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Pub. Type:
Report
Title:
Stumbling Toward Justice: Some Overlooked Research and Police Questions About Statewide Sentencing Guidelines
Subtitle/Series Name:
Abstract:
It presents the historical background of efforts to control sentencing discretion, followed by an analysis of the concept of decisionmaking guidelines proposed in the early 1970's by Gottfredson and Wilkins. An analysis of the New Jersey sentencing guidelines introduced in 1978 is followed by a substudy of prisoners' perceptions of the fairness of their sentences as well as the relationship between perceived crime seriousness and perceived punishment severity. This research was conducted in Rahway Prison (New Jersey) in 1979 and 1980. A detailed study of the development of the Massachusetts sentencing guidelines presents their structure and the< reactions of criminal justice professionals to those guidelines. A substudy, based on statistical analyses of the case-level data, compares the sentencing guidelines developed in Massachusetts and Minnesota. An overview covers the sentencing guidelines developed in Pennsylvania and Michigan. The study shows that statewide sentencing guidelines developed to date have only partially adhered to the 'empirically based' approach, relying on past sentencing practices. The study concludes with an outline of a general model for evaluating statewide sentencing guidelines. source
Issue/No.:
NCJ 101393
Producer:
United States Department of Justice, National Institute of Justice
Place of Production:
Washington, DC

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