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January 23, 2008

New report on the state of sentencing in 2007

The Sentencing Project, as detailed here, has just released a new report titled "The State of Sentencing, 2007: Developments in Policy and Practice."  This 30-page report is available at this link, and here is how The Sentencing Project describes some of highlights here:

Today's report, The State of Sentencing, 2007: Developments in Policy and Practice, highlights a number of important state criminal justice policy developments that occurred during 2007.  These include:

  • Nine states created oversight committees to examine sentencing laws, prison overcrowding, indigent defense, and/or reentry services;
  • Seven states amended parole policies and enhanced reentry preparation; Four states eased policies that treat juveniles as adults;
  • Three states relaxed sexual offense laws related to consensual acts conducted by teenagers; and
  • Two states reformed mandatory sentencing enhancements.

Nevada and California implemented some of the most significant criminal justice reforms in 2007....

The advances highlighted in The State of Sentencing, 2007 reflect a pattern in state criminal justice policy that emphasizes effective public safety measures that control government expenditures.  These developments continue a promising trend of "smart on crime" initiatives.  Between 2004 and 2006, 22 states enacted sentencing reforms targeted at reducing the prison population.  Today's report concludes with several recommendations for enhanced reforms:

  • Repeal mandatory minimum sentences;
  • Implement policies to reduce parole revocations to prison;
  • Invest in reentry and oversight of the criminal justice system; and
  • Expand options to reduce the amount of time served in prison.

January 23, 2008 at 11:13 AM | Permalink


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And one state went in entire the opposite direction, making parole tougher and enacting more mandatory-minimums. Sigh.

Posted by: Gideon | Jan 23, 2008 6:36:17 PM

a friend has just accepted a plea bargain having to do with porn on the internet (child) and as i understand it, the sentence generally is a mandatory minumum of 5 years in prison. He has already served 2 + years while awaiting trials/ hearings etc. Ive been researching all i can to get an answer to my question to no avail. can u help ? my question is this ? is there a possibility he can be released earlier than 5 years for good behavior or as time served or or or. ?
OR does mandatory minimum mean that he will actually have to do 5 years , period. ? i realize it is up to interpretation, i just cant find case law or whatever to answer my question. i live in PA.

Posted by: llm | Jun 5, 2008 4:00:33 PM

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