Sunday, July 28, 2019

Well, well: Criminal justice ‘reform’ wasn’t about ‘non-violent’ offenders after all

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Illegal immigration has tripled, discretionary spending has shot up 20 percent, and there is no border wall. But hey, this administration is now releasing violent federal prisoners that even the Obama administration declined to release.
Last year, Conservative Review was the only scorecard to score against the “First Step Act,” a bill that will lead to the early release of numerous dangerous criminal who have graduated from the state to the federal system. The bill reduced mandatory sentences for many of the worst repeat drug traffickers targeted by federal prosecutors during the worst drug crisis in American history. It also expanded the safety valve, which allows judges to avoid the mandatory sentencing altogether, to include people who potentially have a significant criminal history, as opposed to first-time criminals.
The crown jewel provision of the bill offered numerous back-end early release programs that apply retroactively so that many drug traffickers and many other dangerous criminals in the federal system can serve at least one-third of their sentences in home confinement or full release into parole.
At the time, proponents of the bill said this was all about reducing the prison population of first-time, low-level, non-violent drug offenders. At the time, I explained in an exhaustive series of articles on the bill and the broader issues that those serving time in the federal system on drug, weapons, and racketeering charges are neither first-time, non-violent, nor low-level. I pointed out that if your goal is reducing the prison population rather than preserving public safety, then by definition, you would have to release violent prisoners, especially those in the federal system.
I stood alone on the outside last year, and Sens. Tom Cotton and John Kennedy stood alone in leading the fight in the Senate on the inside. Today, we are proven right. As the Department of Justice releases the first 3,100 under the new early release programs, it is becoming clear that many violent offenders are going to be released into communities throughout our country without a single metric of “recidivism reduction” programs doing anything to change these people.
Fox News is now reporting that of 2,243 inmates released on Friday, “only 960 were incarcerated for drug-related offenses.” Among those released were:
Read the rest from Daniel Horowitz HERE.

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