Some police and victim advocates claim a recent court ruling could lead to the early release of many violent and sex offenders, reports the Times Herald.
The case involves Gregory Gadlin, serving 35 years to life for assault with a deadly weapon. He was also convicted previously of forcible rape in 1984 and forcible child molestation in 1986.
The 2nd District Court of Appeals ruled in January that Gadlin should be considered for early release under terms of Proposition 57, the voter- approved initiative aimed at reducing prison overcrowd- ing, the Feb. 1 story noted.
“The ruling means more sex offenders and violent criminals will be applying for early release back into our neighborhoods,” Paul Kelly, president of the San Jose Police Officers Association, told the Times Herald.
In November 2017, Gadlin petitioned the Superior Court, challenging CDCR’s application of Proposition 57, which excluded him from early parole consideration. The court denied the petition, but the appellate court reversed the denial.
The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) maintained Gadlin was a third-strike offender and a registered sex offender and both factors make him in- eligible for early release under Proposition 57.
Proposition 57, which passed in 2016, allowed prison officials to decide which non-violent felonies could be reduced to misdemeanors (under Proposition 47).
The court concluded that CDCR’s interpretation and application of Proposition 57 does not override the “plain text of the initiative,” which reads “Any person convicted of a nonviolent felony offense and sentenced to state prison shall be eligible for parole consideration after completing the full term for his or her primary offense.”
“The regulations promulgated by the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) are unconstitutional as applied to bar early parole consideration based on two prior sex offenses committed in the 1980s for which petitioner Gadlin has already been imprisoned and released.”