Each month, the National District Attorneys Association publishes The Prosecutor magazine, the premiere publication for prosecutors around the country. This month’s edition features an article by State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle and Chief Assistant State Attorney Stephen Talpins. The duo partnered to inform the nation about, “21st Century Prosecutions —Miami-Style Smart Justice.”
The article reads: Historically, prosecutors and judges relied almost exclusively on punitive measures, most notably jail or prison sentences, to address and deter criminal activity. However, the traditional punitive approach to justice is unduly expensive, does not work as well as it should, and has unnecessary and devastating consequences for lower level offenders and their families. Thus, we do things differently in MiamiDade County, Florida. We distinguish between offenders who can be rehabilitated from those who present a real, present, and future danger to our society. We strive to rehabilitate those we can help, while incapacitating those who would do our community real harm despite our best efforts to assist them.
In 1989, we created the nation’s first drug court. Since that time, much has changed, though our approach to justice has not. While more and more district attorneys have begun to experiment with what some call “progressive” solutions, strategic remedial measures that reduce crime, improve lives, and save money are a matter of tradition in Miami-Dade County. Click here to access the complete article.