Dan Walters

Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
Published: Tuesday, Jul. 23, 2013 – 12:00 am | Page 3A
Last Modified: Tuesday, Jul. 23, 2013 – 6:49 am

California’s four living former governors have filed a brief with the U.S. Supreme Court in support of current Gov. Jerry Brown’s plea for relief from a court order to drop the state’s prison population by nearly 10,000 more inmates.

But while trying to support Brown they – wittingly or otherwise – have joined critics of realignment, one of Brown’s proudest achievements.

Brown claims that he’s done enough to reduce prison overcrowding through realignment – diverting low-level offenders into local jails and supervision – and that any further reductions could imperil the public by releasing dangerous felons from confinement.

The former governors back Brown, saying that such releases would cause “grave and irreparable harm from increased crime.” As evidence, they cite an uptick in crime during 2012, the first full year of realignment.

Their brief was written by the anti-realignment Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, using its analysis of FBI crime reports that were issued in early June covering the state’s cities with over 100,000 population.

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