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What was once an overcrowded system is now losing thousands in just two months and you can thank the coronavirus pandemic for that.
Since the pandemic has taken over, California prisons and jails have let thousands of inmates out on early release in order to help with crowding and space issues inside.
State data show California’s prisons have released about 3,500 inmates while the daily jail population across 58 counties is down by 20,000 from late February.
Inmates have been caught purposely trying to catch the virus, so they could be let out on early release but why?
There are skim job opportunities, governments are shut down, and the economy is collapsed. It isn't exactly the perfect time to want to start over and get your life back on track.
The state isn't doing anything to help these inmates either.
“People are continuously getting out. … Where are those folks going?” said Jay Jordan, executive director of Californians For Safety & Justice, a nonprofit criminal justice reform group. “Seventy-five percent of people getting out of prison right now have no plan. Nowhere to go.”
But then there's the flip side, if counties did not release inmates from their jails and prisons there is no doubt the virus would spread even more inside.
“It would be very difficult if we did nothing, and left all 17,000 inmates in, to contain the spread of this disease,” said Dist. Atty. Jackie Lacey.
The state is left in a tricky situation for something that inevitably can't be stopped.
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