Mar 13, 2012

Roraback Renews Push for Repeal of Early Release Policy

As much as I obviously disagree with Senator Roraback's stance re the Death Penalty, I truly respect his unwavering commitment and tenacity in refusing to vote for a repeal of the DP, unless a separate bill that gives violent felons early release is withdrawn.  I admire Mr. Roraback for stating the truth about the realities of this early release program and boldly stating that he will not vote for a bill that is in effect telling victims of violent crime and their families, the judicial system lied to you when they gave the person who victimized you their sentence.

Whether that sentence was arrived at via a plea bargain or a jury trial (the latter is much rarer in this state unless it is murder)  the adjudication of any violent crime in Connecticut is extremely time consuming and emotionally draining for victims and/or their families.

Attending on average a years worth of hearings and continuances - this in  cases that are plea bargained, a victim and or their family members must see the person that committed often brutal crimes against them or their loved ones at monthly court appearances  Sticking with the process, cooperating with the prosecutors, despite the  traumatization, the fear and any physical seleleque of the crimes themselves, all takes a great deal of courage:  As such, when a victim of violent crime actually goes through all of this, many times the motive being to spare others from becoming future victims of the defendant, the least the state of Connecticut can do is actually ensure that the convicted offender actually serves whatever sentence he or she receives from the court.  As it is 97 percent of these cases are plea dealed which means that the sentences are lower than they should be to begin with, as plea deals involve lowering certain charges and dismissing/dropping others entirely. This is not done because of any lack of proof or weakness of a case, it is simply done out of course, a quick administrative type of approach to "justice" where compromise is key.

Well that "compromise" compromises the victim of these crimes, as well as future victims by leaving these violent offenders with criminal record's that do not reflect the severity of the crimes that they actually committed. As well the accompanying sentence for a violent crime charge is considerably less for say a class a misdemeanor than it would be for a class d felony, and a drop like this is commonplace in plea deals made by prosecutors every day across this state, worse in courts that reside in city's with high crime.ratios.

Now our Governor wants to make what are already watered down and arduously garnered sentences even lighter. No doubt, like the death penalty repeal, saving money is once again the motivation for this felon - friendly program. While putting price tags on our citizens lives is morally repugnant in and of itself, the fact is that repealing the death penalty and allowing violent offenders out of prison early will not save the state money in the long run. But this is another Post for another day.
Suffice to say that as a survivor of violent crime, I am disgusted by our Governor and his yes-men, both in and out side of the legislature, for trying to slide this dangerous policy past the people of Connecticut.

I am also surprised and disappointed that Senator Roraback would seem to be the only legislator this appalled and this vocal regarding the early release program, especially when considering that a very similar early release parole program contributed to a series of  horrible murders in 2007, each crime committed by questionably paroled repeat offenders. .

I do agree wholeheartedly with Roraback's assertion that  the two bills are inexorably linked and therefore his refusal to vote for a repeal of the death penalty if the early release program is approved -is very sound.  He states rather aptly that he  cannot put his name to repealing the death penalty even though in theory he's opposed to the DP,  when AT THE VERY SAME TIME a separate policy on the table would put our States citizens in clear danger from  this same group of violent felons and would be murderers, as well as betraying the victims of violent crimes and their family's, by cutting down sentences that have already been handed down by Connecticut courts.
Roraback Renews Push for Repeal of Early Release Policy | Capitol Watch

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