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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 67586 Find in a Library
Title: MINNESOTA - DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS - RACE AND THE DISCIPLINARY PROCESS
Author(s): ANON
Corporate Author: Minnesota Dept of Corrections
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 11
Sponsoring Agency: Minnesota Dept of Corrections
St Paul, MN 55108-5219
National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Type: Report (Study/Research)
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THE POSSIBILITY OF RACIAL BIAS IN INMATE DISCIPLINE IS EXAMINED OR THE MINNESOTA STATE PRISON (MSP) AND THE MINNESOTA STATE REFORMATORY FOR MEN (SRM).
Abstract: THE MAJOR OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY WERE TO IDENTIFY DECISION POINTS AT WHICH BIAS MAY OCCUR AND DETERMINE AT WHICH POINTS, IF ANY, BIAS EXISTS. WITHIN THE DISCIPLINARY PROCESS AT EACH INSTITUTION, FIVE MAJOR DECISION POINTS WERE IDENTIFIED: THE DECISION TO WRITE A REPORT, THE DECISION TO WITHDRAW THE REPORT, THE DECISION TO CONVICT OR ACQUIT, AND THE SEVERITY OF SENTENCE IMPOSED. AT EACH OF THESE DECISION POINTS, THE POSSIBILITY FOR BIASED DECISIONMAKING WAS FOUND TO EXIST. THE FIRST DECISION POINT, THE DECISION ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT TO WRITE A REPORT, ALTHOUGH ACKNOWLEDGED TO BE A CRUCIAL POINT OF POSSIBLE BIAS, WAS CONSIDERED BEYOND THE SCOPE OF THE STUDY BECAUSE OF THE DATA-GATHERING PROBLEMS. IN ORDER TO CHECK FOR BIAS AT THE REMAINING FOUR DECISION POINTS AT EACH INSTITUTION, DATA WERE COLLECTED FROM ALL DISCIPLINARY REPORTS FILED IN 1976 AT MSP AND SRM. THE ONLY DECISION POINT AT MSP WHERE SIGNIFICANT BIAS APPEARED TO EXIST WAS IN SEVERITY OF SENTENCING; AT ONE LEVEL OF SENTENCE SEVERITY, WHICH INCLUDED ASSAULT AND ARSON/DESTRUCTION OF PROPERTY (THE RULE VIOLATIONS MORE OFTEN COMMITTED BY INDIANS), INDIANS HAD SEGREGATION IMPOSED MORE OFTEN AND AT GRTER LENGTHS THAN FOR BLACKS AND WHITES. ALTHOUGH THE OFFENSES OF ASSAULT AND ARSON/DESTRUCTION OF PROPERTY OFTEN RESULT IN LONGER SEGREGATION SENTENCES, THE DIFFERENCE IN THE MEAN SENTENCE FOR THESE OFFENSES CAN BE ATTRIBUTED TO THE HIGHER SENTENCE IMPOSED ON INDIANS FOR THE SAME OFFENSES COMMITTED BY WHITES OR BLACKS. FINDINGS WERE BASICALLY THE SAME AT SRM AS AT MSP, WITH NO SIGNIFICANT BIAS FOUND TO EXIST EXCEPT AT THE POINT OF SENTENCING. AT TWO LEVELS OF VIOLATION SEVERITY, INDIANS WERE SIGNIFICANTLY MORE LIKELY TO RECEIVE SEGREGATION SENTENCES, AND THE SEGREGATION IMPOSED WAS USUALLY LONGER THAN FOR BLACKS AND WHITES COMMITTING SIMILAR OFFENSES. TABULAR DATA ARE PROVIDED. (RCB)
Index Term(s): American Indians; Black/African Americans; Discrimination; Inmate discipline; Minnesota; Studies
To cite this abstract, use the following link:
http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=67586

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