skip navigation


Register for Latest Research

Stay Informed
Register with NCJRS to receive NCJRS's biweekly e-newsletter JUSTINFO and additional periodic emails from NCJRS and the NCJRS federal sponsors that highlight the latest research published or sponsored by the Office of Justice Programs.

NCJRS Abstract

The document referenced below is part of the NCJRS Virtual Library collection. To conduct further searches of the collection, visit the Virtual Library. See the Obtain Documents page for direction on how to access resources online, via mail, through interlibrary loans, or in a local library.


NCJ Number: 219142 
Title: Gender Considerations in Remand Decision-Making (From Gender and Justice: New Concepts and Approaches, P 125-146, 2006, Frances Heidensohn, ed. -- See NCJ-219137)
Author(s): Kate Steward
Date Published: 2006
Page Count: 22
Sponsoring Agency: Willan Publishing
Portland, OR 97213-3644
Sale Source: Willan Publishing
c/o ISBS, 5804 N.E. Hassalo Street
Portland, OR 97213-3644
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Book Chapter
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: In order to examine how and why courts use remand (detention) for women, this British study investigated magistrates' decisionmaking in remand hearings that involved women "at risk" of a custodial remand.
Abstract: In the overwhelming majority of cases, offense seriousness alone determined remand outcome, regardless of the personal characteristics of the defendant; however, in those cases that fell on the "cusp" (offenses whose severity was marginal), gender was sometimes relevant to the remand decision. In such cases, magistrates' perceptions of female defendants' characters were significantly related to societal perceptions of normative gender roles. Women were typically perceived to be more "troubled" than men, which encouraged magistrates to use remand in cusp cases as an opportunity to help and support defendants. The skill of defense attorneys was the key in influencing magistrates' perceptions of women's characteristics. This was less likely to happen when the women were involved in unconventional family structures compared to those of the magistrates. Future research should determine whether different groups of magistrates' moral assessments of women vary with extra-legal factors and personal characteristics of the defendant, such as demeanor, race, nationality, class, and age. The current study was primarily a qualitative study of magistrates' decisionmaking in five courts in three metropolitan areas. Verbatim accounts of 103 remand hearings (untried defendants and convicted unsentenced defendants being remanded for reports) were analyzed along with 41 semistructured interviews with lay magistrates, Crown Prosecution Service officers, defense lawyers, and women living in a bail hostel. Since the study focused on the use of custodial remand, only cases in which women were at risk of being remanded in custody were observed; the police decision to hold a female defendant in custody overnight was used as a proxy indicator of this risk. 42 references
Main Term(s): Criminology
Index Term(s): Detention; Discretionary decisions; Female inmates; Foreign criminal justice research; Gender issues; Judicial discretion; United Kingdom (UK)
To cite this abstract, use the following link:

*A link to the full-text document is provided whenever possible. For documents not available online, a link to the publisher's website is provided. Tell us how you use the NCJRS Library and Abstracts Database - send us your feedback.