First-Time Drug Offenders Fill Mass.Prisons!

First-Time Drug Offenders Fill Mass.Prisons!
Posted by FoM on January 18, 1999 at 08:16:07 PT

   More than 84 percent of Massachusetts prisoners serving mandatory sentences for drug offenses are first-time offenders, according to data released by the Massachusetts Department of Corrections to the Boston Globe.
   The Boston Globe reported that 8 out of every 10 drug offenders in Massachusetts prisons are serving an average sentence of about five years for their first offense -- nearly one year longer than the average state sentence for a violent crime. For the most part, they are drug users at the bottom of the supply chain, not the big time dealers mandatory sentencing laws were intended to catch. They are also overwhelmingly Hispanic and black.   Massachusetts Superior Court Judge Robert Barton told the Globe, "I have sat [before a] criminal [court] for 20 years and I have never had a really top dealer before me. Invariably they are street dealers or mules who end up taking up jail space. Most do more time than those who commit crimes of violence against another person."   Representative Thomas Finneran, the Massachusetts House speaker, says reform of mandatory sentences is not a soft-on-crime issue and plans to make it a centerpiece of next year's legislative session. "One-size-fits-all solutions designed by a legislative body that sits far away from the instance of a specific case do not make sense. This is a battleground that will develop in 1999."
Home Comment Email Register Recent Comments Help

Comment #1 posted by betty on August 05, 2000 at 14:42:16 PT
marajuna first affenders 
my 19 year old son was charged with intent to distribute when he was accused of owning 2- 2inch plants he has been on probation for over a year and much cout and lawywrs fees along with pee test payments and drug counciling payments what a mess but theres more! well time will tell after the next court date whwther this once happy go lucky good natured young man goes to jail next month it would be to bad for society because he is a hard working productive basically honest member of society god bless america!
[ Post Comment ]

Post Comment

Name: Optional Password: 
Comment: [Please refrain from using profanity in your message]
Link URL: 
Link Title: