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Thousands of prison inmates are being released into local communities


According to California Board of State and Community Corrections (BSCC) data, thousands of prisoners were released early into local communities as a result of the California Public Safety Realignment Act (AB 109) and related state laws including Propositions 47 and 57, which reduced various felonies to misdemeanors, decreased prosecutions of parole violations, and shifted 35,000 inmates to local county jails.

This caused significant overcrowding in the local jails, which were not equipped to handle the rehabilitation, medical, and mental health care of long-term inmates, forcing an early release of approximately 162,000 prisoners back into the community in 2013, 96,000 in 2014 after the passage of Proposition 47, and 72,000 in 2016 after the passage of Proposition 57.

Also, in Los Angeles County, which houses a quarter of California's jail population, male inmates are often released after serving as little as 10% of their sentences and female prisoners after 5%, and individuals arrested for parole violations are in many cases are released and never prosecuted. These efforts were projected to save California $1.5 billion by 2015-16. However, as a result of insufficient rehabilitation, medical and mental health treatment, and reentry efforts many of the prisoners released early recommit crimes and return to prison - and the state budget, number of prisoners, and incidents of crime and homelessness continued to grow.

According to FBI and U.S. Department of Justice data, Los Angeles saw double-digit percentage increases in violent crimes, and California's overall violent crime rate increased by 3.7%, according to a Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) report. In June 2013, a few months after Dustin James Kinnear, 26, was released from prison