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Published On: Tue, May 24th, 2016

Supreme Court orders California to release convicts to afford health care for those remaining prisoners

Five years after the U.S. Supreme Court ruled to cut the prison population, California holds 136,000 inmates as of 2014 per CDCR report. Of the 2013-2014 budget, 7% was spent on corrections and was set to rise to around $12 billion in 2014-2015 – a 2.8% increase YOY.

Gov. Jerry Brown turned in nearly a million signatures on Friday backing his bid to ask voters to approve new ways to reduce California’s prison population, a spokesperson said.

Brown wants voters in November to increase credits that allow adult inmates to get out of prison more quickly and to allow earlier parole for non-violent felons.

The measure “will give voters a chance to improve public safety by providing incentives for people to turn their lives around,” campaign spokesman Dan Newman said in an email.

California’s district attorneys say his initiative would increase crime and undermine laws designed to protect crime victims’ rights.

“With crime rates rising dramatically across the state of California for the first time in decades we believe the voters will be extremely reluctant to pass a measure that allows violent felons who have committed crimes along the likes of domestic violence, human trafficking, rape of an unconscious person and assault with a deadly weapon to be let back out on the streets before serving the time sentenced by a Judge,” California District Attorneys Association chief executive Mark Zahner said in a statement.


It’s “Cruel and unusual punishment” to imprison these convicts without “proper” health care; therefore 30,000 ….30,000 prisoners must be set free over the next two years.

Thank the delusional citizens of California who believe their state is “wonderful” without any fiscal responsibility to its citizens, especially the families of the victimized by these inmates.

Injustice…what’s the point if the system can’t handle the volume of criminals.

Wonderful California? No, shameful.

donkeyhotey  donkeyhotey.wordpress.com

donkeyhotey donkeyhotey.wordpress.com

The article from Peoples World revealed that the U.S. Supreme Court ruled, 5-4, on May 23 that California must lower its prison population by tens of thousands in the next two years, so the state can provide decent health care for those who remain.

 

In his majority opinion, Justice Anthony Kennedy said the case arose “from serious constitutional violations in California’s prison system” that are years-long and “remain uncorrected.” Kennedy cited the Constitution’s ban on “cruel and unusual punishments” involving inmates with serious mental and or physical medical conditions.

“After years of litigation, it became apparent that a remedy for the constitutional violations would not be effective absent a reduction in the prison system population,” the opinion said.

In an unusual action, the decision was accompanied by photos of prisoners jammed into open gymnasium-like rooms, and cages where mentally ill inmates are held.

The state’s prison population, presently about 142,000, has long been far greater than the 80,000 inmates the 33 adult prisons were designed to hold.

The court’s ruling that the population must be reduced to 137.5 percent of designed capacity, or about 110,000, means some 30,000 inmates must be released, shifted to county jails, or sent to private prisons out of state.

Joining Justice Kennedy’s opinion were Justices Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Stephen Breyer, Elena Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor.

In a dissent joined by Justice Clarence Thomas, Justice Antonin Scalia called the decision “perhaps the most radical injunction issued by a court in our nation’s history,” and warned that it would require release of a staggering number of inmates.

Justice Samuel Alito was joined in a separate dissent by Chief Justice John Roberts.

California Governor Jerry Brown said in a statement that moving some inmates from state to county facilities, as his budget proposes, is essential to implementing the court’s decision. The legislature has passed, and Brown has signed, a bill authorizing such a shift, but implementation is blocked by the current budget impasse.

Speaking on public radio station KQED May 23, Donald Specter – lead attorney in the Supreme Court case and director of the Berkeley, Calif.-based Prison Law Office – said the court is not telling the state how to carry out the reduction. “California has to come up with a plan to meet the court’s order,” he said. “There are many safe ways they can do that.”

After the overcrowding is reduced, Specter said, “California will finally be in a position to solve many of the serious problems they have for decades been unable to solve,” including adequate mental and physical health care, rehabilitation, and “treating prisoners with respect and dignity.”

photo TaxRebate.org.uk

photo TaxRebate.org.uk

 

About the Author

- Writer and Co-Founder of The Global Dispatch, Brandon has been covering news, offering commentary for years, beginning professionally in 2003 on Crazed Fanboy before expanding into other blogs and sites. Appearing on several radio shows, Brandon has hosted Dispatch Radio, written his first novel (The Rise of the Templar) and completed the three years Global University program in Ministerial Studies to be a pastor. To Contact Brandon email [email protected] ATTN: BRANDON

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