Marquette Law School Professor Michael O’Hear, author of Wisconsin Sentencing in the Tough-on-Crime Era: How Judges Retained Power and Why Mass Incarceration Happened Anyway
Professor O’Hear is a nationally recognized authority on criminal punishment, an editor of the Federal Sentencing Reporter, and the author of more than 60 scholarly articles, books, and book chapters on sentencing, criminal procedure, and other legal topics. His new book, Wisconsin Sentencing in the Tough-on-Crime Era, is scheduled for release January 17, and examines the explosion in the state’s prison population. Since the 1970s, Wisconsin’s sentencing system has become unusually judge-dominated. Over the same time period, Wisconsin’s prison population has risen dramatically (from just over 2,000 inmates in 1973 to more than 22,000 today), even by comparison to national norms during the era of “mass incarceration.” O’Hear’s book recounts the history of these two important developments and considers how they might be connected.