3 thoughts on “Police Chiefs to Trump: Cut Crime, Prisons

    • Mr Sipes, I agree with you completely about the fact that most of the statistics we use in the debate over criminal justice…and many other subjects in the new US culture fit the saying that used to go around the Wharton School of Finance when I was a student: ” Garbage in; garbage out”. Somehow most now believe that anything supposedly ” data driven” is proven fact. Rational debate based on half way verifiable facts is DEAD. I can’t wait until we begin applying Altfacts to airplane design😀

  1. Thank you Ted Gest for an interesting article. I would point out, however, that vague statistics about recidivism always find their way into the narrative about Justice Reform….We need better statistics about “recidivism”. Right now ” revidivism” lumps together, re-arrest for a new offense (it can be serious or not, related to the previous conviction or not), it ALSO includes re-arrests due to TECHNICAL PROBATION VIOLATIONS that are not “crimes under normal statutes” but can cause a probationer or parolee to find him/herself back behind bars and back in the statistics for…keeping in touch with friends you met in prison, late or insufficient payment of your fines and court costs, missing mandatory counselling meetings….moving without permission, traveling without permission and, of course, the ubiquitous ” dirty urine”. Pew data suggests that in the Federal System at least, probation violations account for near half of rearrests within 3 years..With the current push to extend Supervised Release and Probation to 5 years, 10 years ..I wouldn’t be surprised if probation violation rearrests increased further…Sadly these unscientific ” recidivism” stats are used to convince Joe Public that EVERYONE who has been arrested is a danger to the public and if/when released will inevitably commit another crime…so back to “throw away the key”.

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