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Managing Felons in the Community: An Administrative Profile of Probation

NCJ Number
Date Published
April 1990
This report provides basic descriptive information about probation agencies, the people they supervise, and the services they provide.

For six years, a series of studies was conducted to provide a national picture of felony sentencing outcomes. The results of these studies show that probation is the most prevalent sanction imposed on persons convicted of a felony offense. Fifty-two percent of all felony sentences involve probation, and nearly half of these probation sentences include sentences to the local jail. Probation is rarely used with such violent offenses as homicide (8 percent), rape (32 percent), and robbery (26 percent). Probation is more frequently relied upon for nonviolent offenses such as burglary (44 percent), larceny (54 percent), and drug trafficking (62 percent). In addition to adult probation, one-third of the responding probation agencies provide pretrial and pre-adjudication supervision. Half of the responding agencies provide other adult services, primarily parole. In isolating those probation officers who work with adult felons, this report found a substantial portion of their work to be directed at presentence report writing. In addition, probation agencies expend considerable effort in collecting the various fees levied on their clients. 16 tables, 14 references, appendix.

Date Published: April 1, 1990