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NCJ Number: 63739 Find in a Library
Title: DETERMINATE OR INDETERMINATE SENTENCING - THE CHANGING SCENE (FROM CRITICAL ISSUES IN CRIMINAL JUSTICE, 1979, BY R G IACOVETTA AND DAE H CHANG - SEE NCJ-63717)
Author(s): L A BENNETT
Corporate Author: Carolina Academic Press
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 17
Sponsoring Agency: Carolina Academic Press
Durham, NC 27701
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: ARGUMENTS FOR AND AGAINST INDETERMINATE SENTENCING ARE EXAMINED, THE HISTORY OF PRISON PHILOSOPHY IS GIVEN, AND A MIDDLE-GROUND APPROACH TO PUNISHMENT IS PRESENTED.
Abstract: INDETERMINATE SENTENCING ACCOMPANIED THE MEDICAL MODEL APPROACH TO CORRECTIONS AND DIAGNOSIS OF ROOTS OF JUVENILE DELINQUENCY. OFFENDERS WERE BELIEVED TO BE MALADJUSTED EMOTIONALLY AND CORRECTABLE THROUGH TREATMENT; THUS INDETERMINATE SENTENCES WERE PRESCRIBED TO ALLOW THE TREATMENT AS LONG AS WOULD BE NECESSARY. EVENTUALLY, THE FAIRNESS OF THIS TYPE OF SENTENCING WAS BROUGHT INTO QUESTION, PARTICULARLY AFTER THE IDEA OF REHABILITATION FELL INTO DISREPUTE AND THE PUBLIC BEGAN TO FEEL MORE AND MORE THAT THEY WERE NOT BEING PROPERLY PROTECTED--THAT DANGEROUS INMATES WERE BEING RELEASED WHEN THEY SHOULD NOT BE. WHAT IS ONLY BEGINNING TO BECOME CLEAR IS THAT PUNISHMENT SHOULD BE RECOGNIZED AS THE BASIC RATIONALE FOR INCARCERATION, BUT WITH THESE ACCOMPANYING GOALS: RETRIBUTION, DETERRENCE, REHABILITATION, AND VENGEANCE. THIS PLACES MULTIPLE DEMANDS ON CORRECTIONS. THERE ARE SEVERAL APPROACHES TO DETERMINATE SENTENCING, INCLUDING FLAT-TIME SENTENCING (CONSIDERED TOO INFLEXIBLE BY SOME), DEFINITE SENTENCING FOR WHICH GUIDELINES WOULD BE SET, AND PRESUMPTIVE SENTENCING, SIMILAR TO DEFINITE SENTENCING. A MODIFIED PROCEDURE, RECOMMENDED HERE, WOULD INCORPORATE FEATURES OF THE DEFINITE SENTENCE APPROACH BUT WOULD ALSO RETAIN THE FLEXIBILITY OF THE INDETERMINATE SENTENCING SYSTEM. LEGISLATION WOULD BE REQUIRED TO PROVIDE THE PHILOSOPHICAL BASE FOR OPERATION PLUS REQUIRE THE PAROLE BOARD TO ADOPT REGULATIONS AND OPERATING PROCEDURES TO PLACE THAT PHILOSOPHY INTO OPERATION. WITHIN THIS FRAMEWORK, THE PAROLING AUTHORITY COULD OUTLINE SUGGESTED RULES AND REGULATIONS AND CONDUCT PUBLIC HEARINGS BEFORE ADOPTION OF ANY PROCEDURES. THE DETERMINATION OF THE SENTENCE WOULD OCCUR WITHIN A FEW WEEKS AFTER INDUCTION INTO THE PRISON SYSTEM. DISCUSSION QUESTIONS AND NOTES ARE PROVIDED.
Index Term(s): Determinate Sentencing; Geographical sentencing variation; Indeterminate sentences; Mandatory Sentencing; Presumptive sentences; Sentencing disparity; Sentencing guidelines; Sentencing/Sanctions
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