Autism and the Criminal Justice System
Main Beneficiaries of our research – Secure psychiatric care services, prisons, individuals with ASD, government organisations, policy makers, National Autistic Society, criminal justice professionals (including police, lawyers, barristers), defendants with autism spectrum disorder
Dr Toni Wood and Dr Clare Allely are co-founders of the Autism and Criminal Justice Hub at the university. The aims of the hub are:
To explore the knowledge and understanding of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) of professionals throughout the Criminal Justice System (CJS), Health and Social Care, and other stakeholders.
To increase awareness and understanding of the experiences of individuals with ASD and the professionals who engage with them, creating an environment to enable curriculum innovation, learning & knowledge exchange between higher education and CJS stakeholders
To develop best practice sharing, service intervention evaluation and provide evidence-based decision making to create future policy and influence.
Investigating and raising awareness of how autism symptomatology can contribute to different offending behaviours (child pornography; violent offending; arson/firesetting; stalking; terroristic behaviours; murder, etc). Dr Toni Wood focuses on the knowledge and understanding of prison officers with regards to ASD. Dr Allely is an internationally recognised expert in the field of Autism and offending behaviour and is also an expert witness in both national and international criminal cases and contributes to the evidence base used in the courts on psychology and legal issues through published work.
Project Team: Dr Toni Wood & Dr Clare Allely
Research Group: CLDR, Criminal Justice
Project Funder: Ongoing project, Funding applications in progress