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December 2, 2009

New federal sentencing data from the US Sentencing Commission

I am pleased to discover that the US Sentencing Commission has some fresh new sentencing data now up on its website.  Here are links to the new data runs, with descriptions from the USSC's website:

Fourth Quarter FY09 Quarterly Sentencing Update:  An extensive set of tables and charts presenting fiscal year quarterly data on cases in which the offender was sentenced through the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009. The report also provides an analysis of sentencing trends over five years for several key sentencing practices. (Published December 2, 2009)

Data on Retroactive Application of the Crack Cocaine Amendment:  A set of tables presenting preliminary data on cases in which a motion for a reduced sentence was considered under 18 U.S.C. § 3582(c)(2). These cases involve retroactive application of the crack cocaine amendment to the sentencing guidelines (Amendment 706, as amended by Amendment 711) which became effective on November 1, 2007 and which was made retroactive effective March 3, 2008. The data in this report represents those motions decided by the courts through November 10, 2009 and for which data was received, coded, and edited by the Commission as of November 17, 2009.

I hope to find the time and energy before too long to pour through this new data and report on anything special that catches my eye.  Readers are welcomed and encouraged, of course, to use the comments to the same end.

December 2, 2009 at 06:37 PM | Permalink


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The fraction of downward departures is increasing over the years. The full impact of a law takes about 10 years to take place. It has been five years. The crime rate has yet to increase significantly. But the criminal lovers on the bench are trying their best, it seems.

Posted by: Supremacy Claus | Dec 2, 2009 8:59:29 PM

Then again, maybe the connection between sentencing and crime rates isn't as clear-cut as some members of the “lock-em-up” crowd would like to believe.

Posted by: Marc Shepherd | Dec 3, 2009 2:28:14 PM

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