Initiative to Revise ‘Three Strikes’ Law Cleared For Signature-Gathering

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LOS ANGELES (CNS) – Backers of an initiative to amend the “Three Strikes’ law have received authorization to begin gathering signatures, Secretary of State Alex Padilla announced today.

What authors Thomas R. Loversky and Victoria Johnson have dubbed “The People’s Fair Sentencing & Public Safety Act of 2018” would revise the “Three Strikes” law to impose a life sentence with the possibility of parole only when the third or subsequent conviction is for a violent felony, unless the new offense is a specified sex- or firearm-related crime, or a prior offense was for rape, child molestation, or murder.

The initiative would also require resentencing of inmates serving sentences of life with possible parole if they would have received different sentences under this measure.

The initiative would apply the savings from reduced incarceration to schools, colleges, prison rehabilitation programs and youth crime prevention programs

If the initiative were to become law, the net state criminal justice system savings would likely be in the high tens of millions of dollars initially and could eventually exceed $100 million annually, according to an analysis made by the Legislative Analyst’s Office and Department of Finance.

The analysis also found there would be increased county costs that could exceed $10 million annually, primarily due to increased county community supervision populations.

Valid signatures from 365,880 registered voters — 5 percent of the total votes cast for governor in the 2014 general election — must be submitted by July 16 to qualify the measure for the November ballot, Padilla said.

Photo: Getty Images

1 COMMENT

  1. My husband is at Pelican Bay State Prison and was tried to Murder in the 1st degree. He did NOT murder the man, but was there when the man who stabbed and killed a man was. He was tried with the man who committed the murder and was also found guilty for it. The man who committed the murder received 15 to life. My husband was sentenced under the 3 strike law and received 53 years to life, for being there when it happened. He didn’t know the guy was going to pull out a knife and kill the other man. When it happened, he got so freaked out and scared, he ran. He want back to jail for a parole violation, and was notified the Grand Jury had decided he should be tried too. He was in the SHU, (Security Housing Unit or SolitaryConfinement) for almost 15 years and was let out 3 years ago with everyone else the courts decided their rights were being violated by being kept in there. When he got out and even today, he has a difficult time finding words to say in conversations. My husband had a horrible childhood, (not an excuse) and started getting into trouble when he was young. Being hurt and angry, came out while he was young. He is now 52 years old, and isn’t even scheduled to go before the Parole Board until 2027, yet the man who committed the murder will already be out of prison before then. Three Strikes Law fair? How can they punish a person twice when they’ve already served time and payed the price for a different charge and conviction? I’m 62 and will be 72 by the time he even goes before the Board. I am very disillusioned and disappointed with California’s legal system. I may or may not live long enough to see my husband be released from prison for a crime someone else did. His lawyer never had him tried seperatly. Three Jury members told the Judge they didn’t think there was evidence to convict my husband, but they didn’t want to let the murderer go free and felt obligated to convict him, but not my husband. I’m at a loss and have no idea if anything can be done. So giving my husband more time than a man who killed another man? Three Strikes Law? Sincerely Disillusioned, Debbie Gehrke

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