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Deterrence and the Death Penalty

Deterrence and the Death Penalty

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Deterrence and the Death Penalty

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  1. Deterrence and the Death Penalty Llad Phillips

  2. Outline • The Death Penalty • Arguments • Philosophical and moral (lexicographic ordering) • Practical: Is it a deterrent? • Impact on the criminal justice system: Detention (prison building era) dominates • Operation of the Death Penalty • Homicide and Executions

  3. VI. Lecture Six: “Deterrence and the Death Penalty”, Professor Phillips Ch. 10 (P&V) "Isolating Deterrence Using the Simultaneous Equation System" References: Gary Becker, "Crime and Punishment: An Economic Approach" Journal of Political Economy, March/April 1968 (RBR)

  4. http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7532034279766935521

  5. What purpose did the execution serve? • Deterrence? Other Saddams? (The Hague) • Detention? No • Rehabilitation? No • Retribution?

  6. 1976 Supreme Court Reinstates Death Penalty

  7. Economic Conditions and Crime • California Crime Index Levels Off in the New Millenium

  8. 1980

  9. Damages: US Violence, 1993 Source: National Institute of Justice, Victim Costs and Consequences (1996)

  10. Increase in CA Homicides • 2002 to 2003: at least 10 more homicides • @$1,191,000, increased damages of $11.9 million, minimum • 2003: 2402 homicides, 6.7/100,000 • @$1,191,000, total damages of $ 2.86 billion • 2004: 2392 homicides, 6.5/100,000 • 2005: 2503 homicides, 6.8/100,000 http://caag.state.ca.us/

  11. Schematic of the Criminal Justice System Causes ? Weak Link Offense Rate Per Capita Crime Generation Expected Cost of Punishment (detention, deterrence) Expenditures Crime Control

  12. Questions About Crime • Does the Expected Severity of Punishment Deter Crime? • expected severity = probability of punishment * severity of punishment • e.g. in LA County: 0.005*death penalty • Why Do We Keep Building Prisons at Great Expense to Warehouse Convicts? • Doesn’t deterrence work? • Do we have to rely on detention?

  13. Controversy About the Death Penalty • Death penalty is the most severe sentence. • Does it deter crime? • Opponents of the death penalty say no. • Their evidence? Critiques of studies that indicate the death penalty is a deterrent. • Why are so few murderers who receive the death sentence executed in California? • Death sentence appeases the proponents. • Few executions appeases the opponents.

  14. France was the last Western European Country to abandon the death Penalty in 1977

  15. http://www.albany.edu/sourcebook

  16. http://www.albany.edu/sourcebook/

  17. Executions in the US 1930-2007 http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs Peak to Peak: About 65 years

  18. Bureau of Justice Statistics Peak to Peak: 50 years

  19. Nikolai Kondratieff (1892-1938) Brought to attention in Joseph Schumpeter’s Business Cycles (1939)

  20. 2008-2014: Hard Winter

  21. Policy Impact of Opponents to the Death Penalty • As an instrument for crime control, deterrence has been a casualty of the argument about the death penalty. • The argument: if the death penalty does not deter murderers, then deterrence must not work as a control. • As a consequence, society relies more and more on detention for crime control. • Society builds more and more prisons.

  22. Homicide in Los Angeles County • 1990-1994: 9442 homicides • Increasing number of gang murders • > 40 % of the total • Only 1 in 3 murders leads to punishment • gang killings are harder to solve

  23. Clearance Ratio, CA 1997-2004

  24. Clearance Ratio, US 1976-2005

  25. US Homicides by Circumstance: 76-05

  26. Branching Diagram unsolved 46% other 9442 homicides in LA County 13% 54% dismissed or not guilty solved 87% 32% arrest and prosecution (47%) 68% guilty (32%)

  27. Branching Diagram, Continued dismissed or not guilty Manslaughter 15 years to life (7.0%) 50% Guilty (32%) 25 years to life (5.0%) 50% 1st & 2nd degree murder (16%) life without parole (3.5%) 3.1% death sentence ( 0.5%)

  28. Stable Down Up

  29. Who has benefited the most from the decline in the homicide rate in the nineties?

  30. Who is the victim, family, friend or stranger? http://caag.state.ca.us/ Homicide in California, 1998

  31. U.S.

  32. Death Sentences Commuted:US

  33. Executions in the United States

  34. Administration of Capital Sentences in the US Stock Outflow Inflow Prisoners on Death Row Sentenced to Death Sentences Commuted, Executions

  35. Prisoners on Death Row: US

  36. The Death Penalty in California • Fourteen persons were executed between 1978 and 2009 • In January 2009, there were 677 convicts on death row