This study, the first comprehensive, statewide evaluation of Connecticut's alternative to incarceration programs, provides information about the outcomes of pretrial and sentenced clients.
The study was conducted in two phases. Phase One, completed in August 1993, involved an evaluation of pretrial alternative to incarceration programs and compared defendants in the community on conditional release with a comparison group of defendants without conditions as part of their release status. It was determined defendants released with conditions posed less risk to the community of new arrests and failure to appear in court than defendants who were ordered to post bond without additional conditions. Phase Two evaluated offenders sentenced to alternative incarceration programs, compared to similar offenders sentenced to incarceration and those receiving sentences that combined incarceration and community programming. Offenders sentenced to community programs generally posed less risk to public safety, as measured by new arrests over time, than a comparison sample of offenders who were released after having been incarcerated. In addition, offenders who are typically the source of greatest concern to the public and to policymakers--those convicted of drug or violent crimes--did better having 3 years than other types of offenders under community supervision. Further information on characteristics of sentenced offenders and releases and community interviews are appended. Tables and figures