What are We Hoping for? Defining Purpose in Deterrence-Based Correctional Programs

34 Pages Posted: 4 May 2015 Last revised: 15 May 2015

Date Written: May 2, 2015


One of the most popular program models in criminal justice today is that popularized by Hawaii Opportunity Probation with Enforcement (HOPE). HOPE and other programs like it grow out of research suggesting that the most effective way to prevent violations of conditions of supervision is to more accurately detect them, respond to them immediately, and impose consistent and predictable sanctions for every detected violation. Proponents of these programs assert that they not only change behavior for the better, but that they increase the legitimacy of probation by addressing violations as they occur. Even if program compliance rates are as high as supporters claim, serious questions remain about whether these programs, while advancing compliance, may undermine the larger goal of promoting desistance from crime. Anecdotal evidence suggests that both the conditions and sanctions imposed on program participants are often significantly more severe than the model itself requires, and are sometimes at odds with encouraging behavior that is known to foster desistance. This Essay argues that system actors have an obligation to consider the purpose of correctional intervention when evaluating program "success."

Keywords: HOPE, probation, deterrence, incarceraton, jail, prison, revocation

JEL Classification: K14

Suggested Citation

Klingele, Cecelia M., What are We Hoping for? Defining Purpose in Deterrence-Based Correctional Programs (May 2, 2015). 99 Minn. L. Rev. 101, Univ. of Wisconsin Legal Studies Research Paper No. 1350, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2601824

Cecelia M. Klingele (Contact Author)

University of Wisconsin Law School ( email )

975 Bascom Mall
Madison, WI 53706
United States
608-890-3258 (Phone)

Do you have negative results from your research you’d like to share?

Paper statistics

Abstract Views
PlumX Metrics