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NEWS
January 20, 1997 | From Associated Press
The proportion of jailed or imprisoned Americans almost doubled in the last decade, but the growth has slowed recently, the Justice Department reported Sunday. An expert said the slower growth may be only temporary. As of June 30, federal, state and local prisons and jails held 615 men and women for each 100,000 U.S. residents, the department's Bureau of Justice Statistics said. By comparison, there were 313 inmates per 100,000 residents at the end of 1985.
ARTICLES BY DATE
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2014 | By Paige St. John
SACRAMENTO -- With renewed growth in the state prison population undercutting efforts to reduce overcrowding, the Democratic leader of the state Senate is calling for fundamental changes to prison sentences and rehabilitation in California. State estimates produced in late December show another 3,700 inmates are expected this year, and 6,400 more over the next five years. That equals growth rates forecast before Gov. Jerry Brown launched a major shift sending low-level felons to county jails instead of state prisons.
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NEWS
September 7, 1987
Prison populations rose 4.7% in the first half of 1987, as a record 570,519 inmates jammed state and federal facilities, the Bureau of Justice Statistics said. Corrections officials had to add about 1,000 beds a week to keep up with the influx--a 7.8% increase in the West, 2.5% in the South, 4.6% in the Midwest and 5.1% in the Northeast, the bureau said. Criminologists attributed the increases to more stringent sentencing.
OPINION
December 1, 2013 | By The Times editorial board
Treatment of prison inmates has finally begun to capture the attention of California's lawmakers and public, in large part because two lawsuits over constitutionally inadequate medical and mental health care resulted in a federal court order to reduce the inmate population by thousands. The Dec. 31 deadline has been pushed back to February as the state negotiates with plaintiffs in the consolidated suits, and lawmakers and the administration of Gov. Jerry Brown work through plans to devote more funding to treatment and alternative sentencing for mentally ill felons.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 11, 1995
After reading the commentary by Vincent Schiraldi ("Some Gift--For $1.4 Billion, We Pay $31 Billion," March 15), I couldn't help but feel a sense of worry for California and the nation. Pity the victims if people like Schiraldi were to begin formulating correctional policy. While Californians should rightfully be concerned with the finances of the federal crime bill, money should not be the primary concern when formulating policy dealing with crime. Our main concern is, and should remain, the provision of public safety.
NEWS
March 26, 2001 | From Times Wire Reports
The number of people in state prisons last year increased at the slowest rate since 1971, though the total number of people incarcerated in the United States remained at a record high in 2000, the Justice Department reported. As of June 2000, 1,931,859 people were in federal, state and local facilities, a 3% increase over June 1999. The increase was primarily in the number of people in federal prisons, researchers said.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 10, 2014 | By Paige St. John
SACRAMENTO -- With renewed growth in the state prison population undercutting efforts to reduce overcrowding, the Democratic leader of the state Senate is calling for fundamental changes to prison sentences and rehabilitation in California. State estimates produced in late December show another 3,700 inmates are expected this year, and 6,400 more over the next five years. That equals growth rates forecast before Gov. Jerry Brown launched a major shift sending low-level felons to county jails instead of state prisons.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 22, 2007 | Steve lopez
In the ongoing flap over prison overcrowding in California and what to do about it, little consideration has been given to inmates such as Stephan Lilly. I wrote about the Los Angeles man late last year, when his conviction on charges stemming from a scuffle with a security guard were counted as a third strike. Despite a years-long battle with schizophrenia, and the fact that one of the three strikes was a threat that involved no physical contact, Lilly got 25 to life.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
January 26, 2010 | By Patrick McGreevy
State prison authorities Monday began reducing the number of parole violators sent back behind bars and offering inmates more opportunity to shorten their sentences, as part of a plan to decrease the prison population by 6,500 inmates over the next year. Low-risk offenders, including those convicted of nonviolent crimes, will not have regular supervision by a parole agent. And they will no longer be returned to prison for technical violations such as alcohol use, missed drug tests or failure to notify the state of an address change.
NEWS
June 23, 1997 | From Times Staff and Wire Reports
The nation's adult prison population grew a little more slowly last year after a 10-year surge that more than doubled the number of inmates, the Justice Department reported Sunday. The nation's federal and state prisons added 55,876 inmates, bringing the prison population to a record of just more than 1.18 million in 1996, as of Dec. 31. The additional prisoners represented a 5% increase over the previous year. Between 1985 and 1996, the average annual increase had been 8.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 15, 2013 | By Paige St. John
SACRAMENTO - The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday refused to hear Gov. Jerry Brown's appeal of an order to reduce prison crowding, further narrowing the governor's options in his quest to end what he characterizes as an arbitrary cap on the inmate population. The cap was ordered by three federal judges in California, and Brown had asked the high court to remove it. Having lost that bid, he will continue to pursue a request to the lower court for more time to comply, according to a California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation spokeswoman.
OPINION
September 16, 2013 | By Lois Davis
If California is serious about reducing its prison population, one crucial component will have to be reducing recidivism. Currently, a lot of the state's inmates are men and women who've been in prison more than once. They get out, they have little training or education, they can't get jobs and, in many cases, they return to lives of crime and find themselves back behind bars. But a major new study of correctional education in U.S. state prisons suggests there are things California could do to slow that revolving door.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
September 9, 2013 | By Paige St. John and Chris Megerian
SACRAMENTO -- A deal reached Monday by Gov. Jerry Brown and legislative leaders to reduce the state's prison population was greeted warily by lawyers representing inmates who have sued California over conditions behind bars. “The governor hasn't built up a lot of trust here,” said Michael Bien, who is handling a lawsuit over mental healthcare.  The lawyers for inmates were not involved in negotiations over the weekend, and Brown said they had no role in reaching a deal. A panel of three federal judges has ordered the state to reduce its prison population by 9,600 inmates by the end of the year.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 13, 2013 | By Anthony York, Los Angeles Times
SHANGHAI - California Gov. Jerry Brown said Saturday that he has asked his lawyers to review a new order from a panel of federal judges requiring him to file a fresh plan for reducing the state's prison population. The judges have threatened to hold state officials, including Brown, in contempt if they fail to comply within three weeks. "I did speak with my lawyers. I said, 'Take a good look at this stuff,'" Brown told reporters as he headed for a Huangpu River cruise with Yao Ming, a former NBA star turned Napa Valley winemaker.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 12, 2012 | By Paige St. John, Los Angeles Times
SACRAMENTO - California's progress in relieving its teeming prisons has slowed so much that it probably won't comply with a court-ordered population reduction, and judges have raised the prospect of letting some inmates out early. Three federal jurists have given the state until Friday to come up with a schedule for identifying prisoners "unlikely to reoffend or who might otherwise be candidates for early release" and to detail other ways to hasten the emptying of double-bunked cells.
NATIONAL
August 1, 2012 | By Brian Bennett, Washington Bureau
WASHINGTON - In January, Evin Adonis Ortiz was arrested and charged with killing a 24-year-old man in Los Angeles. After running Ortiz's fingerprints through an FBI database, police learned he was in the country illegally - and this wasn't his first arrest. Ortiz had convictions for driving without a license and attempted grand larceny. A congressional study released Tuesday found dozens of examples of illegal immigrants who were released and later arrested in connection with felonies, including murder.
NEWS
March 11, 1988 | MARK A. STEIN, Times Staff Writer
Parolees are a major and growing factor in California's mushrooming prison population, and a study released Thursday by the state Department of Justice urges the state to find out if needlessly harsh parole terms are causing the problem. The study by Sheldon L. Messinger, a UC Berkeley law professor, found that 43.3% of the felons sent to state prisons last year were parole violators--more than four times the rate 10 years earlier.
OPINION
June 4, 2012 | By Barry Krisberg
So far, the only apparent solutions to California's budget crisis are increased revenues and draconian budget cuts. Legislative leaders have pledged to examine all options to avert further crippling reductions in state funding for higher education, the court system and social support for poor and vulnerable families. They should be looking at the state criminal justice system; there are savings that could help us avoid harsher cuts. To his credit, Gov. Jerry Brown has implemented budget and policy changes that have significantly reduced the state prison population and may reclaim up to $1 billion from the Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
February 24, 2012 | By Chris Megerian, Los Angeles Times
Reporting from Sacramento -- California should hold off on building new medical facilities for prison inmates, according to the legislative analyst's office. That view contradicts plans by the court-appointed receiver who has run the prison health system since a federal judge declared it unconstitutionally inadequate. He has plans for $2.3 billion in new clinics and upgrades. Construction is one of the final sticking points before the state can end six years of federal oversight of inmate medical care.
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