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BREAKING NEWS: Bill Allowing Charging Simple Possession as Misdemeanor Clears Assembly Floor

SB 649 (Leno) will allow prosecuting simple possession of certain controlled substances, including, among others, opiates, opium, opium derivatives, mescaline, peyote, tetrahydrocannabinols (marijuana), and cocaine base, as “wobblers”, that is,

Riverside Jail Sends Inmates to Fire Camps

Image courtesy This Wednesday, Riverside County Jail became the first county institution to send inmates to California’s fire camps, in which state prisoners help put out fires. Richard de

Restorative Justice in Murder Cases

Conor McBride and Ann Grosmaire in 2010.Courtesy the Grosmaire family and the New York Times. In 2001, still in practice as a reservist for the Israeli Military Defense Counsel’s office,

“Smart on Crime”: Retreating from Punitive Discourse Citing Financial Prudence

 In the decades prior to the financial crisis, as Jonathan Simon writes in Governing Through Crime, no politician, regardless of party affiliation, could afford to sound “soft on crime.” Propositions running

Ajami, Part Two: Romanticizing Alternative Dispute Resolution and Its Discontents

One of the most hotly debated issues in criminal justice involves the many suggestions to reform what many perceive to be a deeply dysfunctional courtroom process. In suggesting alternatives, commentators

Jail expansion: Counties seek millions from state

Check out today’s SF Chronicle cover story, “Jail expansion: Counties seek millions from state,” and especially its ending: Lenard Vare, director of Napa County’s Department of Corrections, said he agrees

Marin Interfaith Council Considers Death Row

Jeanne Woodford, former Undersecretary and Director of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR), Warden of San Quentin State Prison, and current Executive Director of Death Penalty Focus, spoke

Making Sentencing Reform a Priority

Sign this ACLU-California petition at Save Money and Increase Public Safety To Governor Brown, Senate President Steinberg and Assembly Speaker Perez: As you work to solve the long-term budget deficit,

A California Gambling Court?

Some of the problem-solving programs are fairly old and well established. An upcoming event in Los Angeles examines the possibility of creating a gambling court, built upon the existing therapeutic

Bastardizing “Problem Solving”

Drug courts, heavily promoted as a novel way to holistically resolve issues concerning addiction, have generated a fair amount of data on their clients (findings on recidivism rates are still