Essay Example on Impact of Various Sentencing Models in Corrections

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Impact of Various Sentencing Models in Corrections Assignment Military University Analyze the impact that various sentencing models have had on corrections As part of your analysis you must discuss at least two 2 different sentencing models In our society an individual can be sentenced for a crime under three conditions One they are found guilty of a criminal offense Two they pled guilty to a criminal offense Three they pled nolo contendere no contest to a criminal offense The sentencing will then be imposed by either a judge or a jury The United States has no single sentencing model that is used today Until the 1970s indeterminate sentencing was dominant and most states gave judges and parole boards wide discretion in sentencing offenders Zhang 2014 With indeterminate sentencing an offender had no idea how long their sentence could be Determinate sentencing is seen more often today Through incapacitation determinate sentencing is designed to increase punishment s certainty severity and celerity by removing discretion from unpredictable judges and parole boards Greenwood Abrahamse 1982 As sentencing models have changed and developed over the years it has caused an impact on corrections agencies and how they handle inmates In the beginning of the twentieth century society s goal with sentencing was rehabilitation With rehabilitation the goal is to modify an offender's behavior so that they no longer continue to commit crimes This began to change in the 1970 s when society wanted to focus on fairness and justice

This became known as just deserts people who break the law deserve to be punished Mackenzie 2001 Sentencing models started to change again in the 1980 s and 1990 s when society wanted a crime control model that emphasized incarceration to reduce crime in the community These changes have impacted the criminal justice system More specifically the corrections system There are four major goals that attribute to the sentencing process Retribution rehabilitation deterrence and incapacitation While retribution refers to people who deserve to be punished The other three goals are considered utilitarian or the idea that moral decisions should be based on the rule of the greatest happiness for the largest number of people Mackenzie 2001 The changes in sentencing models have had a huge impact on incarceration rates and expenditures in the United States Direct expenditures for correctional activities by State governments grew from 4 26 billion in 1980 to 21 27 billion in 1994 Grear 1998 State and federal prisons had jurisdiction over 1 458 200 persons sentenced to more than 1 year at year end 2016 Carson 2018 Indeterminate sentencing models existed in almost every American jurisdiction until the 1970s Tonry 2000 This system was developed so that the correctional system could rehabilitate offenders The states gave judges and parole boards a wide discretion when it came to sentencing offenders Under this model an offender had no idea how long they could be in prison for The sentence was made for an individual s specific needs Parole boards used their discretion to release offenders when it was appropriate to return them to the community Bureau of Justice Assistance 1998 Determinate sentencing is based off the deterrence theory This theory predicts that persons who receive harsh sentences will be less likely to commit future crime Zhang 2014 This model is designed to increase the punishment s certainty severity and celerity State statutes determine the length of incarceration removing discretion from parole boards Bureau of Justice Assistance 1998 Most states have now adopted the use of determinate sentencing with fixed prison terms Prison sentences are based off the seriousness of the crime rather than rehabilitation of the offender 



When determinate sentencing became the go to model for many states they started to experiment with different types of parole good time commitment criteria and the overall severity of punishment Fogel 1975 As sentencing models are developed and changed the impact it will have on correctional facilities will fluctuate Sentencing models are based on societies views at the time Law makers will change models based off the view of the public Models are driven by factors such as crime rates prison overcrowding and the cost of long term incarceration of offenders In the past punishment took the form of physical retribution This physical retribution included instant death lingering death torture mutilation branding etc Looking at today s society it appears that the thought model is shifting back to rehabilitation This model could drastically reduce the number of inmates in prisons The problem with rehabilitation could be that there are not enough facilities available for the courts to assign offenders References Carson A 2018 January 09 Prisoners in 2016 Retrieved from https www bjs gov index cfm ty pbdetail iid 6187 Greenwood P W Abrahamse A F 1982 Selective incapacitation Santa Monica Rand Hollin C Fogel D 1975 We are the living proof The justice model for corrections Cincinnati Anderson Mackenzie D L 2001 Sentencing and corrections in the 21st century setting the stage for the future College Park MD University of Maryland College Park Md Dept of Criminology and Criminal Justice Evaluation Research Group Price Grear L 1998 Bureau of justice statistics fiscal year 1998 at a glance Tonry M 2000 Reconsidering indeterminate and structured sentencing Alternatives to Incarceration 6 17 21 Zhang Y Zhang L Vaughn M S 2009 Indeterminate and Determinate Sentencing Models Crime Delinquency 60 5 693 715 doi 10 1177 0011128709354047


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