The Debt Penalty

Depending on the jurisdiction, offenders are charged fees at nearly every phase of the criminal justice process. In addition to fines, interest, and penalties for late payments, offenders may be required to pay “user fees,” which differ from court-imposed fines. The sole purpose of user fees is to raise revenue for criminal justice systems, while court-imposed fines are intended to punish offenders or to provide financial compensation to victims.

Punishment Without End

Evans, Douglas N. (2014). Punishment Without End. New York, NY: Research & Evaluation Center, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York. Criminal justice punishments are an investment that societies make to protect the safety and order of communities. Following decades of rising prison populations, however, U.S. policymakers are beginning to wonder if they have invested too much in punishment. Policies adopted in previous decades now incarcerate large numbers of Americans and impose considerable costs on states. Mass incarceration policies are costly and potentially iatrogenic—i.e. they may transform offenders into repeat offenders. Public officials and citizens alike…

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Compensating Victims of Crime

Evans, Douglas N. (2014). Compensating Victims of Crime. New York, NY: Research & Evaluation Center, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York. Victims of violent crime are often unable to access financial compensation to offset the costs of victimization (e.g., medical, lost wages, funeral expenses) despite the massive amounts of money set aside for just that purpose. Currently, there is about $11 billion in the federal Crime Victims Fund (CVF). Less than 10 percent of this amount is allocated to state victim compensation programs. This report explores the funding mechanisms used by federal and state governments to…

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Delays in Youth Justice

U.S. Department of Justice (2014). Delays in Youth Justice. Justice Research Bulletin. Washington, DC: National Institute of Justice and Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention, U.S. Department of Justice. This 2014 bulletin from the U.S. Department of Justice describes research conducted by Jeffrey Butts and his colleagues when he was on the staff of Chapin Hall at the University of Chicago. The study draws on data from the National Juvenile Court Data Archive and from case studies of three juvenile courts in the Midwestern U.S. that successfully managed delays in processing youth through the juvenile justice system. The three sites employed…

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Denormalizing Violence

Cure Violence utilizes a public health approach. It considers gun violence to be analogous to a communicable disease that passes from person to person when left untreated. According to the logic of Cure Violence, gun violence is most effectively reduced by changing the behavior of individuals at risk to participate in gun violence and “denormalizing” violence by working to change the community norms that support and perpetuate gun violence.

Line Drawing

The differential response to childhood criminality is an established legal principle. Setting the operational legal boundaries between children, youth, and adults is complicated and contentious. It has been so for centuries. It is easy to agree that a specialized juvenile court is the proper forum for handling cases involving law violations by young people, but where exactly should states draw the line between juvenile and adult status?

Ready for Success

Tomberg, Kathleen A. (2013). Ready for Success: A Profile of YouthBuild Mentoring Participants. New York, NY: Research and Evaluation Center, John Jay College of Criminal Justice, City University of New York. The YouthBuild USA National Mentoring Alliance program (“YouthBuild Mentoring”) seeks to engage students with responsible, supportive, committed adult volunteers in order to help young people achieve success in education, employment, and social relationships. By matching students with adult mentors for a minimum of 15 months, YouthBuild Mentoring helps these youth form strong emotional bonds and continuing relationships that will ideally last for years beyond the end of the program. YouthBuild USA partnered…

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Assessment of New York City Gun Violence Reduction Strategy: Year 1 Report

Delgado, Sheyla, Laura Negredo, Popy Begum, Michelle Cubellis, Alana Henninger, Douglas Evans, Kathy Tomberg, and Jeffrey Butts (2013). NYC Assessment 2013. New York, NY: Research & Evaluation Center, John Jay College of Criminal Justice. The Research and Evaluation Center at John Jay College is assessing the implementation of gun violence reduction initiatives in New York City neighborhoods. With funds awarded from the New York City Council, the project is tracking the formation and deployment of gun violence reduction strategies in five areas: South Bronx, Harlem, Jamaica (Queens), North Shore of Staten Island, and East New York. Each pilot program incorporates the shooting…

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Follow-up Guidebook

Agencies should follow up with former clients to assess their overall effectiveness. Following up with clients helps staff to learn about the long-term effects of programs and to adjust their efforts to increase their impact. Follow-up should begin at intake and it should be as simple and as seamless as possible. The Evidence Generation team created this Guidebook to help agencies conceptualize improved follow-up procedures.

HOUR Children Evaluation Work Plan

Hour Children’s mission is to help incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women and their children successfully rejoin the community, reunify with their families, and build healthy, independent and secure lives. Hour Children’s vision is to break the cycle of inter-generational incarceration. To accomplish this, Hour Children provides compassionate and comprehensive services and encourages all to live and interact with dignity and respect.

Good Shepherd Services Evaluation Work Plan

This work plan was drafted specifically for the youth justice programs at Good Shepherd Services (GSS), to serve as a tool for its continued use in aiding court-involved youth. A key part of the GSS mission is to surround at-risk New York City youth and their families with a web of support that promotes self-sufficiency. The LIFE program at GSS is based on a theory of change that incarceration and removal of youth from their home negatively affects their physical and psychological well-being, academic progress, and emotional development. The program provides services focusing on education, family, and community engagement designed…

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Hour Children Evaluation Guidebook

This Guidebook expands on selected sections of the Workplan prepared by the Graduate Research Fellows for Hour Children. The guidebook provides details and additional resources as supplements that may be useful for implementing the Workplan, including an expanded discussion of logic models and theories of change. The material presented in the document would be most useful for agency staff members who will plan and execute evaluations of programs at Hour Children.