Truth in Sentencing in Michigan prisons

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US Citizen

Las Vegas, NV

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#1
Oct 15, 2008
 

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Michigan has the "truth in Sentencing" law which mandates that anyone sentenced to prison must serve all of their minimum sentence IN a prison.

Prison expenses in Michigan are currently 1.9 BILLION dollars a year. Thats more than Michigan spends on ALL of its universities put together.

When the truth in sentencing law was passed in the late nineties...Michigan was still financially sound as it had the Auto Industry thriving...and it could afford the high cost.

NOW..nearly a decade later as Michigan has had the highest unemployment rate in the nation for the second year in a row...and as hundres of thousands of Michigan families have lost their homes to foreclosure...Michigan needs to re appropriate the tax dollars... and spend that money on the PEOPLE of Michigan.

States that surround Michigan each have a prison population of about fifteen thousand less inmates.
Yet Michigan enjoys no LESS crime rate than those states...proving that longer incarceration periods do NOTHING to lessen crime.

And now as untold numbers people are homeless and without jobs..and all of Michigan is slumbering in unemployment...the lawmakaers do not make ONE SINGLE MOVE to repeal the truth in sentencing law and return to the policy of giving "good time" to prisoners so they can do one third less time and get out of prison sooner.

Repealing the law would save Michigan about six hundred million dollars a year. Think of the better uses that money could go for.

First time offenders and any one deemed not to be a future threat to society could be let out on TETHER..and they could be forced to pay for the monitoring system them SELVES..and that would further save money and begin to bring money into a cash strapped system.

As the new Global economy falls into place... experts say Michigan is not going to recover from the loss of the auto industry for DECADES.

So as economic college graduates who have studied Michigan's economic system well have predicted, Michigan is going to remain in poverty for at least a decade...unless lawmakers do something unique....and FAST!

That unique CHANGE... would be to REPEAL Michigan's "truth in Sentencing" law and begin giving "good time" to all Michigan prisoners...allowing them to be released from prison and serve a third less time than they serve now..and RE appropriate hundreds of millions of Michigans taxpayer dollars..back to the people who REALLY need it...those without jobs..those who are losing their homes.

Right now people are leaving Michigan in large numbers as they know the economic forecast...in search of jobs that support families and homes they can KEEP.

So Michigan is ALSO losing population fast...along with valuable electoral voting power.

The prediction is that the Michigans crime rate is going to triple...and the cities will only be SHELLS of what they once were due to empty homes and lack of property taxpayer dollars.

SAVE MICHIGAN! Repeal the Truth in Sentencing law and give good time to prison inmates...and give the tapxpayer dollars..to the FREE people of Michigan who have worked for decades to own homes and live comfortably in the beautiful state of Michigan.

Its not too late.
Walt B

Lake City, FL

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#2
Oct 20, 2008
 

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I disagree. The 'truth in sentencing' law was the best thAng to ever take place in the Water-Winter Wonderland.

It hold scumbags responsible for the error in their ways.

For ages Michigan had what you propose going back to. Prison was a 'joke' because they almost got out as soon as they went in.

Don't try to fix something that isn't broke...

http://www.state.mi.us/mdoc/asp/otis2.asp
US Citizen

Las Vegas, NV

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#3
Oct 21, 2008
 

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Walt, I'm not saying people shouldn't be responsible for their actions...I'm saying Michigan needs to begin thinking of the FREE people who have worked so hard for decades to have homes and create lifestyles of satisfaction...lifestyles that have now been eroded for the most part...because lawmakers choose to continue to spend a large portion of Michigan's budget dollars on its massive prison system. Tax dollars.

Michigan has one of the highest rates for refusing parole in th e nation...yet as we speak the crime rate is climbing faster than it is in any other state. WHY? Because those people who are FREE...are unemployed; and have been so for the last 2.5 years...and many of them have lost their homes as well..which leaves them desperate..and desperate people do desperate things.

Yes; people will resort to stealing and robbery and burglary and embezzlement and anything else they have to in order to feed their families.

I just think the "truth in sentencing" law was passed when Michigan STILL had the FUNDS from its auto industry. Those funds; as WELL as the auto industry...are gone now...so as long as Michigan KEEPS the truth ion sentencing law in effect; their going to HAVEE to get the 1.9 BILLION dollars a year it takes to support it from somewhere...,and right now that money is coming from the people. THAT...is a crime in itself
US Citizen

Las Vegas, NV

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#4
Oct 21, 2008
 

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Oh that law will be repealed in time. Finances will demand it....but the concern is whether or not lawmakers do it in time to save the state of Michigan BEFORE everyone moves out in search of jobs that will support their famiiles...and homes they can KEEP!

But in time..perhaps when the state has lost a large poprtion of their population because so many people have moved out...perhaps when the crime rate reaches its prediction of triple what it is now..perhaps when the state has been reduced to what economic graduate students say it will ..that of a mere "territory" instead of a state...perhaps then it will be forced to repeal the truth in sentencing law.

When the wealthy of Michigan begin to be affedcted by the economy there... the lawm akers will realize that Michigasn does not even have enough money to support its own truth in sentencing program and it will HAVE to eliminate it. Its going to happen Walt...but will it happen soon enough for Michigan to be saved.

By the way...out west M<ichigan is being watched very closely..and it hasn't been called the "water winter wonderland" for over five years now. Today its known for its biggest industry now that the auto industry has left...today Michigan is known as the "prison state."

xzanex

Dowagiac, MI

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#5
Nov 2, 2008
 

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The Truth In Sentencing will be removed. Michigan is damn near the only state to have no good time in a prison sentence. Michigan has good time in jail so why not in prison? Michigan has one of the highest conviction rates in the United States because they dont have any reason of doubt in anyone arrested. They treat everyone that is arrested as guilty from the beginning no matter what. Ive been in the system for 8 years now and yet to have seen justice to a full affect. The Michigan prisons are becoming greatly over crowded because of it. Michigan needs to find a way to resolve these issues before the community goes under.
TC from michigan

Detroit, MI

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#6
Jan 13, 2009
 

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I disagree with this comment. first of all you shouldn't be making this comment if you don't even live here. Last and This year alone the unemployment rate is 44,000 people who don't have jobs and its going to get worse. I agree with the
first comment about the good behavior
ME ME

Middlesboro, KY

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#7
Jan 18, 2009
 
Try moving out of Michigan.What do you have to lose? IF You have lost your home,job.Why stay!Move to a different state,try the south.LIVING in the south is alot cheeper.
ABradley

Rochester, MI

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#8
Jan 27, 2009
 

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I totaly agree with the first comment. My husband was sentenced to 3-20 in 2006. He has been a perfect inmate. If michigan didn't have the Truth-in-sentencing law he would be home. As of right now MI is spending nearly 2 billion dollars on our prison systems, when there are people everywhere losng homes to foreclosure. Or even those without healthcare. We need to repeal this law.
lischinop

United States

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#9
Feb 20, 2009
 
My son, who's in jail waiting to be sentenced to prison, just called and told me he heard the Truth in Sentencing law is being repealed in Michigan on April 1st. I couldn't find evidence of this.

The only thing I found on State of Mich. Dept. of Corrections site :

How do I learn about Truth in Sentencing? Truth in Sentencing is a 1998 state law which eliminates Disciplinary Credits, good time and corrections centers for certain offenders and requires offenders to serve the entire minimum sentence in prison prior to being considered for parole. It replaces Disciplinary Credits with "disciplinary time" or bad time, which is accumulated for incurring misconducts while in prison. This disciplinary time is not to be formally added to the minimum sentence, but the Parole Board must consider the amount of time each prisoner has accumulated when it considers parole. The new law applies to assaultive crimes committed on or after Dec. 15, 1998, and all other crimes committed on or after Dec. 15, 2000. There have been no changes with the Truth in Sentencing law and currently, there has been no discussion of changing it. Part of Truth in Sentencing is that offenders must serve their entire minimum sentence in a secure facility before being elegible for parole.

Anybody know anything about an April 1st repeal in Michigan?
Det MI

United States

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#10
Feb 27, 2009
 

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Michigan is truely suffering and definetely needs to make some drastic changes soon. There are so many homes for sale and abandoned homes in ours neighborhoods it's a sad thing to see our state continue to go down. I'm a young lady who has plenty of friends who can't go to hospitals or clinics because we have no health care, but yet we're puuting all of this money towards funding prisons due to TIS. My fiance' is a first time offender on a non-violent crime serving six years. He has been the perfect inmate and is currently in camp but still has to comple two and a half years due to TIS. This law needs to be Repealed!!!!!!!!!!
Jacqueline

Grand Haven, MI

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#11
Mar 26, 2009
 
my husband is in prison and has been for a year, he has 2 more years for an offense that should have been a driving offense, the judge had a bad day and used him as an example, he has been the perfect inmate, and im doing all i can to get some one to listen, and do away with the truth in sentencing, can any one help? I am not a politics kinda gal, I just want my husband home, this state is in such a mess, why is the answer to send every one to prison? My husband was a master mechanic we owned our own business, and life was good, now im on assistance, i cant work im disabled, and they think this is the answer? please help!
Jacqueline

Grand Haven, MI

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#12
Mar 26, 2009
 
lischinop wrote:
My son, who's in jail waiting to be sentenced to prison, just called and told me he heard the Truth in Sentencing law is being repealed in Michigan on April 1st. I couldn't find evidence of this.
The only thing I found on State of Mich. Dept. of Corrections site :
How do I learn about Truth in Sentencing? Truth in Sentencing is a 1998 state law which eliminates Disciplinary Credits, good time and corrections centers for certain offenders and requires offenders to serve the entire minimum sentence in prison prior to being considered for parole. It replaces Disciplinary Credits with "disciplinary time" or bad time, which is accumulated for incurring misconducts while in prison. This disciplinary time is not to be formally added to the minimum sentence, but the Parole Board must consider the amount of time each prisoner has accumulated when it considers parole. The new law applies to assaultive crimes committed on or after Dec. 15, 1998, and all other crimes committed on or after Dec. 15, 2000. There have been no changes with the Truth in Sentencing law and currently, there has been no discussion of changing it. Part of Truth in Sentencing is that offenders must serve their entire minimum sentence in a secure facility before being elegible for parole.
Anybody know anything about an April 1st repeal in Michigan?
I dont know anything about it but im all for it, My email is SexyBrat_2269@yahoo ... if you hear anything let me know, and i will do the same... I am lookiing in to what needs to be done to make the goverment hear our voices not just ignore us...
Honest Man

Sterling Heights, MI

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#13
May 30, 2009
 

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"truth in Sentencing" law which mandates that anyone sentenced to prison must serve all of their minimum sentence IN a prison.

Umm....that's as it should be...that's why its called a MINIMUM sentence. If prisoners could get out before serving their minimum sentence, it's not really a minimum is it?

Before truth in sentencing...a convict could get a 5-10 year sentence, but be out in 3. When that happens, it severely damages the states credibility. If a prisoner could get out in 3, it should really be called a 3-10 year sentence, shouldn't it?

I think a case can be made that prison sentences should be shortened. But do that by actually shortening the sentence, not by passing a "good time" law that creates Dishonesty-in-Sentencing.

3-10 should mean a defendent should spend at least 3 years in prison but not more than ten, 5-10 should mean at least five, but not more than ten. Why is this so controversial?
Curious

Battle Creek, MI

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#14
Jun 5, 2009
 

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If we repeal the law and let prisoners out for good time what are they going to do when they get out? There are no jobs. I know people who can't get a job because of a misdemeanor conviction! Just what are we going to do with the felons who are let out early? How will this save money? How will they contribute, or help to stimulate our failing economy? At least the people in the correctional facilities have a job now. I'm just curious, it seems to me that early releases will create more unemployment, crime, and homelessness.
Worried Gal

Petoskey, MI

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#15
Jun 11, 2009
 
Violent offenders should not be let out before their minimum. I agree with Honest Man that there's a reason it's called a minimum. That doesn't mean that good behavior doesn't count for anything, it helps with parole. Shortening the actual senctence would be better than saying, no only do 2 years instead of the 5-10 we said you'd have to do. Even parenting advice tells you to do the same with your kids. If we say one thing, we have to stick with it and be consistent with the consequences, otherwise why would it be believed? If there's an issue with the sentencing, then shorten the minimum. My worry is that violent offenders, especially domestic violence charges, don't get enough time. A first time offender gets probabion and classes. IF there's any jail time it's usually three months. We treat people who shop lift worse!
melle

Detroit, MI

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#16
Sep 24, 2009
 
a person who gets out early kills someone they have a fit but what about the murders when the person has done all thier time and still does the same thing what do you say then?
Debbie

United States

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#17
Sep 27, 2009
 

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Yes, due to budget problems, Michigan is thinking about repealing the "Truth in Sentencing" Law, letting prisoners have "good time" sentence reductions. I know our state desperately needs a balanced budget, but cutting this law is NOT the way to do it. Each prisoner case represents a serious - usually violent - episode that left its mark on a victim and their families, or represents a habitual unwillingness to obey laws, as is the case of the man who murdered my mom. The taxpayers funding that system are entitled to accountability and a sense that justice was done. Blindly proposing that Michigan should accelerate paroles to meet an arbitrary spending limit ignores the need for justice and the cost of crime victimization.

I wish they had passed this law back before 1993. On October 12, 1993, my mom was killed by a man who had been convicted of murder back in 1977. My mom could not have been murdered if the man who killed her had merely served the minimum sentence for his first murder. Instead, he was released early, committed an armed robbery, then was released early again and murdered my mom - all before his minimum sentence had expired on the first murder! Had this law been around back then, it would have kept him in prison until at least July of 1997. As it was, he was released on September 18, 1993, less than one month before he killed my mom.

I am lucky enough to be able to go before the House of Representatives and tell my side.
Goldielox

Tucson, AZ

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#18
Oct 27, 2009
 

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US citizen is correct this law will be repealed. I do not think it will be in time to save the state though. I moved from Michigan in 2008 because I was laid off from Ford Motor Company and could not find a job. I walked away from my home, friends and family. The state is in big trouble and if they do not do something soon it will be too late for many people. They have cut all of their programs to rehabilitate these prisoners because they cannot afford them. So when they do get out they will be worse than they were when they went in. Bring back good time and use some of the extra money to put programs in place to help rehabilitate the prisoners. Even with the Truth in Sentencing Law they will get out someday and then what? Michigan is creating a system that is making their prisoners worse. The reason the state passed the law to begin with was so they could get federal money but the cost is much more than any federal money they have received. The sad thing is that Michigan will have no choice sooner or later they will have to repeal this law because the state will be bankrupt. By then there will be no money left to help anyone; the prisoners or the people of Michigan. They will end up releasing them without the help they need and we will all be worse off. Recidivism rates have gone up since this law went into effect so evidently it is not working. This law is something I have done a lot of research on and in fact gave a speech about it at the local college. So please all of you that post comments saying how awful it would be to repeal this law do some research on the subject and become knowledgeable about it before forming an opinion.
Bobby

Brighton, MI

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#19
Nov 28, 2009
 

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Walt B wrote:
I disagree. The 'truth in sentencing' law was the best thAng to ever take place in the Water-Winter Wonderland.
It hold scumbags responsible for the error in their ways.
For ages Michigan had what you propose going back to. Prison was a 'joke' because they almost got out as soon as they went in.
Don't try to fix something that isn't broke...
http://www.state.mi.us/mdoc/asp/otis2.asp
Do you realize it costs approximately $35,000 per year per inmate? So do you honestly think stealing hub caps or getting caught with personal use marijuana or not paying child support justifies spending that much money? Additionally, since Truth In Sentencing passed, has the crime rate decreased? No it hasn't. We have more prisons and prisoners than we did in the 80's, but the crime rate hasn't really changed. Michigan has more prisoners per capita than the vast majority of states in this country, but yet we are one of the smallest states. And our crime rate isn't any better as a result. Knowing this, how can you say that. This begs the question, are you retarded?
Our justice system sucks

Lincoln Park, MI

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#20
Dec 1, 2009
 

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Truth in sentencing definiley needs to be eliminated! Our tax dollars could definitley be used on way more important issues such as more/better employment! So many prisoners get sentences that are way harsher than they deserve! Our justice system is totally screwed! Last week an 18 year old got 17-35 years for murdering a 14 year old boy! Than 10 minutes later a man got 25 to 50 years for watching his brother sell drugs!!! Our law makers need to wake up and do something about the ridiculous sentencing system we have today!!!

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