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State Senate passes bill to ease jail crowding

The state Senate approved a measure today aimed at easing overcrowding in Los Angeles County jails.

Sheriff Lee Baca sought the proposal, which would allow sheriffs to transfer low-level felons from jails to home detention, where they would be tracked with electronic ankle bracelets.

Sheriffs already have the authority to order misdemeanor offenders to home detention; the new measure would expand that authority.

"If inmates sentenced to low-level felonies in county jails are added [to home detention], we can better control our population and create much-needed room for the more serious offenders," said Assemblyman Mike Davis (D-Los Angeles), author of the bill, AB 1369.

Some lawmakers who supported the expanded powers for sheriffs had blocked a move to give the same powers to the head of the state prison system.

The bill returns to the Assembly for approval of technical changes. It then goes to the governor, who has not taken a public position on it. 

-- Patrick McGreevy in Sacramento

Comments () | Archives (3)

Yet another feeble attempt by Sheriff Lee Baca to address the neverending dilemna of over-crowding in LA County Jails... It is obvious Lee Baca is quick to point the finger in any direction but his own because he values his image more than the real problem. 'Home-Detention' will be unsuccessful because anyone who has been in the LA County Jail, knows damn well that the root of the problem is how slow the processing inside is, the common loss/misplacement of paperwork, files, blood samples, lack of overall organization and failure to monitor inmates status'. Many should be released sooner but 'fall through the cracks' because of how poorly the Jail itself is being ran. Some post bail and are let out 2 days later. This is not a pessimistic view, just a realist fact observed by a person who has first-hand knowledge of how poorly-operated the LA County Jail is in Lynwood, CA. Lee Baca should pay more attention to the hiring practices of under-qualified, poorly-trained, unstable individuals as jailers that shuffle paper work to the bottom whenever they please to play favorites, keeping inmates in jail longer than is fair nor required. Once there are more qualified jailers/staff working in the jail, the result will be less claims filed against one of the most notoriously corrupt Sheriff Dept's in California, and less county money spent to lawsuits and claims filed by inmates would benefit the county immensely. Until Lee Baca realizes the root of the problem starts with him, his Sheriff Deputies, and the jailers themseleves, no inmate will be released on home detention. I, a first time offender, was kept for 3 days on a DUI charge in March. What a misallocation of county resources and jail space! In Dublin, CA, the Alameda County Sheriff Dept releases DUI offenders, even repetitive ones, after they appear to be sober which can be within hours. LA should look to Alameda as an example of how to operate. Shame on Lee Baca and all the Sheriff Deputies for spewing false solutions that they don't even plan to enforce or practice!! Smells like a publicity ploy....

I now live in Texas we don't send felons home at all, a felony is a high level crime. So what are you going to do with your high level misdemeanors? keep them. Remember a felony is considered an upper level crime, be careful who you send home, don't send career crims. home so they can reunite with their crime buddies!

With little or no work available for people without criminal records. You now want to open the jail doors and turn the criminals out in to the streets.


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