Topic

Prison Sentencing

56 petitions

Update posted 19 hours ago

Petition to Jerry Brown, Riverside County District Attorney

Justice for Jesse Meraz

To California Governor Jerry Brown and the Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation, Jesse Meraz is just a six-character inmate number. But to me he is a faithful, hard-working, loving husband and father. You see, Jesse was thrown back into prison even after serving his sentence and our family is in a tail spin. Jesse made some bad decisions when he was a kid and before he even went to his first middle school dance, like too many men of color he was just another statistic in the criminal justice system. Jesse and I make no excuses for his bad behavior. He was hanging out with the wrong crowd, skipping school, and doing drugs. It wasn’t long before he was arrested for possession of a firearm. By his mid-20s he had been accused of four felonies and was serving his sentences. Under California’s draconian three-strikes law, he was looking at a life sentence for the non-violent crimes he committed. But in 2014, a Court of Appeals, reversed two of the charges and Jesse was resentenced to what we all believed was the maximum sentence under the law. Since he had already served seven years, Jesse was released with probation. Jesse was 36-years-old when he left prison and he worked hard to make the most of his second chance. He got a job, a good union job as an ironworker with Local 433. That’s no small feat for someone with a criminal record. He remained drug-and-drink-free. He obeyed all laws, had zero run-ins with law enforcement, and fulfilled all the requirements of his probation. He had even began getting his tattoos removed with the help of Homeboy Industry in Los Angeles. As a family, we both worked hard to provide for our four kids. We are home owners and during the housing crunch when we fell behind on our payments, Jesse worked every day to get us caught up. We did not have to rely of government services for anything. We attended church regularly, made sure our kids did well in school, and we paid our taxes. We were productive members of our community and Jesse had finally put all the mistakes of the past behind him. Then suddenly in all came to an abrupt halt. The Riverside District Attorney (Indio office) filed a petition to reverse the appeal that got him out in 2014. At his court hearing, Jesse had more than 20 people show up to speak on his behalf and we also had character letters from several community members including the former Indio Chief of Police but the judge did not allow us to present anything. The District Attorney argued that Jesse should not benefit from the new laws and would have to be resentenced under the old three-strikes law. He was sentenced to 25-years-to-life. Jesse was placed back into custody on January 30, 2017. I have worked for Riverside County for almost a decade now. I believe in a rehabilitation system that punishes those who commit crimes and then allows that person to do their time and move on. Additionally, as a taxpayer, I do not want to have to pay for another inmate when he has already served his time and has a proven record of living as a productive member of society who is not reliant on the government dime. Please sign my petition to ask the court to reverse the latest sentence and release my husband. Our family wants to go on living our lives quietly and without fear of having to pay for my husband’s mistakes from his past. Sincerely,Guadalupe Meraz

Guadalupe Meraz
21,182 supporters
Update posted 21 hours ago

Petition to Texas State House, Senfronia Thompson

"TIME CREDIT" earned for offenders in Prison..Time for a change in Parole Reform

This letter is regarding a bill that was introduced in the 85th Legislature, on February 20, 2017, formerly known as HB2120. On March 23, 2017, it was left pending in the committee, at 25% progression. The committee being the “House Corrections Committee”. The legislature is now in recess which means that the bill will need to be reintroduced in order to be heard again. It’s pretty much dead in the Corrections Committee. This bill is regarding offenders who are made to suffer to serve the mandatory requirements of half off their sentences regardless if they accrue *GOODTIME. This bill would also include NO major cases. There are husbands, wives, and children with no expectations for early release who were incarcerated for mild mistakes, paying hard core consequences. It leaves offenders with nothing to work towards or look forward to. But, some have learned their life lessons and should be rewarded for their good behavior. Imagine the person you love most gets into a brawl then is mistakenly placed for an aggravated case for up to 30 years. That means your dear darling son WILL HAVE to serve a MANDATORY sentence of at least half (15 years) of his sentence before he is even considered for parole. That’s a mighty long time for just a brawl at the mall. Some offenders should have the same consideration as most offenders when it comes to being considered for parole release. This will give those offenders who have worked steady jobs, enrolled in educational classes, graduated from the GRAD Program, found God and have been actively involved in the Faith-based programs and trying to help other offenders turn their life around too, and the opportunity to come up for parole after serving 1/4th of their sentence.. These acts of rehabilitation should not be discarded as if they don’t matter! Those that have changed behavior, lives matter because they actually want a better life for themselves when they parole. They want to be better role models for their children and grandchildren, and better spouses upon their release to come home. They work very hard to be better people coming out of prison than who they were going into prison and they deserve the opportunity to have their accrued goodtime considered as a means for early release just like any other offender. It encourages good conduct, a changed lifestyle and hopes for the future. Getting this bill passed does not guarantee the release for an offender. That needs to be made clear to those who think all offenders will be released all at once. That is NOT how this bill was written! Offenders will still have to be reviewed by the parole board. They will decide who they believe to have changed behavior because not everyone deserves an early release. This bill does not include capital murder or sexual assault offenses. NOTE: This bill was not written to release inmates. It's written to simply allowing them to accrue GOODTIME.Reading this, you may have and/or had, a loved one incarcerated. If so, Then you understand the importance for them to be considered for their GOODTIME. If you haven’t, then you don’t know what it feels like to miss them at this great expense and you're lucky to have the opportunity to greet, hug, and kiss your loved one every day, as we do not, which is the reasoning for this petition. Whether you are in agreeance with this letter or not, please sign the petition attached to this letter with your comments concerning why or why not.If you agree and support this petition, please help me get the message out by sharing this to your social media sites like FB, twitter, & instagram because sharing will get the many supporters we need to get this bill passed! Thanks for your support!*HB2120- A bill relating to good conduct time earned by certain inmates and the consideration of release on parole for those inmates.*GOODTIME-Time deducted from an inmate's sentence for good behavior while in prison.

Tarra Love-Richmond
322 supporters