Tag "criminal justice"

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California lawmakers propose relief for criminal juveniles

  In a fresh bid to reform California’s criminal justice system, Sacramento lawmakers have begun to advance several bills, many aimed at softening juvenile punishment. “Democratic state senators Holly Mitchell of Los Angeles and Ricardo Lara of Bell Gardens are proposing four bills

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California prison reform laws under fire in aftermath suspected gang member’s murder of Whittier cop

After the killing of a Whittier police officer by a man with suspected gang ties, new focus is being drawn onto California Assembly Bill 109 – legislation signed into law by Gov. Brown in 2011 that critics say illustrates the danger of

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New legislative session puts bail-bonds industry under microscope

SACRAMENTO – At a press conference in the Capitol on Monday morning, California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom explained that although he has long championed various reforms to the state’s criminal-justice system, he had in the past rarely even thought about

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Bail reform tops criminal-justice efforts in next legislative session

California has long been known as a law-and-order state, particularly following the crime spikes of the 1980s. The state passed the toughest “three strikes” law in the nation and state officials from both parties often have argued over who would

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Transparency activists seek CA sunshine

  National Sunshine Week — an effort to increase and encourage government transparency — has come and gone in California while multiple types of state secrecy continue to draw fire from lawmakers and citizens. Budgeting has topped the list of recent complaints. “The

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New capital punishment plan sharpens CA execution fight

Obliged by a court settlement to figure out a new method of capital punishment, California officials have exacerbated the state’s protracted debate over executions by settling on a different kind of lethal injection. With a widespread shortage of execution drugs

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CA lawsuit challenges cash bail

The procedure of charging and posting cash bail has prompted a historic lawsuit out of San Francisco. Evidence has been mounting for years that the bail system places the poor in an untenable position when they are arrested. As the

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Two bills transform CA parole system

California officials are preparing to implement the state’s latest steps toward a transformed parole system for incarcerated youths. The changes were spearheaded by state Sen. Loni Hancock, D-Oakland, who led two bills through closely fought battles in Sacramento. Senate Bill 261

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CA faces dueling death penalty initiatives

Activists on both sides of the death penalty debate were poised for an election day clash, with one group pushing a ban on the practice while the other hoped to speed it up. A new coalition The first group, Taxpayers

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CA settles prison suit, curbing solitary

A momentous court settlement has given new shape to California’s multi-year struggle with the courts over its criminal justice system, rolling back the state’s reliance on solitary confinement as a way of dealing with gangs and violence in prison. “Many such

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