Criminal Justice Advisory Council. Plan of Action

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1 Criminal Justice Advisory Council Plan of Action

2 CRIMINAL JUSTICE ADVISORY COUNCIL PLAN OF ACTION This Plan of Action is the result of numerous conversations with key stakeholders of the Criminal Justice Advisory Council (CJAC). This Plan: Represents agreement within CJAC of a philosophy and vision for Salt Lake County s criminal and social justice system. Embodies consensus on next steps; an action plan for moving forward. Provides critical data to further the understanding and dialogue of the offender population, assesses how to most effectively and efficiently use limited resources to impact criminal behavior. Offers a glimpse into our current criminal and social justice system and discusses how what is currently in place makes a difference. Explores the current criminal justice research to find areas where we can learn more about best practices. Identifies areas in need of improvement. This document is not intended to provide or convince anyone that CJAC has all of the answers to the challenges presented by crime, and those committing it, in Salt Lake County. It is not intended to address all of the challenges that we face. There are many challenges and they are multifaceted and complex. The document does, however, represent a renewed commitment among key stakeholders toward cooperation and coordination in meeting these challenges. The report begins with CJAC s vision for the criminal justice system, and then provides a description of the offender population based upon an analysis of jail booking data. It then highlights what the research indicates works with offender populations to reduce the rate of recidivism, which incorporates an analysis of the impact of what currently exists in Salt Lake County. From there the document takes a closer look at what the criminal and social justice system currently looks like in Salt Lake County, including identifying areas of positive impact and areas in need of improvement. Finally, this document presents CJAC s plan of action to help the criminal and social justice system build what is working well and improve areas of deficiency. Why We Care Public safety is a primary role of Government. Within Salt Lake County, the Criminal Justice Advisory Council (CJAC) has the responsibility to develop a comprehensive plan that promotes a safe community. The plan guides the Mayor, District Attorney, Sheriff, County Council and other CJAC partners in making policy, program, and budgetary decisions that advance public safety. 2

3 There are, and always will be, limited resources with which to work. To this end, it is critical that Salt Lake County has an efficient and effective criminal and social justice system in which the key stakeholders coordinate and collaborate closely in their efforts to reduce crime. In this spirit, the Criminal Justice Advisory Council has put together the following operational plan designed to promote: A Safe Community An Efficient and Effective Criminal and Social Justice System Individual Success (i.e., Offender Rehabilitation) Reduced long-term costs Criminal and Social Justice System Philosophy and Vision 1 A Dynamic, Comprehensive, Data-Enhanced Criminal and Social Justice System that Maximizes Public Safety, Accountability and Individual Success The philosophy and vision for Salt Lake County s Criminal and Social Justice System is characterized by the following: Comprehensive A criminal and social justice system that is comprehensive in nature is a system that recognizes the various levels of risk to public safety that individual offenders present, the diverse treatment needs of those who commit criminal acts, and the need for a range of sanctions to hold offenders accountable. A comprehensive criminal and social justice system offers a wide variety of options to best accomplish its goal of a safe community. This system utilizes assessment and best practices to match programs, sanctions and treatment to the need of the individual offender to prevent the likelihood of re-offense once someone comes into contact with the system. Dynamic A dynamic criminal and social justice system is one in which individual offenders move through the system based on assessed need and level of risk to the community. A dynamic criminal justice system also utilizes data and research to make changes to the system and processes based on need and long-term effectiveness (measured by achievement of outcomes). 1 Operational Plan Diagram 3

4 Data-Enhanced It is critical to measure the effectiveness of the criminal and social justice system through research and data collection. The gathering of data will be used to inform decisions at various key points in the criminal justice process (i.e., screening and comprehensive need assessments), to assist in making recommendations to policymakers, and to measure program effectiveness and system efficiency. Balanced An effective criminal and social justice system in Salt Lake County must maintain the critical balance between public safety, accountability, and individual success (i.e., balanced-approach ). There must be capacity in the system that allows key decision-makers (e.g., prosecutors, defense, courts) to divert individual offenders to programs or treatment when appropriate, to provide adequate supervision in the community when called for, and to incarcerate when necessary. An effective criminal and social justice system must also maintain balance and respect for the divergent roles and responsibilities of elected officials and the different branches of government. Defining the Offender Population 2 Understanding the history of the offender population allows policy makers to make better policy and resource decisions. The data below shows that, in general, the characteristics of the offender population remained fairly consistent from in terms of overall population, level of charges, types of crime and length of stay. During the latter part of 2007 and 2008, the percent of those with felony charges increased in proportion to the overall jail population. The number of book and releases has been increasing and is currently around 800 prisoners per month.. The total number of Salt Lake County inmates has remained steady for the last six years, hovering around This is probably due to multiple factors; including the maximum capacity of the Adult Detention Center and county policies such as the Jail Cap Management Plan that has affected patterns of incarceration. 2 All Data in this Defining the Offender Population are provided by the University of Utah Criminal Justice Center. Their data source is the Salt Lake County ADC. 4

5 Total Number of Salt Lake County Inmates ( ) Degree of Offense The relative percentages by degree remained fairly steady from 2001 to Felony Three offenders make up the largest group of jail inmates for this time period followed by Felony Two offenders. Misdemeanor A and Felony One have occupied the third place slot at various time, both varying between 10% and 15% of the total population. Misdemeanor B offenders have been reduced from a high of 22%, down to their current proportion of 9% of the inmate population. During 2007 and in 2008, the percent of those with felonies has increased from 64% in 2006 to approximately 73% in Salt Lake County Inmates by Degree ( ) 3 Percent With Degree as Most Serious Crime 40% 35% 30% 25% 20% 15% 10% 5% 0% MC MB MA F3 F2 F Degree 3 Degree is by most serious offense 5

6 Type of Offense In 2007, drug offenders surpassed property offenders as the most common category in the county jail population and have remained in the top category since that time. Offenders with a drug crime as their most severe charge now make up 27.7% of the Salt Lake County Jail population. Property offenders, formerly the most numerous category, now make up 26.6% of the Salt Lake County inmate population. Inmate Population by Category ( ) Length of Stay Overall, the average Length of Stay for all committed inmates in Salt Lake County has shown little systemic change over the last six years, although there has been some variation within that time. The minimum monthly average for releases was 49 Days in May of 2002, and the highest was 81 Days in January of As expected, length of stay by degree, for most months reported, was ordered with Felony One releases serving the most time and Misdemeanor C the least. 4 4 It should be noted that the average length of stay among the jail population has also been influenced by Overcrowded Releases and Early Commitment Releases over the past couple of years. Individuals who, in the past, would have spent some time in jail while waiting to bail out or waiting for arraignment are being released within hours of their booking, and sentenced inmates have been released early from commitments due to overcrowding pressures. 6

7 Average Length of Stay for Releases by Month (only for commitments) For August, 2008 Releases, the average length of stay was: All Commitments: 68 Days Felony One Commitments: 145 Days Felony Two Commitments: 108 Days Felony Three Commitments: 91 Days Misdemeanor A Commitments: 70 Days Misdemeanor B Commitments: 21 Days Misdemeanor C Commitments: 3 Days 5 Prior Bookings Overall, 37% (or 6,369 offenders) of offenders had no prior bookings for any offense since 2002; 16% had only one prior booking. Approximately 10% had two prior offenses. Percent of Offenders With Prior Bookings (2008) N = 17,179 50% % of Offenders 40% 30% 20% 10% 0% # of Prior Bookings While the chart above shows low percentages of inmates actually return to jail more than five times, there are those who return numerous times. The data show 706 offenders had between prior bookings; 291 had between 16 and 30 bookings; and 62 had more 5 This category and Felony One vary a lot due to small numbers. Misdemeanor C varied from a high average of 78 days to a low average of 3 days. 7

8 than 30 bookings since These offenders are what we call the frequent flyers who use a large portion of the criminal justice system resources. The frequent flyers are often homeless and have severe mental illness and/or substance abuse issues. The County has begun programming for these individuals (e.g., JDOT) with successful outcomes. What Works with Offenders? The Research Reducing long-term recidivism rates is key to improving public safety in our communities lower recidivism rates mean that fewer people are committing additional crimes. Lower recidivism rates also indicate that people are more accountable for their own behavior and generally more successful in the community. A large number of studies have been conducted on the most effective options for reducing recidivism or the number of arrests for new offenses. The general finding is that while incarceration achieves certain goals (e.g., taking criminals off the streets), it is not effective at reducing recidivism. This means that to significantly impact recidivism, particularly among the frequent flyer population, jail must be accompanied with additional programming. Offenders who do not receive programming are more likely to re-offend than those who receive additional services. The benefits of programming include both community-based and jail-based programs. The research also finds that longer sentences are not more effective than shorter jail stays in reducing recidivism. On the other hand, treatment has positive impacts on reducing recidivism. In fact, for mentally ill offenders and drug offenders, treatment results in much larger reductions in recidivism than time spent in jail. Recidivism Rates: The table below displays the recidivism rates for all inmates booked at the Salt Lake County jail (including those booked and released) for different types of crimes. These rates reflect those who have at least one new charge and do not reflect those coming back in the system for old warrants, etc. Population-- All Booked in the Jail 1 Year Recidivism Rate for New Charges 3 Year Recidivism Rates for New Charges Person Crimes 23% 38% Property Crimes 27% 43% Drug Offenders 25% 42% For the three most numerous categories (person, property and drug offenders), the 12 month recidivism rates are relatively low (all around 25%). It is important to note some vital characteristics of this population: first, drug offenders do not have drastically worse 8

9 recidivism rates from person offenders and they have lower rates than property offenders. Second, for this cohort, almost half of the recidivism occurs after the one year mark. 3 Year Survival (% Releases with no new charge bookings) 6 Person, Property, Drug Offenders If we look at only those who are committed to the jail, the recidivism rates go up somewhat, particularly for those committing property crimes. Population Committed Offenders 1 Year Recidivism Rate for New Charges 3 Year Recidivism Rates for New Charges Person Crimes 23% 45% Property Crimes 34% 50% Drug Offenders 25% 42% 6 This survival curve is from the cohort of all booked individual between 1/1/2002 and 1/1/2003. Later 12 month rates in this report are for a later cohort. 9

10 Programs that Reduce Recidivism Different programs are effective for different populations in reducing recidivism. For example, for the general offender population, cognitive behavioral therapy is most effective while for substance abusers, community-based treatment is most effective. Reviewing the recidivism statistics, we find that those who can be successful in the community on their own are less likely to come back into the criminal justice system and are less likely to be those needing programming and treatment. It is the high-risk individuals that need additional services. Therefore it is important that programming provided within the criminal and social justice system focus on and serve those who are at the greatest risk of homelessness, mental illness, and substance abuse. Research indicates that it is important to match the intensity of services to the individual. For example, high risk offenders need to receive more services and more intense services. Recidivism can actually increase when low risk offenders receive more intense services (Andrews, Bonta, & Hoge, 1990). Also, treatment must focus on criminogenic needs and target domains where the individual has demonstrated higher risk. Finally, treatment should take into account the abilities and learning styles of the individual. This includes providing culturally appropriate services, services that take into account the cognitive ability of the individual and the practical limitations of the individual (i.e., the ability of the individual to pay for or be transported to services) The information below around program effectiveness comes from a number of evaluation sources including meta analysis from a Washington State study, literature reviews, program evaluations, and data analysis from the University of Utah, Utah Criminal Justice Center. General Offender Population For the general offender population, cognitive behavioral programs have been shown to be both very effective and very cost-effective, resulting in both high victim and taxpayer savings. Other cost effective programs for general offender populations include basic education and life skills programs (Byrnes, Fowles, & Hickert, 2006). Reasoning and Rehabilitation is a program that has come into wide use in the United States and the UK, and there are many studies showing its effectiveness (Hollin & Palmer, 2006). 10

11 The table below outlines the effectiveness of different programs for the general offender population. 7 Program Reduction in Recidivism for Participants Total Cost Savings per Individual Other Cognitive Behavioral 25% $14,247 Therapy Basic Education 24% $12,307 Life Skills Program 20% $11,064 Reasoning and 22% $12,742 Rehabilitation HARP (Housing First) 18% $6,852 Homeless Assistance Rental Program (Housing First Model) HARP reductions in new Charge Bookings: 18% Cost Savings per HARP participant $6,852 Housing First is often defined as an intervention in which housing resources are provided with no requirements or contingencies (e.g., abstinence or employment). Three studies specifically examined the efficacy of Housing First interventions. Housing First is generally seen as effective in improving housing outcomes, but has a more limited impact on additional measures of interest (e.g., substance abuse, psychiatric ratings, employment, quality of life, etc.). Studies indicate that in treating homelessness that coexists with mental illness and substance abuse, Supportive Housing tends to improve some housing variables as well as a few other variables (e.g., abstinence measures, housing quality, psychiatric rating scales, stressful life events, etc.) when compared with no treatment, case management only, or even abstinent-contingent conditions. However, many of the studies reported mixed results, with the Supportive Housing interventions failing to provide improvements on all measures of interest. The current literature on Supportive Housing and Housing First interventions aimed at addressing homelessness and related concerns reflect the difficulty of working with this population. A closer examination of these efforts suggest, though, that Supportive Housing and Housing First models can be effective in making progress with homeless clients experiencing mental illness and substance abuse when they are appropriately matched to the needs of the clientele. 8 7 Data from The Cost of Crime. A Cost/Benefit Tool for Analyzing Utah Criminal Justice Program Effectiveness (Fowles, Byrnes, & Hickert, University of Utah). 8 Housing Assistance Literature Review all from (Van Vleet R., Hickert, Becker, Fowles, & Kunz, 2007). 11

12 Day Reporting Center 9 (DRC) Research regarding the effectiveness of DRCs in reducing recidivism has found mixed results. In addition to the possibility of reducing recidivism, a number of studies have found DRCs to be, at the very least, a less expensive alternative to incarceration (Craddock, 2004; Parent, Byrne, Tsarfaty, Valade, & Esselman, 1995) and an effective method of relieving jail overcrowding. The Utah Criminal Justice Center evaluation of the Salt Lake County Day Reporting Center found the following: Of those clients who reported to the DRC, half (51%) successfully discharged from the program. Clients were less likely to successfully discharge if they had a property or drug offense on the booking that resulted in the DRC placement, delayed reporting to the DRC after being released from the jail, and if they were released from the jail on an overcrowding release (OCR). Although nearly half of DRC participants had a new jail booking, only 37.9% of those had a new charge at the time of that booking. Therefore, fewer than one in five (18.3%) DRC participants had a new charge that resulted in a jail booking after entering the DRC. Factors associated with increased odds of having a new jail booking were: having a drug or property offense at the booking resulting in the DRC placement and having a more severe degree of offense at that booking. Contacts between clients and their case managers lowered the odds of a future jail booking by almost half. Probation and Offender Reentry There is evidence that halfway houses, pre-release education, and drug treatment aftercare in the community all increase the odds of the released offender s success in the community (Seiter & Kadela, 2003). Specifically, for drug offenders, research suggests a transition through community programs like outpatient drug treatment or therapeutic communities (Belenko, 2006). In terms of comprehensive programs for re-entry, there are no definitively effective programs. There is a growing sense that the programs for re-entry should target the type of offender and specific domains of an offender s functioning. Re-entry should focus on providing housing, employment or job training, education and, when applicable, drug treatment or mental health case management (Travis & Petersilia, 2001). Substance Abusers Substance abuse and criminal activity have long been identified as interconnected problems that are symptoms of broader deviant thinking and behavior patterns (De Li, Priu, & MacKenzie, 2000). An early study found that 83% of prisoners reported having 9 Literature Review and text from day reporting center all quoted from (Van Vleet, Hickert, & Becker, Evaluation of Salt Lake County day reporting center, 2006). 12

13 used illicit drugs at least once prior to incarceration (Bureau of Justice Statistics, 1999). Furthermore, research has shown that the frequency and severity of offending escalate as drug use increases (Belenko, 2002; Harrell, 2001; Inciardi & Martin, 1997; Inciardi, Martin & Butzin, 2004). Although this relationship does not necessarily indicate that substance use triggers criminal careers, substance abuse has been proven to intensify and sustain criminal activity (Inciardi et al., 2004). This clear demonstration of the connection between substance abuse and crime has led to over three decades of large-scale criminal justice efforts seeking effective communitybased alternatives for reducing drug use among offenders (Belenko, 2002). Following the implementation of prison-based therapeutic communities (TC s, which soared in the 1960s and 1970s but later dissipated due to prison overcrowding and cut budgets) came the drug court movement. While drug courts continue to rapidly expand, the need to decrease costs associated with treatment further led to the development of other alternatives. The table below outlines the effectiveness of different programs for the substance abusing population (based on national analysis of programs). Therapeutic communities (residential treatment) outside the jail are the most effective option in reducing recidivism, followed by Therapeutic Communities in the jail as long as there is follow-up care in the community. Without the follow-up care, these programs have little impact on recidivism. Program Non-jail therapeutic community Adult Incarcerated Therapeutic Community with Community Aftercare (CATS) Reduction in Recidivism Total Cost Savings per for Participants 10 Individual 11 32% $16,968 23% $10, 585 Without Community Aftercare 4% $ 88 Adult Drug Courts 19% $8,006 Adult In-prison community 12% $5,880 based treatment (DOGS) Adult community-based 15% $7, 362 outpatient SA treatment 10 The percentage of reduction in recidivism is based on those who would have returned to jail. For instance, the one year recidivism rate for the overall jail population is 25%. The percentages in the table are a reduction based on the 25% who would have returned. 11 Data from The Cost of Crime. A Cost/Benefit Tool for Analyzing Utah Criminal Justice Program Effectiveness (Fowles, Byrnes, & Hickert, University of Utah). 13

14 The following sections outline the effectiveness of Utah s programs. Drug Courts Average Percent Reduction in Recidivism: 18% Average Cost Savings per Individual Treated: $8,005 Drug courts have been shown both to reduce recidivism and result in a cost savings to the community and criminal justice system (Byrnes, Fowles, & Hickert, 2006). Researchers think that this program is effective because it can administer rewards and sanctions in a more immediate and certain manner than traditional courts, while increasing the likelihood of maintaining pro-social bonds to society (Marlowe, 2002). Specifically, the drug court in Salt Lake County has shown drastic reductions in recidivism (Salt Lake County Drug Court outcome evaluation, 2001). In addition to reducing recidivism, drug courts have also been shown to result in increased participant employment (Peters & Murrin, 2000). Substance Abuse Residential Treatment and CATS Average Percent Reduction in Recidivism: 22.8% (assuming community aftercare) Average Cost Savings per Individual Treated: $10,585 Residential treatment and therapeutic communities have been shown to be, on average, programs that significantly reduce recidivism. (Byrnes, Fowles, & Hickert, 2006) (Aos, Miller, & Drake, 2006). In-jail treatment has been shown to be more effective when paired with community aftercare (Byrnes, Fowles, & Hickert, 2006). Substance abuse residential treatment is one of the best validated, effective treatments for criminal offenders (Hollin & Palmer, 2006). Driving Under the Influence of Alcohol/Drugs (DUI) SLCo Jail Inmates incarcerated with a DUI as their Most Severe Crime: 5.7% 12 Month Recidivism for All Booked DUI Offenders: 11% 12 Month Recidivism for All Committed DUI Offenders: 10% Recent research has shown positive effects of short jail stays with a treatment component in reducing recidivism for DUI offenders (Kunitz, Woodall, Zhao, Wheeler, Lillis, & Rogers, 2002). Drug Offender Reform Act (DORA) and County Offender Reform Act (CORA) Utah has not yet evaluated DORA or CORA. However, there is much to learn from Proposition 200, a law in Arizona that mandated diversion, and emphasized treatment for single conviction drug offenders. It requires treatment and or counseling with the threat of sanctions for non-compliance. For a first conviction, incarceration in forbidden, for a second offense, prison is not an option, but for later crimes both are possible sentences. Proposition 200 has several similarities to DORA and CORA in that its emphasis is on identifying, assessing, and diverting nonviolent offenders to drug treatment. Preliminary data from the first year of operation is promising. Specifically, out of 932 probationers 14

15 treated in 15 counties, 61.1% successfully completed the treatment program they were diverted to (one county had a successful completion rate of 92.9%). This is a positive number of completers considering the rigor of the program. In regard to substance abuse measures, data from one year following treatment initiation indicated that 76.3% of urinalyses (UAs) were negative (UA s were taken as a condition of probation). This suggests that the majority of offenders diverted to treatment were drug free for a substantial period of drug treatment. Preliminary cost effectiveness data has also been assessed for the 551 offenders diverted from prison in the first year of Proposition 200. When accounting for projected costs associated with prison terms ($5,053,014), probation ($306,399) and Proposition 200 expenditures ($2,183,553), it was estimated that Proposition 200 provided a fiscal year savings of approximately $2,563,062. While all data from these Proposition 200 studies are preliminary, it does suggest that substance abusing offenders can be diverted, treated and rehabilitated outside of prison or jail at lower costs (Arizona Supreme Court, 1999). Receiving Centers There is relatively little research on the concept of receiving centers in the criminal justice system, but the studies that have been done suggest that these centers act as an efficient means for delivering services to substance abusers and mentally ill offenders. A pilot receiving center for criminal offenders in Orange County, Florida was designed to aid in the diversion of offenders requiring mental health services and substance abuse treatment. The program was designed to hold offenders for 24 hours, but found that this goal was often difficult and only met the 24 hour mark 47% of the time. Additionally, the program had trouble limiting their population to diverted offenders. The report concluded that the program could function to effectively divert mentally ill offenders if 1) longer term community beds were made available for the participants at discharge and 2) they could limit their participants to those who would otherwise end up in the jail population (Martin, Myers, Nelson, Philips, & Smith, 2003). A receiving center in Maryland for mentally ill offenders that received its population post-booking, reported that this new system reduced system cycling for these individuals and reduced the use of traditional criminal justice resources (Conly, 1999). The evaluation was not quantitative, but it concluded that the center provided an efficient means for directing services for individual who are better served in treatment than in the traditional criminal justice system. Salt Lake County is currently operating a 5-bed Pilot Receiving Center. According to the Salt Lake City Police Department, 87% of its 1,130 admissions would have been booked into the jail without the Receiving Center option. Mentally Ill Offenders 15

16 Offenders with mental illness represent 31% of the inmate population in Utah, which is six times greater than the rate of mental illness in the community. 7% of offenders have a debilitating mental illness. Nearly 90% of the offenders with mental illness also have a co-occurring substance abuse issue. Offenders with mental illness generally return to jail twice as quickly as the general offender population. Leaving this large group of inmates untreated represents a large cost based on this rapid time to return to Utah prisons and jails. For the mentally ill, it is important to focus on the type of program and how it is implemented. Some jail diversion programs have had dramatic success, reporting up to 72% fewer days in jail for diverted offenders while others have little impact.(hoff, Baranosky, Buchanan, Zonana, & Rosenheck, 1999). Mental Health Court The evaluation of the Salt Lake County Mental Health Court found very positive effects on increasing access to treatment and reducing recidivism in offenders with mental illness: Treatment access was significantly improved for Mental Health Court (MHC) participants compared to tradition court subjects MHC participants had drastic reductions in new change bookings (47% reduction from year prior to year after participation) (Van Vleet R., Hickert, Becker, & Kunz, 2008). Case Management for Mentally Ill Several studies have found a significant reduction in recidivism through community case management approaches to treating mentally ill offenders (Ventura, Cassel, Jacoby, & Huang, 1998). Ventura et. al., found a 22% reduction in recidivism for offenders treatment with this approach. Jail Diversion Outreach Team (JDOT) Early statistics from the JDOT program tell the story of success. Clients, prior to participating in JDOT, had an average of 25 bookings per client and 813 days served in jail. Between September, 2007 and March 2008, there were a total of 3 bookings and a total of 48 days served in jail, none on new charges. The Criminal Justice System as it Currently Exists in Salt Lake County The current criminal justice system in Salt Lake County involves many partners, processes, and programs to hold offenders accountable while providing skills and treatment to allow them to be successful in the community while ensuring public safety. Criminal Justice Advisory Council (CJAC) 16

17 The core purpose of the Criminal Justice Advisory Council is to act as a policy recommending body for Salt Lake County to guide decisions regarding the criminal justice system. CJAC utilizes data collection, research and dialogue among its strategic partners to inform and make recommendations to key policy-makers. CJAC Partners The Criminal Justice Advisory Council is comprised of the key decision-makers in Salt Lake County s criminal and social justice system. It consists of the Salt Lake County Mayor, members of the County Council, the Sheriff, District Attorney, district and justice court judges, Salt Lake County s Department of Human Services, and other vital County staff. CJAC also includes state legislators, representatives from municipal government, local prosecutors and law enforcement, and other key partners such as the Legal Defenders Association. CJAC s strategic partners have unique roles and responsibilities in the criminal justice system. They come to the table with a focus and perspective that represents their office. For example; the Sheriff as Salt Lake County s top law enforcement official has main responsibility to manage the jail and to patrol our streets to ensure public safety. The District Attorney has the responsibility to hold those who commit criminal acts accountable for their behavior. The Department of Human Services seeks to give individuals the skills to succeed in life. And so forth. The strength of CJAC lies in bringing together the various parts of the criminal and social justice system, including elected officials and different branches of government, to collaborate and coordinate in the development of a comprehensive and systemic strategy to address criminal behavior in Salt Lake County. The coordination and collaboration among CJAC s partners has improved significantly in the past couple years, but there continues to be room for improvement. CJAC Responsibilities The Criminal Justice Advisory Council s purpose is to: Provide a mechanism for coordinating the functions of the various branches and levels of government concerned with criminal and social justice within Salt Lake County. Promote the coordination and communication of criminal and social justice agencies. Develop and promote broad philosophical agreement concerning the objectives of the criminal justice system. Coordinate countywide efforts to reduce crime and victimization. Identify and promote the implementation of specific policies and programs to reduce crime in Salt Lake County. Study, evaluate, and report on the status of crime in Salt Lake County and on the effectiveness of policies, procedures, and programs that are aimed toward the reduction of crime. 17

18 Promote and enhance information-sharing and timely communication between criminal and social justice partners. Improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of the criminal justice system Develop a comprehensive criminal and social justice plan. Salt Lake County Criminal and Social Justice System A Balanced Approach The current criminal and social justice system provides services at three different levels: 1. Pre-Incarceration Intervention or Diversion 2. Alternatives to Incarceration 3. Incarceration Pre-Incarceration Intervention/Diversion Services Pre-Incarceration Intervention/Diversion services are programs in the criminal and social justice system that divert an individual into a community treatment program in lieu of being admitted into jail. This includes individuals booked and released into a service in the community and those that bypass the jail altogether (e.g., law enforcement taking a mentally ill individual to a hospital). There are currently few services in Salt Lake County that directly divert people who commit crimes from the Adult Detention Center to services in the community. While there has been discussion and some planning to further develop processes, assessments, and resources to allow this to occur on a greater scale, there is still much to be done. The list below outlines what is currently available for adults who commit offenses and are assessed as appropriate for a direct path to services in the community: CIT (Crisis Intervention Team) Officers: Local law enforcement officers who are trained to identify and address mental health issues in the community often leading to a de-escalation of the incident, admission into a hospital, or a direct link to community-based mental health services (e.g., JDOT). 12 Pre-trial Services: All persons who are taken to the jail are screened by Pre-trial Services to determine if they are eligible for release either to Pre-trial Services or on their own recognizance. If they are determined appropriate for Pre-trial Services, they receive a non-financial release from jail and supervision. Upon release from jail, staff members monitor defendants compliance with courtordered conditions of release and court attendance. Staff also makes referrals to 12 It should be noted that the Sheriff s Office is in the process of certifying all of their corrections officers in CIT to assist in the management of mentally ill offenders in the jail. Current Mental Health Officers are already certified. 18

19 various educational and treatment agencies within Criminal Justice Services and the community. Day Reporting Center (DRC): The Day Reporting Center is typically utilized as an Alternative to Incarceration for offenders who are court ordered to the DRC in lieu of being sentenced to jail (i.e., Alternative to Incarceration); however, the DRC also receives individuals released from the jail due to overcrowding (OCR). These individuals receive similar services as those in Pre-trial Services. County Offender Reform Act (CORA): The CORA program is also primarily an Alternative to Incarceration at the time of sentencing; however, approximately one-quarter of those in substance abuse treatment through CORA were courtordered by a judge or referred from Pre-trial Services. Receiving Center Pilot: This pilot designates 5 beds at the Volunteers of America (VOA) detoxification center as the behavioral health receiving center. Persons who are identified by Salt Lake City Police for public intox, substance-influenced behavior, or co-occurring behavioral health disturbances are taken to the center in lieu of the jail when public safety concerns allow. The VOA provides a van to transport individuals to the center. Persons diverted are assessed for substance abuse disorders, mental health disorders, and co-occurring conditions. These individuals have access to appropriate community treatment upon request. Salt Lake City Police reported that 87% of the 1,130 admissions since the pilot began in February would have been booked into jail without the Receiving Center as an option. Program Avg. Served Monthly Pre-Trial Services 1,306 Day Reporting Center 225 CORA 86 new admissions Receiving Center Detoxification Clients 152 Community Alternatives to Incarceration While there are currently few pathways to divert directly to community treatment in lieu of the jail, there are a number of programs that seek to reduce time spent in the jail at the time of sentencing. These alternatives to incarceration typically target non-violent offenders for whom substance abuse and/or mental illness is identified as a primary factor in their criminal behavior, and offenders who do not present a significant risk to the community and would benefit through direct supervision and program referrals. These alternatives also provide a tool for judges to hold offenders accountable while sentencing them to a course of action that will reduce their likelihood of returning to jail. A significant body of research, both nationally and locally, shows that community-based substance abuse and mental health treatment are very effective in providing skills 19

20 necessary to live successfully in the community thereby reducing the number/percent of persons who return to jail in the future. The primary objectives of community alternative programs are to: Connect the target population with community resources such as housing, substance abuse and/or mental health treatment, employment, and educational resources to promote success in the community. Supervise and assist those released to the community to encourage participation in identified programs to reduce the likelihood of return to incarceration. Reduce the crimes committed (in number and severity). The community-based programs include: Probation: Probation is available through Salt Lake County Criminal Justice Services for misdemeanor crimes. (The State s Adult Probation and Parole provides supervision and services for felony crimes). Probation Services provides an opportunity for offenders to live in the community with appropriate supervision. Offenders are required to check in on a regular basis and have access to drug and alcohol education, substance abuse treatment, mental health treatment, and other services. Those sentenced to Probation also address the impact of their crime on the victim and community. Day Reporting Center (DRC): Many of the individuals at the DRC are court ordered to the Day Reporting Center instead of being sentence to the jail. Offenders are ordered to the DRC for up to 90 days with the possibility of one 30- day extension as recommended by the court. While at the DRC, the offenders are closely monitored through daily in-person reporting, and receive the following services: life skills classes, job skills counseling and job placement assistance. Each client has an Individualized Service Plan that identifies specific areas of need (e.g., substance abuse treatment) and directs the person to the programs and interventions based on this assessment. County Offender Reform Act (CORA): The CORA program provides community-based substance abuse treatment for prisoners who can be safely released from the ADC and who are in need of substance abuse treatment services. An independent substance abuse assessor, located at the jail, assesses individuals to determine the level of treatment needed. Prisoners released through the CORA program have access to Residential, Intensive Outpatient, and Outpatient services. Due to the severity of the treatment need and lack of appropriate housing, most offenders are placed in residential treatment. Mental Health Services: Prisoners assessed with a severe mental illness can be connected to community-based treatment through either of two processes--the Mental Health Release program and the Valley Mental Health (VMH) Inreach Program. Through the Mental Health Release program, persons with severe mental illness who are determined eligible for release through the Pre-trial 20

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