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View Full Version : "Scared Straight" Programs


wisco
04-03-10, 04:36 PM
Have any of you ever been involved in one of these? Do you think they are effective?


JeffW
04-03-10, 06:46 PM
I don't think they work at all. The kids that I see coming through our juvenile arrest process are usually laughing and think that it is cool. It gives them status. Of course it does not help much that almost all juvenile offenders even those charged with felonies, get probation and suspended sentences.

wisco
04-03-10, 07:48 PM
Of course it does not help much that almost all juvenile offenders even those charged with felonies, get probation and suspended sentences.

I hear you there. It really amazes me the "slaps on the wrist" that are handed out.

At the same time I don't think the system appropriately handles juveniles in many instances. I think the scared straight idea is a good concept, but I've never heard any fantastic success stories about it. And other times, I think that felonies are handed out much too nonchalantly.


retdetsgt
04-03-10, 08:12 PM
They make for good television, that's about it.

One of the best juvenile programs I ever saw was when I visited a juvenile facility in Gatesville, Texas. Kids come there and are put in regular lockdown until they say they are willing to participate in the program. The program is confronting the kids and taking them back to when they were victims (and nearly all were) and talking about that. Then they move to the part where they start victimizing. After release, they are sent to halfway houses not in the towns they come from.

Their recidivism rate was less than 30% which is phenomenal. I have no idea if it's still operating. Since it was working, probably not.....

I'm a believer in the theory that delinquents are made, not born. Every so often a criminal comes out of a good home, etc., but not usually. They are generally the product of abusive environments. Trying to abuse them more by subjecting them to adult asswipes doesn't impress them a bit. They're use to being yelled at and mistreated.

Safety Steve
04-03-10, 09:42 PM
[QUOTE=retdetsgt;1084555]They make for good television, that's about it.

Their recidivism rate was less than 30% which is phenomenal. I have no idea if it's still operating. Since it was working, probably not.....


Ding, ding, ding, we have a winner! If they do have the program, it is not in Gatesville any longer. They turned all those old facilities along with some new ones they built into prisons for women (no air conditioning, ha). All women sentenced to TDCJ in TX are sent there. Some units house 300 women and some house up to 1600 women. Even the women on death row are housed in Gatesville.

Now for the dig! I think Greggles could even find a date in Gatesville! :thumbsup:

Be Safe.

retdetsgt
04-04-10, 09:53 AM
I'm not surprised, really. It looked expensive to operate and politicians look at money being spent right now, not down the road with these kids.

Our juvenile facilities are nothing but training grounds for more hardened future criminals.

CACBAND
04-05-10, 09:33 PM
I've been through a program called "COYA," it stands for Concerned Offenders for Youth Awareness. It was a great program, went twice for that matter.

It is for the most part offender run, about 6 in total per program would be with our group. You come in and they yell at you for a minute, than you do a prision tour which ends in Seg and a outside cell were the officers talk to you. From that point we went back inside to a room were the offenders told their stories and what they'd done wrong in life (along with Q&A). After that we got to eat with them, and talk to them at the tables.

And before anyone asks, it was part of my "law related education" class in high school.

ChevySSP
04-05-10, 09:59 PM
THe problem with our CJ system is that the bad guys know damn well that the scariest thing that will happen to them is the death sentence...and even then there are ways around it.

If you ask me, take out the TVs and the Gatorade, bring back the chain gangs and make the prisoners earn their keep. A little hard work never hurt anybody, and quite frankly more people probably would wish to stay out of jail if they knew they'd get their arse's worked off.

Adrenolize
04-05-10, 10:29 PM
Just say it....put Sheriff Joe to work in West Texas. He may be a publicity hound, but the guy has people even in NC afraid to go down there!

MountainMan
04-06-10, 09:44 PM
We used to have a program called jail jolt. It was fairly effective. Until friggin attorneys got every program like it shut down. Because juveniles and adult offenders are required to have sight and sound seperation. An attorney argued that even voluntary enrollment was a violation Grrrrrrrrrrrr.:cuss: