Boot camp less effective than prison for gun offenders: study
Gun offenders sentenced to boot camp are more likely to be rearrested than those sent to prison, a new analysis suggests.
Boot camp is intended to reduce the chance of inmates committing new crimes after they are released. Inmates can learn job skills and obtain a GED in the military-style setting.
But an analysis conducted for Chicago Sun-Times showed a higher percentage of people convicted of gun possession in 2011 were rearrested after they completed boot camp than those released from prison.
About 57 percent of the inmates sentenced to county boot camp for gun possession were arrested for a new crime within a year of their release — compared with about 38 percent of those who were released from state prison.
Almost 8 percent of the boot camp inmates were arrested for a violent crime within a year of their release — compared with less than 5 percent of the inmates sent to prison, according to a University of Chicago Crime Lab analysis of Chicago Police Department arrest data.
The crime lab cautioned against drawing strong inferences from the data because of the small sample size. The analysis included 63 people sent to boot camp for gun possession and 464 sent to state prison for the same crime.
Maybe this whole hoopla over “boot camp” is because everyone assumes that since military boot camp turns 18-year old recruits who are already relatively disciplined into straight arrow military personnel, that it will turn 15-year old gang banger thug ghetto blacks into first world white people with dark skin.
John Maki, executive director of the John Howard Association, a prison watchdog group, said he is strongly opposed to boosting mandatory minimums for gun offenders.
“The overwhelming consensus on mandatory minimums is they don’t work,” he said. “The way you do this is through better policing.”
Law enforcement is a paper tiger without the credible possibility of real punishment. You can have the best policing in the world, but if you’re not actually going to punish anyone the cops who do the world’s best policing arrest, then you’ve wasted the world’s best policing.
This is over this bill circulating in the Illinois legislature that would plop a three year man min for certain categories of illegal gun possession. A lot of the opposition to it is coming from CCW advocates thinking that the bill is an attempt on the sly on the part of carry opponents to discourage carrying, in that if someone who carries commits a ticky tack technical offense, it’ll mean three years. I think there’s some truth to that. The problem is that Illinois state prisons are always facing overcrowding issues — Early in his time as Governor, Pat Quinn let a whole lot of prison inmates loose. Enact this law and the state prisons will be so filled to the gills with Chicago blacks and downstate blacks that the Federal courts will surely intervene.