Skip to comments.Supreme Court orders release of over 30,000 prisoners in California to … improve health care
Posted on 05/24/2011 6:56:50 AM PDT by SeekAndFind
California will have to release over 30,000 inmates from its prison system to comply with a Supreme Court ruling earlier today. The court cited chronic violations of inmates’ rights in its 5-4 decision. The reductions will improve the delivery of health care services to the remaining inmates, claims the majority:
The Supreme Court on Monday endorsed a court order requiring California to cut its prison population by tens of thousands of inmates to improve health care for those who remain behind bars.
The court said in a 5-4 decision that the reduction is “required by the Constitution” to correct longstanding violations of inmates’ rights. The order mandates a prison population of no more than 110,000 inmates, still far above the system’s designed capacity.
There are more than 142,000 inmates in the state’s 33 adult prisons, meaning roughly 32,000 inmates will need to be transferred to other jurisdictions or released.
Anthony Kennedy joined the four liberal jurists in the decision, while the four conservatives were aghast at the implications. Calling the ruling “perhaps the most radical injunction issued by a court in our nation’s history,” Antonin Scalia’s dissent predicted a higher number of releases, 46,000. Those may end up going to county jurisdictions rather than state prisons, or perhaps sent to other states with more room in their penal system, but that will cost California money the state simply doesn’t have.
The immediate effect of the order will almost certainly be a large-scale release. That will increase pressure on an already-overburdened parole system and send career criminals back to ply their trade in communities throughout the state — and the country. The increased costs on communities won’t help the state improve medical care to prisoners; it’s more likely to sap the state’s treasury.
This poses other questions as well. What is California supposed to do with convicts now? If they can’t add to the current level of inmates, then they’re going to have to release even more on a one-for-one basis, putting revolving doors on the prisons again. The same will be true in other states, which had joined California in opposing the order, which now have to operate under a new Supreme Court mandate on prison populations.
The state could build more prisons, which would solve the problem. Unfortunately, California spent its money on practically everything but new prisons over the last few decades. The average age of their prisons was 55 years in 2009′s report from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation. California has a responsibility to invest in its prison infrastructure, as well as a responsibility to provide for the safety and basic health needs of its inmates. But the Supreme Court has its own responsibility to keep criminals from victimizing their communities, too. This looks like a big failure all the way around.
Wow, just wow.
Is this the job of the Supreme Court? I think not.
And the SC should be held liable if any of those released cause harm to any person. The truth is that those in the prison system don’t get better they get worse while incarcerated. Shame on the SC.
Apparently, the SOTUS doesn’t give a damn about the law abiding citizens of CA. Is the SOTUS going to defend the citizens of CA from these thugs or release them in DC to walk among the thugs in DC?
More destruction from the Elitist political class!
This is an example of ClowardPiven strategy
of slow motion Anarchy by the SCOTUS.
I’d wager most anything that the five justices that voted for this horror live in guarded and gated communities. The city and county of Los Angeles, which is a pesthole under normal circumstances, should soon become unlivable.
It’s clearly a bad decision, but California could just build more prisons which would solve the problem. Unfortunately, now the Supreme Court has set a precedent and courts all over the nation will now be in the business of determining what “overcrowding” is instead of the voters. This will spark a flurry of lawsuits since many prison systems are overcrowded. The choice at this point for states is either build more prisons or let more criminals go.
The decision, however, clearly demonstrates that 5 of the members of the court are totally delusional. If they weren't already judges we'd have them committed to a hospital for the criminally insane.
I hope this isn’t an indication of how Kennedy would vote on Obamacare.
They want a disruption of society...to bring it down. What better way than to release over 30,000 prisoners onto the mainly unarmed citizens. Insanity or intentional?
almost makes you want to give every newly paroled hood in Cal-ee-fohr-nya a bus ticket and a card with Anthony Kennedy’s home address...almost.....
I have lost faith in the country I served for 30 years in the service. I do not recognize her anymore. I would NOT encourage anyone to go in the service now either..not with the removal of DADT and the social engineering going on now.
The problem all stems from California’s spending, and refusal to deal with the illegal immigration problem.
California could afford more prisons, were it not for our jacked up spending priorities. Rather than deport the prisoners back to Mexico where they’ll be back in a week committing more crimes, we need to make the overall welfare and business climate unfavorable to illegals. This will cut down on the drain on state resources, and ‘drain the swamp’ of elements where crime can flourish or grow.
We can also revise what we put people in jail for, loosen up CA’s ridiculous gun laws to easy issue of CCW permits, and slash spending anywhere the unions are involved.
While the end result of people being let out of prison on a technicality hurts, it’s the right thing to do in the face of California’s horrible mismanagement of the situation. If we are going to put people in prison, we need to treat them humanely. The Supreme Court is right to uphold basic human rights, even for prisoners. CA can more than afford to do this right if we so desired, but our leaders are suicidally bent on liberal spending boondoggles that are bankrupting us.
Then charge Mexico for the housing of all their illegals in our prisons! What the hell is the problem here? They got oil. They got money. Take it from them until they learn to keep their own on their side.
Ginsberg, Soda Jerk, Kagen, Breyer, joined by Kennedy.
Presidents do shape our future.
The national impact should be interesting. These mistreated potential liberal voters are mobile, gang indoctrinated, convicted felons. The operative word being mobile, as in not physically restricted to a single state or jurisdiction upon release.
No wonder the wolves of left are screaming for more restrictions on the prey species.
Wouldn’t it be better to solve the problem of better health care, perhaps calling on the medical profession for help and advice, than to simply remove these people from the prisons?
They could work out a plan to provide medical care and facilities outside of the prison walls.
Where will they get health care on the outside if not in the established medical facilties and programs for the indigent?
As another poster said somewhere else on FR, this is the lefts way to get back at 3 strikes laws and circumvent voters again.
Its a self-fullfilling prophecy. Underfund prisons, then complain about overcrowding so you can let the felons out.
Next will be a (harder)push by CA leftists to allow felons to vote.
Forget the Mexico border fence. We need a fence around California - and quickly.