Current studies, research and reports:
Watch the 12/15/2009 Sentencing Committee Hearing 9 speakers and public testimony, committee agenda, minutes
Watch the 5/14/2010 Sentencing Commitee Hearing 9 speakers and public testimony, committee agenda, minutes
Watch the 11/17/2010 Sentencing Committee Hearing presentation by Auditor General, public testimony, committee agenda, minutes
Watch the 12/14/10 Sentencing Committee Hearing, the final hearing in the series of committee meetings. committee agenda, minutes
Sentencing in Arizona: Recommendations to Reduce Costs and Crime • Associate Professor Carissa Hessick and seven Law Students from ASU Sandra Day O'Connor School of Law • December, 2010 [Referenced during the Sentencing Committee hearing December 14, 2010]
PEW CENTER ON THE STATES
Time Served: The High Cost, Low Return of Longer Prison Terms • PEW Center on the States • June 2012 • [Summary: This new study by PEW found that in the last 20 yeas, the length of time served by prisoners has increased 36%. This comes at a high price for states, showing that at least half of those released in 2009 were nonviolent offenders.
Prison Count 2010 • PEW Center on the States • April, 2010 [Statistics and discussion on current state & federal prison populations, more than half of the states' population declined, Arizona's did not]
One in 31: The Long Reach of American Corrections • PEW Center on the States • March 2009 [One in every 31 adults in the U.S. is under the control of the correctional system]
One in 100 Behind Bars in America 2008 • PEW Center on the States • February, 2008
Less Crime, Lower Cost Data-Driven Decisions in Sentencing and Corrections • The PEW Charitable Trusts • NCSL Fall Forum 2009
Testimony before the Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism and Homeland Security • Adam Gelb, Director Public Safety Performance Project, Pew Center on the States • May 11, 2010
THE SENTENCING PROJECT
Deterrence in Criminal Justice: Evaluating Certainty vs Severety of Punishment • Valerie Wright, PhD, The Sentencing Project • November 2010 • Summary: The report addresses a key concern for policy makers as to whether deterrence is better achieved by increasing the likelihood of apprehension, or increasing the severity of sanctions. Some of the findings regarding deterrence: the certainty of punishment is more effective than severity; many prison terms could be shortened without having any adverse effects on public safety; mandatory sentences burden state budgets with no increased benefit for public safety.
Downscaling Prisons, Lessons from Four States • The Sentencing Project • 2010 • Summary: This report analyzes the impact of legislative and administrative policy initiatives on state prison populations in
The State of Sentencing 2009: Developments in Policy and Practice • The Sentencing Project [A study of 19 states’ efforts to reduce prison population] • published 2010
Incarceration and Crime: A Complex Relationship • The Sentencing Project • 2005 • Summary: Increasing incarceration while ignoring more effective approaches will impose a heavy burden upon courts, corrections and communities, while providing a martinal impact on crime.
Viewpoint: The Impact of mandatory minimum penalties in federal sentencing • Marc Mauer, Executive Director of the Sentencing Project • JUDICATURE Vol 94, No 1 • July-August 2010 • [based on testimony before the United States Sentencing Commission on May 27, 2010]
More Mentally Ill Persons are in Jails and Prisons than Hospitals: A Survey of the States • E. Fuller Torrey, M.D., et al. for Treatment Advocacy Center and National Sheriffs Association • May 2010 [This report shows Arizona is second in the nation in our rates of incarceration of those living with a mental illness.]
Evidence-Based Practice to Reduce Recidivism: Implications for State Judiciaries • National Institute of Corrections + Crime and Justice Institute • Aug 30, 2007
Unlocking America: Why and How to Reduce America’s Prison Population • JFA Institute • November 2007 • [JFA INSTITUTE: "Conducting Justice and Corrections Research for Effective Policy-Making"] This report will take some serious time to download or open.
Alternative-To-Incarceration Programs for Felony Offenders: Progress Report and Preliminary Findings from a Recidivism Analysis • Rachel Kramer and Rachel Porter, Vera Institute of Justice, submitted to the New York City Office of the Criminal Justice Coordinator • June 2000 • Summary: This report documents the outcomes of a large sample of Alternative-to-Incarceration participants in New York City. The programs assessed were established to serve as alternatives to jail and prison.
Using Intensive Case Management to Reduce Violence by Mentally Ill Persons in the Community • Hospital and Community Psychiatry, Vol 45, No 7, p679 • July 1994
STUDIES/REPORTS FROM OTHER STATES
Fight Crime and Save Money: Development of an Investment Tool for States to Study Sentencing and Corrections Public Policy Options • Washington State Institute for Public Policy • April 2010
Reforming Mississippi’s Prison System • JFA Institute with the Mississippi Department of Corrections for PEW Center on the States • August 2009
Staff, Denying Parole at First Eligibility: How Much Public Safety Does it Actually Buy? A Study of Prisoner Release and Recidivism in Michigan • Citizen Alliance on Prison & Public Spending • August 2009 • Summary: This study tests the assumption in the context of parole decision-making by comparing the recidivism rates of people who were released when they first become eligible with those of people who were denied release for some number of years.
Michigan Prisoner ReEntry Initiative • Staff, Quarterly Status Report: First Quarter Fiscal Year 2009 • 2009 • Summary: This overview of the Michigan Prisoner ReEntry Initiative documents preliminary findings through August of 2008 and reports a 26% improvement in total returns to prison against the 1998 baseline (across all of the release cohorts as a group.) This translates into 945 fewer returns to prison so far when compared to baseline expectations (a numerical reduction that will grow considerably if these results are sustained over a full standardized multi-year follow-up period).
What Works: Effective Recidivism Reduction and Risk-Focused Prevention Programs, A Compendium of Evidence-Based Options for Preventing New and Persistent Criminal Behavior • Prepared for the Colorado Division of Criminal Justice by Roger Przybylski of the RKC Group • February 2008 • Summary: The analysis explores what reduces recidivism and documents that thirty years of research has produced a body of evidence that clearly demonstrates rehabilitation programs work. The report finds that a variety of programs, properly targeted and well-implemented, can reduce recidivism and enhance public safety.
The Impact of Hawaii’s HOPE Program on Drug Use, Crime and Recidivism • PEW Center on the states + National Institute of Justice • 2009 [This is a brief of the report.]
Offender Accountability Act: Final Report on Recidivism Outcomes • Drake E.K., et. al., Washington
State Institute for Public Policy • January 2010 • Summary: This report explores recent reductions in recidivism following the adoption of the Offender Accountability Act (OAA) by the Washington State Legislature. State policymakers adopted the OAA in 1999, which affects how the state administers community supervision to adults with felony convictions.
Evidence-Based Public Policy Options to Reduce Future Prison Construction, Criminal Justice Costs, and Crime Rates • Washington State Institute for Public Policy • October 2006
Recidivism: The Effect of Incarceration and Length of Time Served • Lin Song and Roxanne Lieb. Washington State Institute for Public Policy • September 1993 • Summary: This study finds that the effect of incarceration (versus other sentencing options) and sentence length on recidivism is complex. For some formerly incarcerated persons, incarceration and longer confinement seem to increase the risk of recidivism. For other formerly incarcerated persons, the likelihood of re-offense will either be unaffected or reduced by longer terms of incarceration. Furthermore, early-release programs do not appear to affect overall recidivism rates.
Three-Year Recidivism Tracking of Offenders Pariticipating in Substance Abuse Treatment Programs • State of Texas Criminal Justice Policy Council • 1999 [lower recidivism rates tracked and documented]
Final Wrongful Convictions Report • NY State Bar Assocn Task Force • April 2004
POPULAR AND LOCAL PUBLICATIONS
Opinion "My Turn" Arizona Republic, June 8, 2012 • Op Ed piece by Yours Truly, "Legislators need attitude change on prison reform." Published in print, but not available online. This document contains the opinion published by the Republic.
Lawmakers Oppose Relaxing of Prison Sentences • Howard Fischer, Capitol Media Services for EAST VALLEY TRIBUNE • November 17, 2010 • Summary: Some influential Arizona legislators and the Governor's spokesperson have expressed opposition to any sentencing statute changes following the Sentencing Committee Hearing of November 17, 2010.
Rough Justice, Crime and Punishment in America • THE ECONOMIST • July 22, 2010
Too Many Laws and Too Many Prisoners, Never in the Civilized World have So Many Been Locked Up for So Little • THE ECONOMIST • July 22, 2010
Arizona Budget Woes Could Affect Criminal Sentencing • THE ARIZONA REPUBLIC , Paul Davenport, AP • November 9, 2010
Swift and Certain: Hawaii's Probation Experiment • GOVERNING, John Buntin • October 31, 2009 • Summary: A look at the dramatic changes in recidivism brought about by Judge Steven Alm of Hawaii who instituted random testing with immediate sanctions for test failure, working with drug offenders on probation with numerous violations. A discussion about the history of Judge Alm's efforts and sustained success with this program, in Hawaii, now called the HOPE program. A few other jurisdictions have had some difficulty implementing this model with the same success, as they encounter political and judicial resistance.
Arizona's Private Prisons: The Public's Problem, a quality assessment of Arizona's private prisons • February 2012 • American Friends Service Committee, Tucson, Arizona.
Private prisons not saving us money - so why do we still have them? • August 17, 2012 • The Tucson Citizen
Private Prisons Found to Offer Little in Savings • May 18, 2011 • The New York Times
Too Good to Be True, Private Prisons in America • January 2012 • The Sentencing Project
Banking on Bondage, Private Prisons and Mass Incarceration • November 2011 • the ACLU
Prison Privatization: A Meta-Analysis of Cost Effectiveness and Quality of Confinement Indicators • April 2007 • University Of Utah Criminal Justice Center
Prison Privatizaton and the Use of Incarceration • September 2004 • The Sentencing Project
OTHER ARIZONA REPORTS
On Dispensing Injustice • Judge Rudolph J. Gerber Arizona Court of Appeals • 43 Arizona Law Review 171 2001
Former Arizona appellate court judge, Rudolph Gerber, with twenty-two years experience on the trial and appellate bench, argues in this piece that the criminal justice system as structured in Arizona perpetrates a number of injustices, including its "one size fits all" mandatory sentences, misplaced priorities and severities in substance abuse arena, and a counterproductive cost and deterrence scheme regarding imprisonment, among others. He argues that these practices lead to internal contradictions and inconsistencies in the system. Gerber suggests that due to political concerns, legislators are incapable of fashioning a truly just criminal justice system and that others should take over its management.
Report on Arizona’s Pre-August 1973 Life-Sentenced Inmates • Arizona Justice Project • 2010
2010 Arizona Criminal Code Sentencing Provisions • Arizona Supreme Court • 2010