CA Three-Strikers’ Fate Under Reform Varies by County, May Take A Year


How fast California lifers get a resentencing hearing before a judge under the three-strikes reform approved by voters this week, and if they get out early at all, is likely to depend on where they were convicted, reports the San Jose Mercury News. The movement on cases might go more slowly in conservative places like the Central Valley, while in relatively liberal Los Angeles County and the San Francisco Bay Area, things might move along more efficiently.

“We’re probably less likely to see the DA acquiesce on petitions for release or resentencing in many cases,” said Kern County’s interim chief public defender, Konrad Moore. Jeff Adachi, San Francisco’s public defender and a spokesman for the California Public Defenders Association, estimated it will take six months to a year in most counties. Santa Clara County is nearly ready. The county’s acting public defender, Molly O’Neal, has drawn up a list of 127 three-strikers who may be eligible to apply for a shorter sentence or early release. “I hope we begin getting people out before the end of the year,” O’Neal said. “This will right an unfairness in the system dating from (1994) when Three Strikes was passed.”

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