To improve the discussion around pre-trial risk assessments used at bail, Keith Porcaro and I developed Detain/Release, a simulation. This tool puts the user in the role of a county judge at a bail hearing, and prompts them to detain or release individual defendants pending trial. In the simulation, users are served cases that look like the graphic above. The sim also has a dashboard that collects real-time data, including a statistical view, which breaks down the actions of all participants in the classroom.
We wrote a more in-depth article about how we built the tool and use it in class or trainings. While originally meant for students in our Georgetown Law course, the tool is now in open beta and has gained interest from policy organizations, judges, defenders and other universities looking to improve how they talk about risk assessments. If you take it for a spin, let us know what you think by clicking the email button below.