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NCJ Number: 134378 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Effects of Instituting Means-Based Fines in Criminal Court: The Staten Island Day-Fine Experiment, Final Report
Author(s): L A Winterfield; S T Hillsman
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 168
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice (NIJ)
Washington, DC 20531
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
NCJRS Photocopy Services
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Vera Institute of Justice
New York, NY 10279
Grant Number: 87-IJ-CX-0001
Sale Source: Vera Institute of Justice
233 Broadway, 12th Floor
New York, NY 10279
United States of America

National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America

NCJRS Photocopy Services
Box 6000
Rockville, MD 20849-6000
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Program/Project Evaluation
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: New York's Staten Island day fine pilot project demonstrated that the day fine concept can be implemented in typical U.S. courts, that day fines can substitute for fixed fines, that fine amounts increase for more affluent offenders under the day fine system, that overall court revenues increase, and that high rates of collection can be sustained despite higher day fine amounts.
Abstract: Day fines replaced two-thirds of fixed fines in penal law cases sentenced by judges during the pilot year. The remaining one-third of the fines were fixed fines imposed by non-Staten Island judges sitting temporarily in the court to cover for vacationing or sick colleagues. These judges had not been trained to use day fines and, therefore, used the traditional tariff system to set the fine amount. All judges trained to use day fines did so consistently throughout the pilot year without tying up their calendars. The mechanics of imposing a day fine were not too complex or time-consuming to be applied routinely in a fast-paced criminal court. The introduction of day fines did not meaningfully affect judges' sentencing decisions during the pilot year. Even when prior conviction record and arraignment charges were controlled, sentencing patterns were stable during the initial period in which day fines were introduced. The only small but noticeable change in sentencing patterns was an increase in jail sentences for some drug cases. The impact of day fines on fine amounts, collection and enforcement outcomes, and equity and sentence displacement is detailed. Information on the research design and supporting tabular data are appended. 57 references and 62 tables
Main Term(s): Day fines
Index Term(s): New York; Sentencing/Sanctions
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=134378

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