Court rules nonviolent sex offenders are eligible for early parole

December 29, 2020

By JOSH FRIEDMAN

In a unanimous decision, the California Supreme Court ruled Monday that sex offenders who committed crimes deemed to have been nonviolent are eligible for early parole under a statewide ballot measure approved by voters in 2016. [SF Chronicle]

The ruling applies to sex offenders serving crimes such as pimping, possession of child pornography, indecent exposure, sex trafficking and certain types of rape.

On the Nov. 2016 ballot, 64 percent of California voters approved Proposition 57, an initiative sponsored by then-Gov. Jerry Brown that allows the state Board of Parole Hearings to consider releasing prisoners after they complete sentences for just their primary offenses, so long as the crimes are classified as nonviolent. Previously, state law required “nonviolent” offenders to spend additional years, sometimes decades, behind bars before being considered for parole because of factors like having prior convictions, gang membership and gun possession.

Since Prop. 57’s passage, the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) had prohibited the parole board from considering early release for inmates serving time for offenses that required registration as a sex offender. Additionally, Brown had said Prop. 57 was not intended to allow early release for sex offenders.

However, the California Supreme Court ruled the CDCR’s regulations are not compliant with Prop. 57.

In a 7-0 ruling, Chief Justice Tani Cantil-Sakauye said the ballot measure declared “inmates convicted of nonviolent felony offenses ‘shall be eligible’ for parole consideration.”

Thus, inmates must be considered for release after completion of the sentence for their current crime, unless it was a violent offense, Cantil-Sakauye said. That even applies to inmates who have been convicted of violent crimes in the past, the chief justice added.

Cantil-Sakauye said Prop. 57 contained no language indicating voters intended to allow the CDCR to “create a wholesale exclusion from parole consideration based on an inmate’s sex offense convictions when the inmate was convicted of a nonviolent felony.”

As of 2018, CDCR rules had barred about 4,400 inmates from consideration for early release under Prop. 57.


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agnative

The in incompetence of the law makers that write these propositions and the incompetence of the voters that fail to study the propositions before voting are at fault here.


womanwhohasbeenthere

What is missing here in many cases is the real crime. The criminal plea bargained to a lesser crime ,and the DA got a conviction that got him prison time and got him off the streets. But now with Covid-19 and new court rulings, dangerous felons are being released who on paper don’t appear to be so dangerous. Their plea bargain wiped out the true nature of their crime. It’s disgusting.


coronet blue

Another example of the consequences of many of the propositions that uninformed or under-informed voters pass. Let our elected representatives do their jobs and examine laws and change them when needed instead of throwing things out to the general public where the vote can be manipulated by slick misleading media campaigns, and whoever has the biggest advertising budget wins. And don’t sign petitions either!


pigsrule

Same voters put in our elected officials, who in turn, nominate the Supreme Court judges (the governor) who then allow criminals free.


Francesca Bolognini

My problem with the selection of judges is that when they are presented to the voting public to choose, there is little or no easily obtained record of their previous judgements and sentences. It is like buying a pig in a poke, so to speak. We need more information, apparently, before making a decision to let someone make decisions such as the one above for us.


pigsrule

California Supreme Court judges are nominated by the the governor and rubber stamped by a commision.


shelworth

I never thought it would happen, but it did, I agree with Francesca!


Rambunctious

The people of California want criminals locked up…what is wrong with the elected officials in California?…have they forgotten who they work for?…maybe in the next election we should remind them….


slo-to-load

If “the people of California want criminals locked up” as you say, maybe they shouldn’t have approved Proposition 57 by 63%! If you are going to vote for something, you need to do your homework and read the text of the measure, which apparently was so poorly written that it didn’t apply to the crimes people thought it did.


Don’t blame the judges. They are just applying the law based on what was written. Blame the people that wrote that dumb proposition!


shelworth

So we’re supposed to believe that people caught with enough child porn to send the to prison have NEVER molested a child? And what exactly are the “certain types of rape”?


pnishaven

Hmmm some of those link to future crimes committed. Unbelievable. Were their victims asked if it felt non-violent. Stupid Stupid Stupid.


Stunned

Is this enough to make anyone but me sick? Pimping is now considered to be one of the “non-violent” crimes deserving of early release. The article says “eligible” however, the supreme court is basically saying “you deserve a break”. Rotten asshats.


Speak Truth to Power

“The ruling applies to sex offenders serving crimes such as pimping, possession of child pornography, indecent exposure, sex trafficking and certain types of rape.”


I have to wonder when the Citizens of California will rise up and say Enough?

Will they ever or has the Frog already been Boiled in the pot of Liberalism.


The Pendulum has swung so far to the left, I’m almost expecting a counter culture resurgence of Puritans complete with the big buckles on their shoes and belts topped up with funny hats.