Density, Inmate Assaults, and Direct Supervision Jails
ABSTRACT Researchers have completed several studies on the effects of density on violence in prisons and jails, but little work has been done on density's impact on direct supervision jails. Direct supervision facilities, also known as new generation jails, were created by the Federal Bureau of Prisons with the goal of reducing violence, suicide and disorder. Given the crowded conditions in most jails across the country, it is important to determine the impact, if any, that density has on the operations of these jails. The current study involves an analysis of density on assaults in nearly 150 direct supervision jails. The results indicate that neither spatial nor social density are predictors of violence in these jails. Several direct supervision jail characteristics are also included in the analysis, but they are not associated with reported assaults. The racial composition of inmates, location of the jail, and number of inmates each officer is permitted to supervise predicted assaults.
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ABSTRACT: No debate is more sensitive or polemical than the question of “gun rights” in the U.S., and licensing private citizens to carry concealed handguns is the most controversial “right” of all. The morally charged nature of this controversy is reflected in the disparate results reported by various researchers who analyze the effects of these laws, and also by the especially intense methodological scrutiny that follows published research. A National Science Academy review of existing gun policy research issues methodological recommendations which may help resolve scientifically the question of whether or how “right to carry” licensing effects rates of lethal firearm violence. Similar efforts have been published previously, but this study improves upon those earlier efforts by increasing the sample cross-section, by further refining the model specification, and by distinguishing conceptually “shall issue” RTC laws from “may issue” RTC laws. The results provisionally suggest that the former increases homicide rates whereas the latter decreases them.American Journal of Criminal Justice 37(4).
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ABSTRACT: Despite the growth in and debate about super-maximum security housing, there exist few studies of inmates' experiences or placement in supermax incarceration. The lack of research on this new type of confinement assumes particular salience given criticisms that such confinement is excessive, that placement in it is arbitrary, and that it may have adverse effects on reentry into society. The goal of this article was to inform efforts to understand how supermax housing is used and to contribute to policy debates about this housing. To this end, it used data from the Florida Department of Corrections to investigate several dimensions of the supermax experience. These included the frequency of placement into supermax confinement, the duration of time spent in such confinement, and the timing of it relative to reentry back into society. In addition, the article explored factors, especially behavioral indicators, that may contribute to decisions to place inmates in supermaxes. The article concludes by discussing the study's findings and implications for research and policy.Journal of Criminal Justice. 01/2010; 38(4):545-554.