Thursday, July 18, 2013

Daily Corrections Clips


Inmate Housing Facilities Planned for California

Maggie Ryan, Correctional News

(Note: The reporter has substantially understated the projected cost of the infill facilities. The estimated costs in the article should be multiplied by 1,000.)

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) received authorization from 2012 Senate Bill 1022 to begin the process of designing and constructing three new dorm buildings at any of four existing correctional center locations, including California Institute for Men in Chino, California State Prison and Sacramento/Folsom State Prison in Represa, California State Prison and Solano/California Medical Facility in Vacaville, Mule Creek State Prison (MCSP) in Ione or Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility in San Diego. Although planning has started, construction isn’t scheduled to begin until early 2014.

Prison guard from Atascadero dies in high-speed chase in San Benito County
David John Calmere, 41, crashed while fleeing police north of Salinas
Julia Hickey, San Luis Obispo Tribune

A prison guard from Atascadero died last week during a high-speed chase while fleeing from police in San Benito County.


17 News Special Report: Kern County's realignment rehabilitation

KERN COUNTY – Thousands of inmates are being released early into our streets, and many are re-offending. But, a new county-funded program is hoping to break the revolving door that is Kern County's jails. 

The county program started in January. It releases inmates early, but instead of sending them to the streets, they're enrolled in a community-based rehabilitation program. And according to jail staff, it already has a high success rate. 

Letter: Clearing up some things about prison realignment

It's important to note that Public Safety Realignment does not involve "sending 'low-level' offenders out of state prison and back to county jails." Realignment took effect on Oct. 1, 2011, and from that date onward people convicted of lower-level crimes were sentenced to jail; in the past some would have been sent to prison. No one was or is transferred from prison to jail.

Realignment: Still Heavy Topic for California Corrections
Maggie Ryan, Correctional News

(Note: The first sentence of this story should refer to the San Bernardino County Grand Jury, not the “California Grand Jury”.)

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — The California Grand Jury is pushing for a change in Assembly Bill (AB) 109, or The Public Safety Realignment Act, from 2011. Overcrowding has become a major issue in San Bernardino County jails since AB 109 was established. The law was enacted in order to combat the unconstitutional overcrowding and inadequate health care in California state prisons, as decreed by a federal ruling, but overcrowding is now an issue in county jails.

Calculating costs of realignment, mandates no easy task
John Howard, Capitol Weekly

As the state shifts more and more responsibility to local governments, disputes over the size of the tab and who picks it up are growing.

In theory, the transfer of state authority to the locals, such as in the $6.3 billion realignment program in which  some state prisoners are sent to county lockups and myriad services are shifted to the counties, is supposed to be a wash, or revenue neutral.

Prison hunger strike leaders moved to separate quarters

Hunger strike leaders have lost access to news and some legal papers have been seized. One lawyer for inmates has been temporarily barred from all prisons.
Paige St. John, Los Angeles Times

SACRAMENTO — California prison officials have moved 14 inmate leaders of a hunger strike over solitary confinement conditions to more isolated quarters, cutting off their access to broadcast news and seizing some of their legal papers, according to one of their lawyers.

Officials move 14 inmates leading Calif. hunger strike
U.S. News

SACRAMENTO, July 18 (UPI) -- California prison officials moved 14 inmates who were leading a hunger strike to more isolated areas, the prisoners' lawyers said.
As of Wednesday, 2,326 inmates were refusing their meals as part of a protest over solitary confinement conditions now on its 11th day, the Los Angeles Times said.

Convicted Calif. killer who skinned, dismembered mother gets 25 years to life in prison
The Associated Press

LOS ANGELES — A Los Angeles County man has been sentenced to 25 years to life in prison for the first-degree murder of his mother, whose dismembered remains were found in a freezer in their apartment.


One-drug protocol for executions


A decision by the administration of Gov. Jerry Brown to switch from three drugs to a one-drug protocol for lethal injections will delay the potential resumption of death-penalty executions in California for at least one year and possibly several years.

Jeffrey Callison, press secretary to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, confirmed today that the agency will be developing regulations for a one-drug execution process.


The mentally ill are filling jails. What should we do about it?

Phil Willon, The Los Angeles Times

Los Angeles Times columnist Steve Lopez took at trip to the Los Angeles County jail and found all the evidence he needed to show why housing the mentally ill in jail cells is a mistake:

Clearly, locking these men up over and over again isn't working, and it isn't cheap. But it's what the system has been doing for years in Los Angeles County and in jails and prisons across the country.

County Jail Food Strike Ends

Inmates Accepted Lunch Wednesday
Kelsey Brugger, Santa Barbara Independent

The last of 230 inmates who had been refusing meals at the Santa Barbara County Jail accepted lunch Wednesday, officially ending the food strike that began nine days ago. As of Tuesday afternoon, only 27 of the inmates were still involved in the strike. Participants began refusing meals on July 7 to show solidarity with grievances raised about poor conditions at Pelican Bay State Prison, according to Sheriff’s spokesperson Kelly Hoover.

House escape
Woman slips off GPS device, faces prison time

Chico News & Review
A Chico woman was convicted July 10 on charges of felony escape after she slipped off her GPS ankle monitor while on home incarceration at a local clean-and-sober-living house. According to a press release from the Butte County District Attorney’s Office, Samantha Josephine Abernathy, 26, removed the monitor March 1 and then left the residence.


Federal receiver must explain why he did not stop sterilizations: Editorial
Los Angeles News Group, The Daily News

The federal receiver who oversees medical care in the California prison system has some explaining to do.

State Senate Republicans sent a letter last week requesting that the Senate Committee on Public Safety convene an oversight hearing to investigate at least 148 unapproved sterilizations of female inmates in state prisons from 2006 to 2010. That should happen.