Wisconsin Sentencing In The Tough-on-crime Era: How Judges Retained Power And Why Mass…

Hardcover | January 17, 2017

byMichael M. O?hear

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The dramatic increase in U.S. prison populations since the 1970s is often blamed on the mandatory sentencing required by “three strikes” laws and other punitive crime bills. Michael M. O’Hear shows that the blame is actually not so easy to assign. His meticulous analysis of incarceration in Wisconsin—a state where judges have considerable discretion in sentencing—shows that the prison population has ballooned anyway, increasing nearly tenfold over forty years.
            O’Hear tracks the effects of sentencing laws and politics in Wisconsin from the eve of the imprisonment boom in 1970 up to the 2010s. Drawing on archival research, original public-opinion polling, and interviews with dozens of key policymakers, he reveals important dimensions that have been missed by others. He draws out the lessons from the incarcerations that have cost taxpayers billions of dollars and caused untold misery to millions of inmates and their families.

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From the Publisher

The dramatic increase in U.S. prison populations since the 1970s is often blamed on the mandatory sentencing required by “three strikes” laws and other punitive crime bills. Michael M. O’Hear shows that the blame is actually not so easy to assign. His meticulous analysis of incarceration in Wisconsin—a state where judges have considera...

Michael M. O’Hear is a professor of law at Marquette University. He is an editor of the journal Federal Sentencing Reporter and has published many articles on sentencing law, criminal procedure, and public opinion about the criminal justice system.
Format:HardcoverDimensions:288 pages, 9 × 6 × 0.98 inPublished:January 17, 2017Publisher:UNIVERSITY OF WISCONSIN PRESSLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0299310205

ISBN - 13:9780299310202

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Extra Content

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations                
Preface                       
 
Introduction                
1 Setting the Stage, Meeting the Players                   
2 The Seventies Synthesis                  
3 The Equivocal Assault on Discretion, 1980–1995              
4 The Quest for Improved Community Corrections, 1980–1997                  
5 “Truth” and Its Consequences: The Demise of Parole                   
6 The 2s: Managerialism’s Modest Comeback                      
7 Wisconsin’s War on Drugs             
8 Lessons                   
 
Notes              
Index

Editorial Reviews

“Fascinating political and social history. O’Hear puts national criminal justice trends into a single-state frame, providing much sharper insights than often come from trying to look at the entirety of this very big country. This is first-rate work.”—Frank O. Bowman III, University of Missouri School of Law