Date of Conferral





Public Policy and Administration


Paul Rutledge


A Specialized or Super Intensive-1 (SI-1) supervision level refers to a contact requirement imposed on special needs offenders (SNOs) under Texas parole supervision. SI-1 supervision requires greater contact with parole officers and treatment providers than supervision levels used on regular offenders (ROs), yet little is known about whether SI-1 supervision offenders violate terms of their parole or commit new crimes at a different rate compared to the regular offender population in the State of Texas. Reconstruction theory and the social construction of reality were used as theoretical underpinnings of this study, which examined whether differences in offenders' supervision levels created statistically significant differences in technical or new law violations in Texas parole hearings. A random sample of 200 SNOs and ROs data were analyzed using a 2-way ANOVA. Results indicated a positive and statistically significant difference between level of supervision and technical violations, with SI-1 offenders committing a greater number of violations of non-criminal terms of parole, but with SI-1 offenders being less likely than the regular offender population to commit new crimes. These findings challenge the social construction that SI-1 offenders introduce a higher element of risk to the community regarding new criminal activity. The positive social change implications of the study include policy recommendations to the Texas legislature and Texas Department of Criminal Justice to refocus resources on improving outcomes related to technical parole violations, including a reduction in SNOs' contact standards, which in turn, promote fiscal responsibility and improvements in public safety for the people of the state of Texas.