The Review Board Systems in Canada: An Overview of Results from the Mentally Disordered Accused Data Collection Study

3. Results (cont’d)

3. Results (cont'd)

3.3 Prior Involvement with the Criminal Justice System

Due to the high number of cases in Quebec with no information on criminal history, it was necessary to remove Quebec cases from any analysis that involved criminal history. Among the total number of cases with information on prior record (N=4,902), more than half of the NCRMD/UST accused (57.2%) had a prior criminal conviction. The number of prior convictions ranged appreciably from 1 to 60, with a median of 4.

Table 6 indicates that a small percentage of NCRMD/UST cases had more than 10 prior convictions and that approximately one-third had at least one prior violent and/or sexual conviction. In general, current NCRMD cases were more likely to have a prior UST finding compared to current UST cases - 12% of NCRMD cases had a prior UST finding while only 2% of current UST cases had a prior UST finding. This suggests that some UST accused who are returned to court and found fit might then be found NCRMD.

Table 6 – Legal Status (NCRMD/UST) by Prior Involvement

Number of Prior Convictions
Prior Involvement NCRMD N (column %) UST N (column %) TOTAL N (column %)
No prior convictions 1,451 (42.4%) 647 (43.8%) 2,098 (42.8%)
One prior conviction 406 (11.8%) 169 (11.4%) 574 (11.7%)
Two to five prior convictions 825 (24.1%) 231 (15.6%) 1,055 (21.5%)
Six to ten prior convictions 554 (16.2%) 327 (22.2%) 882 (18.0%)
More than ten prior convictions 189 (5.5%) 104 (7.0%) 293 (6.0%)

Type of Prior Convictions
Prior Involvement NCRMD N (column %) UST N (column %) TOTAL N (column %)
No prior convictions 1,451 (42.4%) 647 (43.8%) 2,098 (42.8%)
Prior violent/sexual conviction 1,151 (33.6%) 561 (38.0%) 1,713 (34.9%)
Prior non-violent conviction 822 (24.0%) 269 (18.2%) 1,092 (22.3%)

Prior NCRMD Findings
Prior Involvement NCRMD N (column %) UST N (column %) TOTAL N (column %)
No prior NCRMD 6,141 (90.3%) 1,661 (88.5%) 7,802 89.9%)
One prior NCRMD 573 (8.4%) 193 (10.3%) 766 (8.8%)
More than one prior NCRMD 89 (1.3%) 22 (1.2%) 111 (1.3%)

Prior UST Findings
Prior Involvement NCRMD N (column %) UST N (column %) TOTAL N (column %)
No prior UST 5,988 (88.0%) 1,840 (98.0%) 7,828 (90.2%)
One prior UST 666 (9.8%) 26 (1.4%) 692 (7.9%)
More than one prior UST 148 (2.2%) 11 (0.6%) 159 (1.8%)
  • Percentages may not always total 100% due to rounding error.
  • Totals may not be exact due to the rounding of the weighted data.

As seen in Table 7, the number of prior convictions varied according demographic information, although the pattern is similar to general offenders. Adults were much more likely than youth to have a prior record, males were more likely than females, and Aboriginal accused were more likely than non-Aboriginal accused.

Table 7 - Criminal History By Demographic Information

Gender
Demographic Information N (%) Mean
Male 4,137 (84.4%) 5.2 convictions
Female 765 (15.6%) 1.8 convictions

Age
Demographic Information N (%) Mean
Youth (less than 18 years) 114 ( 2.3%) 1.3 convictions
Adults (18 years and over) 4,758 (97.7%) 4.7 convictions

Aboriginal
Demographic Information N (%) Mean
Aboriginal 333 ( 6.8%) 7.8 convictions
Non-Aboriginal 4,569 (93.2%) 4.4 convictions
  • Percentages may not always total 100% due to rounding error.
  • There were 30 cases that did not contain information necessary to calculate age.

Dual–status offenders are those who are under the purview of a Review Board for an NCRMD or UST designation and are concurrently serving a sentence for a criminal conviction. Of the 8,679 accused, 11.6% were classified as dual-status offenders – there was no difference in the percentage of NCRMD cases versus UST cases.

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