Community Corrections

Community Corrections/Halfway House | Impacts

  • Expands locations for community corrections/halfway houses from 3,210 acres in primarily industrial zones to 19,000 acres throughout the city in mixed-use, multi-unit, and commercial corridor zones

  • Increases potential locations by 492% throughout the city

  • Removes 1500 ft buffer zones between schools, residences, and community corrections/halfway houses

 

Community Planning and Development states: 

“The proposal would remove some of the current restrictions on where they can be located, but it would not change other regulations, codes or oversight that apply to these types of facilities, how they are established, how they are run or who is eligible to live in them.”

​There are at least four layers of law, code, regulation, and contract provision that govern EACH community corrections/halfway house. Denver neighbors will have to know which layer of governance applies, and how to contact each one, in order to address concerns with facilities.

Community Corrections/Halfway House | Q&A

Jane Prancan spoke with Safe and Sound Denver as a concerned Denver resident. She is a 17-year member of the Denver Community Corrections Board, but her comments were not provided in her official capacity. 

 

Do persons eligible for community corrections within Denver limits need to be Denverites?

No, they can come from any jurisdiction in the state.

Can the community corrections system grow beyond what is needed in Denver?

There is no limit to the number of clients in any facility except zoning and the ability to receive reimbursement from the State for each client.

What is the State requirement for square feet/person in a facility?

40 sf/person (see page 6)

What kinds of cases are reviewed and placed?

This is a breakdown of sentencing crimes, for offenders reviewed, by Denver Community Corrections Board in July 2020.

 

Crimes vary from month to month. This list is typical of cases reviewed. It is also important to note that every one of the offenders referred has a lengthy criminal background including misdemeanors and felonies.

 

The numbers, below, are for individual offenders and the crime of conviction that resulted in each one being sentenced to the Department of Corrections. 

Many persons have multiple offenses: a person convicted of armed robbery will also likely have additional charges for unlawful possession of weapons; kidnapping is often accompanied by assault charges.

 

​ • Assault-usually 2nd degree – 21

 • Dangerous drugs-manufacture/sale – 10

 • Menacing – 8

 • Homicide – 4

 • Aggravated robbery (usually with a weapon) – 15

 • Aggravated motor vehicle theft (carjacking) – 5

 • Vehicular assault – 2

 • Child abuse – 1

 • Sex offense – 5

 • Kidnapping – 2

 • Weapons – 5

 • Other including identity theft, extortion, fraud, dangerous drugs, stalking, organized crime (usually gang related) forgery and trespass (often domestic violence) – 17

Community Corrections/Halfway House | Stats

2019 – Colorado has a 50% recidivism rate (convicted criminal re-offense); 10 points higher than the national average of 40%. (CPR, 2/2019) Denver’s recidivism rate is 41%. (Denverite, 8/2019)

 

2019 – 2/3 of Denver’s halfway house population are felons exiting prison. 1/3 have been deferred from state prison.

2018 – 54,000 felonies filed statewide. 50% (27,000) were against people who were already in the criminal justice system or had a prior criminal record. (CPR, 2/2019)

 

2016-2019 – 9 of 10 halfway houses with the highest escape rates in the state were operated by GEO or CoreCivic, According to the Colorado Division of Criminal Justice. All 9 were in Denver, Adams and Arapahoe counties. The highest was GEO’s Williams Street facility in City Park West, one of the few women’s programs in the state. (Denverite, 8/2019)

 

2016-2019 – 31% of people who “exited” Denver’s program did so because of an escape, nearly twice the state average. (Denverite, 8/2019)

 

2016-2018 – 56% of parolees at Denver Community Corrections-run halfway houses completed their programs (Denverite, 8/2019)

 

2016-2018 – 54% of parolees failed their program at Tooley Hall and Williams Street, run by GEO, a national operator; 76% of parolees failed their program at Independence House, run by a local, independent operator. (Denverite, 8/2019)

 

2015-2017 – Violent crime increased 15%. Property crime and larceny increased 4%. (CPR, 2/2019)

2014-2016 – 42% success rate of halfway houses in Denver. Success = 2 years without re-offending. (Denverite, 8/2019)