Scared Straight

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  • A documentary was released in 1978 that depicted a group of juvenile delinquents being brought in front of a group of life-sentenced adult inmates at Rahway State Prison (now East Jersey State Prison), who yelled, screamed, and otherwise terrorized the youths so as to demonstrate that prison was not a place they would want to be. The goal was to demon strate that prison life was not glamorous or exciting. While most of the youth in the original group were scared into following a law-abiding lifestyle, later research found that scared-straight programs actually lead to increased offending.

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