Risk of dying by suicide inside or outside prison: The shortened lives of male offenders.
Purpose: To determine the death rate among offenders, especially by suicide, inside and outside prison. Methods: A follow-up of 1,025 inmates over the period from 1995 to 2006 was conducted by searching the computerized records of correctional services and coroner files for data on suicidal behaviour and death. Results: There were 47 deaths (4.59%) from all causes among the 1,025 offenders during the observation period, of which 82.98% occurred outside prison. Of the 1,025, 26 died by suicide (2.54%). Of these suicides, 76.92% occurred outside prison. Conclusions: Offenders seem to be at risk for suicide throughout their life and even more so outside prison. This does not mean correctional services bear no responsibility for the suicide of inmates. On the contrary, vulnerable offenders should be treated while in prison.