In the survey, 52 percent of victims said that prison makes people more likely to commit crimes again. Only 19 percent said that prison helps rehabilitate people into better citizens. This skepticism of prisons is in line with most social science research, which has generally shown that mass incarceration causes more crime than it prevents, that institutionalizing young offenders makes them more likely to commit crime as adults, and that spending time in prison teaches people how to be better criminals.According to the survey, one in four people have been victims of crime in the last ten years, with half of those having been victim of violent crime. Crime victims are more likely to be young, poor, and minorities, and once victimized, a person is four times as likely to be victimized again.
Further, "Six in 10 victims prefer shorter prison sentences and more spending on prevention and rehabilitation to prison sentences that keep people in prison for as long as possible." Notably, "For every victim who prefers the criminal justice system focus on punishment there are two victims who prefer it focus on rehabilitation."
Grits wanted to flag this work for future reference. It contains lots of useful corrections to common misrepresentations by the tuff-on-crime crowd about what's best for victims, their views on punishment, and what they need to be made whole.