Effects Of Prison Incarceration

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Research states that the United States has the largest incarceration rate in the world. The prison population rate had increased immediately after 1970 with increase number of 1.3million inmates while the incarceration rate increased with number of 400 per 100,000 (Clear et al., 2013). However, there seems to be little relationship between the crime rate and the incarceration rate.
The United States prison overcrowding results from the increment in the rate of arrest and the approach to sentencing as the major means of punishment. Most prisons are relatively small and can only house a particular number of prisoners for a particular period of time compared to the high rate of incarceration by the criminal justice system. The system keeps inmates
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This reform has greatly changed the landscape of federal sentencing and the composition of the federal prison population. As of 2006, 56% of federal prison inmates were incarcerated for narcotics offenses. The United States Sentencing Commission Guidelines, and mandatory minimum statutes were all enacted in an attempt to make sentences more proportional, more uniform, and less disparate (Hartley, R. D., 2008). However, since the latest manifestation of war on drugs, the prison population has increased steadily. In 1980, only six percent of state prisoners had been convicted of a drug offense; today, the percentage is higher in both state prisons (14.4%) and federal prisons (51.4%) (Clear et al., 2013). This reform has strengthened differential criminality where white men reported they uses drug five times more than African American, but African American men get punished on drug 13.4 times more than whites (Clear et al., …show more content…
The sentencing judge is the person who commits prison beds, determining who goes to prison and for how long. Different judges use their unfettered discretion to impose widely different sentences on offenders in similar circumstances convicted of similar crimes and they often take no account of prison space when sentences are handed down. Inmate can be released on parole long before their full sentence has been served. In the case of federal prisoners, release may come after as little as one-third of a sentence has been served. Early release decisions are often based on factors of little value in predicting future criminality. Alternatives to incarceration, such as restitution and community service, are used only sporadically or not at all by many judges. Legislators continue to adopt mandatory sentencing statutes without regard to the availability of correctional facilities. Selective incapacitation is a strategy that attempts to use objective actuarial evidence to improve the ability of the current system to identify and confine offenders who represent the most serious risk to the community. In the context of overall sentencing reform, selective incapacitation offers the possibility of concentrating scarce and costly prison resources on those most likely to commit crimes if not confined. Selective incapacitation should not be the only rationale for incarceration. Other purposes of

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