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NCJ Number: 166210 Find in a Library
Title: Role of Criminal Record in the Sentencing Process (From Crime and Justice: A Review of Research, Volume 22, P 303-362, Michael Tonry, ed. -- See NCJ-166203)
Author(s): J V Roberts
Date Published: 1997
Page Count: 60
Sponsoring Agency: University of Chicago Press
Chicago, IL 60637
Sale Source: University of Chicago Press
1427 East 60th Street
Chicago, IL 60637
United States of America
Type: Survey
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: An offender's criminal history plays an important role in sentencing in all jurisdictions, statutory enhancements for repeat offenders exist in most countries, and there is widespread public support for harsher penalties for recidivists.
Abstract: Advocates of general or specific deterrence support a recidivism premium on the grounds that recidivists are more likely to reoffend and need stronger disincentives. Incapacitationists argue that longer detention is required for offenders with a greater likelihood of reoffending. Most just deserts theorists support a limited sentencing discount for first offenders. State and Federal sentencing guideline systems in the United States attach great importance to criminal history information, but there is considerable diversity in the way different sentencing guideline systems define and limit the use of previous convictions. Policy issues related to the use of criminal history information are explored, including definitions of what should be included in a criminal record, the use of juvenile adjudications, the duration of previous convictions, and the question of whether previous criminal misconduct should ever be completely effaced. Alternative ways of conceptualizing criminal history are examined. 124 references, 1 table, and 3 figures
Main Term(s): Courts
Index Term(s): Criminal histories; Habitual offenders; Recidivism; Recidivists; Sentencing disparity; Sentencing factors; Sentencing guidelines
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