Essay: History of Drug offense sentencing

Essay: History of Drug offense sentencing
23/05/2011 Comments Off on Essay: History of Drug offense sentencing Academic Papers on Sociology,Sample Academic Papers admin

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In 1973, then-Governor Nelson Rockefeller, in reply to a rising heroin outburst and an ongoing tide of drug related offense, introduced and obtained passage of widespread legislation to overhaul the State’s drug laws. The new laws mandate a verdict of 15-years-to-life for a first-time belief for trading an illegal matter, and authorized imprisonment for all Class A, B and C drug crimes. In addition, three new groups of Class A drug crimes were formed to mirror the amount of drugs sold or possessed such as A1, A2 and A3, with a utmost of life imprisonment  for all, simultaneously with a range of obligatory lowest punishment and various boundaries on plea bargaining[1].

Accepted as a companion evaluator to the drug laws, the second offense law eradicated the capability of judges to inflict sentences other than imprisonment for recidivating offenders, and vitalize the obligation of fixed lowest sentences in all such cases. Cooperatively, America’s Rockefeller drug rules were measured the toughest in the state at the time of their performance.

In the last several years, there has been an increase in prison populations and a downfall in revenue, due to which government has undertaken measures to reduce these long term prison sentences that have been a result of Rockefeller drug laws[2]. Shock Incarceration and merit time are some of the programs which were developed to initiate early release of these offenders.

In order to restructure the stricter factors of the Rockefeller drug laws, the government endorsed the Drug Law Reform Act in 2004[3]. This Act has removed the life imprisonment for Class A drug offenses totally and also increased the weight for certain Class A crimes of drug possession, and made all the sentences related to drug crimes shorter accessible ranges.

[1] Rothman, David J. “Sentencing Reform in Historical Perspective.” Crime and Delinquency, October 1983: 633

[2] See Appendix A

[3] Bailey, Kristen. “The Causes of Recidivism in the Criminal Justice System and Why It Is Worth the Cost to Address Them.” Nashville Bar Journal, 2009

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