A Multiyear Statewide Analysis of Restitution Imposition in Pennsylvania

Gretchen Ruth, The Pennsylvania State University
R. Barry Ruback, The Pennsylvania State University
Jennifer N. Shaffer, The Pennsylvania State University

This study examined the effect of legal, extralegal, case processing, and contextual variables on the imposition of restitution. Data for the analyses which came from the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing, included more than 200,000 cases with identifiable victims decided during the years 1990-1994 and 1996-1998. Multivariate analysis indicated that offense severity, prior record, demographic characteristics, and trial type all significantly affected the imposition of restitution. Moreover, whether restitution was part of a sentence appeared to be influenced by county contextual variables, including political and social climate.

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Updated 05/20/2006