Immediate Sanction Probation Pilot Project Virginia Criminal Sentencing Commission June 10, 2013
Overview of HOPE Program Evaluation
Evaluation of HOPE Program • Pepperdine University, with funding from the National Institute of Justice, conducted an evaluation of Project HOPE (published December, 2009) • Evaluation design employed a random assignment of 493 high-risk probationers: 330 (two-thirds) were placed into Project HOPE 163 (one-third) were placed into regular probation
HOPE Evaluation Outcomes HOPE Program Outcomes (One Year Follow-up) CONTROL 47% 46% HOPE Even though the HOPE group was brought back to court for every violation (more opportunities to be revoked), HOPE participants still had lower revocation rate 23% 21% 15% 13% 9% 7% Used Drugs Arrested for New Crime Probation Revoked Skipped Appointments Source: Hawken, A. & Kleiman, M. (2009). Managing Drug Involved Probationers with Swift and Certain Sanctions: Evaluating Hawaii's HOPE. www.ncjrs.govpdffiles1/nij/grants/229023.pdf
HOPE Evaluation Outcomes HOPE Program Outcomes (One Year Follow-up) A separate study found that, on average, HOPE participants and a control group served about the same amount of time in jail for violations (approx. 20 days). However, the average prison sentence was significantly lower for HOPE participants. CONTROL HOPE Source: Hawken, A. & Kleiman, M. (2009). Managing Drug Involved Probationers with Swift and Certain Sanctions: Evaluating Hawaii's HOPE. www.ncjrs.govpdffiles1/nij/grants/229023.pdf
HOPE Evaluation Outcomes HOPE Program Outcomes Number of Positive Urinalyses for HOPE Participants in 12 months Source: Hawken, A. & Kleiman, M. (2009). Managing Drug Involved Probationers with Swift and Certain Sanctions: Evaluating Hawaii's HOPE. www.ncjrs.govpdffiles1/nij/grants/229023.pdf
HOPE Evaluation Outcomes - Key Components of the Warning Hearing These are also frequently reiterated at violation hearings. As part of the warning, the judge: • Stresses the importance of the probationer taking charge of his own life and accepting accountability for his own actions • Clearly lays out the consequences for violation in advance, which creates a perception of fairness on the part of the probationer • Expresses goodwill toward the probationer and the desire that the probationer succeed
HOPE Evaluation Outcomes – Other Key Components of the Warning and Violation Hearings Other key factors described in Hawaii’s evaluation: • Presence of prosecution and defense is key to reinforcing perception of fairness and emphasizing the seriousness of the matter • Attorneys are also important in Virginia because of the statutory ability to object to an expedited hearing and the judge’s ability to remove an offender at any time. • The probation officer reinforces the message expressed by the court after the probationer is released from incarceration following a violation.
Swift and Certain Sanction Programs Elsewhere in the U.S.
States with Similar Swift and Certain Sanction Programs Interest and Participation in Results First ME WA MT ND MN OR NY WI SD ID MI WY PA VT IA NE OH IN NH NV IL WV UT MA VA CO MO CA KS KY RI NC CT TN OK SC NJ AR AZ NM GA DE AL MS MD LA TX FL AK AK Evaluation or Preliminary Results Reported HI Data Collection Phase/Evaluation Pending Program Created, Evaluation Status Unknown
Research on Swift and Certain Sanction Programs • Growing body of research on HOPE-style supervision: • Anchorage Probation Accountability with Certain Enforcement (PACE) • South Dakota 24/7 Sobriety Project • Washington Intensive Supervision Program (WISP) • Arizona Swift Accountable Fair Enforcement (SAFE) • 4 Federal Demonstration Field Experiment Sites • Clackamas County, Oregon • Essex County, Massachusetts • Saline County, Arkansas; and • Tarrant County, Texas
Virginia’s Pilot Project – Status Update
Completed Tasks • Implementation manual, warning script, and forms • Template court orders in place • Payment process for court-appointed attorneys working with the program in Henrico • Point-of-contact for each office/agency identified and contact lists created for each pilot site • To facilitate swift communication process
Completed Tasks • Worked with DOC, Compensation Board, and Clerks to add new codes, etc., in automated systems • DOC’s VA-CORIS system • Local Inmate Data System used in the jails • Supreme Court’s Case Management System • Prepared and presented information on HOPE and Virginia's pilot program to all Probation Officers in Lynchburg and Henrico to encourage the identification and referral of candidates
Ongoing Tasks • Hold regular meetings in each pilot site to discuss any issues or questions that arise • Work together to develop solutions that are satisfactory to everyone
Overview of Henrico Pilot Program Start date: November 1, 2012 Two judges oversee the hearings (Judge Yoffy and Judge Wallerstein) DOC has designated a probation officer to supervise the offenders in the program Six court-appointed attorneys provide defense counsel to offenders in the program Sheriff and Chief of Police agreed to arrest program violators quickly (currently being handled by HPD’s Fugitive Investigations Team) Judges conduct expedited hearings on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 1:00pm
Overview of Lynchburg Pilot Program Start date: January 1, 2013 One judge is overseeing the hearings (Judge Yeatts; backup will be a substitute judge) DOC designated a probation officer to supervise the offenders in the program The Public Defender’s Office provides counsel to offenders in the program
Overview of Lynchburg Pilot Program • Sheriff and Chief of Police agreed to arrest program violators quickly • Initial delays within Police Department appear to have been resolved • Amherst and Campbell County Sheriffs have agreed to execute Lynchburg PB-15s quickly, thereby expanding the pool of potential program participants to those living outside the city • Originally held as needed, Lynchburg has now set expedited hearings for Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at 1:00pm
Update on Third Pilot Site • On March 5, Commission staff and the Deputy Secretary of Public Safety met with stakeholders in Chesapeake • Second meeting in Chesapeake was held in April • Stakeholders discussed the potential workload impact for the Probation Office and Clerk’s Office • Judges expressed concern about the low number of participants in the two existing pilot programs • Wanted eligibility criteria to be expanded to allow offenders with a prior conviction for an offense listed in § 17.1-805 to participate (e.g., prior burglaries) • Requested information on number of eligible offenders in Chesapeake
Update on Third Pilot Site • To encourage Chesapeake’s participation in the pilot, Commission staff pursued expanding the eligibility criteria to allow offenders with a prior conviction for an offense listed in § 17.1-805 to be considered for the program • This had previously been suggested by stakeholders in Henrico and Lynchburg • Secretary of Public Safety’s Office and the Commonwealth’s Attorneys in all three jurisdictions were amenable to the proposed change (implemented April 26)
Update on Third Pilot Site Commission staff requested probation caseload data from DOC, which indicated that Chesapeake would have a larger pool of eligible offenders than either Henrico or Lynchburg
Update on Third Pilot Site • Chesapeake’s judges desired to change the pilot program to require offenders to waive their right to counsel in order to participate • Modifying the pilot program in this way raised concern • § 19.2-303.5 allows parties to object to the expedited hearing, in which case the matter proceeds to a full show cause hearing • HOPE evaluation found that defense counsel was an important part of the program’s effectiveness • Evaluation would likely become more challenging if one pilot site were operating differently than the others in regards to a key aspect of the program
Update on Third Pilot Site • Due to those circumstances, a pilot program did not proceed in Chesapeake • Discussions were held with the Secretary of Public Safety’s Office and DOC administration regarding options for another site • Arlington was identified as a potential site • Judge Newman has agreed to convene the stakeholders on June 19
Program-Related Issues Identified at the March Meeting • Number of eligible offenders appears to be less than expected • Offenders being supervised in the pilot sites who are under the jurisdiction of another court are not eligible • Offenders with current or prior violent felonies were not eligible • Probationers were not being referred to the Immediate Sanction Probation Officer to be considered for the program at the rate that was anticipated
Program-Related Issues Identified at the March Meeting Henrico Program Participants (as of March 14) 5 Program Violations (as of March 14) 1 Lynchburg Program Participants (as of March 14) 6 Program Violations (as of March 14) 5
Follow-up on Program-Related Issues • Eligibility criteria has been expanded to allow offenders with a prior conviction for an offense listed in § 17.1-805 to be considered for the program • On April 26, 2013, Commission staff accompanied DOC’s Deputy Director and a Regional Operations Chief to Henrico and Lynchburg to meet with all Probation Officers in each district • Presented information about the HOPE model and Virginia’s pilot program and answered questions • Second meeting was held for officers who could not attend the April 26 meeting
Follow-up on Program-Related Issues • Commission staff participate in weekly conference calls with each Probation District to discuss potential candidates for the program • Calls also provide opportunity to address questions from Probation staff and receive feedback on the program from Probation Officers
Program-Related Issues Identified at the March Meeting • Some PB-15s had not been executed as quickly as desired • This resulted in delays in getting offenders in front of the judge to be considered for placement in the program • More importantly, participants who violate must be arrested as quickly as possible so that sanctions can be imposed swiftly and the impact of the sanction on the offender can be maximized
Follow-up on Program-Related Issues • Issue was discussed at stakeholder meetings in March • Delays in executing PB-15s appear to have been resolved
Recent Activity in Henrico & Lynchburg Measures of Swiftness Note: Excludes revocations that occurred after a participant’s removal from the program.
Recent Activity in Henrico & Lynchburg Measures of Certainty and Sanctions Imposed * Represents 1 case Note: Sentence length is in addition to time served awaiting hearing. Excludes revocations that occurred after a participant’s removal from the program.
Recent Activity in Henrico & Lynchburg Number of Violations for Participants * N=33 * One participant was removed after 3 violations.