Fred Butcher, PhD

Research Assistant Professor

PhD, University

MA, University

BS, University

Visit my Google Scholar Citation Page

Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences

Mandel Center Room 221
Case Western Reserve University
11235 Bellflower Road
Cleveland, Ohio 44106



Fredrick Butcher is Research Assistant Professor at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences and a Senior Research Associate at the Begun Center for Violence Prevention Research and Education. His research involves a number of projects around juvenile justice diversion and criminal justice policy analysis. Through these projects, Dr. Butcher seeks to help state and local criminal justice agencies to better serve justice-involved individuals by implementing policies based in evidence. Dr. Butcher’s work has been published in a number of criminal justice and social work journals.

In the News

Poly-victimization Across Social Contexts

Jan 20 2017

Fred Butcher, Senior Research Associate, and colleagues recently published an article examining childhood exposure to violence across social contexts.

Nationally, a large proportion of youth experience exposure to violence (ETV) in their homes, schools, and neighborhoods and research has consistently shown that ETV is linked to symptoms of trauma. Juvenile justice-involved youth are particularly at risk for ETV and accurate assessment for this population is vital to their treatment. We examined data from a sample of juvenile justice-involved youth and found that measures of ETV should take into account the cumulative effect of violence across multiple social contexts. Youth who experience ETV in homes, schools, and neighborhoods are particularly vulnerable since they are likely to have few, if any locations in which they feel safe from violence.

Butcher, F., Holmes, M. R., Kretschmar, J. M., & Flannery, D. J. (2016). Poly-victimization across social contexts: Home, school, and neighborhood violence exposure. Criminal Justice and Behavior. Advance online publication. doi: 10.1177/0093854816662679

Fred Butcher Publishes New Article in Social Science & Medicine

Nov 17 2015

Article exploring “The impact of neighborhood disorganization on neighborhood exposure to violence, trauma symptoms, and social relationships among at-risk youth” available for free for limited time

A Begun Center research team was recently invited to write an article appearing in a special issue of the journal Social Science & Medicine, an issue entitled, “Violence, Health, and Social Justice: South-North Collaborations and Institutional Challenges”.

Led by Research Associate Fred Butcher, Ph.D, and co-authored with Begun team members Dan Flannery and Jeff Kretschmar and former Begun Research Associate Joe Galanek, Social Science & Medicinethe article, entitled “The impact of neighborhood disorganization on neighborhood exposure to violence, trauma symptoms, and social relationships among at-risk youth”, explores the impact on youth in highly-disadvantaged neighborhoods who are exposed to violence at high rates and have trauma symptoms as a result.

“The general argument here and what makes the article novel,” says Dr. Butcher, “is that most people think of social relationships as a protective factor for exposure to violence. So when kids are exposed to trauma, it is less likely to impact their mental health functioning if they have supportive relationships in place. “However, we argue that kids with trauma have a difficult time developing social relationships because of their trauma and we talk about the theoretical impact that conceptualizing the model in this way on trauma-informed care.”

From the Article Abstract
Previous research has demonstrated that exposure to violence (ETV) is a serious concern across the north-south socioeconomic divide. While studies have found that social support is a protective factor for youth exposed to violence and trauma, little is known about the impact of trauma symptoms on forming and maintaining social relationships which are key to accessing a vital social resource that fosters resilience in youth experiencing trauma symptomatology.

| Read Full Story |

Begun Center Awarded $465,000 as Evaluator for Sexual Assault Kit Task Force

Oct 5 2015

The United States Department of Justice announced that the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor’s Office and its partners will receive nearly $2 million over the next three years to accelerate the work of bringing rapists to justice, assisting the survivors of those crimes and changing the culture of law enforcement here and throughout the country when it comes to investigating sexual assaults.
Cuyahoga County SAKs Task Force
Listen to Rachel Lovell explain the SAK initiative on WKSU’s Morning Edition

As part of this initiative, the Begun Center for Violence Prevention Research and Education at the Mandel School has been awarded a three-year, $465,000 grant to analyze Ohio’s procedures for alleviating the backlog of Sexual Assault Kits. The CWRU team is using data compiled by the task force to understand what led to the backlog of kits and to provide recommendations, best practices and training to prevent it from happening again.

The Begun research team, consisting of Rachel Lovell, Fred Butcher, Laura T. Overman, and Tiffany Walker, will be conducting a mixed-method process evaluation of all aspects of the investigation, victim advocacy, and prosecution of the Sexual Assault Kit (SAK) cases. Cuyahoga County SAKs Task Force

“Cuyahoga County is probably further along, if not the most successful city in the United States in prosecuting these unsubmitted Sexual Assault Kits,” says Dr. Lovell, a Senior Research Associate at the Center. “But they have yet to assess the process — what works, what doesn’t work, what about the process caused and could prevent future backlogs. From our research and evaluation, we will develop a white paper or a series of papers and training materials that will be used as a best practices for Cleveland to refine their process, as well as for other cities that are just starting to test the SAKs.”

“We will also expand on our current efforts to code the SAK cases now to see what information should investigators collect to identify patterns, solve cases, and support successful prosecution earlier,” Rachel says. “Coding cases in order to see what factors affect prosecutorial outcomes. What kinds of cases drop off at certain points? In an effort to improve successful investigation and prosecution of sexual assault that also adequately support and respect victims.”

| Read Full Story |