Published online by Cambridge University Press: 20 November 2018
Grievances and restlessness among convicted prisoners led to legislation–in 1943 in Massachusetts, in 1957 in Connecticut–establishing sentence review boards composed of three judges of the trial courts of first instance. The authors explore in these two jurisdictions how often and under what circumstances sentences are appealed and modified and what effect, if any, these modifications have on the sentencing practice in the trial courts. They also appraise the value of the Connecticut requirement that the review board state the reasons for its decisions. The authors explore the function of the review boards in the broader context of the need for reducing sentence disparity.