Monday, November 25, 2013

Gun Possession Sentences Put Three-Strikes Law Back in Court

Well, I voted against the measure.

At LAT, "Rulings on jail terms inconsistent after changes to three-strikes law":
After nearly two decades behind bars, Mark Anthony White saw a chance for freedom last year when California voters softened the state's tough three-strikes law.

Within weeks of the election, White asked a judge to reduce his 25-years-to-life sentence under the ballot measure, which allows most inmates serving life terms for relatively minor third strikes to seek more lenient sentences.

White would have walked free if his request had been granted. But a San Diego County judge refused to reduce White's sentence. The judge ruled that the 54-year-old prisoner's last crime, being a felon in possession of a firearm, made him ineligible for a lighter punishment.

A year after state voters overwhelmingly approved Proposition 36, judges around the state are handing down conflicting decisions on whether prisoners given life terms for gun possession can qualify for shorter sentences.

The ballot measure specifically excluded prisoners whose third strikes were either violent or serious, or who during the commission of their last crime were armed with a firearm or deadly weapon.

Whether someone convicted of simply possessing a firearm was in fact armed during the commission of a crime is a more complicated legal question than it might appear. The answer could mean the difference between freedom and life in prison for more than 280 third-strikers across the state. In Los Angeles County, about 120 prisoners are waiting for the legal wrangling over the issue to be resolved.

White has appealed the decision denying his request for a shorter sentence, and his case appears to be the first in which an appeals court could address the issue head on...
The f-ker should be behind bars. The three-strikes law was good law. You know idiot leftists got on the ballot last year, and good, decent and innocent people are the ones who'll pay the price as crime skyrockets.

More at that top link.