Another damning report from the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation on the tragic public impact California’s now year-old policy of releasing prisoners early.
“The California-based Criminal Justice Legal Foundation has been tracking crime across the state since the Governor’s Realignment law (AB109) took effect last October. The law requires that felons released from prison be placed on Post-Release Community Supervision (PRCS), rather than state-managed parole. The law also prevents habitual criminals convicted of new felonies such as assault, auto theft, drug dealing, identity theft, fraud, and commercial burglary from receiving prison sentences, instead requiring that they receive sentences in overcrowded county jails, probation or “treatment” in county-managed rehabilitation programs. Over the past six months, local police agencies, and news stories have reported hundreds of incidents of violent and serious crimes committed by criminals released from state prison and placed on PRCS or convicted of what Realignment defines as a “low level” felony and left in the community.
“According to the Fresno Police Department, the following murders, committed by realigned criminals on PRCS, have been investigated by the homicide unit:
—25-year-old Arthur Lee Howlin was arrested for the murder of 45-year-old Tina Lafaye Banks on April 27, 2012. During this incident, Howlin allegedly shot four other people that were near Banks. Howlin was placed on PRCS on November 13, 2011, for resisting or obstructing an executive (police) officer in performance of his duties.
—28-year-old Rocky Phelps was arrested for the murder of 52-year-old George Gowanlock on May 11, 2012. Phelps was placed on PRCS on January 3, 2012, for possession of stolen property.
—30-year-old Robert Alexander Cadena was arrested for the murder of 25-year-old Adam Garcia on May 19, 2012. Cadena was placed on PRCS on November 24, 2009, for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.
—29-year-old Miguel Payan Jr. was arrested for the June 4 murder of 27-year-old Jeremiah Cortez. Payan was placed on PRCS on May 12, 2012, for auto theft.
—27-year-old Dexter Murphy (Brazeal) was arrested for the murder of Wayne Devine on July 7, 2012. Murphy (Brazeal) was placed on PRCS on April 15, 2012, for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.”