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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 81820 Add to Shopping cart Find in a Library
Title: Case Weights for the Prosecution and Defense of Felony Cases in Los Angeles County (California) - Final Report
Author(s): W M Rhodes
Corporate Author: INSLAW
Productivity Research Ctr
United States of America
Date Published: 1979
Page Count: 240
Sponsoring Agency: INSLAW
Washington, DC 20005
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
Type: Statistics
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This study focuses on prosecutor and defense productivity by quantifying the costs of these legal services for the Office of the District Attorney and the Office of the Public Defender in Los Angeles, Calif.
Abstract: A general methodology was developed that is suitable for determining legal services costs both in Los Angeles and in other settings. Case weights were then derived, indicating the average amount of attorney time spent on criminal cases, controlling for offense type and method of disposition. Finally, a summary of attorney activities was provided. Time data were collected from all deputy district attorneys who processed felony cases in four branch offices and in the main office over a 73-day period. Data collection in the public defender's office followed a similar plan, but attorneys were much less willing to cooperate, and data veracity is questionable. An obvious application of the weights determined in this study is to provide a focal point for external funding decisions. A second use of this analysis is in suggesting where changes in justice administration might have the greatest impact on reducing costs and increasing productivity. The case-weight analysis has important potential uses in internal allocation decisions. Numerous tables, illustrations, and footnotes are supplied. Appendixes include a description of the data base construction, the case weight estimation model, data validation, a list of crime offense codes, and other information.
Index Term(s): California; Caseload management; Cost analysis; Defense counsel; Felony; Prosecutors
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