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News Scan

Another Bill Proposed to Change Realignment:  Don Thompson of the Associated Press reports that Assemblyman Ken Cooley (D Sacramento) has proposed AB222 an an attempt to change part of California's realignment law AB109. The proposal would send anyone convicted of selling or transporting 2.2 lbs or more of heroin, cocaine, or methamphetamine to state prison. Approximately 40 offenders meeting these conditions are currently serving lengthy sentences in county jails, some of which are longer than a decade. If AB222 passes, it would free up county jail space making room for less serious offenders and keep major drug traffickers in prison.

WA Sex Offender Accused of Rape Just Days After Release:  Christine Clarridge of the Seattle Times reports that convicted sex offender Ricky Lee Lewis, 55, allegedly kidnapped and raped an 18-year-old woman on March 20 in North Seattle. After failing to check-in with the King County Sheriff's Office, he was summoned to court on March 14. However, the judge set him free without bail less than a week later. Lewis was a level III sex offender at the time of his release, considered to be at high risk for reoffending. He was released from prison in 2003 after serving a 10 year sentence. In 1993, Lewis was convicted of raping a woman. He also raped a 15-year-old girl in 1985. If convicted, Lewis will serve a mandatory life sentence under Washington's two-strikes sex offender law.

MT Sex Offender Bill Becomes Law:  Bryan Cohen reports that Montana Attorney General Tim Fox's bill, SB 213, was signed into law by Gov. Steve Bullock last week. The new legislation closes a loophole in the state's sex offender registry law. It allowed sex offenders from out of state to opt out of providing a DNA sample to the state's database. Fox hopes the law, which goes into effect October 1, will help solve cold cases and increase public safety.

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