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NCJ Number: 69591 Find in a Library
Title: Sentencing Guidelines - A Practical Approach
Journal: Pennsylvania Bar Association Quarterly  Volume:49  Issue:4  Dated:(October 1978)  Pages:462-465
Author(s): A G Blackey
Corporate Author: Pennsylvania Bar Assoc
United States of America
Date Published: 1978
Page Count: 4
Sponsoring Agency: Pennsylvania Bar Assoc
Harrisburg, PA 17101
Format: Article
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This article contends that serious problems exist in sentencing policies and that the courts should take the lead in reconsidering sentence policies and procedures.
Abstract: Widespread discontent with current sentencing practices reflects a lack of information about sentences that have been imposed or the factors that affect a specific case, as well as a misunderstanding of the limited relationship between sentences and the amount of crime. Alternative solutions include mandatory sentences, eliminating the parole system by flat time, presumptive sentencing, sentencing councils, expanded appellate review, and sentencing guidelines. Strong support has been generated for the guideline approach, which is currently before the General Assembly of Pennsylvania in the form of House Bill 953. A massive study of sentences imposed over a period of years, conducted by LEAA, found a high degree of sentencing predictability, proving that guidelines now exist and that sentences are more consistent and rational than they may first appear. However, the process of sentencing has not been explicitly defined or developed by discussion and compromise in an effort to reduce unjustified variation. A guideline developed in York County, Pa., is suggested as a starting point for further analysis. The York County guidelines and footnotes are included.
Index Term(s): Court reform; Pennsylvania; Sentencing guidelines; Sentencing/Sanctions
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