NY State Probation Incarceration Study

February 2013 | The Council of State Governments Justice Center and the New York Division of Criminal Justice Services

New York has a strong probation and ATI system.

  • Between 2002 and 2011, the percentage of adults on probation who were rearrested declined 31 percent.
  • New York has a robust community of ATIs, who have largely been successful in reaching and treating clients with a high risk of recidivism.

New York state and counties spend $280 million each year to supervise 117,000 probationers. When probationers fail on supervision, New York state and counties spend approximately $100 million on jail and prison costs.

  • More than one out of every six (17 percent) adults admitted to prison committed a crime or a condition violation while under probation supervision.
  • Approximately 6,100 probationers were resentenced to jail in 2011 because they committed a new crime or violated conditions of probation while under supervision.
  • In New York City, 80 percent of probationers successfully completed probation; probationers in the rest of the state had a 65 percent success rate.

New York statutes require probationers to be supervised longer than many other states:

  • Felony probation terms are fixed at 5 years in New York.
  • Other states typically give judges discretion to set terms between 2-5 years.
  • Misdemeanor probation terms are fixed at 3 years in most cases, 1 year in others.
  • Other states set terms of 6 months to 24 months.

Most probationers who will be rearrested do so during the first 6-12 months on supervision, limiting the value of the much longer supervision terms required by NY’s current statutes.

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