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Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014

Judge studies criminal concerns

Saturday, December 24, 2011

BENTON -- A local judge was among those tapped for ideas on saving the state money on prison costs while continuing to keep the public safe.

David A. Dolan, circuit judge for the 33rd Judicial Court, was one of four judicial branch appointees chosen for the Missouri Working Group on Sentencing and Corrections.

"It was primarily a budget study," Dolan said. "Missouri's budget for corrections has increased over the last few years -- it is one of the biggest items in the state budget. Part of this study was to see how we could try and rein in that number, try to get a better handle on the corrections budget."

The group, which met for just over a half dozen meetings since the summer culminating in them producing a consensus report released last week, was organized as part of the Pew Center on the State's Public Safety Performance Project.

"They assist states in research and trying to find answers to problems," Dolan said. "What we did was examine some of the other states that have experienced the same problems -- particularly neighboring states that might have similar Midwest values -- and look at some of the evidence-based solutions they put in place to address them."

The study found the number of people incarcerated in the Missouri Department of Corrections is going up even though the number of violent crimes committed is down.

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