§706-672  Place of imprisonment.  When a person is sentenced to imprisonment, the court shall commit the person to the custody of the department of public safety for the term of the person's sentence and until released in accordance with law.  The director of public safety shall determine the proper program of redirection and any place of confinement of the committed person. [L 1972, c 9, pt of §1; am L 1983, c 182, §1; am L 1987, c 338, §10; am L 1989, c 211, §8; gen ch 1993]




  This section is substantially in accord with prior law.  H.R.S. §711-83 (as codified prior to this Code) provided that felons be committed to the custody of the director of the department of social services and housing for placement within the correctional facilities of the department.  Although there was no specific statutory direction that persons imprisoned for misdemeanors shall be incarcerated in county jails,[1] this was the usual practice.




  In enacting the Code, the legislature added to §672(1) of the Proposed Draft the last sentence which allows the court to determine the initial place of confinement.  The Conference Committee Report states that "the Director of the Department of Social Services and Housing shall determine the proper program of redirection and any subsequent place of confinement best suited to meet the individual needs of the committed person."  Conference Committee Report No. 2 (1972) (emphasis added).  The committee also put its gloss on the word "institution," appearing in subsection (2), by stating its "intent that 'institution' refers to any detention or correctional facility other than Oahu prison."  Id.

  Act 182, Session Laws 1983, amended this section to authorize the director of social services to determine a convicted person's place of confinement.  Under prior law, courts determined the initial place of confinement for convicted persons with indeterminate prison terms and also determined the permanent place of confinement for convicted persons with definite prison terms.  Because of that law, convicted persons were sometimes inappropriately housed due to the court's commitment or the prisoner's subsequent behavior.  By amending this section, the director is able to place convicted persons in the most appropriate program and is better able to use the department's resources to provide for the safety of other prisoners and the department's staff.  Senate Standing Committee Report No. 722, House Standing Committee Report No. 419.


Case Notes


  Nothing in the federal or the state constitution or the state statutory law entitles prisoner to a hearing in connection with the prisoner's transfer to a mainland prison.  63 H. 138, 621 P.2d 976 (1981).



§706-672 Commentary:


1.  But cf. H.R.S. §710-12, which reads in part:  "The magistrate may direct, as one of the terms and conditions of such suspension of sentence, periodical or intermittent confinement of such person in jail or his attendance at a traffic course or school prescribed by the magistrate."



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