Leonna A. Brandao
End "Life Sentences Without Parole For First-Time Offenders" of a Fatal Crime
We understand the United States has the largest rates of incarcerations in the world and that a Bill was recently passed for Prison Reform. It is also apparent that the prisons nationwide, are filled with Individuals who are incarcerated due to wrongful convictions, Substance Abuse related crimes, Mental Illnesses and first-time offenses of non-violent crimes.Our request is that you add another consideration to your goals to decrease the incarcerated population and that is to review and consider the first-time offenders of a fatal crime. Individuals who committed their first, but fatal offense before the age of twenty-five, have served twenty years or more in prison, and have matured, repented, and who have a post release plan set up prior to release. Also to consider the prisoners who are now severely ill and those who are now elderly. Many individuals serving a life without the possibility of parole for a first-time fatal offense, are individuals in most cases, who were unable to comprehend the serious of their actions leading up to a crime, or who may have had emotional breakdowns, which should, but are not always categorized as mental illness. Many of these same individuals, were victims themselves as children or adolescents of severe abuses. There are many reasons why they may have offended, although prisoner stereotypes should not exist, as there is an enormous difference in every situation involving a fatality. Life without the possibility of parole is no different than a Death Sentence. Most individuals of first-time fatal offenses were not violent, prior to their first time offense and have not been violent throughout their time in prison. Many were previously college students, well established, gainfully employed, and many are educated and productive human beings who would never offend again with the proper Long-term rehabilitative treatments outside a prison setting. The Government and many others in America, have stereotyped prisoners of fatal crimes. They have given first-time offenders of a fatal crime the same sentences given to serial killers and habitual offenders of serious crimes. It is not a fair process. Nor is it something that has been justified. Therefore, we ask that First-Time Offenders of a Fatal Crime, be given a fair opportunity to be re-evaluated and reconsidered for sentence reductions allowing them to receive less expensive and more appropriate treatment in a long-term transitional residential facility outside the prison setting and to someday also be free, while saving the Government and the Tax Payers enormous amounts of money.