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NCJ Number: 48620 Find in a Library
Title: OFFENDERS' CHARACTERISTICS VERSUS DECISION-MAKERS' ATTITUDES AS DETERMINANTS OF THE OUTOME OF PRESENTENCE EVALUATIONS
Journal: PSYCHOLOGICAL REPORTS  Volume:39  Issue:1  Dated:(1976)  Pages:267-274
Author(s): T R HOLLAND; N HOLT
Corporate Author: Psychological Reports
United States of America
Date Published: 1976
Page Count: 8
Sponsoring Agency: California Institute for Men
Chino, CA 91710
Psychological Reports
Missoula, MT 59807
Sale Source: California Institute for Men
Box 128
Chino, CA 91710
United States of America
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: PRESENTENCE RECOMMENDATIONS MADE BY PSYCHIATRISTS AND PSYCHOLOGISTS ARE RELATED TO CHARACTERISTICS OF INMATES TO DETERMINE IF VARIABILITY MAY BE ATTRIBUTED TO THE ATTITUDES OF THE DECISIONMAKERS TOWARD SENTENCING.
Abstract: THE SUBJECTS WERE 372 CONSECUTIVELY RECEIVED INMATES AT THE CALIFORNIA INSTITUTION FOR MEN, CHINO. THEY WERE CONVICTED FELONS WHO HAD BEEN COMMITTED TO PRISON ON A SHORT-TERM BASIS AT THE ORDER OF SUPERIOR COURT JUDGES FOR THE PURPOSE OF UNDERGOING AN EVALUATION PRIOR TO FINAL SENTENCING. INFORMATION USED FOR EVALUATION INCLUDED AGE AT PRESENT COMMITMENT, SELFREPORTED EDUCATIONAL LEVEL, ARMY GENERAL CLASSIFICATION TEST INTELLIGENCE QUOTIENT, MINNESOTA MULTIPHASIC PERSONALITY INVENTORY PROFILE, SEVERITY OF CURRENT OFFENSE, PROBABILITY OF RECIDIVISM, AND THE ESTIMATED EXTENSIVENESS OF ARREST HISTORY. ON THE BASIS OF THIS INFORMATION, RECOMMENDATIONS FOR MANAGEMENT ON THE COUNTY LEVEL THROUGH PROBATION OR SHORT-TERM DETENTION OR IMPRISONMENT IN A STATE PRISON WERE MADE BY THE PSYCHIATRIC-PSYCHOLOGICAL AND CORRECTIONAL COUNSELING STAFF MEMBERS. FOR PSYCHIATRISTS AND PSYCHOLOGISTS, CHI=SQUARE AND PHI WERE EMPLOYED IN ASCERTAINING THE EXTENT OF THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE EVALUATIVE CONCLUSIONS REACHED BY THE STAFF MEMBERS. IT WAS FOUND THAT MEASURED HIGH LEVELS ON BOTH SEVERITY OF OFFENSE AND PROBABILITY OF RECIDIVISM WERE ASSOCIATED WITH STATE-LEVEL RECOMMENDATIONS, WHILE LOW LEVELS ON THE VARIABLES WERE ASSOCIATED WITH COUNTY-LEVEL RECOMMENDATIONS. ANALYSIS REVEALED THAT DIFFERENCES AMONG STAFF MEMBERS IN WEIGHING THESE FACTORS CONTRIBUTED TO THE RECOMMENDATIONS. IT IS CONCLUDED THAT ATTITUDES TOWARD THE SENTENCING OF OFFENDERS HELD BY THE EVALUATING STAFF AFFECT THEIR CHOICE OF SENTENCING ALTERNATIVES. THOSE WHO VIEW SENTENCING AS PRIMARILY PUNITIVE WOULD GIVE WEIGHT TO THE SEVERITY OF OFFENSE IN DETERMINING SENTENCE RECOMMENDATION, WHILE THOSE WHO VIEW SENTENCING AS A MEANS OF REDUCING RECIDIVISM WOULD BE MORE LIKELY TO GIVE STRONG WEIGHT TO THIS PREDICTION. IT IS RECOMMENDED THAT, IN THE LIGHT OF THIS DETERMINATION, THAT STRATEGIES BE DEVELOPED FOR MINIMIZING THIS SUBJECTIVE VARIABILITY SO AS TO INCREASE THE EQUITY TO BE FOUND IN THIS SEGMENT OF THE CRIMINAL JUSTICE SYSTEM. A TABLE SHOWING THE RESULTS OF ANALYSIS IS INCLUDED. (RCB)
Index Term(s): Attitudes; Decisionmaking; Presentence investigations; Studies
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=48620

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