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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 70138 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Use of Social Workers in a Public Defender Office - An Evaluation of the Offender Rehabilitation Project of the Public Defender Office for Santa Clara County, California
Author(s): M S Wald
Corporate Author: Santa Clara Cty Office of the Public Defender
Cty Government Ctr
United States of America
Date Published: 1972
Page Count: 129
Sponsoring Agency: National Institute of Justice/
Rockville, MD 20849
Santa Clara Cty Office of the Public Defender
San Jose, CA 95110
US Dept of Justice

US Dept of Justice NIJ Pub
Washington, DC 20531
Grant Number: 69-NI-058; 70-NI-062
Sale Source: National Institute of Justice/
NCJRS paper reproduction
Box 6000, Dept F
Rockville, MD 20849
United States of America
Document: PDF
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This report describes and evaluates the Offender Rehabilitation Project of the Santa Clara County Public Defender (California) that was carried out from May 1969 to October 1970.
Abstract: The project's purpose was to provide the public defender attorneys with personnel who would help them develop sentencing recommendations for their clients. Two nonlawyers with social work backgrounds were hired to prepare sentencing plans for public defender clients to be presented to the court at the time of their sentencing. The project had two goals: to compare the defender reports with the probation reports to see in what ways, if any, the reports differed; and to study whether the sentencing court, when faced with differing reports, would adopt plans submitted by defense counsel. Due to the loss of all the statistical data comparing defender and probation reports and evaluating the sentencing judges' reaction to the two reports, this report can only present an impressionistic evaluation of the impact of the project and a description of the project's development. The project found that the reports prepared by the project workers differed substantially from those of the probation department; the sentencing judge was influenced in some, but not all cases, by the project recommendations and did alter the sentencing patterns in cases in which project workers developed rehabilitation plans. The evaluation concludes that the project had a clear impact on the community service agencies which became more willing to offer programs to help clients with criminal backgrounds. The project did provide services that were then unavailable in Santa Clara County and it appears that major components of the criminal justice system will alter their behavior in response to it. Tables, footnotes, and appendixes of information sheets, survey instruments, and lists of agencies surveyed are provided. (Author abstract modified).
Index Term(s): California; Evaluation; Offenders; Public defenders; Rehabilitation; Sentencing/Sanctions
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