Va. official urges sentencing changes
Virginia Department of Corrections director Gene Johnson says the state is spending too much money locking up nonviolent offenders.
Speaking at a statewide conference on prisoner re-entry Tuesday, Johnson said the state should stop doling out lengthy prison sentences to those "we're mad at" such as nonviolent criminals and those with drug convictions.
He said the state should instead focus on locking away violent criminals.
About a third of state inmates are serving time for nonviolent crimes.
Johnson told a crowd of government officials, private businesses and faith-based groups that help those transitioning from prison that those changes must be made by the legislature. He urged attendants to educate lawmakers to change the “lock-them-up-and-throw-away-the-key” mentality.
-- Associated Press
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