TTA Spotlight

Welcome to NTTAC’s TTA Spotlight! Through these TTA Spotlights, NTTAC will highlight those TTA engagements that have demonstrated success in achieving meaningful impact in the criminal justice system. It is our hope that these TTA Spotlights will enhance awareness and understanding of best practices to be replicated by criminal justice professionals. By highlighting these model engagements, NTTAC hopes to facilitate the sharing of information on provider capabilities, critical success factors, and achieved impact in order to strengthen the level of collaboration across the criminal justice community.

Background

Across the United States, criminal justice practitioners, policymakers, and researchers have recognized a growing need to improve statewide corrections systems and implement more judicious parole policies. The national trend in corrections and parole systems signals that different parole populations can experience varying rates of recidivism, affecting how risk information and guidelines are used to predict recidivism and inform parole release decisionmaking in violent and non-violent crime cases and in high, moderate, and low risk recidivism cases.

In 2014, Detroit, Michigan, joined a consortium of cities in the Violence Reduction Network (VRN), a nationwide, locally focused Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) training and technical assistance (TTA) initiative to reduce high rates of violent crime in communities through strategic and innovative measures. Similar to other communities in the VRN program, Detroit has one of the highest violent crime rates in the United States and has endured deep public sector resource constraints and challenges with police-community relations.

In September 2016, the Bureau of Justice Assistance (BJA) convened the BJA Smart Suite Summit: Transforming Criminal Justice through Research and Innovation, gathering BJA Smart Suite grantees, researchers, national experts, federal representatives, and thought leaders from the justice community to discuss and promote data-informed criminal justice projects and programs.

Background

The right to a speedy trial is one of the most basic guarantees of the U.S. Constitution, yet a host of variables can interfere with efficient courtroom proceedings. The practice of caseflow management helps to mitigate these variables – coordinating court processes and resources so that cases progress in a timely fashion from filing to disposition (i.e., sentencing or final settlement). Caseflow management best practices require an active effort by both judges and court managers to establish appropriate expectations, use tools to monitor actual performance against expectations, and ensure accountability for addressing issues.

Background

Across the United States, many prison populations are at all-time high levels, leading to significant overcrowding. In 2014, approximately 2.2 million people were incarcerated in federal, state, and local prisons and jails – a rate of 1 out of every 111 adults. At the same time, 40 percent of people leaving prison return within three years.* This comes at a huge cost for states. Over the last 25 years, state corrections expenditures have increased exponentially – from $12 billion in 1988 to more than $55 billion estimated for 2014. In the face of skyrocketing corrections costs, states are searching for practical, evidence-based solutions to help reduce incarceration and recidivism rates and, ultimately, save money.

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