Hundreds of Oklahoma inmates being released Monday in largest commutation in U.S. history

Rev. Hellh0und

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Hundreds of Oklahoma inmates being released Monday in largest commutation in U.S. history



More than 400 inmates across Oklahoma were being released from prison Monday in what the governor's office calls the largest single-day mass commutation in the nation's history.

The Oklahoma Pardon and Parole Board approved the commutations Friday and forwarded them to Gov. Kevin Stitt, a former mortgage company CEO who was elected in 2018. The board voted unanimously to recommend that the sentences of 527 state inmates be commuted, with 462 of those inmates slated to walk out of prison Monday and 65 others being held on detainer.


"With this vote, we are fulfilling the will of Oklahomans," Steve Bickley, executive director of the board, said in a statement Friday. "However, from Day One, the goal of this project has been more than just the release of low-level, nonviolent offenders, but the successful re-entry of these individuals back into society."

Stitt, a Republican, has advocated for criminal justice reform, pledging to move away from policies that have made Oklahoma the state with the highest incarceration rate in the country. At a news conference Friday, Stitt hailed the decision to give hundreds of Oklahomans "a second chance."

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over 500 released is a great thing!Is this the start of a wave of states playing more than lip service to prison reform?
 
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Nov 2007
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over 500 released is a great thing!Is this the start of a wave of states playing more than lip service to prison reform?
This isn't the start - it's already begun. Several states have passed reforms recently to bring down the prison population, some of which go further than Oklahoma's. I'm not sure if the claim about this being the 'largest single-day mass commutation' is just wrong, or if it's true on a technicality; but Louisiana's reforms set about 2,000 free at once a couple of years ago.
 

Rev. Hellh0und

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This isn't the start - it's already begun. Several states have passed reforms recently to bring down the prison population, some of which go further than Oklahoma's. I'm not sure if the claim about this being the 'largest single-day mass commutation' is just wrong, or if it's true on a technicality; but Louisiana's reforms set about 2,000 free at once a couple of years ago.
Thanks for the link, i felt like there was another release, i forgot where.

this is all good.
 
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Thanks for the link, i felt like there was another release, i forgot where.

this is all good.
The question, though, is will it continue or is the current trend just a flash in the pan that will be reversed in a few years time? Oklahoma had several other bills in this session aiming at reducing the prison population, with bipartisan support, that were defeated or stalled. It's easy to rally support against sentencing reform with scare stories about criminals; and it's easy to smear your political opponents as 'soft on crime' if they support these reforms. We just saw exactly that here with the silly thread about California's sentencing reforms.
 

Ian Jeffrey

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Was there any specific crime(s) for which they were commuted, or just a general thing?

Hopefully such a trend will help put an end to private prisons.
 
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Between Constitutional Carry going into effect 11/1 and this we've had our fair share of "news" here lately . . . I hope this release helps these folks get back on their feet and where they can be productive members of society.