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NCJ Number: 50893 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: SENTENCING IN PENNSYLVANIA
Corporate Author: Pennsylvania Assoc on Probation, Parole & Correction
United States of America
Project Director: S MCCLEA
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 64
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Pennsylvania Assoc on Probation, Parole & Correction
Camp Hill, PA 17011
Pennsylvania Governor's Justice Cmssn
Harrisburg, PA 17120
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE OBJECTIVE OF THIS STUDY WAS TO OBTAIN DATA ON TYPES AND LENGTHS OF SENTENCES RECEIVED BY FELONY OFFENDERS IN PENNSYLVANIA IN 1976, WITH PARTICULAR EMPHASIS ON REPEAT OFFENDERS AND THE USE OF WEAPONS.
Abstract: FIVE STAGES COMPRISED THE STUDY PLAN: PROJECT ORIENTATION AND FIELD PLANNING, STUDY POPULATION IDENTIFICATION, DATA COLLECTION, DATA TABULATION AND VERIFICATION, AND DATA ANALYSIS. THE FOCUS OF THE STUDY WAS ON THE COLLECTION OF INFORMATION ABOUT FELONY OFFENSES FREQUENTLY CITED IN LEGISLATIVE SENTENCING REFORM BILLS, AND THE FOLLOWING EIGHT MAJOR FELONY OFFENSES WERE EXAMINED: THIRD-DEGREE MURDER, ARSON, RAPE, ROBBERY, BURGLARY, FELONIOUS THEFT, AGGRAVATED ASSAULT, AND THE SALE OF NARCOTICS. THESE OFFENSE CATEGORIES PERTAINED TO 85 PERCENT OF ALL OFFENDERS SENTENCED TO PROBATION AND COUNTY JAILS FOR FELONY OFFENSES DURING 1976. THE STUDY DID NOT INCLUDE PENNSYLVANIA'S EIGHT STATE CORRECTIONAL INSTITUTIONS. DATA WERE RECEIVED ON APPROXIMATELY 90 PERCENT OF 25,000 CASES INVOLVING OFFENDERS. SIX MAJOR FINDINGS EMERGED FROM THE STUDY: (1) 25 PERCENT OF OFFENDERS WERE CONVICTED OF FELONY OFFENSES; (2) ONE, OR MORE, OF THE THREE OFFENSES OF BURGLARY, ROBBERY, AND THE SALE OF NARCOTICS WAS COMMITTED BY TWO-THIRDS OF ALL FELONY OFFENDERS; (3) 25 PERCENT OF OFFENDERS HAD ONE OR MORE PRIOR FELONY CONVICTIONS, WITH OVER HALF OF REPEAT OFFENDERS HAVING HAD ONLY ONE PRIOR FELONY CONVICTION; (4) FEWER THAN 7.2 PERCENT OF OFFENDERS WERE CONVICTED OF USING OR POSSESSING A WEAPON DURING THE COMMISSION OF AN OFFENSE; (5) WHILE NEARLY 70 PERCENT OF OFFENDERS HAD NO PRIOR FELONY CONVICTIONS AND DID NOT USE A WEAPON WHILE COMMITTING THEIR OFFENSE, ONLY 2.7 PERCENT HAD BOTH A PRIOR FELONY CONVICTION AND USED A WEAPON DURING THEIR OFFENSE; AND (6) THERE WERE A TOTAL OF 1,709 OFFENDERS WHO HAD ONE OR MORE PRIOR FELONY CONVICTIONS (45 PERCENT WERE COMMITTED TO COUNTY JAILS WITH AN AVERAGE MINIMUM SENTENCE OF 8.3 MONTHS AND 55 PERCENT WERE PLACED ON STATE OR COUNTY PROBATION FOR AN AVERAGE TERM OF SUPERVISION OF 46.6 MONTHS FOR STATE CASES AND 42.8 MONTHS FOR COUNTY CASES). IT IS RECOMMENDED THAT ANY SENTENCING REFORM PROPOSAL CONSIDERED BY THE LEGISLATURE BE REVIEWED WITH REGARD TO ITS FISCAL IMPLICATIONS. SUPPORTING STUDY DATA ARE PROVIDED. (DEP)
Index Term(s): Felony; Offenders; Pennsylvania; Recidivists; Sentencing/Sanctions; Weapons violations
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=50893

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