Do Looks Matter? Effects of Sex Offender Appearance on Sentencing
Researchers have conducted numerous studies and assessments regarding racial disparities in the criminal justice system. However, there is not much literature concerning the effects of physical appearance on sentencing. In the current study, the effects of race, facial hair, visible tattoos, visible scars, body mass index, and crime type on the sentencing of sex offenders was examined. The results indicate that crime type and physical factors such as visible tattoos and scars, do affect sentence severity. Limitations and further research possibilities are discussed.