The Anatomy of Discretion (Podcast 1 of 4) Interview with Don Stemen

This is the first in a four-part series discussing findings from The Anatomy of Discretion, a Vera Institute study of factors that influence prosecutors’ decisions in criminal cases. In this part, Professor Don Stemen talks with Vera Director Michael Jacobson about the study’s main findings. Stemen is author of numerous works on sentencing and corrections policies, sentencing guidelines, mandatory treatment for drug offenders, and racial disparities in prosecution and sentencing. In other podcasts in this series, a prosecutor discusses the effects of resource constraints; a federal judge discusses the balance between individualized treatment of defendants and consistency in decision making across similar cases; and a law professor discusses the balance between strength of evidence and other considerations.