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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 159876 Find in a Library
Title: Increasing Judicial Responsibility Can Reduce Prison Overcrowding (From America's Prisons: Opposing Viewpoints, P 139- 144, 1991, Stacey L. Tipp, ed. - See NCJ-159858)
Author(s): B L Benson; L A Wollan Jr
Date Published: 1991
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: Greenhaven Press
Farmington Hills, MI 48333-9187
Sale Source: Greenhaven Press
P.O. Box 9187
Farmington Hills, MI 48333-9187
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article argues that proposals to alleviate prison overcrowding should focus on decreasing the demand for prison beds, rather than increasing the supply through construction of new facilities.
Abstract: Early release programs represent a mistaken approach to relieving overcrowding, because dangerous criminals are often released to make room for new admissions. The authors argue that judges play a key role in dictating the level of demand for prison spaces. Under the proposal outlined here, judges would be assigned a certain amount of prison space. They would have to evaluate each of their cases carefully to determine which offenders, and which offenses, merit a prison space. In effect, judges would be forced to send the most dangerous criminals to prison, while finding alternative sanctions for less serious offenders.
Main Term(s): Corrections
Index Term(s): Courts; Incarceration; Judges; Prison conditions; Prison overcrowding; Sentencing reform
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