Three months after California voters approved Proposition 36, to lessen the impact of the draconian-applied Three Strikes Law, one Los Angeles County judge is sifting through more than 1,000 cases, trying to determine who can be freed. [Read more…]
When someone spends years or even decades in prison, things change. Both in the outside world and within that person—things change. So, as an estimated three dozen former-three-strikers are now among us after changes in the law, it would be good to give them some reentry assistance. Instead, however, because the laws of California make them ineligible for parole “benefits”, these former-inmates are left to fend for themselves.
When California voters overwhelmingly supported a measure to soften the state’s Three Strikes Law, Mike Reynolds, the man whose daughter was an inspiration for the law called the passage “a great day for criminals and their attorneys.” He said he believed voters were misled and that the new, softer legislation would prevent some of the more dangerous criminals from being locked up. While he isn’t alone in his disapproval of Proposition 34, he is of the minority. And the majority spoke in favor.
Update: Citizens voted to strike down California’s punitive and costly 3 strikes law in 2012. Proposition 36 passed!
Under the new reforms, third strike mandatory life sentences are only applicable when the third felony conviction is “serious or violent”, or if the defendant was previously convicted of murder, rape, or child molestation.
Three strikes and you’re out! This saying took on a whole new meaning within California in the 1990’s. It went from something you would only hear at a baseball game to terms used to describe criminal sentencing and essentially locking people up and throwing away the key. Passed in 1994 by the legislature and the people of California, the Three Strikes Law has done more to increase spending and controversy than it has to reduce crime. [Read more…]
California’s three strikes laws have been extremely controversial, often punishing people harshly and out of proportion for an offense or mistake that seems relatively minor. But some cases, like a recent conviction for a DUI murder, by a career criminal is not likely to be one of those controversial cases. [Read more…]