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For those in States with "Three Strike" Laws

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Got in a hot debate last night about how to react to the recent fatal shooting of a police officer by a career criminal...


32 year veteran of a local PD, shot to death by a 57 year old armed robber (also killed in the exchange). Robber had 70 (yep, 70) entries on his rap sheet, and had been serving THREE life sentences (for crimes including armed robbery, assualt with intent to murder, and a variety of gun charges) when he was PAROLED. Parole Board was impressed that he had learned to use computers, taken a Toastmasters' class, etc.


Another local chief is quoted as saying that the Board needs to learn that the best indicator of the likelihood of future criminal activity is frequency of past criminal activity. Others are arguing that MA had a 78% success rate with non-violating releasees last year, far better than the national average, and proof that criminals can change and become contributing citizens again.


My problem is with the extremity of this guys' record. At some point (like after 30 or 40 offenses, for crying out loud...) the likelihood of rehabilitation just seems to be wholly outweighed by the risk to the public, and particularly to cops, of a released violent offender - and I don't care whether he's an effective public speaker or not.


Which brings me to my question....if your state has a "three strikes" law, where repeat offenders, after a certain number of convictions, lose their parole rights....how is that working out? Does it lower the apparent level of repeat criminals? Does it dissuade criminals from repeating? Does it keep the really bad guys where they belong? Does it produce unreasonably harsh results in certain cases?


I raised it as a potential solution for this kind of problem, and I was met with screams of indignation and the suggestion that my views on the penal system were 100 years behind the times (that may be a compliment - I'm not sure.)


Any input appreciated.



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I'll wager that not one of those howlers-in-protest have ever been the victim of a serious property crime or violent crime. I'll further wager that that few if any of them even live in areas where such crimes occur.

I worked in the D.C. prison system for 27 years+ and I believe in the "3 Strikes And You're Out" concept. "3 Strikes And You're Dead" might be even better. Virginia doesn't have a 3 Strikes law, but we did do away with parole some years ago. The time one gets is the time one does, minus any time off for good behavior.

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Well, I am not a lawyer, and I never played one on TV, and Washington State has the law.

That said, I guess I don't have a lot of sympathy for law breakers. Given my way, three strikes and you get an introduction to the lethal injection process. If that makes me a bad

person, I guess that is what I am.


Breaking the law is a choice. Break the laws of nature and it can very often be fatal.

Why should we as creatures of nature, do otherwise. In my opinion it cleans the gene pool.

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It should have been 3 strikes and your DEAD! Period end of story..You can't belive the money corporations like AT$T make off of these repeat offenders.The the system itself is run like a school,the more heads ya have the more fed money they get,repeat offenders have ten heads or more..Another thing to watch for is soldiers(?) marrying gals before they deploy so they get more money and then even more money if and when they go to Afganastan,they send thier wives a debit card(with momas name on it) and send all the money to thier momas to save,then tell the gals to shove off when they come home..Hey mom where's my money...?

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I have a problem with all the bleeding hearts people.

I can't stand the "If this law stops just one person from committing a crime." attitude.

Deterrents! .....Hog Wash!

I don't want laws written to deter anyone.

I want laws that punish the person who does break the law.

If the person is caught, tried and convicted, they serve the full sentence.

Get that person off the street and worry about the next bad guy when it happens.


The three strikes law in California was a good idea until the politicians started their "I can do it one better." It started out as three violent crimes and ended up being just about any crime at all. This overpopulated our prisons. Now we have early release for all three strikers. Doesn't seem to matter that some are violent offenders.


What happened to hanging horse thieves? Car thieves and carjackers are just modern day horse thieves.

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Where I live, we don't have near as much "big time" crime as some others (few murders for example). That is however changing, as statistically we have almost twice as many assaults, including sexual assault, per capita than the DOJ says is average. This may be due to the college we have in town (more hormonally excited young people) or our current meth problems (literally a hundred meth houses shut down county wide this year) or the main highway (I-70) that the state patrol says is a major drug and human smuggling route. With that said I think the whole 3 strikes stuff is a farce. My own business was burglarized and vandalized (about $4K damage and loss) last summer and both perpetrators already had a full page of convictions and previous arrests. Even with that history neither had served more than a couple months time for any of their offenses. One was 22 and the other 23. Their juvie records were sealed but the asst DA told me they were very familiar with the two as they had an extensive history with local law enforcement.


Personally I think they are career young criminals turning into career old criminals. If the 3 strikes thing were really in place these two would already be looking at life in prison. Instead I got a letter on Monday saying the DA office would not even be pursuing restitution as they were currently unemployed and unable to pay. (can't get blood from a turnip) :lol:


They were both sentenced to 6 months prison but that was suspended in lieu of 1 year supervised probation. I thought they had to have a job to get into that situation but maybe not. Guess I would not make a very good judge as I think that is a little light.


Also at a guess I would say the OP killer started his career in similar fashion. As have many other scum bags who have played the system since birth.

When will we learn that criminals by definition exist outside the law and treat them as the societal problem they are and will become?







Gateway Kid

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We had two trials a few years back in which both defendants pled guilty.


One guy killed a wild turkey out of season and the other guy killed his wife.


Guess which one did hard time.


Yup, the evil turkey killer.


In the initial post the state was bragging about 78% of their releases being successful.

In my book that means that 22% of the releases commit another crime.

The victims should be allowed to sue the parole board and the judges.

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