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News Scan

Lodi Man on PRCS Causes Multiple-Fatality Car Accident: Ryan Morales, a Lodi man released from prison early under AB 109, has been named as the driver responsible for causing a multi-vehicle accident that left five people dead.  Michelle Schultz of KCRA 3 reports that witnesses to the crash reported seeing Morales driving at 'freeway speeds' and possibly talking on his cell phone before plowing through an intersection and killing a father, pregnant mother, and three of their children.  The search warrant executed at Morales's home indicates that authorities were searching for empty alcohol bottles in the garage of the home after it was revealed by his mother that she had witnessed him drinking vodka prior to the crash.  Morales was released from prison just last month after serving time for recklessly evading a peace officer. 

Double Bunking to Blame for Violence:  A union vice president at Groveland Correctional Facility in New York is blaming the increase in prison violence and danger on the practice of double bunking, following a series of six assaults that occurred there last week.  Howard W. Appell of Livingston County News reports that there are nearly 10,000 inmates in double bunk situations in the state, and Governor Andrew Cuomo's announcement of four more facility closures in 2014, adding to the 9 others he has already closed, will only make matters worse.  Groveland Correctional Facility is currently at 93 percent capacity, consisting of violent inmates crammed into limited spaces together.

Ex-Doc Sentenced to Life in Hep C Case:  Dipak Desai, a former Las Vegas endoscopy clinic owner, was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 18 years yesterday, following the 2007 hepatitis C outbreak that was traced back to his clinics.  ABC News reports that the outbreak, one of the worst in  the U.S., killed one man in 2012, and authorities suspect another death this year is also related.  Prosecutors say that Desai emphasized profits over safety, which lead to unsafe clinic and injection practices.  A former nurse-anesthetist from the clinic will also convicted of lesser charges and sentenced to seven to 21 years.

Female Prisoners to Serve Sentences Closer to Home:  In the UK, the Ministry of Justice plans to convert 12 of its 13 female prisons into 'resettlement prisons,' moving inmates to the jail closest to where they and their families live.  James Watkins of Law on the Web reports that this plan emerged in an effort to cut down on reoffending by making it easier for prisoners to stay in contact with their families and reintegrate back into society once they are released.  Other measures to improve women's recidivism rates will be introduced as well, including support for each prisoner for 12 months after their release and individualized help with drinking, drug addiction, and mental health issues.

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