Research | Length of stay | Corrections spending | Sentencing | Parole | June 2012

By the Pew Center on the States, Public Safety Performance Project

Over the past four decades, criminal justice policy in the United States was guided largely by a central premise: the best way to protect the public was to put more people in prison. A corollary was that offenders should spend longer and longer time behind bars. But criminologists and policy makers increasingly agree that we have reached a “tipping point” with incarceration, where additional imprisonment will have little if any effect on crime.

Read>> Time served: The high cost, low return of longer prison terms