Re "Voters should OK modification of 'three strikes' " (Editorials, Oct. 4): Thirty years working in our prisons can provide a reasonable idea of what sentences are fair to the public, victims and offenders. Proposition 36 keeps life sentences for dangerous criminals like rapists, murderers and child molesters, and requires life sentences when a defendant's current conviction is a violent or serious felony. Also, it allows those sentenced to life for non-violent petty crimes to petition for re-sentencing and be subject to twice the normally prescribed sentence.
Our respect for the "rule of law" rests on the premise of fairness to all. No victim of a petty crime could reasonably argue a life term to be a fair sentence. Simple math reveals that eliminating a $50,000 per year cost per inmate produces tax savings. Prop. 36 is right for California.
-- Hector Lozano, Copperopolis
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