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Veterans of the U.S. Armed Force face a multitude of problems stemming from the unfortunate consequences of combat. In a report from The Institute of Medicine (2010), the negative outcomes experienced by veterans after combat service include, but are not limited to, posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD), major depression, suicide, substance-use disorders, unemployment, homelessness, and incarceration. Given the nexus between veterans’ mental health issues and criminal justice involvement, the incarceration of the nation’s veterans has created an opportunity for veteran-specific rehabilitation programs and courts as an alternative to punitive sentencing. However, research identifying criminogenic needs of justice involved veterans (JIV) is relatively new and the literature examining this unique population of veterans is incomplete. The Central Eight, criminogenic risk factors, have been studied on a wide array of offender groups, yet currently no study exists that examines all Central Eight risk factors within a JIV population. Considering the growing population of JIVs, research is needed to maximize the utilization of criminal justice resources and divert veterans into specific rehabilitative programing if necessary. This study extends the current literature of the Central Eight to justice-involved veterans by examining the relationship between risk factors (i.e. Criminal History, Procriminal Attitudes, Procriminal Associates, Antisocial Personality Pattern, Family/Marital, School/Work, Substance Abuse, and Leisure/Recreation) on group membership (i.e., JIVs or non-veteran offender). Additionally, the relationship between criminal thinking styles and veteran’s justice involvement will be explored. Results from this study will be used to inform veteran specific criminal justice programing.



Justice-involved veterans, Central Eight risk factors, Criminal Thinking