Principles and procedures for sentencing of multiple current offenses

Richard S. Frase

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter


This chapter discusses the sentencing principles and procedures for multiple current offenses. It examines a seeming paradox: when multiple crimes are sentenced at one time or close together in time (simultaneous offenses), they are often sentenced much less harshly than when the same crimes are sentenced over a longer period of time (sequential offenses). Sequential offenses almost always receive penalties that are, in effect, fully cumulative (because all earlier sentences have already been entirely served), whereas simultaneous offenses typically receive less than fully cumulative penalties. The chapter first considers the diverse forms that multiple offending and the resulting criminal charges can take before highlighting several consistent differences between simultaneous and sequential offenses that justify presumptions in favor of more lenient treatment of simultaneous offenses cases. It also presents five proposals to make multiple-offense sentencing more principled and consistent.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationSentencing for Multiple Crimes
PublisherOxford University Press
Number of pages13
ISBN (Electronic)9780190607609
StatePublished - Jan 1 2017


  • Cumulative penalties
  • Multiple crimes
  • Multiple current offenses
  • Multiple offending
  • Multiple-offense sentencing
  • Sequential offenses
  • Simultaneous offenses


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