Mandatory minimum sentences

Gants v Conley: Time for a real debate?

The Boston Globe delivered an editorial spanking to Suffolk County District Attorney Daniel Conley over the weekend for questioning the political activity of Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph Gants. Gants has been leading the charge for doing away with mandatory minimum sentencing in most cases, an issue that the Globe editorial page is also(...)

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Sentencing commission backs repeal of mandatory minimums

Sentencing commission backs repeal of mandatory minimums

Votes add to push for more sweeping criminal justice reform

IN ANOTHER SIGN of support for broad criminal justice reform, the Massachusetts Sentencing Commission voted to recommend abolition of mandatory minimum sentences for all crimes except murder. The move comes as state leaders are split on the best way to revamp criminal justice policies. At a Jan. 18 meeting of the sentencing commission, members voted(...)

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Activists interrupt criminal justice meeting

Activists interrupt criminal justice meeting

Advocates worried reform bill won’t address sentencing issues

CHANTING “JOBS NOT JAIL,” advocates for criminal justice reform briefly disrupted the final meeting of a state criminal justice policy commission today, part of a growing chorus of voices expressing concern that state leaders are preparing to put forward legislation that won’t include major changes to sentencing laws. The protest came as advocates and lawmakers(...)

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Bishops press Beacon Hill for criminal justice reform   

Bishops press Beacon Hill for criminal justice reform  

Catholic leaders urge end to mandatory minimum drug sentences, other changes

THE STATE’S FOUR Catholic bishops are adding their voices to those calling for the Legislature to take up a comprehensive criminal justice reform bill when lawmakers reconvene for a new session next month. In a letter sent last week to state leaders, the bishops urged adoption of “comprehensive thoughtful reforms” that can “reduce recidivism and(...)

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Mapping incarceration in Boston

Mapping incarceration in Boston

Study finds minority neighborhoods burdened by high jail rates

LARGE SWATHS OF mostly minority Boston neighborhoods are so heavily affected by the criminal justice system that nearly every street has a resident who has spent time in jail, a concentration of incarceration that is costing millions of dollars and threatening the social fabric of neighborhoods already struggling with high rates of poverty and other(...)

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We need to reverse course on mandatory minimums

We need to reverse course on mandatory minimums

Sentences discriminate and don't improve public safety

AT LAST MONTH’S second annual Massachusetts Criminal Justice Reform Summit, we heard two opposing views on the public safety impact of mandatory sentences for drug offenders. One camp, represented by Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph Gants, held that the practice has been a costly failure, with particularly dire consequences for minority communities. The other(...)

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