CRJ 106 Chapter 6: Jails

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Criminal Justice
CRJ 106
Jennifer Lanterman

Criminal Justice 106 (Dr. Jennifer Lanterman) Yellow = Important Concepts Green = People Blue = Important Events/Works Chapter 6: Jails Introduction: The Community Institution  Jails are usually local and community institutions that hold people who are presumed innocent before trial o Hold convicted offenders before they are sentenced o Hold more minor offenders who are sentenced for terms that are usually less than a year o Hold juveniles and women o Serve to incapacitate, deter, rehabilitate, punish, and reintegrate  Majority operated by county sheriffs whose primary focus has been law enforcement rather than corrections o Jail facilities have often been neglected o Staffs get less pay and training than deputy sheriffs in the same organization o General public views jails as more punitive than prisons  Jails helps overcrowding in prisons  More programming and treatment in jails o Emergence of community reentry programs Jail Types  Operated by sheriff of a county or city, state, federal governments o Can be referred to as detention centers  2,900 jails in U.S., 68 jails operated by American Indian tribes  In places with no jails, counties are paid to hold inmates  Composed of one/two buildings in close proximity o Operated close to a city or town center, except on reservations and military facilities  Use of cameras, voice and visual check-operated doors, electronic fingerprint machines, and video arraignments Jail Inmates and Their Processing  Operates 24/7  60% of inmates are waiting for court action  Processed 11.7 million inmates (2013) o Arrestee is delivered to facility by a law enforcement officer o If not injured, law enforcement officer will fill out paperwork for admittance of arrestee  If injured, hospital can check them out before they are admitted to the jail o Jail then fills out its own paperwork to admit the arrestee  Might be allowed to contact family, friends, and/or a bail bondsman  Might be released directly into the community if the alleged offense is minor o If crime is serious enough, arrestee will have to await arraignment by a judge to determine bail o Booking process  Strip search arrestees (now inmates), take property, and issue clothing/essentials  Placed in special holding cell if intoxicated or belligerent  Classified and placed in more permanent housing area in the jail Overcrowding  Overcrowding – number of inmates exceeds the physical capacity available o Decrease by 1.1% in jail inmates (2008-2009) o Jails operating at 82% of their capacity (midyear 2013)  Still operating at over that average o Percentages of capacity can be misleading  May indicated that the jail is not completely full, but a section is overwhelmed with inmates o Less programming can be provided, health and maintenance systems are overtaxed, and staff become stressed o Staff lose ability to effectively classify and control inmates o Judges and jail managers will struggle over how to keep the jail population down to acceptable limits  Overcrowding is clearly quantifiable but it leads to many other problems Gender, Juveniles, Race, and Ethnicity  Most jail inmates are adult minority males o Number of whites represents the largest racial grouping of the men o Number of whites as a proportion of the total men increased markedly (2010)  Women comprised of 12.2% of jail inmates (2009) o Increased to 14% (2013)  “Get tough” policies have led to greater propensity to catch and keep low-level drug offenders in jails  Recent declines in the numbers of minorities (African Americans, Hispanics)  Number of adult males doubled from 1990 to 2006 o Number of adult females and juveniles almost tripled  Women represented 9% of jail populations and juveniles about 0.6% (1990)  Women comprised 12.2% of jail populations and juveniles about 1.0% (2000)  Juveniles decreased from 1.0% to 0.5% from 2000 to 2013  Percentage of females has increased by almost 3% in that same period  African Americans more likely to be incarcerated in American jails than are whites or Hispanics Criminal Justice 106 (Dr. Jennifer Lanterman) Yellow = Important Concepts Green = People Blue = Important Events/Works o Blacks are three times more likely than Hispanics and five times more likely than whites to be in jail o Number of African Americans decreased in jail populations (41.3% in 2000 to 35.8% by midyear 2013) The Poor and the Mentally Ill  Disorganized and disorderly, lower-class, “detached” and of “disrepute”  Homelessness puts person at greater risk for negative contact with police o Mentally ill more likely to be homeless o Those with a mental illness were almost twice as likely to be homeless as those jail inmates without a mental illness designation  64% of jail inmates have a mental health problem (2002) o 26% of jail inmates had symptoms of “serious psychological distress” o 10.6% of U.S. population has symptoms of mental illness  Mental illness and poverty has many societal issues for jail inmates o Those who are mentally ill and homeless are more likely to have a substance abuse problem  Inmates with serious psychological distress reported high rates of inmate-on-inmate and staff sexual victimization (2011-2012) Medical Problems  More than 1/3 of jail inmates reported a medical problem (2002) o 61% over age 45 reported a medical problem o Women more likely to report medical problems (53% for women, 35% for men) o More women get cervical cancer, more men get skin cancer o Incarcerated youth girls 3 times more likely to have gonorrhea/chlamydia than boys  Estelle v. Gamble (1976) o Inmates have a constitutional right to reasonable medical care o Being indifferent to medical needs is a violation to the 8 Amendment  Some jails contract with private companies to provide medical services or use telemedicine o Need to make sure the programs are properly accredited o Jail inmates are likely to suffer the consequences in terms of continued poor health o Jails may be sued for failure to provide care Substance Abuse and Jails  68% of jail inmates reported substance abuse or dependence problems (2002) o ½ of convicted inmates reported being under the influence at the time they committed their offense o 16% said they committed the crime to get money for drugs o More likely to have a criminal record and to have been homeless before incarceration
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