Los Angeles County Jail and overcrowding.
According to a recent news report in the Los Angeles Times, The Los Angeles Sheriffs Department is considering closing part of the antiquated Mens Central Jail in downtown Los Angeles. The plan would be to house male inmates in the Lynwood facility which presently allows only female inmates. In addition, there would be an increased emphasis on early release of inmates convicted of non-violent offenses, by giving them the option of serving the balance of their sentence by way of electronic home confinement or "house arrest".
Non-violent inmates would include those convicted of aDUI in Los Angeles. Second and third time DUI offenders face up to a maximum of twelve months in county jail. Inmates convicted of non-violent misdemeanors are often released early in any event. If part of mens central jail was closed, the overcrowding problem would get even worse resulting in more and more early releases.
The overcrowding situation has resulted in some DUI offenders opting to elect for county jail time instead of negotiating for alternatives such as SCRAM, Caltrans, electronic home confinement or private jail. The problem for many is that there are no guarantees of early release. When you enter the county jail system, you are at the mercy of the Los Angeles County Sheriffs Department. Unlucky inmates serve half of their sentence or more. County jail can be a brutal environment and can be a very negative experience. At Gold & Witham, we work hard to avoid any kind of incarceration for our repeat offenders and instead focus on rehabilitation and treatment of underlying issues. After all, the best way to avoid any further repeat offending is to address the underlying issues of stress and alcoholism that led to the defendant commiting a second or third DUI.