A Study of Immediate Sanction Effectiveness to Reduce New Conviction Post-Probation

Sensui, Leonard
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[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [May 2016]
The criminal justice system’s attempt to reduce new conviction of drug using individuals, through incarceration, has increased the national prison population rate by 3.2% from 1.526 million in 2005 to 1.575 million in 2013; also, between 2001 and 2013, more than 50% of federal prisoners were convicted of drug charges (Rabinowitz & Lurigio, 2009; Carson, 2014). The average cost to incarcerate an individual in Hawai‘i is about $44,895 annually (Lawrence, 2016). Nationally, in order to reduce the prison population and the associated costs, more individuals were placed into probation supervision. Research has shown that first and second time offenders who received probation supervision instead of prison terms were less likely to recidivate (Rabinowitz & Lurigio, 2009). However, according to Mauer (1999), as probation caseloads increased, individual supervision time declined, which caused drug using violations and non-compliant behaviors to increase. In order to increase probationers’ compliance levels, the First Circuit Court in the county of Honolulu (O‘ahu) incorporated a probation supervision model based on the theory of operant conditioning. The model included motivational interviewing techniques (to increase probationers’ good behaviors) and incorporated immediate sanctions (to reprimand probationers’ noncompliant behaviors). This study analyzes factors related to new convictions and it includes comparisons of supervision outcome of probationers who began 5-years of probation supervision between the periods of January 2007 through December 2007. Probationers’ supervision outcomes and new convictions were examined until December 2014. The post-probation outcome of reducing new conviction was significantly effective when immediate sanction was employed as a supervision mechanism. This research may provide valuable information to the social work field to improve probationers’ compliance, drug treatment outcomes, and to increase public safety through the reduction in drug related crime.
Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2016.
Includes bibliographical references.
HOPE Probation, Substance Abuse, Recidivism, LSI-R
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