Offenders with intellectual disabilities in prison: what happens when they leave?

Murphy GH, Chiu P, Triantafyllopoulou P, Barnoux M, Blake E, Cook J, Forrester-Jones R, Gore NJ, Beecham JK

Journal of Intellectual Disability Research 2017, 61, 10: 957—968

Available online 1 Jun 2017


People with intellectual disabilities, if convicted of offences, may be sentenced to prison, but little is known about their life when they are released.

This study followed up men with intellectual disabilities who were leaving prisons in England.

The men were hard to contact, but 38 men were interviewed, on average 10 weeks after leaving prison. The men were living in a variety of situations and often were very under-occupied, with limited social networks. A total of 70% were above the clinical cut-off for anxiety, and 59.5% were above the clinical cut-off for depression. The men were receiving little support in the community, and many had been reinterviewed by police.

Community teams need to provide better support to this very vulnerable group.