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Discretionary JusticePardon and Parole in New York from the Revolution to the Depression$
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Carolyn Strange

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781479899920

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479899920.001.0001

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Epilogue Mercy, Parole, and the Failed Search for Penal Certainty

Epilogue Mercy, Parole, and the Failed Search for Penal Certainty

(p.207) Epilogue Mercy, Parole, and the Failed Search for Penal Certainty
Discretionary Justice

Carolyn Strange

NYU Press

By the Depression, New York had earned a reputation for being the state with the most sophisticated parole system, run according to up-to-date standards of case management, although never up to the standards set by actuarial criminologists. Governors’ involvement in discretionary justice narrowed by the 1930s to the consideration of capital cases, a “lonely business,” according to one office holder. This chapter underlines that even after the state abolished the death penalty it never did away with the prerogative of mercy, an attribute of gubernatorial power as relevant today as it was during the Revolution.

Keywords:   parole, criminology, discretion, mercy, justice, Depression, New York

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