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NCJ Number: 68593 Find in a Library
Title: AXE, RUBBER HATCHES, AND DRIFTERS - IDEOLOGY AND THE JUVENILE COURT (ISSUED IN TWO NUMBERED VOLUMES)
Author(s): L LEWIS
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 570
Sponsoring Agency: UMI Dissertation Services
Ann Arbor, MI 48106-1346
Sale Source: UMI Dissertation Services
300 North Zeeb Road
P.O. Box 1346
Ann Arbor, MI 48106-1346
United States of America
Type: Thesis/Dissertation
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: THIS DISSERTATION ATTEMPTS TO EXPLAIN JUVENILE COURT POLICY IN TERMS OF THE JUDGES' COGNITIVE DECISIONMAKING STRUCTURES AND EXAMINES JUDGES' BELIEFS, ATTITUDES, AND VALUES AS A PREDICTOR OF SENTENCING SEVERITY.
Abstract: THREE CONDITIONS SHOULD BE MET BEFORE INDIVIDUAL IDEOLOGY BECOMES A MAJOR FACTOR IN INSTITUTIONAL DECISIONMAKING AND POLICY: (1) THE INDIVIDUAL MUST OCCUPY AN AUTHORITY POSITION IN THE INSTITUTIONAL STRUCTURE, (2) INSTITUTIONAL RESTRAINTS ON INDIVIDUAL DECISIONMAKING AUTHORITY MUST BE FLEXIBLE, (3) THE INDIVIDUAL MUST HAVE DECISIONMAKING OPTIONS. A QUESTIONNAIRE WAS USED TO MEASURE IDEOLOGY FOR EACH OF A NATIONAL SAMPLE OF JUVENILE COURT JUDGES. THE JUDGES WERE ASKED TO AGREE OR DISAGREE WITH OPINION STATEMENTS REFLECTING SEVERAL IDEOLOGICAL TYPOLOGIES AND TO STATE THEIR DISPOSITIONAL PREFERENCE IN RESPONSE TO 11 FICTIONAL CASE SUMMARIES. ANALYSIS OF THE RESPONSES INDICATED THREE IDEOLOGICAL TYPES. AXES, ON RIGHT-WING HARDLINERS, SHOWED A PROPENSITY TOWARD HIGHER DISPOSITIONAL SEVERITY PREFERENCE SCORES, WHILE RUBBER HATCHETS, OR LEFT-WING DIVERSION ADHERENTS, LEANED TOWARD LOWER SEVERITY PREFERENCE SCORES. DRIFTERS SHOWED INCONSISTENT RESPONSE PATTERNS, BUT TENDED TO SCORE SOMEWHERE BETWEEN AXES AND RUBBER HATCHETS IN SEVERITY PREFERENCES. IT WAS CONCLUDED THAT THE LEAST SEVERE JUDGE IS MOST LIKELY TO BE A RUBBER HATCHET IN A STATE ALLOWING JURY TRIALS IN JUVENILE COURT AND WHO HAS SEVERAL DIFFERENT DISPOSITIONAL ALTERNATIVES, MOST PROBABLY IN AN URBAN AREA. THE MOST SEVERE JUDGE WILL MOST LIKELY BE A SMALL TOWN/RURAL AXE IN A STATE PROHIBITING JURY TRIALS IN JUVENILE COURT AND WHO HAS VERY FEW DISPOSITIONAL OPTIONS. STATE JUVENILE COURT OFFICIAL STATISTICS WERE OFTEN VAGUE AND UNUSABLE, SO THE LINK BETWEEN IDEOLOGY, SEVERITY PREFERENCES, AND ACTUAL DISPOSITIONS COULD NOT BE SHOWN. TABLES, THE QUESTIONNAIRE, FOOTNOTES, ADDITIONAL METHODOLOGICAL DISCUSSION, A CODEBOOK, AND APPROXIMATELY 200 REFERENCES ARE INCLUDED. (AUTHOR ABSTRACT MODIFIED)
Index Term(s): Decisionmaking; Dispositions; Judicial decisions; Judicial discretion; Juvenile adjudication; Penalty severity rating; Sentencing disparity
Note: MICHIGAN STATE UNIVERSITY - DOCTORAL DISSERTATION
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http://www.ncjrs.gov/App/publications/abstract.aspx?ID=68593

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