Beyond Conviction Rates: Measuring Success in Sexual Assault Prosecutions

Prosecutorial effectiveness is commonly measured by conviction rates, largely because they are readily available. But, are conviction rates an accurate measure of success? Experienced prosecutors know they won’t win every case. In fact, some would argue that if you aren’t losing any cases, you aren’t trying the right ones. This Strategies Newsletter discusses promising sexual assault prosecution strategies as well as ways of measuring effectiveness in ways that do not rely solely upon conviction rates. The article also offers other, more meaningful performance measures, and describes how they can be used to more accurately measure and sustain effective prosecution practices.