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Community Input at Sentencing: Victim’s Right or Victim’s Revenge?

Long, Katie
June 4, 2015

Source: (1995) Boston University Law Review. 75:187.

Citing examples of community response to decisions in the criminal justice system, Katie Long asserts that communities are seeking greater influence over the process of criminal justice. One emerging focal point of community activism is criminal sentencing. Across the United States, citizens are pursuing grassroots efforts to affect sentencing policies and practices. Long explores all of this by looking at the expansion of community input in criminal sentencing. In particular she examines community-impact statements at the time of sentencing and the implications of such statements. This involves consideration of the practical and constitutional problems with occasionally allowing or institutionalizing community participation at sentencing. Long’s perspective is that the widespread use of community-impact statements would produce an unacceptable skewing of the criminal justice process in favor of victims.


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