Law & Inequality
As of the fall of 1993, at least 15 states and the federal government had adopted or were in the process of adopting sentencing guidelines developed by an independent sentencing commission. 1 Minnesota pioneered this approach to sentencing reform in 1978. 2 Its guidelines have now been in effect for more than a decade, and they have been more extensively studied and evaluated than any other system. 3 In addition, many observers believe that the Minne sota Sentencing Guidelines remain one of the better-designed and successful systems of this type. 4 Ironically, the more-recently-enacted Federal Sentencing Guidelines may be the worst example, 5 and they have certainly received the most recent attention. 6 It thus seems appropriate to turn our attention away from the Federal Guidelines, for the moment, and consider how the original prototype is doing; all sentencing guidelines systems are not the same.
Richard Frase, The Uncertain Future of Sentencing Guidelines, 12 Law & Ineq. 1 (1993), available at http://scholarship.law.umn.edu/faculty_articles/458.