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Impact of marsy’s law on parole in california an empirical study


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Marsy’s Law (Proposition 9) purported to increase Victims’ Rights by making significant changes to parole in California. Supporters of Marsy’s Law intended to decrease lifer inmate’s “chances” to obtain parole by statutorily lengthening the amount of time between parole hearings, and to increase victim presence at parole hearings by creating greater opportunities for victim participation.

I conducted an analysis of 211 randomly selected parole hearing transcripts in California both before and after Marsy’s Law was implemented. I found that the passage of Marsy’s Law nearly doubled the amount of time set by the Parole Board between parole hearings. It is unclear whether Marsy’s Law has increased victim participation at parole hearings or has impacted the quality of victim participation at parole hearings.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 29

Date posted: July 07, 2011

Contact Information
Laura Lienhart Richardson (Contact Author)
University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) - School of Law ( email )
385 Charles E. Young Dr. East
Room 1242
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1476
United States

Published in: News & Politics, Education
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Impact of marsy’s law on parole in california an empirical study

  1. 1. COMMENTImpact of Marsy’s Law on Parole in California: An Empirical StudyLaura L. Richardson* CONTENTSINTRODUCTION .........................................................................................................................................2I. LITERATURE REVIEW ...........................................................................................................................3 a. VICTIMS’ RIGHTS ...................................................................................................................................3 b. PAST EMPIRICAL WORK.........................................................................................................................4 c. MARSY’S LAW .......................................................................................................................................8 d. HYPOTHESES ..........................................................................................................................................8II. DATA + METHODOLOGY...................................................................................................................10 a. OVERVIEW OF THE DATA SET ..............................................................................................................10 b. DEPENDENT VARIABLES ......................................................................................................................11 c. INDEPENDENT VARIABLES ...................................................................................................................11 d. CONTROL VARIABLES ..........................................................................................................................12III. ANALYSIS ............................................................................................................................................18 a. LENGTH SET BETWEEN PAROLE HEARINGS ........................................................................................19 b. IMPACT ON PAROLE DECISIONS ...........................................................................................................20IV. FINDINGS .............................................................................................................................................20 a. MARSY’S LAW HAS A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ON THE TIME SET BETWEEN PAROLE HEARINGS ..........20 b. MARSY’S LAW’S IMPACT ON VICTIM PARTICIPATION IS UNCLEAR ....................................................22CONCLUSIONS ..........................................................................................................................................23APPENDIX ..................................................................................................................................................25* Student, UCLA School of Law. Special thanks to Joseph Doherty and Sharon Dolovich.   1   Electronic copy available at:
  2. 2. INTRODUCTION In 2008, California voters passed Proposition 9 (“Marsy’s Law”), a Victim’s Rights billintended to give the victims of crimes and their families a more meaningful role in the criminaljustice system.1 Marsy’s Law altered many aspects of the California criminal justice systemfrom redefining victim2 to dramatically amending parole procedure.3 This Comment explains the impact of Marsy’s Law on both the length of time set by theBoard of Parole Hearings (“Parole Board”) between parole hearings and the impact of Marsy’sLaw on parole hearing decisions. An empirical analysis of 211 parole hearings from 2007 to2010 reveals that the average amount of time set between parole hearings has almost doubledsince the passage of Marsy’s Law. This study shows how Victims’ Rights bills can have aprofound impact on parole hearings and thus on inmates serving indeterminate sentences.4 Part I provides context for Marsy’s Law within larger Victims’ Rights framework andreviews past empirical research carried out on Parole Board decision making generally, andspecifically when victim participation is allowed.5 Part II describes the data set and how it wascoded, and Part III discusses the results of the regression analyses. Part IV discusses theimplications of my findings and I conclude with some final thoughts and by proposing avenuesfor future research.                                                                                                                1 Text of Proposed Laws, Proposition 9, Victims’ Bill of Rights Act of 2008: Marsy’s Law, Section 3 (listing thepurposes of Mary’s Law) (available at Under the post- Marsy’s Law California Constitution, a victim is defined as (1) a person who suffers direct orthreatened physical, psychological, or financial harm as a result of the commission or attempted commission of acrime or delinquent act; (2) the person’s spouse, parents, children, siblings, or guardian; and (3) a lawfulrepresentative of a crime victim who is deceased, a minor, or physically or psychologically incapacitated. CAL.CONST., art. I, § 28 (e).3 See CAL. PENAL CODE 3041.5 (b); CAL. PENAL CODE § 3043.4 Inmates serving indeterminate life sentences are commonly referred to as “lifers.”5 For the purposes of this study victim refers not only to the direct victim of the crime (“crime victim”) but also thevictim’s family and victim’s representative. CAL. PENAL CODE § 3043 (b).   2   Electronic copy available at:
  3. 3. I. LITERATURE REVIEW a. VICTIMS’ RIGHTS The Victims’ Rights movement in the United States is both a politically popularmovement6 and one that many perceive to be long overdue.7 The exclusion of the victim frommany aspects the criminal justice system has been considered both a virtue8 and a vice.9 The ofthe marginalization of the victim in the criminal justice system has resulted in many cases wherethe victim or victim’s family fails to perceive their rights or needs as vindicated by that system. While the Victim’s Right movement on a whole has arguably created positive changes inthe criminal justice system10, there is a real risk that the changes it proposes might go too far;infringing upon the rights of the accused, the convicted and the incarcerated. Additionally,because it is politically unpopular to protect these particular groups, there may be few forcesworking on their behalf, protecting their fundamental legal rights. Marsy’s Law’s sweepingchanges to the California Constitution, and California Penal Code may result in due processviolations to the inmate’s liberty interest in parole11 or may even violate the Ex Post Facto                                                                                                                6 CANDACE MCCOY, POLITICS AND PLEA BARGAINING: VICTIMS’ RIGHTS IN CALIFORNIA 10-16 (1993). See alsoPRESIDENT’S TASK FORCE ON VICTIMS OF CRIME FINAL REPORT 16-18 (1982), available at See e.g. Frank Carrington & George Nicholson, The Victims’ Movement: An Idea Whose Time Has Come, 11PEPPERDINE L. REV. 1 (1984).8 “The American legal system intentionally and properly distances families from prosecutions; the goal isevenhanded justice. The level of punishment a criminal receives should not depend on how persistent a particularfamily is in pleading for punishment or blocking parole. Civilized Justice rejects vendetta and instead placeretribution in the hands of the entire society. It may seem depersonalizing, but that’s a goal, not a defect, of oursystem.” Editorial, No on Proposition 9, LA. TIMES, Sept. 26, 2008, at 28.9 See e.g. Carrington & Nicholson, supra note 7.10 See e.g. Sue Anna Moss Cellini, The Proposed Victims’ Rights Amendment to the Constitution of the UnitedStates: Opening the Door of the Criminal Justice System to the Victim, 14 ARIZ. J. INT’L & COMP. L. 839 (1997)(noting that victims’ have been marginalized in our criminal justice system and suggesting systematic reform toinclude greater victim input in criminal proceedings). Contra Lynne Henderson, The Wrongs of Victims’ Rights, 37STAN. L. REV. 937 (1985) (arguing that so called victims’ rights are aimed less at including victims in the criminaljustice system and more at vindicating conservative crime control goals).11 See 2008 California Criminal Law Ballot Initiatives, 14 BERKELEY J. CRIM. L. 173, 187-88 (2009) (discussinghow Marsy’s Law may create arbitrary parole decisions based upon the presence of a victim, or if the victim’simpact statement contains un-correctable mistakes, exaggerations or lies); see also Laura L. Richardson, A Matter ofDegree: Parole in California After Marsy’s Law, 28-45 (unpublished manuscript) (on file with author).   3   Electronic copy available at:
  4. 4. Clause of the Constitution.12 Thus, compensation for the marginalization of one group in thecriminal justice system – the victim – may marginalize the rights of another group in the criminaljustice system – the criminal. The impact of Victim’s Rights legislation on parole is important for a number or reasonsbeyond maintaining the complex and delicate balance between due process and Victims’Rights.13 California has been a leader for both parole reform and Victims’ Rights14 and whereCalifornia goes, other states follow. In 2009 the Oregon legislature adopted a bill that increasedthe amount of time that the Oregon Parole Board could set between hearings from two years toten years.15 Additionally, since California has the largest inmate population in the country,16 thepotential impact of laws aimed at this somewhat vulnerable population17 could have a profoundimpact on a very large number of Californians’ rights. Tracking the actual impact of newVictims’ Rights bills is crucial in ensuring that the popular rights of one group do not overtakethe basic, yet less popular rights of another group. b. PAST EMPIRICAL WORK Prior studies have focused primarily on what factors impact the parole decisions of ParoleBoard hearings. Empirical research on parole hearings, while attempting to create “objective,actuarial models and guidelines for determining releases from prison” instead to some extent, has                                                                                                                12 Id. at 45-52.13 MCCOY, supra note 3 at 1.14 Id. at 26.15 H.B 2335, 75th Leg. Assemb., Reg. Sess. (Or. 2009) (enacted). The Oregon law increasing the amount of yearsthat could be set between parole hearings went into effect in January of 2010. Lynne Terry, Diane Downs’ NextParole Hearing Won’t be for 10 Years, THE OREGONIAN, Dec. 10, 2010, California state prisons house more than 170,000 inmates. Hagar Aviram, Defining the Problem, 7 HASTINGSRACE & POVERTY L.J. 161, 162 (2010). About 30,000 inmates are serving indeterminate life sentences and 4,000life sentence inmates apply for parole every year. Blaire Russell, In re Lawrence and Hayward v. Marhsall:Reexamining the due process Protections of California Lifers Seeking Parole, 14 BERKELEY. J. CRIM. L. 251 (2009);Gary Klien, “Buddha Behind Bars Granted Rare Release, But Fight from DA Promised, Marin Indep. J., July 21,2008. See JOAN PETERSILIA, WHEN PRISONERS COME HOME: PAROLE AND PRISONER REENTRY 105-37 (2003).   4  
  5. 5. exposed how little predictability can be found in parole decisions.18 Empirical studies on parolehave found many different factors to exert control over whether parole was granted or not. Anexperimental study conducted by Carolyn Turpin-Petrosino in 1999 examined what factors mostaffected parole decisions by having Parole Board Officers from New Jersey hear experimentalcases and decide whether to grant parole and then rank which factors they considered importantin their decision-making.19 She found that the type of commitment crime was the most importantfactor in parole decisions.20 A 1974 study by Robert M. Garber and Christina Maslach looked atwhether what was discussed at the parole hearing had an impact on whether or not parole wasgranted.21 This study involved 100 randomly selected California parole hearings fromSeptember and October of 1974.22 The authors found that when parole was granted there was a“significantly greater proportion of discussion about post-release activities, … post-releasesupport, … and prior parole hearings.”23 When parole was denied there was a “significantlygreater proportion of discussion about prison rehabilitation … and prison custody.”24Additionally the study noted that the parole hearing placed a “heavy emphasis on psychologicalassessment.”25 Other studies have shown that race26, gender27, and the institutional behavior of                                                                                                                18 Joel M. Caplan, What Factors Affect Parole: A Review of Empirical Research, 71 FED. PROBATION 16 (2007); seealso Mary West-Smith et al., Denial of Parole: An Inmate Perspective, 64 FED. PROBATION 3, 9 (“Release decisionsby the parole board appear to be largely subjective and to follow latent norms that emerge over time.”) (2000); c.f.Robert M. Garber & Christina Maslach, The Parole Hearing: Decision or Justification, 1 L & HUM. BEHAV. 261(1977).19 Carolyn Turpin-Petrosino, Are Limiting Enactments Effective? An Experimental Test of Decision Making in aPresumptive Parole State, 24 J. CRIM. JUST. 321, 324-25 (1999).20 Id. at 329.21 Robert M. Garber & Christina Maslach, The Parole Hearing: Decision or Justification, 1 LAW & HUM. BEHAV.261 (1977).22 Id. at 266.23 Id. at 271.24 Id.25 Id. at 274.26 Leo Carroll & Margaret E. Mondrick, Racial Bias in the Decision to Grant Parole, 11 LAW & SOC’Y REV. 93, 104(1976) (finding that black prisoners were required to meet an “additional requirement not imposed upon whiteprisoners” in order to be found eligible for parole).   5  
  6. 6. the inmate28 impact Parole Board decision-making at parole hearings. More recent research into parole hearing decision-making has shown that victimparticipation can exert a significant effect on parole hearing decisions.29 In a 1997 studyconducted by Brent L. Smith, Erin Watkins and Kathryn Morgan, the authors found thatincreased victim participation in parole hearings resulted in fewer grants of parole.30 Smith et al.looked at parole hearings in Alabama for violent offenders from June 1993 through May 1994.31Parole decisions in Alabama are conducted by three member Parole Board Panels.32 Out of the763 parole hearings that Smith et al. collected, they focused on 316 hearings in which ”victimswere notified of the parole hearing.”33 Out of the 316 hearings, parole was granted about 43percent of the time.34 Smith et al. found that when victim participation was high35 parole wasgranted in only 18 percent of hearings.36 When victim participation was minimal37 parole wasgranted in around 46 percent of hearings.38 Smith et al. ran a least squares regression to examinethe relationship between victim participation and parole decisions finding a significant                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    27 Martin Silverstein, Justice in Genderland: Through a Parole Looking Glass, 29 SYMBOLIC INTERACTION 393,407-08 (2006) (finding that gender played a role in how parole boards viewed the inmate’s commitment crimewhich in turn impacted parole decisions).28 John S. Carroll et al., Evaluation, Diagnosis, and Prediction in Parole Decision Making, 17 LAW & SOC’Y REV.199, 211-12 (1982) (finding that the “single strongest factor associated with the parole decision” in Pennsylvania isinstitutional discipline).29 For an overview see Caplan, supra note 18 at 18.30 Brent L. Smith et al., The Effect of Victim Participation on Parole Decisions: Results from a Southeastern State, 8CRIM. JUST. POL’Y REV. 57 (1997).31 Id. at 62.32 Id.33 Id. at 65.34 This is a quite large percentage in comparison to California where parole is granted in about 2-5% of hearings. SeeGary Klien, “Buddah Behind Bars” Granted Rare Release, but Fight from DA Promised, MARIN INDEP. J., July 20,2008,; Michael Rothfeld, Is this Paroled Killer Still a Threat?, L.A.TIMES, July 13, 2008, (“The State Parole Boardunder Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger has been granting releases to about 5% of eligible inmates serving lifesentences.”)35 High participation means that more than ten letters or appearances from victims (or victim’s families) occurred atthe parole hearing. Smith et al., supra note 30 at 65.36 Id.37 Minimal participation means that two or fewer letters or appearances from victims occurred at the parole hearing.Id.38 Id.   6  
  7. 7. relationship between the two.39 Other studies have similarly explored the impact of victim participation on Parole Boarddecisions. In a study conducted by William H. Parsonage, Frances P. Bernat, and JacquelineHelfgott, the authors examined the impact of victim testimony, implemented by Pennsylvania in1986, on parole decision making.40 The data set contains 200 randomly selected parole casesdecided in 1989 by the Pennsylvania Board of Probation and Parole in which the inmate wasappearing before the board for the first time.41 100 of these cases had victim impact testimony.42Controlling for the offense, offender, and parole eligibility related variables the study found thatwhen victim impact testimony was present parole was refused in 43 percent of parole hearings incomparison to 7 percent in the cases in which victim testimony was not present.43 Usingdiscriminant analysis the authors found that out of the four highly significant variables inexplaining the Parole Board’s decision to refuse parole, victim testimony exerted the greatestimpact on the parole decisions.44 Other variables that significantly impacted parole decisionmaking were the institutional performance of the inmate, the presence of victim injury, and thenumber of the inmate’s prior convictions.45 The study also found that even in cases where thevictim suffered no injury victim testimony resulted in denial 27.8 percent of the time incomparison to 0 percent of the time when there was no victim testimony.46 The study concludedthat victim testimony, which at the time was new in Pennsylvania, posed certain dangers becausethe Parole Board’s understanding of the policy reasons underlying victim testimony may not                                                                                                                39 Id. at 69-70.40 William H. Parsonage et al., Victim Impact Testimony and Pennsylvania’s Parole Decision Making Process: APilot Study, 6 CRIM. JUST. POL’Y REV. 187 (1992).41 Id. at 193.42 Id.43 Id. at 194.44 Id. at 195.45 Id.46 Id. at 197.   7  
  8. 8. have been understood.47 c. MARSY’S LAW Marsy’s Law has made major changes to many aspects of parole. Section 3041.5 of theCalifornia Penal Code was the most significantly altered by the adoption of Marsy’s Law.Marsy’s Law changed the default time for the date of the next parole hearing from a single yearto fifteen years.48 It changed the amount of time that could be set between parole hearings from1-5 years to 3-15 years.49 It altered the standard for deciding when to set the next hearing,shifting the burden from the state on justifying why the inmate continued to be a threat to publicsafety necessitating a longer time before the next hearing, to the inmate in showing the non-existence of reasons why he or she continues to be a threat to public safety.50 It also gave theboard less discretion in setting parole hearings only allowing parole hearings to be initially set ateither 3, 7, 10 or 15 years.51 Section 3043 of the California Penal Code was significantly changed by the adoption ofMarsy’s Law as well; allowing for victims, victims’ families and up to two representatives tohave greater input during the parole hearing. Victims’52 are now entitled to have their “entireand uninterrupted statements” heard by the Parole Board.53 Additionally, the inmate does nothave the right to cross-examine the victim at the parole hearing.54 d. HYPOTHESES While earlier studies have shown how victim input can exert a significant impact on                                                                                                                47 Id. at 201.48 CAL. PENAL CODE 3041.5 (b)(3)(A).49 CAL. PENAL CODE 3041.5 (b)(3).50 CAL. PENAL CODE 3041.5 (b).51 Id.52 Victim is defined for the purposes of this study as not only the crime victim but the crime victim’s family and orrepresentatives.53 CAL. PENAL CODE § 3043.54 CAL. PENAL CODE § 3043 (b).   8  
  9. 9. parole hearing decisions, no study has dealt directly with the impact of a law that has made asmany changes to parole as Marsy’s Law has. Building off the work of Smith et al. andParsonage et al., I intend to show the variety of ways in which Victims’ Rights bills can impactparole hearings and the decision making of the Parole Board.Hypothesis 1 I hypothesize that Marsy’s Law will significantly increase the amount of time set by theParole Board panels between parole hearings. One of the purposes of the changes made to thepenal code by the passage of Marsy’s Law was to allow the board to set longer periods of timebetween parole hearings, thus creating less stress on a victim’s family having to relive the crimeevery time the inmate has a parole hearing.55 Additionally by increasing the minimum amount oftime that can be set between parole hearings from 1 to 3 years and by increasing the defaultamount of time set between parole hearings from the minimum (1 year) to the maximum (15years) it is very likely that the length set between parole hearings has increased significantlysince the passage of Marsy’s Law.Hypothesis 2 I also hypothesize that the increase in victims’ participation rights at parole hearings willhave an impact on the decision-making of the Parole Board. As described above, previousstudies have found that increased victim input results in Parole Boards being less likely to grantparole. Marsy’s Law, in increasing the opportunity for victim participation and by making suchparticipation free from certain procedural restraints, should result in increased victim input atparole hearings which in turn will have an impact on whether parole is granted and the amount of                                                                                                                55 The stated purpose of Marsy’s Law was to: (1) Provide victims with rights to justice and due process. (2)Eliminate parole hearings in which there is no likelihood a murderer will be paroled, and to provide that a convictedmurderer can receive a parole hearing no more frequently than every three years, and can be denied a follow-upparole hearing for as long as 15 years. Statement of Purpose and Intent, STATE OF CALIFORNIA DEPT. OF JUST., Law (last visited May 1, 2011).   9  
  10. 10. time set between parole hearings by the Parole Board. II. DATA + METHODOLOGY a. OVERVIEW OF THE DATA SET The data set includes parole hearing transcripts from parole hearings conducted inCalifornia of lifers between 2007 and 2010.56 Parole hearing transcripts ranged in length from 5pages to over 150 pages with the shorter parole hearing transcripts normally being the result ofparole being stipulated, waive, postponed or continued. Parole hearings are conducted at allState penal institutions that house lifers. The sample includes 211 total parole hearings decidedby 2 member Board of Parole Hearings panels including one Commissioner57 and one DeputyCommissioner.58 In order to code each parole hearing transcript I created a matrix of the differentinformation relevant to this study (Table 1). Each transcript was read thoroughly andinformation was recorded on paper and then later transformed into an excel spreadsheet.Missing data was assigned a 99 for all binary and categorical variables. Coding errors werecorrected in Stata once I uploaded the spreadsheet by going through each variable individuallyand looking for possible coding errors. Each variable was checked three times.                                                                                                                56 The range of dates for the parole hearing transcripts begins in November of 2007 and ends in December of 2010.I generated the data set by filing a California Public Records Act request (“CPRA Request”) with the CaliforniaDepartment of Corrections and Rehabilitation via a letter first filed on January 13, 2011. Letter from LauraRichardson, UCLA Law Student, to Daniel Davis, Board of Parole Hearings (Jan. 13, 2011) (on file with author).The original request was for 750 parole hearing transcripts, randomly selected using Stata, from September 2007 toDecember 2011. However, in the interest of time and cost a smaller sample was created from the initial sample ofapproximately 300 transcripts. The parole hearing transcripts were made available for my viewing at the Board ofParole Hearings office in Sacramento on February 24th to 25th and again from March 21st to 25th.57 Commissioners, of which there are tweleve, are appointed by the Governor to three year terms and are subject toSenate Confirmation. Board of Parole Hearings, CA. DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS & REHABILITATION, (last visited April 28, 2011).58 Deputy Commissioners are civil service appointments made by the Governor and not subject to SenateConfirmation. Board of Parole Hearings, CA. DEPT. OF CORRECTIONS & REHABILITATION, (last visited April 28, 2011).The Commissioners meet en banc to decide cases that are determined by the Governor to require full panelconsideration. No en banc parole hearings are included in my data.   10  
  11. 11. [Insert Table 1 Here] b. DEPENDENT VARIABLESNext Hearing The key dependent variable for the first hypothesis is the time in years set by the two-commissioner Parole Board until the next parole hearing. If parole was granted the variable wascoded as “0”. When parole was stipulated, waived, postponed, or continued the year the nexthearing was set for was coded unless not stated in which case it was left blank.Victim Participation The key dependent variable for my second hypothesis is a variable representing theparticipation of the victim.59 I utilized a factor analysis in order to create this variable. Thefollowing four factors were considered victim participation for the purposes of this study:whether the victim(s) were present at the parole hearing (binary variable coded “1” for presentand “0” for absent); whether the victim spoke at the parole hearing (binary variable coded “1” forspoke and “0” for did not speak); whether the victim sent opposition letters to be considered atthe parole hearing (binary variable coded “1” for letters sent and “0” for no letters sent); and howmany victims spoke (cardinal variable). Victim participation is also a key independent variablefor the purposes of this study. c. INDEPENDENT VARIABLESMarsy’s Law Applied The key independent variable for both hypotheses is whether the parole hearing tookplace before Marsy’s Law was applied or after Marsy’s Law was applied. This binary variablewas coded as “0” if the year was before 2009 (the year Marsy’s Law went into effect) or if theParole Board utilized the pre-Marsy’s Law scheme in determining the amount of time until the                                                                                                                59 “Victim” in this context means victim, victim’s next of kin, and/or victim’s representative.   11  
  12. 12. next parole hearing, and as “1” if the year was 2009 or later (after Marsy’s Law went into effect).Suitability Score This independent variable is a score created out of the nine suitability and sixunsuitability factors that must be considered by the Parole Board in their deliberations.60 Thisscore was created through a multi-step process. First I created ordinal variables for eachsuitability and unsuitability factor based upon whether the factor was discussed when the ParoleBoard gave their decision. If the factor wasn’t discussed I coded it as “0”. If the factor wasdiscussed as being present I coded it as “1”. If the factor was discussed as being absent I codedit as “-1”. The noted absence of suitability factors is normally considered an unsuitability factorby the board and the noted absence of an unsuitability factor is normally considered a suitabilityfactor.61 For each parole hearing I created the suitability score by adding up the amount ofdiscussed present unsuitability factors and the discussed absent suitability factors and subtractedthat from the amount of discussed present suitability factors and discussed absent unsuitabilityfactors. I then created a binary variable, suitability, coding it as “0” when the suitability scorewas negative (more unsuitable) and a “1” when the suitability score was zero or above zero(more suitable). d. CONTROL VARIABLES To determine whether the differences that I found at parole hearings before and after the                                                                                                                60 The six unsuitability factors are: heinous initial crime, previous record of violence, institutional misbehavior,sexually sadistic offense, severe mental problems, and unstable social history. CAL. CODE REGS. § 2402 (c). Thenine suitability factors are: no juvenile record, under stress when crime committed, stable social history, crime wasthe result of battered women syndrome, age, realistic future plans, lacks history of violent crime, and goodinstitutional behavior. CAL. CODE REGS. § 2402 (d).According to Commissioner Susan Melanson, the factors are fairly malleable, meaning that the absence of asuitability factor can be considered an unsuitability factor and the absence of an unsuitability factor can beconsidered a suitability factor. Personal Communication with Susan Melanson, Commissioner, Board of ParoleHearings (April 26, 2011).61 One noted exception I saw to this was in the parole hearing for inmate P-14259 the Commissioners seemed to citethe lack of an unstable social history as an unsuitability factor. Transcript of Parole Hearing for CDC # P-14259,Sept. 30, 2010 (on file with California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation).   12  
  13. 13. passage of Marsy’s Law indicated that the passage of Marsy’s Law was the primary differencemaker, I included in the regressions control variables for other factors that might have an impacton the decision making of the Parole Board panels. These included offender characteristics,offense characteristics62, victim characteristics, procedural characteristics of the parole hearing,and general parole factors.63 Some of these variables were then used as the basis of multiplefactor analyses that resulted in variables representing many features of the parole hearing, thecrime, and the offender.Inmate Activities Inmates are encouraged to participate in various activities by the Parole Board whileincarcerated to demonstrate a commitment to rehabilitation and to increase their likelihood ofhaving a successful transition to free society. I utilized a factor analysis in order to create avariable representing the inmate’s activities while incarcerated. The following three variableswere used to create the variable inmate activity: whether the inmate had completed a vocationalprogram while incarcerated (binary variable coded “1” for having completed a vocation and “0”for not having completed a vocation); whether the inmate had participated in programmatic self-help (binary variable coded “1” for having completed participated in programmatic self-help and“0” for not having participated in programmatic self-help); and whether the inmate hadparticipated in Narcotics Anonymous (“NA”) or Alcoholics Anonymous (“AA”) duringincarceration (binary variable coded “1” for having completed participated in NA or AA and “0”for not having participated in NA or AA.                                                                                                                62 Unfortunately, the age and race of the victim were not present in most of the hearing transcripts, so were notutilized in my regressions.63 These categories are similar to the ones that Kathryn Morgan and Brent L. Smith used in their study of the impactof victim participation of parole. Victims, Punishment, and Parole: The Effect of Victim Participation on ParoleHearings, 4 CRIMINOLOGY & PUB. POL’Y 333, 343-44 (2005) (characterizing their variables as falling into thefollowing categories: offender characteristics, offense characteristics, general parole factors, and offender and victimrelated responses).   13  
  14. 14. Education Level Another factor that the Parole Boards considered when assessing the suitability of theinmate for parole was the level of education that the inmate had completed. Level of education,like vocational training, has to do with the inmate’s ability to find employment upon release.This ordinal variable was coded as “0” for no schooling, “1” for some schooling, “3” for havingobtained a high school diploma or GED, “4” for some college, “5” for college graduate, and “6”for advanced degree. Completed associates degrees were coded as “5”.# Counseling 128a This cardinal variable is the total number of Counseling 128as that the inmate hasreceived in incarceration up to the date of the parole hearing. A Counseling 128a is a minor ruleinfraction write-up.64 Counseling 128as do not add time to an inmate’s sentence.# Disciplinary 115 This cardinal variable is the total number of Disciplinary 115s that the inmate hasreceived in incarceration up to the date of the parole hearing. A Disciplinary 115 is a major ruleinfraction write-up.65 Disciplinary 115s can add time to an inmate’s sentence.Psychological Evaluation The board seems to rely to some extent on the psychological evaluations that the inmatenormally has before a parole hearing to inform them as to the current dangerousness of theinmate and whether the inmate has shown insight into her or his life-crime. I utilized a factoranalysis in order to create a variable representing the inmate’s overall psychological evaluation.The following three variables were utilized to create the variable psychological evaluation: the                                                                                                                64 CAL. CODE REGS. § 3312 (a) (2).65 CAL. CODE REGS. § 3312 (a) (3).   14  
  15. 15. inmate’s PCLR Psychopathy Score66 in their most recent psychological evaluation (ordinalvariable on a scale from “0” being very low to “8” being very high); the inmate’s HCR20 Score67in their most recent psychological evaluation (ordinal variable on a scale from “0” being verylow to “8” being very high); and the inmate’s LS/CMI Score68 in their most recent psychologicalevaluation (ordinal variable on a scale from “0” being very low to “8” being very high).Gender I was able to collect information on the gender of the inmate, but the number of parolehearings for males accounted for 92% of my data set, making it difficult to see if the gender ofthe inmate plays a significant role in parole decision-making by the Parole Board. Gender iscoded as a binary variable with male coded as “0” and female coded as “1”.Gang Affiliation Gang affiliation of the inmate, including both pre-incarceration gang affiliation, and post-incarceration gang affiliation, is a binary variable coded as “1” for one time or present gangaffiliation and “0” if the inmate has never been associated with a gang.Crime Type The type of commitment crime that resulted in the indeterminate life sentence is acategorical variable coded as follows: murder first “1”; murder second “2”; kidnapping forrobbery “3”; attempted murder “4”; conspiracy to commit murder “5”; kidnap for ransom “6”;torture “7”; kidnap for rape “8”; and rape by force “9”. These are the only crimes for whichindeterminate sentences are still given in California.                                                                                                                66 The PCLR Psychopathy Score measures the inmates level of psychopathy.Scores for all psychological evaluation tests were coded as follows: 0 very low; 1 very low/low; 2 low; 3low/moderate; 4 moderate; 5 moderate/high; 6 high; 7 high/very high; and 8 very high.67 The HCR-20 Score measures the inmate’s risk of future violence.68 The LS/CMI (Level of Service/Case Management Inventory) Score measures the inmate’s recidivism risk. SeeKarina Kendrick, The Tipping Point: Prison Overcrowding Nationally, in West Virginia, and Recommendation forReform, 113 W. VIR. L. REV. 585, 612 (2011).   15  
  16. 16. Weapon Weapon is a categorical variable coded as follows: gun “1”; knife “2”, physical beating“3”69; strangulation “4”; fire “5”; and other “6”.70Sentencing In order to account for the differences in time not only for when the inmate started her orhis sentence but also for when the inmate was first eligible for parole I utilized a factor analysisin order to create a variable representing sentencing. The following 2 variables were utilized tocreate the variable sentencing: the year that the inmate was first eligible for parole; and the yearthat the life sentence commenced.Subsequent Hearing This is a key control variable for both hypotheses. In only one initial hearing in the dataset did the Parole Board grant parole to an inmate. Additionally, victims may be more likely toshow up to the initial parole hearing and less likely to show up in subsequent hearings due to thetime commitment and potential frustration with repeated interactions with the inmate.Subsequent hearing is a binary variable with initial hearings coded as “0” and subsequenthearings coded as “1”.Parole Procedure I utilized a factor analysis in order to create a variable representing the impact ofprocedural aspects of parole. The following four variables were utilized to create the variableparole procedure: whether the inmate was present at the parole hearing (binary variable coded“1” for inmate present and “0” for inmate absent); whether the Deputy District Attorney was                                                                                                                69 Physical beating means that the victim was either assaulted or beat to death.70 Examples of “other” includes the victim being run over or thrown out of a car.   16  
  17. 17. present at the parole hearing (binary variable coded “1” for Deputy District Attorney present and“0” for Deputy District Attorney absent); whether the Deputy District Attorney present objectedto the inmate’s release (binary variable coded “1” for Deputy District Attorney objected and “0”for Deputy District Attorney did not object); and whether the police department objected to theinmate’s release (binary variable coded “1” for police department objected and “0” for policedepartment did not object).Inmate Attorney Present This is a binary variable representing whether the inmate was represented at the parolehearing by a lawyer. The presence of counsel for an inmate at the parole hearing is coded as “1”and the absence of counsel is coded as “0”. Many times when the inmate wasn’t present, counselwasn’t present as well. The result of many of those parole hearings is that the hearing waswaived, unsuitability stipulated, or the hearing was postponed. Additionally, there were fewcases in which the inmate represented herself or himself at the parole hearings.Marsy’s Law Objection This is binary variable representing whether the attorney made a Marsy’s Law objectionat the parole hearing.71 The variable is coded as “1” when the lawyer made a Marsy’s Lawobjection and “0” when the lawyer didn’t make a Marsy’s Law objection.Primary Victim’s Sex This is a categorical variable of the primary victim’s sex with “1” meaning the victimwas male and “2” meaning the victim was female. The gender of the victim was not alwaysavailable, especially when the parole hearing was not a full parole hearing.                                                                                                                71 Whether or not an attorney made a Marsy’s Law objection could have some implications for the competency ofthe inmate’s attorney. While there are many fine attorneys representing inmates at parole hearings, more than halfthe attorneys (62.32%) failed to preserve the record by making a Marsy’s Law objection at the parole hearing andmay have waived future Marsy’s Law claims for habeas corpus appeals.   17  
  18. 18. Primary Victim’s Age This is a variable of the age of the victim at the time of the crime. The age of the victimwas rarely available in the parole hearing transcripts.[Insert Table 2 Here] III. ANALYSIS Out of the 211 parole hearing transcripts coded, the Parole Board panel denied parole 117times, granted parole 12 times, and postponed, waived, stipulated, or continued the parolehearing 82 times. Out of the 12 grants of parole only one was given at an initial parole hearing.Marsy’s Law was applied in nearly half of the hearings, 109. Additionally, out of the 211 parolehearings, victims were present at 35 of the hearings (17%). In 32 of those hearings the victim(s)spoke. In complete parole hearings where Marsy’s Law was applied the time set between parolehearings was nearly double to the time set between parole hearings before the passage ofMarsy’s Law. In 50% of the post Marsy’s Law parole hearings the time set between the parolehearings was at least five years. Prior to the passage of Marsy’s Law, 50% of parole hearingsresulted in a time set between parole hearings of two years or less. Additionally, the boardappears to be fully utilizing Marsy’s Law only two years after it’s passage. Prior to the passageof Marsy’s Law the Parole Board set the time between parole hearings at three years or less overhalf of the time (70%) despite being able to set the amount of time until the next parole hearingfor five years. After the passage of Marsy’s Law, despite still being able to set parole hearingsfor three years, the Parole Board has set the amount of time until the next hearing at more thanthree years over half the time (75%).[Insert Table 3 Here]   18  
  19. 19. Compare these results to the impact of the presence of the victim or victim’s next of kinat the parole hearing. The presence of the victim or victim’s next of kin resulted in an increaseof about only one year whereas the application of Marsy’s Law resulted in an increase of nearly2.5 years. The suitability score of the inmate72 asserted nearly as much impact on the length setbetween parole hearings. However, even the presence of a low suitability score, representingunsuitability, resulted in a time set between parole hearings of three years or less 50% of thetime.[Insert Tables 4 and 5 Here] These results indicate that Marsy’s Law has had a significant impact on the time set bythe Parole Board panel between parole hearings. This is no surprise given the amount of timethat Marsy’s Law now allows Parole Boards to set between hearings (3-15 years) in comparisonto the amount of years the board was allowed to set between hearings prior to the passage ofMarsy’s Law (1-5 years). a. LENGTH SET BETWEEN PAROLE HEARINGS Using least squares regression to test the validity of the results above, and controlling forother variables, I found that amount of years set by the Parole Board until the next parole hearingwere increased significantly by the passage of Marsy’s Law, supporting hypothesis 1.[Insert Table 6 Here] Controlling for the factors described in Part II, the coefficient for Marsy’s Law in theregression shows a positive increase in the amount of time set by the Parole Board until the nexthearing by 2.06 years (+/-0.72) for full parole hearings (Table 6, Column II). No other variableshowed an equal positive increase in the amount of time set between parole hearings by theParole Board. Marsy’s Law had a more significant impact on the time set until the next parole                                                                                                                72 The suitability score is described in greater detail in Part II (d).   19  
  20. 20. hearing by the Parole Board than any of the factors that the board must utilize in making theirparole decisions73 or the inmate’s activity (Table 6). b. IMPACT ON PAROLE DECISIONS In order to determine the impact of the passage of Marsy’s Law on victim participation,which in turn directly impacts whether or not parole is granted (Table 5, Column I & 2), I createda model in order to predict what would motivate a victim to participate in a parole hearing. VP = ML + IM/AF + ε In this simple model victim participation (VP) is a function of whether Marsy’s Law wasin effect (ML), the impact of motivational and anti-motivational factors (IM/AF), and anythingelse (ε) that exerts influence on the model that we are unable to measure.[Insert Table 7 Here] Out of the variables I was able to collect from the parole hearing transcripts I consideredcrime victim identification factors74, crime factors75, inmate factors76, and whether or not theparole hearing was an initial or subsequent hearing as motivational/ anti-motivational factors.Using least squares regression to test the validity of my model I was unable to find any impact ofMarsy’s Law on victim participation at the parole hearing. The only variable that was significantwas whether the hearing was an initial or subsequent hearing. When the hearing was asubsequent hearing victim participation decreased by 1.219 (+/1 .46) (Table 6). IV. FINDINGS a. MARSY’S LAW HAS A SIGNIFICANT IMPACT ON THE TIME SET BETWEEN PAROLE HEARINGS                                                                                                                73 Represented in the regression by the suitability score.74 Such as primary victim sex and primary victim age.75 Such as the weapon used in the crime and the crime type.76 Such as the whether the inmate has a gang affiliation and the inmate’s suitability score.   20  
  21. 21. The passage of Marsy’s Law has already had a significant impact on parole hearings atleast with regards to the amount of time set by the Parole Board between parole hearings. This islikely due to a number of different factors that influence the Parole Board during the parolehearing process.Will of the People Although the Parole Board itself is not politically vulnerable to the popular will like thegovernor77, it’s commissioners and deputy commissioners are not insulated from what the publicwants. Marsy’s Law was passed by Californians in large part because of the changes that itwould make to the criminal justice system.78 In order to carry forth the will of the electorate,Parole Board decisions regarding length set between parole hearings would increase since thatwas an explicitly stated component of the bill.79 Additionally, Marsy’s Law has to some extenthighlighted the very popular Victims’ Right movement. The Parole Board may be feelingpressure to use Marsy’s Law as a sword or face the ire of powerful Victims’ Rightsorganizations.More Flexibility. While in some ways the Parole Board has less discretion after the passage of Marsy’sLaw due to the strict guidelines added to California Penal Code Section 3041.5 (b) (3), it ispossible that the Parole Board feels less constrained now that they have more flexibility in being                                                                                                                77 The power of the electorate was demonstrated in California when voters recalled Governor Gray Davis fromoffice in 2003. See Katharine Q. Seelye, For Gray Davis, Great Fall From the Highest Height, N.Y. TIMES, Oct. 8,2003, Text of Proposed Laws, Proposition 9, Victims’ Bill of Rights Act of 2008: Marsy’s Law, Section 3 (listing thepurposes of Mary’s Law) (available at See supra note 55 and accompanying text.   21  
  22. 22. able to set longer periods between parole hearings.80 There may be legitimate circumstances thatwould make setting a yearly hearing or even an hearing every five years redundant if the inmatehas severe persistent mental problems that are not likely to be quickly resolved or has shown nomotivation towards programmatic or behavioral rehabilitation. However, prior to Marsy’s Lawthe board had the discretion to set the next parole hearing at the statutory maximum of five yearsyet only did so in about 18 percent of full parole hearings. After the passage of Marsy’s Lawapproximately 32 percent of full parole hearings are set at five years and 57 percent of parolehearings are set at five years or more.Economy + Efficiency. With only twelve Commissioners and with depleted economic funds, there is acompelling economic reason why lengthy parole denials might be preferable. One result of thepassage of Marsy’s Law is that there are fewer parole hearings per year, at least in the short term.California, with the largest lifer population in the United States of 30,00081 has beenoverwhelmed with parole hearings, with nearly 4,000 lifers receiving a parole hearing per year.82However, Marsy’s Law would serve as only a temporary fix with new lifers becoming eligiblefor parole each year and with eventual waves of parole hearings coming in 3, 5, 7, 10 or 15 yearsout. Additionally, Marsy’s Law has prompted a wave of lawsuits in both state and federalcourts. These lawsuits are costly and may clog up already overburdened judicial systems. b. MARSY’S LAW’S IMPACT ON VICTIM PARTICIPATION IS UNCLEAR At this juncture it appears that the passage of Marsy’s Law has not had a significant                                                                                                                80 Personal Communication with Susan Melanson, Commissioner, Board of Parole Hearings (April 26, 2011). C.f.Transcript of Parole Hearing for CDC # J-55438, Feb. 25, 2009 (on file with California Department of Correctionsand Rehabilitation). (noting that they would have set the next parole hearing date for one year if not for Marsy’sLaw requiring them to set a period of three years).81 See supra note 16 and accompanying text.82 Id. Additionally, in 2008 nearly 6,000 inmates were scheduled for parole hearings.   22  
  23. 23. impact on victim participation. This could be due to a variety of reasons. First, the law is fairlynew so it may be that victims remain unaware of their increased statutory and constitutionalrights. However, this may change. Victims’ Rights organizations could become more active inreaching out to crime victims in order to encourage them to utilize their statutory parole rights.Additionally, since Marsy’s Law now allows the victim to send a representative to speak on hisor her behalf83, Victims’ Rights organizations may reach out to victims to speak on their behalfat parole hearings. Finally, victims who feel that their Marsy’s Law rights have been violatedhave begun to be more present in the news and in the courts.84 This broader exposure of both thevictim and their rights may encourage other victims to become more involved in the paroleprocess.CONCLUSIONS Marsy’s Law has already had a significant impact on the time set by the Parole Boardbetween parole hearings (hypothesis 1). The passage of Marsy’s Law has nearly doubled theamount of time set between parole hearings (from about 2.5 year to about 5 years), and is ahighly significant determinate of the length set between parole hearings.85 Future work shouldcontinue to track the length set between parole hearings by the Parole Board as the time betweenthe passage of Marsy’s Law and the present increases. This length of time may impact how theParole Board decides to use the law in setting the next parole hearing date. While victim input at the parole hearing may have an impact on the parole decision-making of the Parole Board (hypothesis 2), I was unable to find a difference in victim                                                                                                                83 CAL. PENAL CODE § 3043 (b)(2).84 See e.g. John Langeler, Suit Claims Schwarzenegger Violated Marsy’s Law, FOX40.COM, May 11, 2011,,0,5091757.story (discussing thepending suit accusing former Governor Schwarzenegger of commuting the sentence of a friend’s son in violation ofMarsy’s Law); Don Thompson, Schwarzenegger says Commutation was to Help Friend, FORBES, Apr. 19, 2011, This significant change may implicate ex post facto concerns.   23  
  24. 24. participation due to the passage of Marsy’s Law. Future work should continue to try to measureany increases in victim participation and should focus on collecting more information on whatmotivates a victim to participate in a hearing or to be absent from a hearing. Variables that couldinfluence victim participation include the relationship of the victim to the crime victim, whetherthe crime victim was a gang member, the distance the victim lives from the prison where theparole hearing is taking place, the number of parole hearings that have already taken place, andthe economic situation of the victim(s). If Marsy’s Law was found to increase victim participation, future work could explorewhat impact this increased victim participation has on Parole Board parole determinations. Themodel for exploring this impact might look something like the following. NH = IA + IS + PF + SF + (VP = ML + IM/AF) + ε In this model the date of the next hearing (NH) is a function of the institutional activities(IA) of the inmate, the inmate’s suitability score, the procedural factors of the parole hearing(PF), the sentencing factors (SF), victim participation (VP)86, and anything else (ε) that exertsinfluence on the model that we are unable to measure.                                                                                                                86 As measured by the model described in Part III b.   24  
  26. 26. Table 2: Variables Relating to the Features of the Parole HearingDescriptive Variable Name ShortName DescriptionNext Hearing nexthearing Dependent Variable- Years set by the Parole Board Until the Next HearingVictim Participation vicfac1 Dependent + Independent Variable- Factor analysis of victim participationMarsy’s Law Applied marsyslawapp Independent Variable- Binary variable representing whether Marsy’s Law was applied to the parole hearingSuitability Score suitscore Independent Variable- Cardinal variable representing the suitability score of the inmateSuitability suitdummy Independent Variable- Binary variable representing whether the suitability score was above zeroInmate Activities fac1vocshnaaa Control Variable- Factor analysis of inmate activitiesEducation Level education Control Variable- Ordinal variable expressing what level of education the inmate completed# Disciplinary 115s s Control Variable- Number of disciplinary infractions that inmate was cited for while incarcerated# Counseling 128As a Control Variable- Number of counseling infractions that inmate received while incarceratedPsychological Evaluation psychtestfac1 Control Variable- Factor analysis of inmate’s most recent psychological evaluation while incarceratedGender gender Control Variable- Categorical variable expressing the gender of the inmateGang Affiliation gangaff Control Variable- Binary variable representing whether the inmate has been associated with a gangCrime Type crimetype Control Variable- Categorical variable expressing what the type of crime resulted in the life sentenceWeapon weapon Control Variable- Categorical variable expressing what weapon was used in the commission of the commitment crimeSentencing parolestatfac1 Control Variable- Factor analysis of sentencing factors associated inmateSubsequent Hearing subhear Control Variable- Dummy variable whether the parole hearing was a subsequent hearingParole Procedure procfac1 Control Variable- Factor analysis of procedural factors associated with the parole hearingInmate Attorney Present inmateatt Control Variable-Dummy variable whether the inmate had a lawyer presentMarsy’s Law Objection attobjml Control Variable- Binary variable whether the inmate’s attorney objected to Marsy’s Law at the parole hearingPrimary Victim Sex vic1sex Control Variable- Categorical variable expressing the gender of the primary victimPrimary Victim Age vic1age Control Variable- The age of the primary victim at the time the crime was committed   26  
  27. 27. Table 3. Years Set Until Next Parole Hearing Before and After Marsy’s Law Mean Median Std. Err. Largest Smallest NYears Set Until Next Parole Hearing 3.88 3 .23 15 0 121 Pre-Marsy’s Law 2.55 2 .21 5 0 56 Post-Marsy’s Law 5.03 5 .34 15 0 65 Difference -2.48 3 .41 p= .00 t= -5.97 Table 4. Years Set Until Next Parole Hearing More by Suitability Score Mean Median Std. Err. Largest Smallest NYears Set Until Next Parole Hearing 3.88 3 .23 15 0 121 Suitability Score > or = 0 2.82 3 .42 7 0 28 Suitability Score < 0 4.20 3 .27 15 1 93 Difference -1.38 0 .54 p= .01 t= -2.54 Table 5. Years Set Until Next Parole Hearing More by Whether Victim’s Next of Kin Present Mean Median Std. Err. Largest Smallest NYears Set Until Next Parole Hearing 3.88 3 .23 15 0 121 Victim/Next of Kin Absent 3.64 3 .25 10 0 94 Victim/Next of Kin Present 4.74 4 .58 15 1 27 Difference -1.10 1 .56 p= .05 t= -1.98   27  
  28. 28. Table 6. Marsy’s Law’s Impact on Parole Board Decisions I II III Model 1 Model 2 Model 3 Marsy’s Law Applied 2.198*** 2.060*** (0.376) (0.723) Suitability Score -0.360*** 0.109 0.114 (0.071) (0.120) (0.133) Victim Participation 0.394** 0.490* 0.526 (0.164) (0.283) (0.311) Subsequent Hearing -1.007 -0.143 (0.810) (0.828) Inmate Attorney Present 0.541 0.098 (1.035) (1.128) Marsy’s Law Objection 0.321 1.453** (0.723) (0.665) Inmate Activities -0.793*** -0.703** (0.274) (0.300) Education Level -0.099 -0.134 (0.315) (0.347) Psychological Evaluation 0.268 0.097 (0.381) (0.415) Sentencing 1.092** 1.816*** (0.492) (0.465) Parole Procedure -0.629 -0.909* (0.489) (0.528) # Counseling 128a -0.022 -0.037 (0.039) (0.043) # Disciplinary 115 0.170* 0.215** (0.090) (0.098) Crime Type -0.145 -0.212 (0.250) (0.275) Gang Affiliation -0.878 -0.674 (0.629) (0.689) Weapon -0.155 -0.143 (0.207) (0.228) Constant 1.804*** 3.520** 4.441** (0.309) (1.579) (1.704) N 121 49 49 R2 0.393 0.742 0.677   28  
  29. 29. Table. 7 Marsy’s Law’s Impact on Victim Participation I Model 1 Marsy’s Law Applied -0.258 (0.414) Suitability Score 0.021 (0.096) Subsequent Hearing -1.219** (0.476) Crime Type -0.087 (0.225) Gender -1.218 (1.127) Gang Affiliation -0.726 (0.514) Weapon 0.227 (0.163) Primary Victim Age 0.008 (0.010) Primary Victim Sex -0.166 (0.462) Constant 2.666 (2.002) N 46 R2 0.252 Standard errors in parentheses *** p<0.01, ** p<0.05, * p<0.1   29