A Sober Assessment of Drug Courts
Federal Sentencing Reporter, Vol. 16, Issue 2, pp. 153-160, December 2003
9 Pages Posted: 3 Jun 2020
Date Written: 2003
Against a history paved with nearly unbroken failure, drug courts represent one of only a few promising strategies on the horizon for intervening with drug-abusing offenders. The best available research evidence suggests that drug courts can reduce drug use and criminal recidivism on an order of magnitude of two to three times greater than almost any other initiative that has been attempted with this intransigent population. Unfortunately, we know next to nothing about how drug courts work, for which types of offenders, at what dosage, and whether they may have negative side effects for some individuals. These knowledge-gaps have been a significant source of confusion for criminal justice scholars and a significant source of fodder for policy advocates bent on obfuscation.
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