The Impact of Probation and Parole Populations on Arrests in Four California Cities
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January 21, 2013

The Impact of Probation and Parole Populations on Arrests in Four California Cities

Council of State Governments Justice Center

On January 22, 2013 the Council of State Governments Justice Center released The Impact of Probation and Parole Populations on Arrests in Four California Cities. The unprecedented study answers one question that to date has been a matter of speculation among law enforcement and corrections officials everywhere: to what extent do people on parole and probation contribute to overall crime rates?

The Chiefs of the Los Angeles, Redlands, Sacramento, and San Francisco Police Departments commissioned the analysis in 2010. Collecting and analyzing the data required an extraordinary effort spanning 11 independent agencies, including four local police jurisdictions, county law enforcement and probation agencies, two county sheriffs' departments and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR). Researchers at the CSG Justice Center collected and matched more than 2.5 million arrest, parole, and probation records generated between January 1, 2008 and June 11, 2011.

Among the most notable findings in these four jurisdictions:

  • The majority of all adult felony and misdemeanor arrests were of people who were not currently under supervision. People under supervision accounted for only 22 percent of total arrests.
  • Whereas people under probation and parole supervision accounted for one out of every six arrests for violent crimes, they accounted for one out of every three drug arrests.
  • During a 3.5 year period in which total arrests fell by 18 percent, the number of arrests involving individuals under parole supervision declined by 61 percent and by 26 percent for individuals under probation supervision.

Geographic Focus North America / United States (Western) / California
North America / United States (Western) / California / Los Angeles County / Los Angeles
North America / United States (Western) / California / Sacramento County / Sacramento
North America / United States (Western) / California / San Bernardino County / Redlands

Issues Crime and Safety
Prison and Judicial Reform

Funders Fund for Nonviolence
Public Safety Performance Project of the Pew Center on the States
Public Welfare Foundation
Rosenberg Foundation