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41 California D.A.s Challenge State Emergency Inmate Release

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Sonora, CA – 41 district attorneys out of California’s 58 counties have signed on to a letter challenging emergency regulations allowing for the early release of what they call “some of California’s most violent criminals.”

Those on the letter include all Mother Lode county D.A.s, most notably, Calaveras County D.A. Barbara Yook and Cassandra Jenecke for Tuolumne County. The group has filed a petition with the Secretary of the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) requesting the repeal of temporary emergency regulations that award additional credits to more than 76,000 state prison inmates. They also question the timing of the regulations that were passed under a claim of an emergency and only made public two weeks ago (Friday, April 30, 3:30 p.m.).

In a written release, D.A. Jenecke stated, “Allowing the early release of the most dangerous criminals by shortening sentences by as much as 50%, impacts crime victims and creates a serious public safety risk.”

The CDCR Secretary has stated that these regulations were necessary to comply with “the direction outlined in the Governor’s Budget Summary” from a year ago, but the D.A.s argue that in adopting these regulations, claiming and invoking an emergency, the traditional regulatory scheme and transparent public comment period was bypassed.

“What we are for is that CDCR repeal these regulations and start the process anew,” stated Jenecke. “This will allow for the transparency and public input that our communities are entitled to. Victims, their families, and all Californians deserve a fair and honest debate about the wisdom of such drastic regulations.”

The group relays this type of petition is needed to seek a formal court order that could declare the regulations unlawful. If that happens, then the CDCR would be forced to use the traditional way to pass them. Click here to view the petition.

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