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    Mandatory Sentencing

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    Mandatory sentencing is not anything new. It began in the 1970s. The main purpose for mandatory sentencing was to try to get rid of the drug lords and to eliminate most of the nation’s street drug selling. It was to impose that the same crime would have the same sentence all over the nation. Some of the negatives that rose from mandatory sentencing were nonviolent drug offenders and first time offenders who were receiving harsh sentences. Inmate populations and correction costs increased and pushed

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    related assault. The societal and legal issue of alcohol fuelled violence and ‘one punch’ assaults has led to legislative change in several state jurisdictions with much of the Australian public divided on the use mandatory minimum sentencing. Advocates of mandatory minimum sentencing would argue that it helps ensures that sentences reflect community standards and are not unduly lenient. In other words, to ensure that the punishment matches the crime. This is important for maintaining confidence

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    Negative Consequences of Mandatory Sentencing In recent years several mandatory sentencing laws have been put into motion. The original goals of the mandatory sentencing laws were to stop repeat offenders and to exhibit a "get tough attitude" on crime. These laws have not been working as intended, instead mandatory sentencing has led to some unfortunate consequences. Some of these consequences are overcrowding in prisons and less prison based rehabilitation. Mandatory sentencing laws do not narrowly

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    Mandatory Sentence Mandatory sentencing refers to the practice of parliament setting a fixed penalty for the commission of a criminal offence. Mandatory sentencing was mainly introduced in Australia to: prevent crime, to incapacitate the offenders, to deter offenders so they don’t offend again, to create a stronger retribution and to eliminate inconsistency. There is a firm belief that the imposition of Mandatory sentencing for an offence will have a deterrent effect on the individual and will send

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    “Mandatory minimum sentences are the product of good intentions, but good intentions do not always make good policy; good results are also necessary.”(Larkin, 2014) Mandatory minimum sentencing is the laws that require automatic, minimum prison terms of a particular length for people convicted of certain federal and state crimes. In other words, everyone who committed the same crime would have the same guaranteed sentence. This is an issue of grave national consequence and if America is the land

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    the United States. The features of the 1994 Crime Bill created sixty new federal crimes punishable by either death penalty or life sentencing as well as increase existing penalties for dozen of other offenses (Wilson, 1995). Another feature created by Congress was the statutory ‘Safety Valve’, which provided relief for first-time offenders facing mandatory sentencing in drug cases. The statute created five requirements a defendant must meet to qualify for the reduced sentence – no criminal history

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    Mandatory minimum sentencing laws for criminal offenses started in the 1970s and continued throughout the 1980s and the 1990s. States that implemented such laws sought to reduce drug use and crimes; control judicial discretion over sentencing; increase sentences for serious and violent offenders; and to send a message to the general public that serious action will be taken for violations related to drugs and repeatedly committing other crimes. Mandatory minimum sentencing laws set minimum sentences

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    sentences being handed down are the minimum mandatory sentences, truth-in-sentencing laws, three strikes laws, sentencing guidelines, and sentencing enhancements. Policy changes and legislative changes have made longer sentences for certain offences. Minimum mandatory sentencing “laws set minimum sentences for certain crimes that judges cannot lower, even for extenuating circumstances. The most common of these laws deal with drug offenses and set mandatory minimum sentences for possession of a drug

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    Should mandatory sentencing be abolished Ensuring judges have such discretion fosters sound sentencing outcomes, respects our commitment to checks and balances and is better than a system skewed by mandatory minimums. A neutral judge should balance competing sentencing goals like retribution, deterrence, incapacitation, and rehabilitation consistent with broad legislative direction. Sound legislative sentencing ranges are often broad because offenses are committed differently, and offenders are

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    Mandatory minimum sentencing started with good intentions; to restrict the unlimited sentencing discretion of judges. This unlimited power often gave way to a large disparity among sentences that involved similar circumstances. However mandatory minimums have only switched that power from the judges to legal prosecutors. While judges almost unanimously dislike this restriction on their powers, prosecutors are taking their newfound abilities in stride. Some would even say they are abusing the power

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    discretion to mandatory sentences. This not only negatively effects the judges, it also effects the average citizen in a negative manner. Furthermore, the aftermath of mandatory sentencing is even more devastating, due to, it assisting in overcrowding prisons with minor offenders. Another issue that has risen, due to, mandatory sentencing is the racial divide in prisons. The next topic discussed will be a possible future if this law doesn’t change. Getting to the main point, mandatory sentencing has quickly

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    Mandatory minimum sentencing is the practice of requiring a predetermined prison sentence for certain crimes. The most notable mandatory minimums are the ones implemented in the 70’s and 80’s, hoping to combat the rising drug problem. Mandatory minimum sentencing has existed in the United States nearly since its very birth, with the first mandatory minimums being put into place around 1790. Recently, as the marijuana laws of many states have scaled back in severity, the issue of mandatory minimums

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    Mandatory minimum sentencing laws have gained popularity in the United States over the last couple of decades. By the early 1990’s, these laws existed in all 50 states (Bjerk, 2005). The purpose of these laws seems to be aimed at creating lengthier sentences for repeat offenders; however, these laws have also been known to cause unintended consequences within the criminal justice system (Bjerk, 2005). Persons involved in the judicial process (such as judges and prosecutors) have come to realize

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    The Growing Problems of the Prison System

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    These few include reviewing the mandatory sentencing laws, education opportunities, good time credits earning, conditional release of elderly inmates, foreign national occupation and after prison employment incentives. Traditionally judges were allowed to weigh the facts of a case when determining sentencing, but since the passing of the mandatory sentencing laws judges no longer have any discretion in these matters. It was believed that the mandatory sentencing would catch the upper end of those

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    The War on Drugs: Drug Sentencing Reform

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    Drug Sentencing Reform The Judiciary Branch of the United States government is responsible for interpreting the law. Those involved with this branch determine the meaning of the laws and decide what to do with those who break them. Because of a drug movement that took place through the 1980s, the courts have severely punished those who break laws associated to drugs; Congress is now trying to step in to change the way the Judiciary Branch is forced to punish such criminals. Congress has been busy

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    After viewing the documentary: America's War on Drugs - The Prison Industrial Complex, it is clear that the Criminal Justice System is in desperate need of reconstruction and repair with policies such as the mandatory minimum sentencing act which has proven to be unsuccessful and unjust in its efforts to deter 'criminals from committing illegal acts' as seen with the increase of incarcerations of the American people and the devastating effect it has had on those in prison and the family members of

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    integrate back into society. This is just one issue with the Youth Criminal Justice Act, not only is it affecting our youth but also causing difficulties into adulthood. This highlights errors in the system such as; over the punitive treatment of youth, mandatory minimum sentences and lack of judicial discretion, and inadequate assistance of counsel. Starting with over punitive treatment of youth, young people are wired differently than adults, they do not have the same levels of judgment, decision making

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    The Penalties and Sentences Act of 1994, governs every aspect of Queensland’s sentencing process and is one of our most important pieces of legislation; implementing a completely impartial justice sentencing system. This act attempts to establish a balance between punishments and positive outcomes for all the key stakeholders, but has come under scrutiny of recent times for supposedly being “soft on crime” (Judicial Conference of Australia, 2014). A considerable number of Queenslanders believe however

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    Felman (2012) explains this by saying “in the last twenty-five years since the advent of mandatory sentences for drug offenses and the Sentencing Guidelines, the average federal sentence has roughly tripled in length” (p. 369). The development of these guidelines indicates that for the same crimes that individuals committed previously, they are now receiving longer sentences. Mandatory sentencing also suggests that no matter an individual’s circumstance, they will receive the same punishment

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    Background Mandatory minimums for controlled substances were first implemented in the 1980s as a countermeasure for the hysteria that surrounded drugs in the era (“A Brief History,” 2014). The common belief was that stiff penalties discouraged people from using drugs and enhanced public safety (“A Brief History,” 2014). That theory, however, was proven false and rather than less illegal drug activity, there are simply more people incarcerated. Studies show that over half of federal prisoners currently

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