations for policy and practice.
By Caitlin DeLong, Megan Alderden, Jennifer Hiselman, And Tracy Hahn
Addressing Child Exposure to Violence
April 12, 2016 | Article | Child Abuse
Each year a notable number of children are exposed to violence in their homes and communities. This exposure can result in negative health and well-being consequences. Safe from the Start (SFS) programs were funded to provide treatment services and supportive referrals to children exposed to violence and their families. This report provides an overview of the Illinois Safe from the Start program, program outcomes, and implications for policy and practice.
By Caitlin DeLong And Megan Alderden
The use of incarceration to address juvenile delinquency: Court evaluation admissions to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice
March 16, 2016 | Article | Juvenile Corrections
Court evaluations, new commitments, and technical violations are three ways in which youth may be admitted to the Illinois Department of Juvenile Justice, the state’s juvenile corrections agency. This article is the first of a three-part series examining the use of incarceration to address juvenile delinquency in Illinois. Admissions to IDJJ for court evaluations is examined, including admission trends and the impact court evaluation admissions have had on the profile of committed youth.
By Megan Alderden
An examination of Illinois sexual violence victims
March 7, 2016 | Article | Victims
InfoNet is a web-based data collection and reporting system used by rape crisis centers across Illinois. Developed by the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority in collaboration with the Illinois Coalition Against Sexual Assault (ICASA) and other agencies, InfoNet is used by ICASA’s network of 33 rape crisis centers. The system tracks victim characteristics and services provided using unique identifiers and offers data to inform local and statewide policy and planning.
By Jennifer Hiselman
Assessing the quality of Illinois Criminal History Record Information System data on juveniles
January 22, 2016 | Article | Juveniles
Detailed statewide statistical data is needed to inform juvenile justice policy decisions. The Illinois Criminal History Record Information System has been used with some success, but its full potential for statistical purposes has not been systematically evaluated. This report provides such an assessment, focusing on the completeness of the juvenile arrest and court information collected by the CHRI System.
By Christine Devitt Westley
Drug-addicted offenders and treatment needs in Illinois
January 21, 2016 | Article | Offenders
Last year, 45 percent of the 28,612 Illinois Department of Corrections inmates screened for substance abuse upon prison entry were deemed in need of treatment.
By Sharyn Adams
2015: Our year in review
January 15, 2016 | Spotlight | ICJIA
The Authority hit many highs in 2015, kicking off new and exciting initiatives, improving the agency’s web presence, and offering a variety of new research to support criminal justice reform.
By Cristin Evans
Male Survivors of Urban Violence and Trauma
December 17, 2015 | Article | Jails
Urban violence is a major public health concern and at epidemic levels in some neighborhoods, directly impacting the mental health of its residents (Morris, n.d.). The rate of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among urban populations is estimated to be around 31 percent, higher than the PTSD rate among returning Iraq war veterans of 17 percent.
By Jessica Reichert
Women and reentry: Evaluation of the St. Leonard’s Ministries’ Grace House Program
December 8, 2015 | Research Report | Prison reentry
More than 2.4 million people are confined in correctional facilities across the United States. Each year, more than half a million inmates are released from prison and return to their communities. The formerly incarcerated face many obstacles as they reenter the community, such as finding employment and housing, and paying outstanding fines, restitution, and other debts.
By Jessica Reichert
Fidelity to the evidence-based drug court model: An examination of Adult Redeploy Illinois programs
December 8, 2015 | Article | Courts
Drug courts emerged in the 1990s to address serious drug offending while improving offender outcomes and reducing incarceration costs. Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority researchers examined drug courts funded by Adult Redeploy Illinois (ARI) in five counties. Data to measure the 10 key components was collected after 18 months of program implementation (August 2012 to July 2013). ARI applies evidence-based, data-driven, and result-oriented strategies to curb prison overcrowding and enhance public safety.
By Jessica Reichert
Mental Health Courts in Illinois
October 22, 2015 | Article | Prosecution and Courts
Mental health courts serve the challenging and extensive service needs of people who have a serious mental illness and are involved in the criminal justice system. The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority awarded a grant to Loyola University Chicago to assess the operation of these courts in Illinois.
By Tracy Hahn
InfoNet: Putting data to work
August 24, 2015 | Spotlight | Victims
The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority’s InfoNet data system is key to targeted, effective services for victims of interpersonal violence across Illinois.
By Cristin Evans
An evaluation of the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office Deferred Prosecution Program
August 20, 2015 | Article | Prosecution and Courts
The Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office implemented its alternative sentencing-focused Deferred Prosecution Program in February 2011. The Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority awarded a grant to the Loyola University Chicago to evaluate the program in 2013. The program became the model for the Offender Initiative Program, enacted by state law (730 ILCS 5/5-6-3.3) in 2013 to promote public safety, conserve resources, and reduce recidivism.
By Tracy Hahn
Evaluation of youth summer job program suggests targeting at-risk youth
August 18, 2015 | Article | Prevention
Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority researchers conducted an evaluation of the Community Violence Prevention Program’s Youth Employment Program. The program, which ended in August 2014, sought to increase job readiness skills, build relationships with a caring adult, improve attitudes toward employment and violence, increase self-esteem and conflict resolution skills, and offer community service and engagement.
By Jessica Reichert
Evaluation of St. Leonard’s Ministries: Case studies of former residents of St. Leonard’s House and Grace House
July 29, 2015 | Research Report | Reentry
More than 2.4 million people are confined in the U.S. in state and federal prisons, juvenile corrections, and jails. Each year, more than half a million individuals are released from prison and return to their communities. After leaving prison, offenders with criminal records face obstacles such as difficulty finding employment and housing, significant debt, outstanding fines, and restitution payments.
By Jessica Reichert
Evaluation of the 2014 Community Violence Prevention Program’s Parent Program
July 29, 2015 | Research Report | Prevention
Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority researchers conducted an evaluation of the Community Violence Prevention Program’s (CVPP) Parent Program. The program, which ended August 2014, sought to increase protective factors to reduce child maltreatment by employing and training nearly 1,000 Chicago-area parents to lead service projects to help other parents in 20 communities.
By Jessica Reichert
Performance incentive funding for prison diversion: An implementation study of the DuPage County Adult Redeploy Illinois Program
July 10, 2015 | Research Report | Adult Redeploy
Adult Redeploy Illinois (ARI) applies evidence-based, data-driven, and result-oriented strategies to curb prison overcrowding and enhance public safety. Since 2010, the Illinois Criminal Justice Information Authority (Authority) has administered grant funding for ARI and offered research, evaluation, and technical assistance to the program.
By Jessica Reichert
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Crime & Risk Factor Data Tools

With support from the U.S. Department of Justice, Bureau of Justice Statistics, ICJIA has developed several data analysis and dissemination tools to give users convenient and flexible ways to access and interact with ICJIA’s extensive criminal justice and associated risk factor data holdings.

Criminal Justice Data Profiles

The Criminal Justice Data Profiles tool offers criminal justice indicators that allow users to create county, judicial circuit, and statewide profiles. These profiles may be used to inform planning and policy decisions.

Criminal Justice Data Profiles 

Criminal history and recidivism tool

The Criminal History and Recidivism Tool provides information on the patterns of prior criminal history of various cohorts of persons sentenced to prison in Illinois, and their long-term recidivism rates upon release. Tables and charts display several types of information: demographic information on the selected group of interest; the number and types of prior arrests, convictions, probation and prison sentences; and post-release recidivism rates based on multiple types of criminal justice events and demographic categories.

Criminal History and Recidivism Tool 

Single Map Analysis Tool

The Single Map Analysis Tool is useful for those interested in a visual snapshot of how Illinois counties compare on various crime and criminal justice indicators. The tool displays this information in two interactive formats; as an Illinois map, and as corresponding trend lines over the previous ten years. Users can select any number of counties, regions or judicial circuits for comparison.

Single Map Analysis Tool 

Scatter Plot Analysis Tool

The Scatter Plot Analysis Tool allows users to compare the relationship between two different criminal justice indicators within a county, and determine how all Illinois counties rank on that joint set of crime statistics or criminal justice indicators. The tool displays this information in several interactive formats; as Illinois maps and as a corresponding scatter plot showing correlations for all counties or custom sets of counties in Illinois.

Scatter Plot Analysis Tool 

These tools come with a variety of built-in Help features to assist users as they navigate the unique analysis functions.

For more information or assistance with these tools, contact the Research & Analysis Criminal Justice Information Clearinghouse Unit at 312-793-8550, or email