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Goals of Sentencing 1. DETERRENCE—the punishment will deter others from committing such a crime. (MAKING AN EXAMPLE OF SOMEONE) 2. INCAPACITATION—punishment will reduce the individual’s opportunity to commit future crime. (LOCK THEM UP AND THROW AWAY THE KEY)
Goals of Sentencing cont. 3. REHABILITATION—treat the individual and eliminate the underlying causes of crime. Includes classes, vocational training, and substance abuse treatment. 4. RETRIBUTION—Punish criminals in a manner proportionate to the severity of their crime. This will discourage vigilantism. (MAKE THEM PAY)
Goals of Sentencing cont. 5. RESTITUTION/RESTORATION—Repay the victims and society for costs, and apologize for misdeeds.
Race and Sentencing A disproportionate number of minorities are in state prisons and on death row. 1. Bias in drug laws Ex. Crack vs. Cocaine 2. Bias in victim-offender status Minorities who kill whites are more likely to get the death penalty than minorities who kill other minorities. 3. Bias in probation Where there is little bias in sentencing, there is still bias in granting probation.
Race and Sentencing cont. What can be done to address disparities? 1. Mandatory Sentencing laws 2. Judges appointed for lifetime may be more objective than those who are elected.
Three Strikes Laws Also called “habitual offender laws” About half of states have them; California’s (1994) is the most prominent Helps keep violent offenders off the street Non-violent offenders may be sent to prison for life for a minor felony Very costly—is costing CA about $6 B per year in extra prison costs.