County Supervisor Michael D. Antonovich continues to speak out against Assembly Bill 109, the state’s public safety realignment program that addresses overcrowding in state prisons by housing low-level offenders in county jails.
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At his annual Police Chief’s Luncheon on Monday, Antonovich, Sheriff Lee Baca and Probation Chief Jerry Powers discussed AB 109, which transferred supervision of state prisoners to County probation departments and custody of certain offenders from state to county systems.
This action has resulted in crime spikes across the state, according to Antonovich.
“With crime rates rising in many of our local cities, the Governor’s realignment program is a proven threat to public safety which has overwhelmed probation departments and local law enforcement agencies statewide,” Antonovich said.
Jeffrey Callison, spokesman for the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, said in a previous interview that while AB 109 does redirect offenders from state prisons to county jails, it avoids sending low level offenders hundreds of miles from home, and who might only spend a few months in jail.
When put through the state system, prisoners with short sentences are often released before the intake process is completed, Callison said.
At the luncheon, Antonovich addressed the sheer numbers and the fact that there are prisoners sent to county jails under AB 109 who are serving sentences much longer than a few months.
“Currently there are over 43,000 prisoners serving time in local jails instead of state prisons, a number expected to reach 52,000 by 2014,” he said. “Of those, 14,377 are in Los Angeles County, 5,901 of whom are currently in county jail. Over 40 of them have a sentence longer than eight years…”
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Source: Santa Clarita News