CDCR to Close Three Community Correctional Facilities Due to Downward Trend in Low-Security Inmates
Due to a significant decrease and anticipated decline in low-security inmates, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) is closing three privately run Community Correctional Facilities (CCFs). “There are a number of factors for the downward trend in lower-level inmates entering the system, including recent parole reforms that authorize minor parole violators to be diverted to community programs instead of prison,” said Undersecretary of Operations Scott Kernan.
Calif. says 3 low-level prisons no longer needed
The Associated Press -- California officials say a drop in the number of minimum-security inmates is allowing them to end contracts with the companies that operate three private prisons. The move will save the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation about $15 million a year. The private prisons in Baker, Bakersfield and McFarland once housed a total of 822 inmates.
State plans to close two community correctional facilities in Kern
By James Burger, Bakersfield Californian -- Two privately run prisons in Kern County were issued 60-day closure notices Monday by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. McFarland Community Correctional Facility in McFarland and Mesa Verde Correctional Facility in Bakersfield now face closure. Wardens at both facilities declined to discuss the situation Monday afternoon. The decision was made because downward trends in the minimum-security inmate population have reduced demand for the services the private prisons provide, said Terry Thornton, a spokeswoman for the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
Federal judges reject plan to cut California prison crowding
By Denny Walsh, Sacramento Bee -- Three federal judges on Wednesday rejected the prison population reduction plan submitted to them by the state and gave the Schwarzenegger administration three more weeks to produce a plan that complies with their wishes. If the court doesn't get one by Nov. 12, the judges said they will order attorneys who represent sick inmates to submit a plan by the end of November, and the judges would order that plan be implemented.
Environmental review launched for proposed boys school conversion
By Josh Petray, Paso Robles Press -- Officials from the state and the three neighboring counties who are working to convert the former El Paso de Robles Youth Correctional Facility into a low-level, adult inmate prison, Cal Fire camp and new re-entry facility convened at the Paso Robles Library/Hall Conference Center last week to launch public scoping meetings for an Environmental Impact Report being developed for the proposed Paso Robles property.
Sex Offender Sanctuary under a Fresno Bridge
By Sontaya Rose, ABC 30 Fresno -- There are few places sex offenders can live legally. Along the train tracks in Downtown Fresno this is not your average homeless camp. Ankle monitors are common and parole agents pull up randomly just to check up. Some tents are even labeled to make the spontaneous visits easier. Most of the people who live here are registered sex offenders. Residents say they're presence is no secret, they are monitored constantly and not only by law enforcement.
Viewer spooked by Halloween decorations in sex offender's yard
KGET -- A yard full of Halloween decorations has one woman spooked. A viewer contacted 17 News concerned a registered sex offender is attracting children to his home by putting dozens of Halloween decorations in his yard. However, the Kern County Sheriff's Department says the decorations are legal because the sex offender is not on parole or probation.
Inmate Fire Fighters:
Injured firefighting prisoner rescued in Loma fire
By Joe Rodriguez, San Jose Mercury News -- Dressed in prison orange, Gilberto Smith was unloading shovels and other equipment when he twisted his ankle deep in Eureka Canyon. "I was scared at first,'' said Smith, a 23-year-old inmate at Susanville Prison. "I knew that they'd have to carry us very high to safety.'' An immigrant from Mexico, Smith was serving a sentence for "gang activity" when he was accepted two years ago into the California Department of Corrections' special firefighting crew.
Cal Fire official confirms that crews were burning brush in Loma Fire area last week
By Paul Rogers, San Jose Mercury News -- A Cal Fire commander told the Mercury News Monday that a brush-thinning project he supervised last week along the Santa Clara-Santa Cruz county border could have sparked the Loma Fire that has scorched 485 acres and forced hundreds to evacuate. Fire crews on Monday made progress on the flames that have destroyed a mobile home and two outbuildings but said they are worried the fire could gain strength Tuesday when 40 mph winds are expected to return.
CDCR Related and Miscellaneous:
Is killer in '84 Fresno slaying a danger today?
By Pablo Lopez, The Fresno Bee -- A Fresno man who killed a man, cut out his heart and put it in his pocket in 1984 will get another chance at freedom today, and a state Supreme Court ruling could help his case. Theodore Allen LeLeaux Jr., who is serving 16 years to life in prison for killing 25-year-old Kenneth Carlock, was granted parole last year, but Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger blocked his release. LeLeaux, now 48, will try again at a hearing inside the California Men's Colony, San Luis Obispo.
Passalacqua hasn't pursued death penalty
By Guy Kovner, Press Democrat -- In seven years as Sonoma County district attorney, Stephan Passalacqua has not sought the death penalty. Execution is a punishment reserved for “the worst of the worst,” said Passalacqua, a former prosecutor who was elected the county’s top law enforcement officer in 2002. Four men are on San Quentin State Prison’s Death Row for murders committed in Sonoma County, convicted between 1990 and 1997. Passalacqua said his office has prosecuted about a dozen homicides during his tenure involving “special circumstance” that carry the option of the death penalty. It is the district attorney’s decision whether to pursue the death penalty in such cases.
AP files lawsuit against Wis. Department of Corrections over video showing grenade detonation
Breaking News 24/7 -- The Associated Press filed a lawsuit Monday against the Wisconsin Department of Corrections seeking the release of a video that shows a powerful stinger grenade exploding after a guard dropped it inside a prisoner’s cell. The lawsuit, filed in Dane County Circuit Court, alleges that the Corrections Department’s refusal to release the tape showing detonation of the device that sprays 180 rubber pellets in a 50-foot radius is a violation of the state open records law.