Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Sociology

Content Description

1 online resource (vi, 138 pages) : illustrations (some color)

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Steven F Messner

Committee Members

Glenn Deane, Joanne M Kaufman, Alissa Worden


Implicit Bias, Phenotype, Race/Ethnicity, Sentencing, Sex Offending, Discrimination in criminal justice administration, Sex offenders, Sentences (Criminal procedure)

Subject Categories

Criminology | Sociology


The role of offender race/ethnicity and potential bias in criminal case outcomes is a popular topic both culturally and academically. Although a common research subject, the existing literature remains inconsistent and limited when focusing on sex offender sentencing outcomes. This dissertation uses data collected from the New York State public sex offender registry on white, black, and Hispanic males to examine the effect of offender racial/ethnic phenotype on two sentencing outcomes: sentence type and sentence length. Offender phenotype is measured through three facial features: nose width, lip fullness, and eye shape. These facial features were chosen from existing literature, however, I extend current methodological approaches by using a pre-trained machine learning algorithm to locate facial coordinates on images and then calculate the Euclidean distance between these coordinates to quantify facial features removed from human perception and bias.

Included in

Criminology Commons