A Sheriff in Los Angeles County has released 4,276 inmates from a county jail in hopes to slow or prevent the outbreak from taking over the jail. But, now he’s concerned that there might be a “future surge of crime” with so many inmates being released at once.
Despite the fact that most of the inmates were said to be non-violent, one must remember that someone who is released from prison who has nowhere to go, no family to call, will often resort back to crime to survive out of necessity. Some criminals don’t have many options when they’re released, which states the case for developing programs that help non-violent criminals transition from prison back to the workplace and being a contributing member of society.
Bill Melugin of Fox LA stated, “LA County Sheriff tells me he has released 4,276 nonviolent inmates from county jail, which equates to 25% of the inmate population. He says it’s been effective in preventing spread of #COVID19, with only 11 inmates infected, but now fears a possible surge in crime. 10pm”
Melugin continued, saying “The Sheriff says LASD was the first department in the country to do this, starting in late February, and only dangerous criminals are still in the jail, including 1,200 charged with murder. For that reason, no more releases, and a doubling up on deputy patrols.
The Sheriff admits some of the pre-trial detainees will not show up for their court dates, and felony warrants will end up being issued for them to re arrest. “We were faced with a choice, if we left the jail system overpopulated, the pandemic would have swept through easily.”
Releasing inmates from prisons has been heavily criticized as many claim it puts the public in danger.
In fact, there has already been a situation where one released inmate was involved in attacking someone in public, therefore making the complaint about putting people in danger from the inmates as a valid case.
In this case, a man released from a halfway house, as a result of the virus, has already been arrested after attacking a woman.
He tied her up and threatened her with a knife.