An argument against mandatory minimum drug sentences

Tyler — Life in prison for possessing 13 sheets of LSD. The crack to powder cocaine punishment disparity is These defendants, and others like them, occupy a space at the deadly intersection of illicit drugs and violent crime.

The law requires that courts must set a minimum term before they become eligible for parole. Mandatory minimum sentences can surely be unjust.

They never had to decide the issue since the defense was appealing a guilty plea and such a plea is an admission of every element necessary to satisfy the offense. The objective of mandatory minimum sentences is making the consequences of committing crimes less beneficial than the perceived rewards.

Cindy, the one who pays the highest price, was not a mastermind behind a drug empire, she was simply in the wrong place at the wrong time. A Growing Problem, Sentencing Project The appellate court felt that since the only way a sentence can be given under the minimum is after the prosecution has filed a downward departure motion, and because the prosecution never filed this motion, the mandatory minimum sentence must be instituted.

While supporters say that it decreases crime and remove sympathy or bias from the litigation process, opponents argue that it unfairly targets minority groups in the US, destroying families and homes, as well as creating an institution where citizens are more likely to commit crimes in the future.

The Court founded this belief upon common law tenets. The measure also seeks to reduce recidivism with a "justice reinvestment" approach that would establish a trust fund with money saved from the proposed reforms.

The author argues that police routinely stop black and latino motorists on the pretext of violating minor infractions which are routinely overlooked when whites are involved. They help eliminate personal bias. Meierhoefer, in her report for the Federal Judicial Center stated: In addition, once stopped, blacks are disproportionately more likely to be arrested by police than similarly detained whites.

In the United Statesmandatory death sentences have been unconstitutional since Woodson v. In Indiamurder committed by a convict serving a life sentence carries a mandatory death sentence. They would unfairly target minority groups.

Department of Justice August No legislation is perfect, but mandatory minimum sentence laws destroy families and communities — there is no reason Cindy, who poses no risk to society, should have to raise her daughters remotely over the phone. This writer concluded mandatory minimum penalties are inconsistent with a fair and effective sentencing system and the sentencing guidelines.

When prosecutors apply discretion, they tend to invoke sentencing disparities when choosing among a variety of statutes with different sentencing consequences. In Hong Kongmurder carried a mandatory death sentence until when capital punishment was legally abolished. Each country has its own mandatory sentencing laws, and several crimes such as offenses involving drugs, guns, and pornography come with their own mandatory minimum sentences.

In addition, he argues judges should be given more autonomy in their ability to sentence so they may craft specific punishments for particular defendants and create a solution which is best for all parties.

This report indicated that in8. Then the mandatory minimum will not be applied. Life imprisonment is only mandatory in the other states for aircraft hijacking or with a minimum non-parole period of 20 years 25 years in South Australia and the Northern Territory if a criminal is convicted of the murder of a police officer or public official.

The mandatory minimums give judges far little room to maneuver and most dare not challenge their application. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. In one occasion, a desperate mother of four was once paid USD to mail an unknown package to someone that contained hundreds of grams of crack cocaine, and the judge sentenced her to 10 years in prison, as the law dictated what had to be done even though the judge felt it unjust and irrational.

In fact, a survey showed that almost 80 percent of Americans agreed to the elimination of mandatory sentencing laws. Because sentences are based on drug quantity, a street level dealer and the leader of a drug cartel could receive similar sentences.

They prevent personal bias from getting in the way of justice. This, in turn, greatly contributes to the high incarceration rates of African-Americans and promotes a culture of fear, low self-esteem, and distrust of authorities among them.

Three strikes law InCalifornia introduced a "three strikes law", which was the first mandatory sentencing law to gain widespread publicity.

Federal drug prosecutions leveled off for the first time in a decade in This negative police attitude towards blacks is undoubtedly over 1.Booker mandatory minimum penalties on federal sentencing by the United States Sentencing Commission. [15] [ clarification needed ] InUnited States Attorney General Eric H.

Holder, Jr. announced that the Justice Department would follow a new policy restricting mandatory minimum sentences in certain drug cases. In drug cases, mandatory minimum sentences are also often insensitive to factors that could make incapacitation more effective, such as prior criminal history.

Jun 10,  · Lawmakers on Beacon Hill took up the issue of mandatory minimum prison sentences for drug offenses Tuesday with a packed public hearing on the long-debated issue. Critics of mandatory sentences say they crowd prisons with people who really need treatment, not incarceration.

Proponents say the mandatory sentences act as a deterrent for crime. The Effect of Mandatory Minimum Sentencing on Black Males and Black Communities This case reflects the appellate court's unwillingness to affirm a drug sentence below the mandatory minimum unless the prosecutor files a downward departure motion.

But the court did leave some room for a potential innovative argument by defense counsel for.

The Sentence

List of Cons of Mandatory Minimum Sentences. 1.

Arguement Against Minimum Drug Sentencing

They can be an unfair, one-size-fits-all solution. The premise surrounding mandatory minimum sentences is that judges have no choice but to award the same minimum punishment to everyone who commits the same crime, without taking their individual circumstances into account.

A powerful DIY film cobbled together from testimonials, iPhone videos, and home movies, Rudy Valdez's personal documentary The Sentence explores the personal toll of mandatory minimum drug sentences on a family.

Cindy, the one who pays the highest price, was not a mastermind behind a drug empire, she was simply in the.

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An argument against mandatory minimum drug sentences
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