The Law Offices of Thomas Mueller Articles Does the Three Strikes Law Really Prevent Crime?

Does the Three Strikes Law Really Prevent Crime?

By Thomas F. Mueller  Jul. 25, 2011 3:58p

According to a recent editorial, the Three Strikes Law enacted in 1994 may have nothing to do with a decrease in California crime rates. Often in the face of economic downturns there is an increase in a variety of criminal offenses such as thefts, fraudulent activities and others.

Nevertheless, and while somewhat counter intuitive, crime rates have decreased despite the nation's economic woes. California's 2010 homicide rate was the lowest it has been in 44 years with no clear data indicating that this drop was due to the harsh stance on third strike crimes. This brings up the important question: is the severe Three Strikes Law really necessary? 

In an overloaded penal system in which prisons are practically bursting at the seams and with a state recidivism rate of 70 percent, many argue that more energy and resources should be put into rehabilitation. Job training, education and more community centers could be the solution for reducing a variety of crimes and effectively salvaging individuals and helping them become valuable members of society rather than stealing years of their lives by sentencing them to hard time in overcrowded prisons.

About the Three Strikes Law and Its Serious Consequences

It was thought that this law would assist in reducing violent crime by "making an example" of repeat offenders. There are many shortcomings to this law, however, including the fact that a non-violent crime could result in a 25-year to life sentence.

Per ยง3559(c) of the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act, an individual convicted of a felony could receive life imprisonment if he or she has been previously convicted for two or more felonies - including a violent felony of a particularly serious nature. Unfortunately, this law could result in severe punishment unequal to the alleged offence.

For example, if an individual has priors on their record counting as two strikes against them, a third non-violent offense which could be considered either a misdemeanor or a felony ("wobblers") has the possibility of being counted as a third strike crime.

San Jose Third Strikes Crime Lawyer

At the Law Office of Thomas Mueller, they are proud to represent clients who find themselves facing charges that could result in a third strike conviction. When you or a loved one could be spending the rest of their life in state or federal prison, you need strong, experienced representation from a San Jose criminal defense lawyer that will do everything possible to get the results you need. We understand what our clients are going through in such a serious situation and how important a positive outcome is - so don't wait, call today!

Contact a San Jose three strikes crime attorney at the firm today to see what may be done for your case!

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