Is sentencing different if I’m Black?

4. Give the judge information about things other than your race or culture

Information about your race and cultural background is only one type of information that the judge thinks about to decide your .

The judge must also think about how serious the crime is. To do this, the judge thinks about how your crime affected other people. For example, an is more serious if the victim gets badly injured. Your sentence should be higher than if the victim was not injured.

It's a good idea to learn about the other types of information that the judge thinks about to decide your sentence. For example, you can give information about:

  • your personal background, including where you were born, your education, work history, and family
  • things you're doing to improve your behaviour, like an anger management course or addiction counselling
  • how a criminal record would negatively affect you, for example, not being able to cross the border if your job involves travel
  • what you've done to repair the damage or hurt you caused, like writing an apology letter or replacing a stolen item

It's also a good idea to think about what type of sentence you think is fair in your case. A lawyer can help you figure this out.

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