Trauma Among Justice-Involved Veterans


This report looks at veterans admitted to veteran-specific jail diversion programs in the U.S. and their experience of trauma. The results show that those veterans present in the criminal justice system have a high rates of trauma and the authors suggest that there is a need to understand complex trauma when designing policy.


This report examines the challenges faced by justice-involved veterans and their experience of trauma. Using 153 consecutive admissions to veteran-specific jail diversion programs in 2 states (Connecticut and Massachusetts), we present demographic, military history, behavioral health, and criminal history data on veterans in relationship to self-reports of trauma. Our results reveal a sample of veterans with a history of contact with the criminal justice system that have high reported rates of trauma, in particular, before the age of 18. Understanding the complex trauma history of justice-involved veterans is essential for providing appropriate and holistic treatment and informed policy responses.

Full Reference

Stephanie Hartwell, Amy James, Jie Chen, Debra A. Pinals, et al.. "Trauma among justice-involved veterans" (2014)