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NCJ Number: 65036 Find in a Library
Title: SENTENCING TRENDS IN THE UNITED STATES - IMPLICATIONS FOR CLINICAL CRIMINOLOGY (FROM TODAY'S PROBLEMS IN CLINICAL CRIMINOLOGY - RESEARCH AS DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT, 1979, BY L BELIVEAU ET AL - SEE NCJ-65021)
Author(s): D M GOTTFREDSON
Corporate Author: Universite de Montreal, Centre International de Criminologie Comparee
Canada

Institut Philippe Pinel de Montreal 12
Canada

Universite de Genes
Centre International de Criminologie Clinique
Italy
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 17
Sponsoring Agency: Institut Philippe Pinel de Montreal 12
Montreal, Quebec 478, Canada
Universite de Genes
Genes, Italy
Universite de Montreal, Centre International de Criminologie Comparee
Montreal, Quebec, Canada H3c 3j7
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: RECENT SENTENCING TRENDS IN THE U.S. ARE DESCRIBED, WITH EMPHASIS ON THE SHIFT FROM INDETERMINACY TO THE JUST DESERTS MODEL AND THE EFFECTS ON REHABILITATIVE DIAGNOSIS AND TREATMENT OF INMATES BY CLINICIANS.
Abstract: IN CONTRAST WITH THE CONTINENTAL MODEL OF CRIMINAL PROCEEDINGS, AMERICAN TRIALS HAVE TWO DISTINCT PHASES: THE FIRST IS TO DETERMINE CRIMINAL LIABILITY; THE SECOND IS TO DETERMINE THE APPROPRIATE SENTENCE. ALTHOUGH SENTENCING DECISIONS AFFECT ROLES AND BEHAVIORS OF POLICE, PROSECUTORS, CORRECTIONAL ADMINISTRATORS, AND CLINICIANS, THERE IS MUCH DEBATE AND NO AGREEMENT ABOUT THE PURPOSES OF SENTENCING. FOUR SENTENCING GOALS ARE DETERRENCE, INCAPACITATION, TREATMENT, AND DESERT OR PUNISHMENT. UNTIL RECENTLY, THE TREATMENT GOAL WAS PARAMOUNT. INDETERMINATE SENTENCES WERE THUS THE GENERAL RULE. SUCH SENTENCES WERE CRITICIZED, HOWEVER, FOR BEING ARBITRARY, CAPRICIOUS, AND CONDUCIVE TO UNWARRANTED DISPARITY. THE RECENT SHIFT HAS BEEN TO DETERMINATE SENTENCING AND AN EMPHASIS ON DESERT. FUTURE TRENDS WILL PROBABLY INCLUDE NONCOERCIVE INMATE TREATMENT, RIGID TIME CONSTRAINTS ON INMATE TREATMENT, MORE CERTAIN PENALTIES, PENALTIES CLOSELY RELATED TO THE CRIME'S CHARACTERISTICS RATHER THAN THE OFFENDER'S CHARACTERISTICS, REDUCED PARTICIPATION OF CLINICIANS IN PAROLE AND SENTENCING DECISIONS, AND DECREASED EMPHASIS ON PREVENTION OR REHABILITATION AS PURPOSES OF CORRECTION. THESE CHANGES IMPLY INCREASED PENALTIES IN A WAY NOT ENVISIONED BY THE DESERT THEORIST. VOLUNTARY TREATMENT MAY MEAN THAT ONLY MORE EASILY TREATABLE INMATES WILL VOLUNTEER FOR TREATMENT. TIME AVAILABLE FOR TREATMENT WILL BE RELATED TO THE CRIME'S SERIOUSNESS RATHER THAN TO THE INMATES NEED FOR TREATMENT. RESEARCH ON EFFECTIVENESS OF DIFFERENT TREATMENTS MAY BE HINDERED. FINALLY, PRISON MANAGEMENT MAY NEED TO CHANGE TO MORE AUTHORITARIAN SYSTEMS BECAUSE OF THEIR LOSS OF ONE FORM OF SOCIAL CONTROL, AND PRISONS MAY BECOME OVERCROWDED DUE TO INCREASED TERMS. THESE PROBLEMS MAY HAVE A CUMULATIVE EFFECT. THE CHANGES TO INCREASED FAIRNESS IN SENTENCING HAVE BEEN ACCOMPLISHED BY REJECTION OF THE TRADITIONAL TREATMENT AIM. THESE CHANGES, WHICH MAY BE PART OF A MORE GENERAL SOCIAL MOVEMENT IN THE U.S., PRESENT A FUNDAMENTAL CHALLENGE TO CLINICAL CRIMINOLOGY. A REFERENCE LIST IS INCLUDED.
Index Term(s): Custody vs treatment conflict; Determinate Sentencing; Evaluation; Future trends; Indeterminate sentences; Inmate Programs; Just deserts theory; Psychiatric services; Rehabilitation; Sentencing/Sanctions; United States of America
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=65036

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