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.

Impact of Sentencing Reforms and Speedy Trial Laws in the United States, 1969-1989 (ICPSR 9736)

Principal Investigator(s): Marvell, Thomas B.; Moody, Carlisle E. Jr.


The certainty and promptness of punishment have long been hypothesized to be important variables in deterring crime. This data collection evaluates whether sentencing reforms to enhance certainty of punishment and speedy trial laws to enhance promptness of punishment affected crime rates, prison admissions, and prison populations. Variables include state, year, crime reports, economic conditions, population (including age structure), prison population, prison releases, and prison admissions. The unit of observation is the state by the year.

Access Notes

  • The public-use data files in this collection are available for access by the general public. Access does not require affiliation with an ICPSR member institution.


Dataset - Download All Files (1.746 MB)

Study Description


Marvell, Thomas B., and Carlisle E. Moody, Jr. IMPACT OF SENTENCING REFORMS AND SPEEDY TRIAL LAWS IN THE UNITED STATES, 1969-1989. Williamsburg, VA: Justec Research [producer], 1991. Ann Arbor, MI: Inter-university Consortium for Political and Social Research [distributor], 1992.

Persistent URL:

Export Citation:

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


This study was funded by:

  • United States Department of Justice. Office of Justice Programs. National Institute of Justice (88-IJ-CX-0045)

Scope of Study

Subject Terms:    crime rates, deterrence, inmate populations, prisons, punishment, sentencing, sentencing reforms, trials

Geographic Coverage:    United States

Time Period:   

  • 1969--1989

Date of Collection:   

  • 1988--1990

Universe:    The population of the United States during 1969-1989.

Data Type(s):    aggregate data

Data Collection Notes:

This collection contains two 87-character records per case.


Sample:    The data collection is a pooled cross-sectional time series in 50 states for the period 1969-1989.

Data Source:

(1) "Prisoners and Prison Admissions and Releases," from Bureau of Justice Statistics reports, (2) Federal Bureau of Investigation Crime Report, 1972-1990, (3) United States Bureau of the Census population data, and (4) United States Department of Commerce economic data


Original ICPSR Release:   1992-03-04

Related Publications


Metadata Exports

If you're looking for collection-level metadata rather than an individual metadata record, please visit our Metadata Records page.

Download Statistics