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Blog Post #7 – California Victim’s Voice

Victim’s and Survivors Direct Appeal to the California Supreme Court

Recently the California Supreme Court rejected several of Governor Brown’s pardons and clemency of violent criminals. The Court has authority and a final “say so “of the Governor’s actions under it’s “abuse of power” authority.

I hope this is a realization by the Court that violent and career criminals must stay in prison as long as the sentence requires and are not to be released by a Governor’s whim or personal philosophy of justice and punishment.

Under the law, convicts can submit a request for pardon or clemency directly to the Governor. The Governor can grant the request. The Parole Board standards for release are more lenient then ever since the government policy now is to release as many convicts as possible, empty the prisons. The Supreme Court will scrutinize these actions for “abuse of power” by the Governor and Parole Board.

The Victims and Survivors:  What are our rights in this new, lenient system. We can write letters to the parole boards and the Governor. But the deck is stacked against us when the major concern boils down to “will the convict become a good citizen upon release.”

Recommendation:  Our Marsy’s rights must be expanded to allow victims and survivors the right to directly petition and/or address the Court to reject the Governor’s approval. The Court must consider the crime and its affects on the victim and survivors.

Victims and survivors have a powerful voice—but only if we use it with our legislators, family and friends, media, social and civic contacts.

 

Jack Reilley         October 28, 2019   Blog # 7