Tuesday, June 10, 2008
The new courts sentence "frequent fliers" to treatment plans and social services, such as mental health and substance abuse treatment, instead of jail.
"It's the new frontier," says Amy Solomon, who studies criminal justice at The Urban Institute in Washington. "There is a new realization and recognition" that incarceration is not the best solution. "I think it'll grow and continue to pick up."
Lincoln (Neb.) Police Chief Tom Casady says that his list of people arrested more than 200 times each has grown from 17 in 2002 to 83. "The overall impact of the 'frequent flier' on the criminal justice system is great," Casady says. "If you can stop that trend in one way or another, there's a huge amount of money that can be conserved" — perhaps thousands of dollars in Lincoln alone. [Mark Godsey]