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San Diego’s Effort to Reduce Prison Overcrowding Is Hitting Some Snags

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In 2014, California voters passed Proposition 47, and law enforcement officials have complained ever since that they have fewer options to confront people caught possessing drugs.

The new law may have helped alleviate prison overcrowding but police and prosecutors say reducing many drug charges to misdemeanors deprived them of the chance to force people into recovery programs.

The San Diego city attorney’s office responded in late 2016 by launching a program to connect people who have a string of misdemeanor arrests with addiction treatment and stable housing.

More than two years in, only a handful of clients have graduated from the San Diego Misdemeanants At-Risk Track program and the city has struggled to expand the program despite significant investment.

In 2017, the city bought a South Bay hotel to house up to 84 people while they are enrolled in the program. The plan to expand in Nestor is now on hold after a Superior Court ruling late last year. More than two-thirds of clients who enrolled in the program have walked away at least once.





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Thanks !

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