Reduce Prison Sentences For Inmates To Serve 60% Instead of 85% & Drop Gang Enhancement for Rehabilitated Inmates
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California prisons have become severely overcrowded over the past decade or so. Currently, non-violent, low-level offenders must only serve 33% of their sentence. This is a significant change compared to the previous 65% that was implemented years ago. This has reduced prison population quite a bit, but most California prisons are still over 100% capacity. By reducing the mandatory 85% to 60%, we could reduce the prison population by significant amounts. It is a step that is vital for California to take. For young offenders (under age of 23 when sentenced) serving long sentences, this could mean an opportunity to build a brighter, better future and the ability to get an education, a well-paying job and the opportunity to get married and have children. For many inmates charged with a gang enhancement (PC-186.22), the enhancements are lengthy, often up to ten years. What constitutes as a "gang member" in the laws eyes? Inmates are often convicted of a gang enhancement for being somehow associating or interacting with a gang member. The justice system does not have an accurate way of proving whether someone is a true gang member or not. How do you rehabilitate a "gang member" who was never one to begin with? What are those extra ten years doing for society, the inmate and their families? Governor Brown, we ask that you please review Penal Code 186.22 and review inmates gang affiliations, as well as give them a second chance. Remove gang enhancements for those who have dropped out of the gang and those who were convicted for simply associating those who interacted at one time or another with a gang member. Being friends with a gang member should not cost anyone ten years of their life. Many people may not look at the human side of prisoners, but the truth is they are people just like us. For the majority of inmates, prison is a reality check and helps them change into different, better people. Please help us bring hundreds, maybe even thousands of families back together. Make the justice system JUST again! This would NOT release non-rehabilitated inmates.
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