SAGE Journal Articles

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Journal Article #1: Homant, R. J., & DeMercurio, M. A. (2009). Intermediate sanctions in probation officers’ sentencing recommendations: Consistency, net widening, and net repairing. The Prison Journal, 89(4), 426-439

Abstract: To explore the role of intermediate sanctions in probation officers’ sentencing recommendations, 30 actual felony cases were selected. These cases were then randomly assigned to 10 probation officers who were experienced in writing pre-sentence investigations. Each officer reviewed a total of 9 cases; this gave a total of 90 ratings, with each case rated by three probation officers. Each officer expressed his or her preference for either a standard prison term, regular probation, or one of three intermediate sanctions: boot camp, intensive probation, and a split sentence (60 days jail followed by probation). Data showed that probation officers were in substantial agreement in their recommendations for a given case, but there were consistent differences among the probation officers, with some showing a consistent tendency toward leniency and others toward severity. The intermediate sanctions were used consistently, in that they were seen as less severe than a prison term and more severe than standard probation. In 61 of the 90 ratings, an intermediate sanction was the first choice of the rater. In 44 of these cases, the next choice was standard probation, suggesting that the intermediate sanction served a net widening (or net repairing) function; in 17 cases the next choice was prison, suggesting that the intermediate sanction served to divert from (standard) incarceration.

Journal Article #2: Bouffard, J., Cooper, M., & Bergseth, K. (2016). The effectiveness of various restorative justice interventions on recidivism outcomes among juvenile offenders. Youth Violence and Juvenile Justice, 15(4), 465-480

Abstract: Research has generally supported the effectiveness of restorative justice (RJ) programs on a number of outcomes; however, little research has examined the effectiveness of variations in the intervention. This study examined several variations of an RJ program for juvenile offenders, including direct mediation, indirect forms of victim/offender mediation accomplished without direct victim/offender contact, the use of community panels (i.e., with community representatives when no direct victim was available), and a group who received only minimal interaction with RJ staff. Results supported the effectiveness of a number of variations in program implementation. Implications for future research and potential improvements to the RJ model are discussed.