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NCJ Number: 77244 Find in a Library
Title: Determinate and Indeterminate Sentence Law Comparisons Study Feasibility of Adapting Law to a Sentencing Commission - Guideline Approach
Corporate Author: Arthur D Little Inc
United States of America
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 246
Sponsoring Agency: Arthur D Little Inc
San Francisco, CA 94111
Format: Document
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: Findings and recommendations are reported from a study that compares the merits of California's experience under current determinate sentencing law (DSL) with the merits of its experience under prior indeterminate sentencing law (ISL), and the feasibility of California's adopting a sentencing commission is assessed.
Abstract: Following a discussion of the enactment of the DSL and its objectives, the structural contrasts between ISL and DSL are considered. The report compares California's experiences under DSL and ISL and analyzes the degree to which each scheme achieves the following goals: adequacy, certainty, equity, protection, deterrence, and rehabilitation. The study also assesses the impact of DSL on justice system processes and procedures, specifically the courts, corrections, and the discretion afforded decisionmakers in the criminal justice system. The study includes an analysis of sentencing practices in other States, which consists of a literature review on sentencing, a general survey of sentencing models and mechanisms used throughout the United States, and an indepth analysis of four States' experiences in establishing sentencing commissions and developing sentencing guidelines. The report recommends that California establish a sentencing commission to alleviate the current management problems associated with the legislative process of developing and passing sentencing laws. Other recommendations are as follows: (1) prior to the establishment of a sentencing commission, the legislature should prioritize goals for sentencing; (2) in the analysis of sentencing reforms, the sentencing commission should consider development of sentencing guidelines; (3) the sentencing commission should be initiated and established by the legislature as an independent body in the executive branch; and (4) enabling legislation for a sentencing commission should specify goals to be achieved and the basic organizational and procedural responsibilities to be assumed by the legislature, commission, and judiciary in regard to sentencing reform. Appended are the study design, a bibliography, analysis of superior court dispositions for 1970-1978, and an analysis of offense rates. Tabular data are provided.
Index Term(s): California; Comparative analysis; Determinate Sentencing; Indeterminate sentences; Sentencing commissions; Sentencing guidelines; Sentencing reform; State laws
Note: Report to the California Legislature Joint Committee on Rules.
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