New Meaning for the Phrase "Dead Time"?

Federal prosecutors and DOJ, under the control of Attorney General William Barr, unlike their state counterparts, are objecting to the release of many low level, non-violent inmates with serious health concerns and doing time in crowded jails in which other inmates and guards have already contracted coronavirus.

They don't always get their way, but still, their position is appalling.[More...}

Court documents show federal prosecutors have contended that judges cannot force the government to put prisoners on home confinement. They have urged courts to deny bond to defendants who are in jail awaiting trial. They have suggested that some inmates with pre-existing medical conditions would be safer in prison than at home. And they have expressed skepticism about claims of virus-related illness among people facing incarceration. “They’re fighting the release of vulnerable people on technicalities. It’s disgusting,” said Kevin Ring, president of Families Against Mandatory Minimums, a group that has pushed to reduce the number of people in prisons.
< Monday Open Thread: Staying Safe | Tuesday Open Thread: Where Does the Time Go? >
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    I have been spending about 50% of my time (5.00 / 5) (#1)
    by Peter G on Fri Apr 03, 2020 at 06:50:24 PM EST
    every day this week advising and assisting other lawyers throughout the country, all pro bono, with advancing these motions or responding to these cruel and shocking arguments by DOJ lawyers.

    I'm sure you have (none / 0) (#3)
    by Jeralyn on Fri Apr 03, 2020 at 10:20:17 PM EST
    the letter sent by the Federal Community Defenders to Barr on April 1 on why DOJ's position is just so wrong and inappropriate?

    The letter urges him

    ... to implement measures that DOJ can take now to avert catastrophe from the spread of COVID-19 in the federal prisoner population.  Specifically, the Defenders ask Attorney General Barr to exercise his authority, under Section 12003(b)(2) of the CARES Act, "to allow BOP to transfer many more people to the releative safety of home confinement.  The letter makes three arguments, along with numerous citations, to support the contention that DOJ should "immediately reduce the number of people entering federal detention and aggresively transfer or release indiviudals who are already incarcerated into the community:"

        1. Jails and Prisons are Unprepared and Unsafe. Experts Agree that Rapid Decarceration is Necessary to Prevent a Deadly COVID-19 Outbreak.

        2.  DOJ's Claims in Court that its Jails and Prisons are Safe during the COVID-19 Pandemic are False.

        3.  [DOJ's] March 26 Policy Erects Complex Barriers that Unnecessarily Limit Transfers to the Relative Safety of Home Confinement.

    Yes, I did. Superb letter. (none / 0) (#4)
    by Peter G on Fri Apr 03, 2020 at 10:56:27 PM EST
    And this evening, Barr relented at bit and authorized the Bureau of Prisons to release any prisoner who is at particular risk -- with no per se exclusions -- to home confinement, with an initial 14-day quarantine (which may be at the prison before release or at home upon arrival), with or without electronic monitoring, if the release would not likely endanger public safety. BOP was directed to implement this directive (authorized by the CARES Act) promptly, especially for prisoners at the federal prisons in Oakdale (LA), Danbury (CT), and Elkton (OH), where there are already significant outbreaks of COVID-19.

    Thanks, I agree it is limited (none / 0) (#5)
    by Jeralyn on Sat Apr 04, 2020 at 03:52:38 AM EST
    but an improvement. The memo is here.

    Damn (5.00 / 1) (#2)
    by Repack Rider on Fri Apr 03, 2020 at 08:26:06 PM EST
    I already wrote my book.

    Two hours ago (none / 0) (#6)
    by ragebot on Sat Apr 04, 2020 at 12:54:53 PM EST
    The story you linked (none / 0) (#7)
    by Peter G on Sat Apr 04, 2020 at 03:00:42 PM EST
    begins by referencing the memorandum I discussed at my comment #4 above, although the news article is less accurate, and then proceeds to confuse it with a very different memorandum Barr issued a week ago. Not a good source on the details, unfortunately.

    The link is to UPI, a (none / 0) (#8)
    by leap on Sat Apr 04, 2020 at 05:06:28 PM EST
    Moony-owned news org.

    In 2000, UPI was purchased by News World Communications, an international news media company founded in 1976 by Unification Church leader Sun Myung Moon.[11][12]

    So, take that for what it's worth. As our Constitution, not much.


    I was not objecting to a point of view. (none / 0) (#9)
    by Peter G on Sat Apr 04, 2020 at 06:20:43 PM EST
    I have read the original document (which J also posted at comment #5). I happen to have professional expertise on this exact subject (post-conviction aspects of federal criminal law). In this instance, the journalist who wrote the story just lacks the appropriate competence.