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Monday, April 22, 2013
Sue Reams, California's Three Strikes Law
One person we can thank for overturning this heinous law is Sue Reams. Sue campaigned to change California's Three Strikes Law and help set free her son, Shane Reams, free. Her son, was sentenced to a minimum of 25 years in prison for being involved in the $20 sale of crack-cocaine. A drug far less pure than cocaine and far more punishable by law. When news of her son's conviction hit, she went into action. She began to campaign to have the Three Strikes Law overturned. She campaigned vigorously, writing senators and members of congress, petitioning, attending hearings, doing anything she could to bring attention to this imbalance. Change didn't come overnight, however.
Sue Reams' son, Shane, served 17 of his 25 year minimum sentence. During his time in prison, Shane was forced to join a prison gang. He saw and participated in things he should have never been exposed to, especially in our prison system. A better fit for Shane's situation would have been sentencing Shane to a drug counseling program in lieu of a lengthy prison sentence. This is the argument Sue has campaigned on for 17 years. Finally, during the fall of 2012, her prayers were answered.
Today, drug counseling programs and gang prevention programs will have their chance to take a bite out of crime. Dealing with the source of the problem, rather than the problem itself, can produce fruitful results in the form of rehabilitated and functional members of society. This will hopefully result in less prisons and prisoners.
Click here to listen to Sue's interview with NPR as she talks about her impressive mission and victory. Contact San Jose Criminal Defense Attorney if you have been charged with a criminal matter.