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Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice in Wisconsin Pamela Oliver.

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Presentation on theme: "Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice in Wisconsin Pamela Oliver."— Presentation transcript:

1 Racial Disparities in Criminal Justice in Wisconsin Pamela Oliver

2 The Magnitude of the Problem

3 Comparing International Incarceration Rates (Source: Sentencing Project)

4 World Incarceration Rates in 1995: Adding US Race Patterns

5 Nationally, The Black Population is Being Imprisoned at Alarming Rates Upwards of 1/3 of the black male population is under the supervision of the correctional system (prison, jail, parole, probation) Estimated “lifetime expectancy” of spending some time in prison is 29% for young black men. About 9% of black men in their 20s are in prison 7% of black children, 2.6% of Hispanic children,.8% of white children have a parent in prison (at one time) – lifetime expectancy much higher

6 About Rates & Disparity Ratios Imprisonment and arrest rates are expressed as the rate per 100,000 of the appropriate population Example: In 1999 Wisconsin new prison sentences –1021 whites imprisoned, white population of Wisconsin was 4,701,123: 1021 ÷ = Multiply by 100,000 = 22, the imprisonment rate per 100,000 population. –1,266 blacks imprisoned, black population of Wisconsin was 285, ÷ = Multiply by 100,000 = 444 Calculate Disparity Ratios by dividing rates: 444/22 = 20.4 the black/white ratio in new prison sentence rates

7 US Prison Admissions by Race

8 National & Wisconsin Imprisonment Rates

9 The 1970’s Policy Shift Shift to determinate sentencing, higher penalties LEAA, increased funding for police departments The drug warm incentives to police departments to make drug arrests Post-civil rights post-riots competitive race relations, race-coded political rhetoric.?

10 Imprisonment Has Increased While Crime Has Declined Imprisonment rates are a function of responses to crime, not a function of crime itself Property crimes declined steadily between 1970s and 2000 Violent crime declined modestly overall, with smaller ups and downs in the period

11 The Drug War Most of the increase in imprisonment is due to drug offenses. Drug use rates have generally declined since the 1980s, while drug imprisonments have increased. Black adult drug use rates are only slightly higher than white (see next chart), while their imprisonment rates for drugs are enormous Among juveniles, blacks use illegal drugs less than whites, but black juveniles have much higher drug arrest rates.

12 Current Illicit Drug Use Among Adults (National Patterns) 6.6 percent for whites 6.8 percent for Hispanics 7.7 percent for blacks 10.6 percent for American Indian/Alaska Natives (this is largely marijuana, rates for other drugs are lower than other races) 11.2 percent for persons reporting multiple race 3.2 percent for Asians Source: 1999 National Household Survey on Drug Abuse

13 Wisconsin Prison Admissions Time Trends (Preliminary Data)

14 Wisconsin Prison Admissions by Race Black Asian white Hispanic AmerInd

15 Proportion of Admissions Involving New Sentences

16 White Admissions Status New Sentence Only Violation Only Violation + New

17 Blacks Admission Status New Sentence Only Violation Only Violation + New

18 Total admits, violations only AmerInd Black Hispanic white Asian

19 Total Admits, New Sentences Only Prison Admission by Race , New Sentence Only Black Asian white Hispanic AmerInd

20 Total Admits, Whites Wisconsin: White NH Total Prison Admissions Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

21 Total Admits, Offense Blacks Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

22 Total Admits, Hispanics Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

23 Whites, Violators Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

24 Black violators Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

25 New Sentences, Whites Violent Robbery & Burglary OtherDrugsTheft

26 New Sentences, Blacks Offense Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

27 Conclusions Huge racial disparities, especially black vs. white Probation/parole violators returning to prison are a major source of the rise Blacks show steep rises in new sentences for drugs, while whites show no increase White new sentences are primarily for violent offenses. Black new sentences are primarily for drug offenses.

28 County Comparisons

29 Compare Counties Whites New Sentences

30 Compare counties black, new sentences thick

31 Compare Counties, New Sentences B/w ratio

32 Compare counties, whites violations

33 Compare Counties, Blacks Violations

34 Compare Counties, Violations B/W ratio

35 Milwaukee New Totals AmerInd Black Hispanic white Asian

36 Milwaukee New Black Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

37 Milwaukee New White Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

38 Dane New Totals All Races AmerInd Black Hispanic white Asian

39 Dane New Black Violent Robbery & BurglaryOther Drugs Theft

40 Dane New White Violent Robbery & Burglary Other Drugs Theft

41 County Drug Disparities by Time

42 Prison Entry From Dane County 1999, by offense and race

43 Dane County Prison Admissions per 100,000 by race & offense, 1999 (Totals: Black 3361, White 87)

44 Black Prison Admission Rates From Dane & Milwaukee Counties (annualized), new sentences

45 White Prison Admission Rates, Dane & Milwaukee Counties (annualized), new sentences only

46 Arrest Rates in Madison & Milwaukee, Source: Uniform Crime Reports Data obtained from Wisconsin Office of Justice Assistance

47 Annual Arrest Rate Per 100,000 Madison PD

48 Adult Arrest Rates Per 100,000 Average

49 Juvenile Arrest Rates Per 100,000 Average

50 Madison PD Average Annual Adult Arrest Rate by Race, “Serious” = homicide, sexual & aggravated assault, burglary, robbery, arson, auto theft “Wrong place” = loitering, curfew, vagrancy, runaways

51 Madison PD Average Annual Juvenile Arrest Rate by Race, “Serious” = homicide, sexual & aggravated assault, burglary, robbery, arson, auto theft “Wrong place” = loitering, curfew, vagrancy, runaways

52 Black Adult Arrest Rates, Madison vs. Milwaukee averages

53 Black Juvenile Arrest Rates, Madison vs. Milwaukee averages

54 White Juvenile Arrest Rates, Madison vs. Milwaukee averages

55 Arrests Averages: Adult Disparity Ratios

56 Arrests Averages: Juvenile Disparity Ratios

57 Conclusions Drug war in Dane County (and Milwaukee County) is being fought “against blacks.” Probation/parole violation holds are a major source of arrests in Dane County, a major source of jail crowding. Large racial disparities in serious crimes indicate a real problem that needs to be addressed

58 Making Things Worse High imprisonment rates (including longer sentences, high rates of probation/parole revocation) are not a constructive way of dealing with the problem of non- violent property crimes (thefts) and drug offenses Enormous expenses to house these offenders in prison Destruction of offenders’ lives and and mortal harm to their families Because of racial targeting of the drug war, the harmful consequences of this policy are being concentrated in black communities, while the beneficiaries of the policy do not pay its price

59 Social Conditions, Political Processes, Crime, and Corrections

60 An Individual Life Course Model of Crime With Policing Added

61 Imprisonment as a Cause of Crime?


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