<< Trey Gowdy for USCA4? | Main | The State of the Union and Crime >>

Ups and Downs in Fighting Crime in Fresno

Liz Gonzalez has this story for Fox 26 in Fresno, California. "Fresno Police say a crackdown on crime in the new year is paying off.  Fresno Police Chief Jerry Dyer said Monday violent crime is down 15.2%."  But there is a problem, and the problem is Proposition 57.

Voters passed the measure in November of 2016, allowing for the release of inmates who committed so-called "non-violent" offenses.

"We have a weak legislature, weak governor who has allowed these laws to be passed. And we have an uninformed voter population in California that has also supported some very weak laws," Dyer said. "It has made the job of a police officer that much more difficult."

So far, the California Parole board has granted early release to 25 inmates from Fresno County under Proposition 57.

Many more releases are expected.

"They are dangerous and violent, despite propaganda from Sacramento and our Governor and this is the result," says Fresno County District Attorney Lisa Smittcamp.

"Anytime you combine criminal justice reform with saving money, you're costing lives," says Dyer.

The "uninformed voter population" on Propositions 47 and 57 was the result of a combination of a large imbalance in campaign funding with the press being almost uniformly on the side with more money.  In that situation, a great many voters simply never hear the other side of the argument.

This story also illustrates why proving cause and effect is so difficult in crime research.  You can't control the variables.  A crime-increasing policy like Proposition 57 may go into effect at the same time that crime-reducing efforts such as the Fresno Police gang crackdown are going on.

Leave a comment

Monthly Archives