I think a "decision matrix" would work for "would be" criminals. If the state were to develop a matrix that allowed people to know, clearly, what the penalty is for committing crimes, I believe, we would see a reduction in crime. You see, when we talk about fighting crime, what we are really talking about is modifying behavior. This matrix would help the criminals know what is coming if they do (x) crime. We could assign a value to each crime conviction and they could redeem them at the state prison or other penal institution. Do a burglary, first offense is worth 5 points. Five points gets you probation on a first offense. Do it again and you now have 10 points, do not pass go....
Misdemeanor charges could carry points too. Prostitution might be a 3 point crime, with probation on the first offense. Second offense, 6 points, go to penal farm for 11 months, 29 days, etc.
At any rate, I think it's an idea that can work. We just need to get a dialogue about PROGRESSIVE DISCIPLINE started. Criminals will change their behavior if they believe it will get progressively painful, if they continue down "the road to perdition"! Feel free to comment on this subject.
Here is a place to start: