Law enforcement officers know that the best solution for criminal acts
isn’t always to put the criminal in jail. Yes, there are times when
people may become safer because of someone being put behind bars, but
in the vast majority of low-risk drug offenders’ cases, going to
jail is something that isn’t helping. Instead of getting the help
and therapy needed, they’re being locked away from the very things
that could help in society. With these changes, it could be easier for
people like yourself to work with attorneys to find the fair solution
to their charges.
A group of 130 law enforcement officials have come together to discuss
unnecessary incarceration and what it means to those who have low-risk
crimes keeping them in jail or prison. Many times, the group agrees, these
people end up in prison because of mental illness or addiction, and those
are things that can be treated with the right kind of care.
Would keeping these alleged criminals out of jail help? The Law Enforcement
Leaders coalition co-chair thinks it would. By helping these offenders
in a different way, the public can still be kept safe. Instead of locking
away the unstable or mentally ill, the group of officials has called for
more alternatives to arrest. Things like mental health and drug treatments,
for instance, could open the door to saving a person’s future instead
of losing a future to addiction or mental health issues combined with
a prison sentence.
The group is expected to meet with the President of the United States to
discuss their options; they pointed out issues like having to give the
same mandatory minimum sentences to offenders of different levels, and
want to make a change.
Source: The Baltimore Sun, “Baltimore police chief joins push for end to ‘unnecessary incarceration’,” Kevin Rector, Oct. 21, 2015