National Archive of Criminal Justice Data

This dataset is maintained and distributed by the National Archive of Criminal Justice Data (NACJD), the criminal justice archive within ICPSR. NACJD is primarily sponsored by three agencies within the U.S. Department of Justice: the Bureau of Justice Statistics, the National Institute of Justice, and the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention.

Caseflow Management and Delay Reduction in Urban Trial Courts of the United States, 1979, 1983-1985 (ICPSR 9918) RSS

Principal Investigator(s):

Summary:

The purpose of this study was to examine caseflow management in order to reduce delays in urban trial courts. The data contain information from court records that reached disposition in a cross-section of urban general-jurisdiction trial courts during 1979, 1983, 1984, and 1985. The 1979 data files contain the baseline data for this survey. Data were gathered on civil and criminal case processing times across a broad range of courts, and changes in case processing times over a period of years were analyzed for 18 different jurisdictions: Newark, Pittsburgh, New Orleans, Miami, Wayne County, Minneapolis, the Bronx, Phoenix, Portland, San Diego, Dayton, Boston, Cleveland, Providence, Wichita, Detroit, Oakland, and Jersey City. The data are supplemented by information supplied by trial court administrators and presiding judges in the courts participating in the study. Data include information on the nature of the case, the dates of first and last trials, and the total number of trials and their manner of disposition.

Access Notes

  • One or more data files in this study are set up in a non-standard format, such as card image format. Users may need help converting these files before they can be used for analysis.

  • These data are freely available.

Dataset(s)

WARNING: Because this study has many datasets, the download all files option has been suppressed, and you will need to download one dataset at a time.

DS0:  Study-Level Files
Documentation:
DS1:  1979 Civil Data File - Download All Files (797 KB)
DS2:  1983 Civil Data File - Download All Files (2,957 KB)
DS3:  1984 Civil Data File - Download All Files (2,138 KB)
DS4:  1985 Civil Data File - Download All Files (2,962 KB)
DS5:  1979 Criminal Data File for Jersey City - Download All Files (555 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS6:  1979 Criminal Data File for Wichita - Download All Files (546 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS7:  1983 Criminal Data File for Miami - Download All Files (546 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS8:  1983 Criminal Data File for the Bronx - Download All Files (564 KB)
Data:
DS9:  1983 Criminal Data File for Portland - Download All Files (553 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS10:  1983 Criminal Data File for Jersey City - Download All Files (552 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS11:  1983 Criminal Data File for All Other Cities - Download All Files (1,329 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS12:  1984 Criminal Data File for Miami - Download All Files (540 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS13:  1984 Criminal Data File for the Bronx - Download All Files (566 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS14:  1984 Criminal Data File for Portland - Download All Files (547 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS15:  1984 Criminal Data File for Jersey City - Download All Files (562 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS16:  1984 Criminal Data File for All Other Cities - Download All Files (1,285 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS17:  1985 Criminal Data File for Miami - Download All Files (546 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS18:  1985 Criminal Data File for the Bronx - Download All Files (555 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS19:  1985 Criminal Data File for Portland - Download All Files (550 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS20:  1985 Criminal Data File for Jersey City - Download All Files (547 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS21:  1985 Criminal Data File for All Other Cities - Download All Files (1,260 KB)
Data:
ASCII
ASCII + SPSS Setup
DS23:  SAS Data Definition Statements for All Civil Data Files - Download All Files (491 KB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup
DS24:  SAS Data Definition Statements for Jersey City Criminal Data - Download All Files (497 KB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup
DS25:  SAS Data Definition Statements for the Bronx Criminal Data - Download All Files (498 KB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup
DS26:  SAS Data Definition Statements for Miami Criminal Data - Download All Files (498 KB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup
DS27:  SAS Data Definition Statements for Portland Criminal Data - Download All Files (497 KB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup
DS28:  SAS Data Definition Statements for Criminal Data for All Other Cities - Download All Files (499 KB)
Data:

ASCII + SAS Setup

Study Description

Citation

Mahoney, Barry. Caseflow Management and Delay Reduction in Urban Trial Courts of the United States, 1979, 1983-1985. ICPSR09918-v1. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1994. doi:10.3886/ICPSR09918.v1

Persistent URL:

Export Citation:

  • RIS (generic format for RefWorks, EndNote, etc.)
  • EndNote XML (EndNote X4.0.1 or higher)

Funding

This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (84-IJ-CX-0077)
  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. Bureau of Justice Assistance (84-SN-AX-0001, 87-DD-CX-0002)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:   case processing, cities, court cases, courts, trial courts

Geographic Coverage:   United States

Time Period:  

  • 1979
  • 1983--1985

Unit of Observation:   civil or criminal case

Universe:   Civil and criminal trial cases in urban courts of the United States.

Data Types:   survey data

Data Collection Notes:

Data for 1979 are supplied for New Jersey and Wichita only. No civil data are available for Detroit for 1983 and 1985, nor for Phoenix, Miami, Minneapolis, Newark, New Orleans, or Oakland in 1984. See the notes in the codebook for information particular to certain sites. The individual survey instrument for each site is available only in hardcopy form upon request from ICPSR.

Methodology

Study Purpose:   The purpose of this study was to examine caseflow management in order to reduce delays in urban trial courts. Data were gathered on civil and criminal case processing times across a broad range of courts, and changes in case processing times over a period of years were analyzed for 18 different jurisdictions: Newark, Pittsburgh, New Orleans, Miami, Wayne County, Minneapolis, the Bronx, Phoenix, Portland, San Diego, Dayton, Boston, Cleveland, Providence, Wichita, Detroit, Oakland, and Jersey City. These data contain information that reached disposition in a cross-section of urban general-jurisdiction trial courts during 1979, 1983, 1984, and 1985. The 1979 data files contain the baseline data for this survey. In selecting courts for inclusion in the study, a mix of urban courts from different geographic regions, all with at least ten judges, was sought. The intent was to include at least a few courts that met the following criteria: (1) courts that had been the subject of a prior empirical study of case processing times, (2) courts that had initiated a significant delay reduction or delay prevention effort during the 1977-1983 period, and (3) courts located in states in which a significant state-wide delay reduction effort had been initiated during the 1977-1983 period.

Study Design:   After the court selection, presiding judges or trial court administrators were contacted to arrange initial site visits. These visits served three purposes: (1) to help project staff members obtain an overview of civil and criminal case processing in the court through interviews with key judges and administrators, (2) to collect documentary information about the court, such as organizational charts, management information reports, local court rules, annual reports, etc., and (3) to study the court's record-keeping system. These systems provided a basis for developing a data collection framework.

Sample:   A general sample of approximately 500 criminal cases and 500 civil cases was selected for each disposition year--1979, 1983, 1984, and 1985. The approach to select the desired sample size of 500 was first to determine (or estimate) the number of dispositions in the year for which the sample was drawn. The determined (or the estimated) number was then divided by the desired sample size (500) to obtain the sampling interval. Using the random number as a starting point, every nth (where n is the sampling interval) case on the list was picked up for inclusion in the sample.

Data Source:

court records

Description of Variables:   The criminal case survey instrument contains 22 basic question statements. Out of 22 basic data elements that are present in the data, eight are dates that include date of arrest, date trial started, date of disposition, and date of sentencing. Other elements include total number of defendants, most serious charge in indictment, number of counts or charges against this defendant, type of disposition, most serious charge at conviction, and sentence imposed. The civil case survey instrument contains 17 basic question statements. Out of 17 elements in the data six are dates which include date of complaint, first schedule trial date, date trial started, and date of disposition. Other elements include nature of case, number of plaintiffs, number of defendants, and manner of disposition. Supplemental data elements were added in particular sites.

Response Rates:   Not applicable.

Presence of Common Scales:   None

Extent of Processing:  ICPSR data undergo a confidentiality review and are altered when necessary to limit the risk of disclosure. ICPSR also routinely creates ready-to-go data files along with setups in the major statistical software formats as well as standard codebooks to accompany the data. In addition to these procedures, ICPSR performed the following processing steps for this data collection:

  • Performed recodes and/or calculated derived variables.
  • Checked for undocumented or out-of-range codes.

Version(s)

Original ICPSR Release:  

Version History:

  • 2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 29 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.
  • 2006-01-12 All files were removed from dataset 22 and flagged as study-level files, so that they will accompany all downloads.
  • 2005-11-04 On 2005-03-14 new files were added to one or more datasets. These files included additional setup files as well as one or more of the following: SAS program, SAS transport, SPSS portable, and Stata system files. The metadata record was revised 2005-11-04 to reflect these additions.

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