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Felony Defendants in Large Urban Counties, 1992

NCJ Number
Date Published
July 1995
51 pages
B A Reaves; P Z Smith
Publication Series
Data from the 1992 National Pretrial Reporting Program (NPRP) provide the following information on felony defendants in large urban counties: arrest charges, demographic characteristics, criminal history, pretrial release and detention, adjudication, and sentencing.
The NPRP uses a two-stage stratified sample, with 40 of the 75 most populous U.S. counties selected at the first stage and a systematic sample of State court felony filings (defendants) within each county selected at the second stage. Data on 13,206 sample felony cases were collected from the 40 sampled jurisdictions. Findings show that an estimated 55,513 felony cases were filed in the State courts of the Nation's 75 largest counties during May 1992. Approximately one-fourth of these felony defendants were charged with a violent offense, usually assault or robbery. Murder and rape defendants accounted for a small percentage of defendants. Sixty percent of the felony defendants charged as adults were under age 30; one-fifth were under age 21. Eight-five percent were male, with approximately half being African-American. Approximately three in eight defendants had an active criminal justice status at the time of the current charged offense. Two-thirds of all defendants had been previously arrested. Just over one-third were detained until their cases reached final disposition. Two-thirds of the cases adjudicated ended with a conviction. Overall, 71 percent of the defendants whose most serious conviction charge was a felony were sentenced to incarceration. Prison sentences were longest for those convicted of a violent felony, a median of 6 years and a mean of approximately 9 years. 38 tables and 17 figures

Date Created: December 17, 2009