Three Strikes Law Research Paper

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In the hopes of reducing crime and criminal behavior, the State of California is always looking for ways to revise the system regarding criminal punishment for habitual offenders. In 1994, the “Three Strikes and You’re Out” law passed on making sentencing tougher for repeat offenders. The law is a sound concept, in theory. The goal focuses on getting repeat offenders off the streets by imprisoning them longer so they do not continue presenting a threat against society. California’s “Three Strikes” law is the focus of much controversy because of the extensive sentencing they mandate. Some offenders receiving lengthy prison terms do not always commit violent or serious felonies, and subsequently enter claims for appeals based on violations of…show more content…
Strike offenses consist of crimes designated as “serious” in the state’s penal code, and they include such felonies as murder, rape, kidnapping, robbery, and residential burglary. In accordance to the provisions of the law, it states offenders obtaining one previous strike offense lose eligibility for probation, and sentencing is double the usual punishment upon conviction of any second felony. Offenders gaining two prior strike offenses also lose eligibility for probation, and must be sentenced upon conviction of any third…show more content…
One of those cases is the one of Leandro Andrade. Leandro was a US Army veteran and father of three children but he was addicted to heroin, he had his run-ins with the law, as a drug addict he committed some residential burglaries years past but none involved violence. On November 4, 1995, Leandro stole five videotapes from a K-mart store in Ontario, California. Two weeks later he stole four videotapes from another K-mart store in Montclair, California. As results of his previous convictions Leandro was convicted and sentence to 50 years for these two crimes under the three strikes law. Ninth Circuit District Judge Paez wrote “calling the sentence "so grossly disproportionate to his crime that it violates the Eighth Amendment of the United States Constitution."” (John) On May 13, 1997 the California Court of Appeals affirmed the

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