Access

You are not currently logged in.

Access your personal account or get JSTOR access through your library or other institution:

login

Log in to your personal account or through your institution.

If You Use a Screen Reader

This content is available through Read Online (Free) program, which relies on page scans. Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.

An Integration of Theories to Explain Judicial Discretion

Celesta A. Albonetti
Social Problems
Vol. 38, No. 2 (May, 1991), pp. 247-266
DOI: 10.2307/800532
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/800532
Page Count: 20
  • Read Online (Free)
  • Download ($42.00)
  • Subscribe ($19.50)
  • Cite this Item
Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
An Integration of Theories to Explain Judicial Discretion
Preview not available

Abstract

Based on an integration of work on uncertainty avoidance in decision making with research on causal attribution in punishment, the author hypothesizes that judges attempt to manage uncertainty by developing "patterned responses" that are the product of an attribution process involving assessments of the offender's likelihood of committing future crime. Washington, D. C., felony sentencing data generated by the Prosecutor's Management and Information System (PROMIS) were used to test this integrated theoretical model. Support for the theoretical integration is provided by the evidence of the effects of prior record, defendant's race, use of a weapon, pretrial release, and the interaction between defendant's race and bail outcome on sentence severity. Contrary to common suppositions, information on defendant-victim relationship and victim provocation was unrelated to sentence severity. Further research should examine judges' attempt to reduce uncertainty by relying on stereotypes and attributions linked to the likelihood of recidivism.

Page Thumbnails

  • Thumbnail: Page 
247
    247
  • Thumbnail: Page 
248
    248
  • Thumbnail: Page 
249
    249
  • Thumbnail: Page 
250
    250
  • Thumbnail: Page 
251
    251
  • Thumbnail: Page 
252
    252
  • Thumbnail: Page 
253
    253
  • Thumbnail: Page 
254
    254
  • Thumbnail: Page 
255
    255
  • Thumbnail: Page 
256
    256
  • Thumbnail: Page 
257
    257
  • Thumbnail: Page 
258
    258
  • Thumbnail: Page 
259
    259
  • Thumbnail: Page 
260
    260
  • Thumbnail: Page 
261
    261
  • Thumbnail: Page 
262
    262
  • Thumbnail: Page 
263
    263
  • Thumbnail: Page 
264
    264
  • Thumbnail: Page 
265
    265
  • Thumbnail: Page 
266
    266