Sheriff Will Monitor Parolees That State Won't

The union representing Los Angeles Police Department officers made a rare move this week in praising the Sheriff's Department for stating it would essentially do the job of the state and monitor those convicts set free under state parole reform.

" ... We thank Sheriff Lee Baca," reads a statement from the Los Angeles Police Protective League. " ... Under the new law, the Department of Corrections is washing their hands of these inmates."

State parole reform, designed to save money and relieve prison overcrowding, could put 6,500 inmates back on the streets in Los Angeles County. Such "non-revocable parolees'' will go scot-free, without having to check in with probation officers, with the only caveat being that they must submit to warrant-less searches if law officers happen to come across them and happen to want to search them.

The Sheriff's Department, however, has stated it will, in fact, keep tabs on county parolees who are released or whose status is transferred to non-revocable parole. That will put a strain on county resources, though.

County Supervisor Mike Antonovich said the extra work will entail "taking our law enforcement personnel, who should be out fighting gangs ... to do the state's mothering of these parolees."

The LAPPL, meanwhile, argues that the parole reform program will halve the time most felons spend in prison, reduce the time county inmate serve, and "gut" rehabilitation and education programs.

"A tidal wave of prisoners is being released back into our community without rehabilitation services or parole supervision," states the union.

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