The Drug War Chronicle details sentencing reforms adopted by Kentucky this month to help address the fiscal problems exacerbated by a growing prison population. The new law changes possession of up to an ounce of marijuana from a Class A misdemeanor, punishable by up to a year in jail, to a Class B misdemeanor, which carries a maximum penalty of 45 days. More important, the Chronicle reports, people caught with small amounts of marijuana or other drugs will be subject to "presumptive probation," meaning "they will get probation unless judges can offer a compelling reason why they should go to prison." Low-level dealing—involving less than four grams of cocaine, two grams of heroin or methamphetamine, or 10 doses of other drugs—also has been downgraded, from a Class C felony (which triggers a prison sentence of five to 10 years) to a Class D felony (which carries a sentence of one to five years). "Although crime rates have remained steady or dropped," the Chronicle notes, "Kentucky's prison population has increased fourfold in the past two decades, from 5,000 in 1990 to more than 20,000 now. Drug offenders account for 25% of the prison population, but 38% of inmates admitted since 2000."
Kamala Harris Does Not Understand Why the Constitution Should Get in the Way of Her Gun Control Agenda
The presidential contender conspicuously fails to explain the legal basis for her plan to impose new restrictions by executive fiat.
This is bending the Lanham Act until it nearly breaks
The black market still dominates. And more enforcement and fines aren’t going to fix it.
The "assault weapons" that the presidential contender wants to confiscate are not especially deadly, but the symbolism of that policy is poisonous.