Sheriff Ian Parkinson opposes federal order to release 10,000 state prisoners

ppemberton@thetribunenews.comJune 21, 2013 

Sheriff Ian Parkinson opposes a federal panel’s order to release 10,000 prisoners in the state by the end of the year, according to the sheriff’s office.

Parkinson supports Gov. Jerry Brown’s decision to appeal the order rendered by a 3-judge federal panel, according to a statement issued by Tony Cipolla, public information officer for the sheriff’s office.

Thursday, the panel ordered immediate compliance of its 2009 mandate to reduce the state’s prison population to 137.5 percent of capacity. In the 2009 order, adopted by the U.S. Supreme Court, the judges ruled that health care in the prison system is so bad, it’s unconstitutional. The cause of poor health care, they concluded, was overcrowded conditions.

At the time, the inmate population was around 150,000 with the design capacity of prisons around 80,000.

The court’s order would require the state expand the use of good-time credit to cut the inmate population. Such a move, the judges maintain, would trim the prison terms of some inmates by several months without posing a threat to the public.

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