13. Protecting repeat crime victims. An effort should be made to identify repeat crime victims associated with people with mental illness, because previous victimization is generally the best predictor of future victimization.§ When repeat crime victims are identified, the behaviors or conditions connected to their victimization should be identified to explore possible responses. For example, if a person with mental illness is a repeat victim, an abusive caregiver might be uncovered. Alternatively, it might be discovered that the person frequents risky places or engages in risky behaviors. It is also possible, of course, that the crimes reported by the person with mental illness are imaginary and never happened. Identifying any of these “causes” could lead to solutions that reduce or even eliminate future victimizations. Alternatively, people with mental illness might habitually victimize others—caregivers, family members, employers.


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