D.C. Council Advances Bill Seeking Early Release For People Convicted of Violent Offenses Before Turning 25

D.C. Council Advances Bill Seeking Early Release For People Convicted of Violent Offenses Before Turning 25

The D.C. Council unanimously approved the Second Look Amendment Act on Tuesday. The council will vote on the bill a second time on Dec. 15 before it is sent to Mayor Muriel Bowser. The D.C. Council unanimously voted to approve an omnibus criminal justice reform bill on Tuesday, marking another step toward possible early release for some incarcerated D.C. residents. The council granted initial approval of the Second Look Amendment Act, which would allow convicted felons who committed a violent crime before they turned 25 to petition for early release after they serve 15 years in prison. The legislation builds on the existing Incarceration Reduction Amendment Act, or IRAA, which passed in 2016 and applies to incarcerated felons who committed crimes before they turned 18. Tuesday’s vote came during the first of two legislative meetings this month — the council’s last chance to push through any bills before the session ends and any outstanding bills are tossed out. Since its introduction by Ward 6 Councilmember and chair of the Judiciary Committee Charles Allen in early 2019, the legislation has drawn harsh criticism from prosecutors and local law enforcement officials. The U.S. Attorney for D.C. has strongly opposed the measure, and the Metropolitan Police Department claimed the bill would “provide for the early release of hundreds of violent gun offenders” in a tweet on its official account . The council’s Judiciary Committee voted to advance the bill in late November , with Ward 3 Councilmember Mary Cheh the lone ‘no’ […]

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