Essay - Disparities in the Court System: Sentencing of African Americans and...


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DISPARITIES IN THE COURT SYSTEM: SENTENCING OF AFRICAN AMERICANS AND HISPANICS

***** DESIGN

***** WHERE RESEARCH IS TO BE CONDUCTED

The research proposed in this document is to take place ***** several selected jurisdictions on calls for "service, arrests, and failure ***** arrest, prosecutions and failures to prosecute and other data relevant to determining disparity prior to sentencing toward the objective of a statistical determination of factors that affect the decision to incarcerate, including ***** charges levied against the defendant and the length ***** ***** sentence imposed upon the *****. The primary data systems in most states for collection of in*****mation on *****fenders are Department of Corrections offender-tracking information ***** and the court systems case management ***** database.

INDEPENDENT ***** DEPENDENT VARIABLES

1. Dependent variable

***** dependent variable in this study will be the race/ethnicity of the offender ***** has been ********** for a crime.

2. Independent Variables

Independent *****s in ***** study include those as follows:

Sentence Length;

The crime committed;

The race of the victim (if any)

The gender of the *****

The gender ***** the victim (if any)

***** age of ***** offender

The age of the victim

The injury ***** the victim

Prior convictions

Seriousness of disposition

Total current *****

On probation

Rele*****ed on bond

***** attorney

Guilty plea

State/County/City ***** conviction

Offense type

Homicide

*****

Robbery

Assault

Classification of Habitual Offender Assigned

***** COLLECTION METHOD

1. Analysis of Data

The work of Mueller, Connelly, and Pingel entitled: "Starting Points: The State ***** National Landscape" states: "In theory there ***** two ********** of factors that contribute to racial disparity: (1) differential participation (or involvement) in criminal activity; and (2) differential treatment by the criminal justice systems and processes." (2004) According to *****, Connelly and Pingel (2004) Differential ***** "describes whether, ***** how different demographic groups differ in terms of the percent***** f their members who commit crimes." On the other hand, ***** treatment describes "bias-whether intentional or overt, or circumstantial - reflected in the ways the actors in ***** criminal justice system (police, prosecutors, defense attorneys, judges) treat subjects of *****ent ***** groups." (Mueller, Connelley, and Pingel, *****) Some *****ers have attempted to quantify the difference between differential ***** and ***** **********. Blumstein (*****982) states calculations "that 80 percent of racial disproportionality in imprisonment is explained by differential participation by minority groups in criminal activity." (Mueller, Connelley, and Pingel, 2004) Yet Crutchfield, Bridges and Pitchford report that other researchers "have since refined the data and methods employed to yield estimates ***** 66%." (Mueller, Connelley, and Pingel, 2004) However, it is held ***** Mueller, ***** and Pingel that in order for research ***** be valid, that both of these ***** must be taken into account. The ***** of Oliver (2004) is related in which comparisons of *****carceration rates and sentence lengths were used and subdivided by race and type of crime to describe ***** observed racial disparity stems from 'factors' that ***** a combination of bias, real differences in serious *****, social and political conditions.' Whether attributed

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