Voices from the Field: How California Stakeholders View Public Safety Realignment

257 Pages Posted: 21 Feb 2014

See all articles by Joan Petersilia

Joan Petersilia

Stanford University

Sara Abarbanel

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center

John Butler

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center

Mark Feldman

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center

Mariam Hinds

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center

Kevin Jason

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center

Corinne Keel

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center

Matthew J. Owens

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Camden Vilkin

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center

Date Written: January 1, 2014

Abstract

Passage of California’s Public Safety Realignment Act (AB 109) initiated the most sweeping correctional experiment in recent history. Launched on October 1, 2011, Realignment shifted responsibility for most lower-level offenders from the state to California’s 58 counties. By mid-2013, more than 100,000 felons had been diverted from state prison to county jail or probation.

This report summarizes the results of interviews conducted with California stakeholders responsible for implementing the law. Stanford Law School researchers conducted 125 interviews in 21 counties to produce a snapshot of how California is faring under Realignment so far. We talked with police, sheriffs, judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, probation and parole agents, victim advocates, offenders, and social service representatives. Our goal was to determine how Realignment had influenced their agency’s work and what changes they would make to the law.

Our interviews revealed a justice system undergoing remarkable changes, arguably unprecedented in depth and scope. Stakeholders’ opinions varied widely, and their comments reflected their role in the system more than the county they represented.

Keywords: Criminal Law; Realignment; corrections; California; sentencing

Suggested Citation

Petersilia, Joan and Abarbanel, Sara and Butler, John and Feldman, Mark and Hinds, Mariam and Jason, Kevin and Keel, Corinne and Owens, Matthew J. and Vilkin, Camden, Voices from the Field: How California Stakeholders View Public Safety Realignment (January 1, 2014). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2395498 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2395498

Joan Petersilia (Contact Author)

Stanford University ( email )

Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Sara Abarbanel

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

John Butler

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Mark Feldman

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Mariam Hinds

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Kevin Jason

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Corinne Keel

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

Matthew J. Owens

affiliation not provided to SSRN ( email )

Camden Vilkin

Stanford University - Criminal Justice Center ( email )

559 Nathan Abbott Way
Stanford, CA 94305
United States

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