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Federal Probation Journal - June 2014

Federal Probation Journal (June 2014) is dedicated to informing its readers about current thought, research, and practice in corrections and criminal justice. Explore the issue.

This Issue in Brief

Federal Post-Conviction Supervision Outcomes: Arrests and Revocations

By James L. Johnson

This article reports results that build upon the strategic effort undertaken by the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts to fashion a results-based framework for the federal probation and pretrial services system. Using a dataset of over 360,000 offenders serving either a term of probation or a term of supervised release, the author describes outcomes in terms of arrests and revocations both during and after supervision and broken down according to types of offenses.

Pretrial Detention Choices and Federal Sentencing

By J.C. Oleson, Marie VanNostrand, Christopher T. Lowenkamp, Timothy P. Cadigan, John Wooldredge

The authors describe the effects of pretrial release and detention on sentencing decisions in the U.S. federal courts, beginning with a description of extant research on the sentencing consequences of pretrial detention, drawn mostly from city and state courts. They note current trends in federal detention data, describe current research on the sentencing consequences of pretrial detention and the revocation of pretrial services supervision, and discuss implications of these findings for decision makers within the federal criminal justice system.

Location Monitoring for Low-Risk Inmates: A Cost-Effective and Evidence-Based Reentry Strategy

By Trent Cornish, Jay Whetzel

The Bureau of Prisons (BOP) Location Monitoring program stands out as an excellent example of applying the risk principle in the federal criminal justice system. By moving minimum-security inmates from BOP prison camps back into their communities to complete the final portion of their sentence—while on location monitoring and supervised by U.S. probation officers—the BOP and the federal courts are reducing expenditures, reducing low-risk inmates’ exposure to higher-risk offenders, and opening up more space in Residential Reentry Centers (RRCs) for higher-risk inmates and noncompliant offenders who require much greater programming.

Improving Legitimacy in Community-Based Corrections

By Joseph A. DaGrossa

A recently growing body of research has examined the importance of perceptions of legitimacy in maintaining social order. However, the literature has largely avoided applying the concept of legitimacy to community-based corrections. The author explores assorted conceptualizations of legitimacy, briefly summarizes what is presently known about how perceptions of legitimacy are shaped and how these perceptions may facilitate noncompliance with formal methods of social control, and concludes with specific recommendations for probation officers to enhance the legitimacy of community-based corrections in the eyes of those under supervision.

Are the Collateral Consequences of Being a Registered Sex Offender as Bad as We Think?
A Methodological Research Note

By Sarah W. Craun, David M. Bierie

Empirical research on the collateral consequences of sex offender registries on offenders’ lives has provided researchers, practitioners, and policymakers with evidence that registries are associated with unintended harm to sexual offenders such as harassment, loss of employment, difficulty finding housing, and personal distress. The methodologies of these studies, however, have two major limitations. The authors describe the limitations and suggest methodological approaches that would address them.

A Difficult Position: A Feasibility Analysis of Conducting Home Contacts on Halloween

By Ryan Alexander

The issue of how best to manage sex offenders under community supervision has been a source of much debate. This article investigated the cost feasibility of United States probation officers and U.S. marshals tasked with ensuring compliance in the District of Kansas during Halloween 2013. The author calculated the cost per offender of conducting a home visit as well as ascertaining probation officer perceptions about the effectiveness of such contacts.

Interagency Collaboration Along the Reentry Continuum

By Jay Whetzel, Carol Miyashiro, Christine Dozier, Scott Anders

In October 2012, the U.S. Probation Re-Entry Expert Working Group conducted a national survey of federal probation and pretrial services officers regarding a variety of reentry practices, with a goal of establishing a baseline of certain collaborative practices along the federal reentry continuum. This article highlights some of the survey’s findings regarding ways to improve federal reentry.

How Far Have We Come? The Gluecks’ Recommendations from 500 Delinquent Women

By Mary Ellen Mastrorilli, Maureen Norton-Hawk, Danielle Rousseau

In 1934, Sheldon and Eleanor Glueck published a richly detailed empirical study on women prisoners in Massachusetts entitled 500 Delinquent Women. In the final chapter they proposed a wide-ranging set of crime, justice, and punishment policy recommendations, putting forth evidence-based and well-reasoned arguments for systemic change in the management of deviant, marginalized women in the criminal justice system. The authors measure current practices against the Gluecks’ recommendations to see how much of the Gluecks’ vision was realized.

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