Assemblyman Joe Patterson, R-Rocklin, introduced a bill on Thursday that he says will bring transparency to a system that allows “the secret early release of inmates.”
Under Proposition 57, inmates can earn credits for good conduct, education, and rehabilitation, but the calculations of this secret credit system are unknown, Patterson said in a news release.
Here is more on my legislation to bring more transparency for victims and law enforcement on the Governor’s secret inmate release program. We all like transparency, right? pic.twitter.com/JlDENU12cn
— Joe Patterson (@Patterdude) February 17, 2023
When a release is made under Prop. 57 parole review, the local district attorney and the victim are notified.
However, Patterson said, the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation also is releasing inmates without notification by issuing credits and deeming the sentence completed after serving a fraction of that sentence.
“I support proven rehabilitation programs, but the reality is that inmates are now being secretly released and earning credits automatically,” said Patterson. “Our local district attorneys are seeing criminals, denied parole, released back into communities to repeat offend, without notification to the district attorney or victim. This cannot continue unchecked.”
What the Bill Does
His AB 1260 requires advance notification to local DAs of credit calculations for early releases. The notification also would include the length of the sentence imposed by the court, the amount of time the sentence was changed by each category of credit awarded or denied, and the total time served vs. the original sentence.
“Our victims and communities deserve access to information regarding inmates being released into their neighborhoods,” said Placer County District Attorney Morgan Gire of AB 1260. “Just as the front end of the criminal justice process demands transparency, so must every step in that process.”