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Sentencing: House Subcommittee Approves Reducing Federal Crack Cocaine Penalties

Submitted by Phillip Smith on (Issue #595)
Consequences of Prohibition
Politics & Advocacy

An end to the notorious sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine may be in sight. After more than a decade of congressional dawdling since the US Sentencing Commission called for the disparity to be ended because of its racially disproportionate impact, a bill that would do so is finally moving in the Congress.

DEA crack cocaine photo
Under current federal law, it takes 500 grams of powder cocaine to garner a five-year mandatory minimum prison sentence, but only five grams of crack to earn the same time. The 100:1 sentencing disparity has been widely criticized for years, especially because about nine out of 10 federal crack prosecutions are aimed at African-Americans. (Most crack users are white, despite popular belief.)

On Wednesday, the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Crime, Terrorism, and Homeland Security passed H.R. 3245, the Fairness in Cocaine Sentencing Act of 2009. They did so unanimously, making the vote a striking moment of bipartisanship on a once controversial issue. The bill removes all references to "cocaine base" -- federalese for crack -- from the US criminal code, effectively treating all forms of cocaine the same for sentencing purposes.

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA) and has 20 cosponsors, including every Democrat on the subcommittee. It now heads to the full House Judiciary Committee, which is headed by Rep. John Conyers (D-MI), also an ardent supporter of ending the sentencing disparity.

Sentencing reform advocates cheered the bill's progress. "I knew it was coming," said Julie Stewart, president of Families Against Mandatory Minimums. " There has been so much attention paid to sentencing policies in the past six months that it was only a matter of time before one of the half-dozen sentencing bills in Congress would start moving. Today it did."

Repealing the crack/powder cocaine sentencing disparity is a much needed step in restoring trust and enacting smarter policies , said Stewart. "If Congress eliminates the sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine, it would not only restore some faith in the justice system among the communities most affected by the law, it would reduce prison overcrowding and free up funding for more effective rehabilitation efforts. A minimum of $26 million would be saved in the first year of the reforms and nearly $530 million over the next 15 years," she said. "FAMM strongly urges Congress to make the changes retroactive so that people currently serving unjust sentences for crack cocaine can benefit and taxpayers will see even greater savings."

Permission to Reprint: This content is licensed under a modified Creative Commons Attribution license. Content of a purely educational nature in Drug War Chronicle appear courtesy of DRCNet Foundation, unless otherwise noted.


Anonymous (not verified)

I want to thank the people who or pushing to change the crack cocaine laws. My husband is a victim of this law and the whole family and tax payers suffers. He has been gone over 13 years now. He learned his lessen a long time ago. I am a disable mother of 4 supported by state funds (welfare, Social Security and SSI). I really don't believe it is the state responsibility to take care of me and my family. I believe it is the responsibility of my husband. The tax payer are paying for him to serve his time as an inmate by providing him with housing, lights, gas, food, etc., The tax payer provide me with housing, food stamps and cash aid. Please help. My husband needs to be at home so he could provide for his family.

Once again thanks for pushing to change such laws. I don't think it fair for no one who commits a crime to be punished by tax payers paying for the them to live for free. The inmate only worry is to have money on their books so they could call home. Don't get me wrong, I believe if you commit a crime you should do the time. But for someone to sell drugs to someone who willfully buy them. Should not serve 25 to life so the tax payer could take care of him or her for the rest of their lives, but maybe community service for the duration of their time. Let the punishment fit the crime.

Sat, 07/25/2009 - 5:39pm Permalink
Rah-kay Lacy (not verified)

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

I want to thank everyone that is all in favor for this law to change. I think it is ridiculous how people get more time for selling drugs then for a person taking another human's life. I have been away from my husband since 2003. He needs to be home with his wife and daughter. I also want to say that alot of younger african american males are in prison for 15 to 20 years or longer due to this 100:1 crack law. And with the help of our people we can bring alot of non violent first time offenders home like my husband who only been in trouble for driving until 2003 and he was only 21. Again me and my family would like to thank everyone that is helping to make a change because we do need it.

Tue, 11/10/2009 - 12:03pm Permalink
R. YOUNG (not verified)

In reply to by Rah-kay Lacy (not verified)


Sun, 05/23/2010 - 4:14pm Permalink
concerned mom (not verified)

In reply to by Rah-kay Lacy (not verified)

They don't get any money from a person who takes a life or rapes and kill children but they do get money for drug dealers most of thel time when they get a drug dealer they end up getting money from them also and most of the money they get from a drug dealer ends up in the officers pocket, because the dealer's not gonna tell how much money he had in his pocket because the more money you have the longer the sentence so there is not a drug dealer that gonna say I had 10,000 in my pocket.Good luck to you and your husband hope he will be home with his family soon.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 3:03am Permalink
Anonymous78 (not verified)

In reply to by concerned mom (not verified)

I totally agree! My fiance was locked up a month before we had our first child together because he decided to sell drugs. He has received more time than my uncle who molested my niece a few years prior. I don't believe anyone should get this much time for selling drugs 1st time offender or not. They sell drugs to people who are WILLING TO PURCHASE a life sentence for selling drugs and they are not forcing anyone to do it. There are a lot of Afro-American males away from their families because of this law and it only makes society worse. Yes, I feel that if they break the law they should be jailed but not to this extent. Crooked cops don't get as much time as these men are getting and I thank God that someone has a voice for the families and the men that is serving these ridiculous sentences so the government can prove a point. I pray for all the families that has been affected by these strict sentences and pray that when our men, sons, fathers, and husbands return home they HAVE learned their lessons so they can be the MEN that GOD ordained them to be.

Thu, 08/05/2010 - 5:10pm Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

I truly hope this gets passed as well so hopefully it'll end my nightmare. My father went to prison when I was 7 weeks old and now I am 20 he still is not close to the end of his sentence. These laws are cruel! It is very sad that my father lost 20 years of his life for a non-violent crime when sex offenders get less time. That is a true failure in this so-called 'justice' system. I pray that this is made retroactive as well, it is only fair to the people that were sentenced under these cruel laws!

Sun, 07/26/2009 - 8:00pm Permalink
latricia (not verified)

I pray all is well and i God is good. Families are torn apart because of this.My fiance been in since my daughter was 1 month old and now shes going on three. despite his crime hes a wonderful father and if society dont give them a chance by letting them a get a job, what else can they do? I truly believe thats the wat the way the sytem was made to keep a black man down. In the midst of the storms i still thank God.

Mon, 08/03/2009 - 2:29am Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

In reply to by latricia (not verified)

I thank God everyday. My daughters father has been down since she was 3 months old. He is a great father. I share your concern and God will see us through. Stay strong and hold on to your faith.

Sat, 09/19/2009 - 8:11pm Permalink
melvina (not verified)

when the bill becomes law each person that was sentenced under the old mandatory law should automatic receive a reduction in their sentence without them applying for it. it was unfair from the beginging. you can't buy 5 grams of crack cocain for the same price as 500 grams of power cocain so why should the punishment be the same? that does not make sense. not only are the law breakers going to answer to God for their actions SO ARE THE LAW MAKERS. God help us to treat others as we would want to be treated.

Thu, 08/06/2009 - 9:38pm Permalink
REB (not verified)

First and foremost ide like to thank the lawmakers who are partaking in the passing of this bill. It has been a long time coming and so many families have been torn apart for a crime that isnt even as wrong as others. The thing I wish for the most though is that after all is said and done.. these men and woman who have paid there time, get a speedy release.. I think they have waited to long and the longer they wait the more vulnerable they become. I think they deserve to go home to there loved ones and not have a long waited out "system of release" to think about... Its enough that they have paid there time and now have to think about what they must do to take care of themselves and/or family members.. they had nothing but time.. So I ask that these same lawmakers make it quick for them and there loved ones, theyve already paid there price...

Sat, 08/08/2009 - 9:17pm Permalink
jay johnson (not verified)

I am so very happy that change has come where change was due. It makes me mad to see people being locked up for long periods of time for drug cases and those who commit murders and different violent crimes get less time or in some cases get off for them.I feel it's a better way to sentence people with nonviolent drug cases such as comunity service or rehabilatating them.Hopefully this will be retroactive so that my kids and there father can reunite instead of losing time, these kids need their fathers!

Wed, 08/12/2009 - 6:57pm Permalink
mahara (not verified)

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

not for him but my children,cause seems like no guideance far as father figure and the man is not violent.if this system would put jobs out there iam sure they would be willing to work,who sells drugs for fun?i feel i had something to do wit dat,because your man dont want to see us suffer no work and at da same time his family dat lead to me pushing him to do wat he has to,  to provide for us even if we push 4 the best intentions out there for him,he's gonna feel obligated to do wats neccssery for us...i no i may have spelled sum things wrong but u understand where im comming from!!they serve  a purpose in our lives.and lets not begin how im living...

Tue, 08/10/2010 - 2:36am Permalink
stressed out (not verified)

I'm praying every day that something gets done soon. i'm going to be sentence on oct,9 and even though the judge in my case is very vocal in letting the goverment know that thier wrong in how they are still trying to give such long sentences with so much possitive progress in reforming the mandatory minimums theres not much he can do to help me because of these laws that where put in place. i cant belive this has been going on for so long. i'm not a drug dealer i was set up by one of my friends and even though i could argue intrapment it's not worth risking 10 more years of my life without my kids. my charge is a 10 year mandatory minimum. if i was to go to trial and lose i could be facing 20 years. if this where cocain i would be getting 18 months of probation or if i went to tial and lost i would get 24 months in prison. how about that for our justice system. the thing that i dont get is if change is more likely to come and the country is in a recesion how come the goverment aint giving better deals to help cut cost. i've been out on bail for 2 years and they aint change thier plea deal from march of 08 giving how great i've been in those 2 years. I PRAY FOR US ALL AND GOD SPEED...

Wed, 08/26/2009 - 12:06pm Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

i hope this law changes because like the person that wrote before me i have a federal drug case and i got setup and got caught with 51.99 grams of crack and i took that same 10yr deal and now with my 2 prior felonies for weed the federal guidlines are saying i should get between 260 to 310 months so i pray the laws change soon and i would like to say thank you to who ever pushing this law through and one more thing if you rat you should die because thats how i got caught up

Tue, 09/08/2009 - 1:33am Permalink
Mizz Lady (not verified)

In reply to by Anonymous (not verified)

I know exactly how you feel, my husband is going through the same thing. In Iowa they take the law and just do as they please. What I don't understand is how is it the police supposedly took crack cocaine from him in 2008 and and wait until 2010 and come back to get him. After he's been working, taking care of his family and even moved away from Iowa. He's made this great life for himself and because they are not able to make a case on him the get all these people to jump on his case. What makes it even worst majority of these people don't even know him and will testify to that. I hope this law changes soon he is looking at 20 years if he doesn't go to trial and life if he does. Iowa should be wiped off the map with some of their twist laws they have.

Fri, 07/02/2010 - 6:46pm Permalink
jcarlisle (not verified)

My son has been incacerated for 20 yrs. He was given a 35 year sentence to life. His children are grown with children and its not fair that my son get all these years without no killings, no crack found,no money or anything, they went by the word of two snitches that were drug dealers themselves. My son would not snitch on anyone and pleaded not guilty on all charges. The judge said they would use him as an example in the state of Iowa. He had no priors, never been in jail. of course he is a black male and Iowa keeps deining all of his paper work. I pray this new law will et him free! He has more time then baby killers, murderers.

Thu, 09/24/2009 - 8:22pm Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

In reply to by jcarlisle (not verified)

Free at last Free at last Thank God O Mighty We free at Last. I live In Iowa Too.And The way they do Black people here is a Shame.But I never gave up.I put my Trust in God and I prayed every day That this day will come.Free at last Free at last Thank God O Mighty we free at last.No more cring days may God Bless this world.

Sun, 12/06/2009 - 7:01pm Permalink
a sad girl (not verified)

the love of my life is also a victom of the harsh punishment they put on these men and women the us really has its values messed up when they put a drug before someones life and not only a life but the life of a child when a man can violate a woman in an alley or crawl thrugh her window and while attacks her while she sleeps or when its ok to invade a childs innocents i just cant grasp that i mean im not trying to condone anything that he has done but all that drug dealing they never caught my guy selling anything didnt catch him with anything at home no money or drugs but cause of a misdemeanor charge that he had concluded and now they say they have him on something else on him his prier misdemeanor which by the way was no violent but it can bump up his sentence and have to sevre for his no violent misdemeanor it is just ludicrous i will be so glad when the us court gets priorities straight

Sat, 10/03/2009 - 2:14am Permalink
latesha (not verified)

Ihad just found out i was pregant when my son father went to jail he got sentance under ther crack law but got cought with powder and got 17yrs my son never ever seen his father never touch his father only thing that he did was write and talk to him on the phone antoina was sentance to 17 yrs and been gone 12 and and half yrs it's not right that he got al that time and i have to raise my child buy myself and pray an that he grow up and do right because they taken away all our black man and leven us women to raise our kids by our self they givng our black man man more time then they ever live and yes they did wronge but people learn and my son is 12 yrs old and in every sport but i can't teach him how to be a man i need his help and i hope that he get out soon free our black man what ever happen to 2nd chance

Thu, 10/22/2009 - 12:29am Permalink
jann banks (not verified)

i have one step son doing 14yre for crack cocaine one brother did 5yrs but you know the funny thing is that my cousin was murdered and his killer only did 3 yr for taking his life so now maybe my step son may have a chance at having a life . he has done half of his time and i know he has learned a very hard leson for what he did its a terrible thing when a person gets more time for crack than a man who takes a life here in martinsburg wv if you even know anyone the police thinks sells coke you are harassed and belittled by them we are family just because a person sold coke doesnt mean they are bad people and should have a chance to life outside . and if by chance your name is redman you dont get that chance just because of your last name they arnt bad people just made wrong choices so dont take away the rest of there lives they love and cry just like anyone else we feel loss to

Mon, 10/26/2009 - 12:25am Permalink
So Fed Up! (not verified)

I have several friends who fell under this unfair crack law. Im not justifying that its ok to sell drugs in order to survive financially, but the sentencing guidelines are acceptable forms of cruel and unusual punishment. The state and federal government are locking up prisoners for years, without the chance of rehabilitation. Being that the inmates are in prison on non-violent crimes, who's to say after being released they wouldn't be law abiding citizens? Five years ago I was convicted of possession of cocaine, and was sentenced to three years of probation. Although I didn't receive prison time, the conviction is on my record and it has been a challenge becoming gainfully employed. Ex-offenders are automatically stero-typed by society, despite the fact they did they're crime and the time. Ex-offenders lose faith in they're country from being rejected and resort to their previous criminal activities. The Government should have more programs and alternatives to helping those who have been previously incarcerated. No one is perfect and everyone makes mistakes and disobeys the law in some aspect, but not everyone gets caught.

Tue, 10/27/2009 - 8:17am Permalink
Lisa (not verified)

The love of my life and father of my beautiful daughter was taken away form us when she was only 6 days old. Like many of the stories I have seen on here he too was set up by what was a childhood friend. His friend ( also a CI for the Feds) called him 9 times asking him for a ride until he finally gave in and gave him a ride. The ride ended up being to pick up crack from his brother and was all taped so they charged my man with aiding something that he did not even know was going to happen. Of course the CI is still out doing his thing and has now started selling herion as a main drug. Funny how that goes, no jail time for him. This law would bring him home to us sooner so I pray that it gets passed. I had heard it was passed on Nov 1st but have not been able to confirm that yet. God Bless!!!!

Tue, 11/17/2009 - 2:11pm Permalink

The finest man I've ever known is locked up over crack cocaine. This reform could bring him back to his very supporting family. I have a problem with manic depression and AIDS. This summer he saved my life. He called and he could tell I wasn't right and talked and we laughed and he encouraged me. My CD4 count was only 5. I would have died very shortly. Because of him I got back on my meds both emotional and physical. He's my best friend and maybe he did do something he shouldn't have But I know the time he has served has been enough. You see I was killing myself with crack cocaine and this man encourages me to stay clean now. He's the one telling me to stay away from the drugs; do good; live good. Because of his phone call and his encouragement I go to church. I have a better life. But his scarifice for me is too great.

Wed, 11/18/2009 - 7:04pm Permalink
FeeJ (not verified)

I was dating a man for 8 years before he was locked up for crack cocaine. He is a wonderful man who was trying to take care of his family. We both know his way of going about it was not the best of ideas. Not to mention we are aware that you have to pay for your mistakes. No excuses have been made for this action, but all we are asking is that the punishment fit the crime. The federal system is filled with nonviolent offenders. It costs alot of money to house them and not to mention room that she be there for the man who touched someones child or killed someones mother. Looking for ammendments is so hard to do. I have found lawyers that I am scared to contact because there is no way to confirm if what they are saying is real. So Im praying for him. Im praying for the families that are experiencing the same situations. A change is coming, I feel it. Anything I find out, I am willing to share with everyone here. Could you please do the same thing????

Tue, 11/24/2009 - 4:01am Permalink
Anonymous (not verified)

I thank you to everyone who has voiced their opinion about this issue. It is a long time coming for justice for these inmates. I am keeping them all in my prayers and praying that they do make this law retroactive so all the people incarcerated get to come home and start a new life. My friend is currently incarcerated and he understands what he did wrong and wants to make things right. Not only is he missing out on his childrens lives but his too. These men don't deserve that much time. They thought this law would help when it's just tearing down families.

Wed, 12/02/2009 - 7:21pm Permalink
nyeshia (not verified)

my brother has been gone for three years that is a short time but when i heard how many years was 135 months i instantly started to cry because that was a unfair secntence for someone who past didn't consist of a long list of drug cases. so hopefully you guys would consider passing this law and let my big brother come home.

Wed, 12/02/2009 - 8:54pm Permalink
Lady Wo (not verified)

My fiance is currently serving 160 month sentence for a single posession charge. We are working very hard to make sure he comes home, and soon. This 100:1 ratio should have never been accepted as a suitable punnishment. Its proof positive that this country still has a racial war going on within itself. Now that Obama is in office, we expect things to change. If this law does not indeed become retroactive, it would be a great travesty in our country. Where is the justice in that? My man made some mistakes, but keeping him incarcerated under an old law will do more harm than good. He is a human being and deserves to have a life too.

Fri, 12/18/2009 - 11:01am Permalink
briana (not verified)

Im so happy for this and i don't understand WHY a lot of people got life sentences for drugs and the ones that kill got 10 or 20 years. Im from south texas like two years ago a sheriff officer linked to gulf cartel He faces three cuonts of sprawling 19 count indictment implicating him and 14 others in drug smuggling conspiracy. and guess what the judge still thinking about his sentense home arrest or money becauses we dont think that he will go to jail. judge please why you give life sentence for conspiracy to normal citicen and u still dont know what to do.

Sun, 03/21/2010 - 8:50pm Permalink
Thankful (not verified)

I am so happy that they finally decided to see that the sentencing is so unjust. My fiance was sentence 14 years with no hard evidence,three weeks before our wedding. Things were missing in court, and things that suppose to had residue on it was not there all the evidence was just rediculas and 50+k s dollars to a lawyer that was unsuccessful is another story, what's crazy is that I know someone that killed someone recieved the same amount of time. I had two kids and was 2 months pregnant when they took him away and now the child that I was pregnant with is going on 9. My children ask me everday for 9 years when does daddy come home? What can I tell them... soon huh? No!!!! I have been a single struggling mother like I am sure a lot of people have been for 9 years and if this law didn't go through it would be 4+ more years and that is rediculas. Then they ask why so many people have to get government support? Stop taking our men away for life times that could help us and alot of people wouldn't have to go on support, I worked two jobs and go to school and it is very hard without that second person. I am sure alot of people have the same story, and I could go on and on, but I just would like to thank those who contrubuted to making this law pass.

Wed, 03/24/2010 - 11:40am Permalink
sierranightengale (not verified)

i jus wanna say im glad the law passed but i need my husband home..he shouldnt of had to do 15 -25 for selling drugs he has done his time and now its time for him to be home. he didnt kill or harm noone so y is he being punished please make it retroactive.thank you

Sat, 03/27/2010 - 11:51am Permalink
Mother that knows (not verified)

In reply to by Hoola Hoop (not verified)

Most people that are arrested for a crime end up pleading out to a lesser charge because they are threatened by the state that if they don't plead out they could be facing a lot longer sentence than if they go ahead a plead out, or if they don't plead out most of them sign a waiver for speeding trial (which they don't realize what they are doing and then they sit in jail for 6 months to a year waiting for a trial and usually are kept being threathened to plead out because if they don't they may end up serving alot more years if they go to trial, for instance my son was arrested and the state offered him 5 years in prison, he said he would go to trial , then they kept offering him less and less time but they always told him if he went to trial that he could be looking at 15 years, he had been in jail for almost 6 months when they came to him and offered him 12 months in county jail with time served , he ended up asking for 13 months so he could get out ot the Nassau County jail and go to prision because of jail conditions he was in, over flowing toliets, spoiled food, no toliet paper etc.not all people that at in jail deserve to be there, if the state would have had a firm case on him why would they want to even offer him lesser time why didnt they take him to trial and give him 15 years.

Mon, 05/24/2010 - 2:49am Permalink
KAREONE (not verified)

In reply to by Hoola Hoop (not verified)


Mon, 08/02/2010 - 1:05am Permalink
D. Johnson (not verified)

In reply to by Hoola Hoop (not verified)

We are all human and everybody makes mistakes in there life or get accused of something in there life. People should not commit crime but they do and it has been happening for years. You should just Thank for what every reason your life was spared from not doing them or selling them. You never know one reason behind doing something but if you were in these shoes wouldn't you want some one to fight for you. I don't sell drugs should warrent a life sentence when you have people out here having sex with kids and murdering people. Drugs have been around since the beginning of time do you think they will disappear? You never know what your children may do no matter where you raise them and what school they go to drugs are everywhere and guess what they don't give a Damn who or what color you are..

Mon, 08/23/2010 - 12:31pm Permalink
dckck (not verified)

My Husband has been gone from us for many yrs for crack cocaine.He was fighting his case since 2004, He got his time in 2008 at the end of all that he got ten years still. I hope this law pass so our love ones can come home. I never stop loving him because of a mistake he made.Please pass this BILL so our love ones can come home. God Bless

Fri, 05/28/2010 - 1:38am Permalink
JMJ (not verified)

my husband was with some one who had crack cocaine, they had been looking for this person for over 10years once they caught him my husband was in the car with him. My husband had never been in trouble with the law and he got 6 years he now has been away from his kids and his new wife for the last 3years. But a person that can rape and kill someone and get lest time whats wrong with that. please pass this bill so that my husband can come home to our kids and i thank you for your time and i hope you read all of our comments

Tue, 06/08/2010 - 1:30am Permalink
flaca13 (not verified)

my son is also incarcerated for crack cocaine, my question if anybody out there knows when is this new law going to pass i have been hearing about it but nothing has happen yet! does it real take that long for the president to sign the papers..we want out babies home my son made a stupid mistake his wife was sick with breast cancer and he was looking to make a quick buck to help take care of his family but now he is paying for that mistake and regrets its so bad cuz he got locked up and his wife passed away last year. so i which they would hurry up and pass this bill so that he can come home to be with his 4 children that need him.

Fri, 06/11/2010 - 9:25pm Permalink
thediva2c (not verified)

My oldest son is in jail right now facing 20 to life for 5 k of crack cocaine. Because he has prior small drug charges the fed gov is trying to take the rest of his life from him. He is 37 yrs old and this seems so unfair to me. He has children that need him. If, they would concentrate on providing education and jobs for some of these men instead of taking their whole life from them they would do better. They would not have to go out and sell drugs to take care of their families. In this country as soon as you get any kind of criminal history you are unemployable. If, you are unemployable how will you take care of yourself and your kids. Non violent offenders should not have to stay in jail for 20 yrs it's just ludicrous. We all know why it's like this because the crack offenders are all black men/women. It's racism in it's most subtle form. My son says that the law had passed but I can't confirm that. Anybody out there know for sure. God help us all.

Tue, 07/13/2010 - 11:31pm Permalink
I am Anonymous (not verified)

In reply to by thediva2c (not verified)

I am in the same boat. My Husband is in the Federal Prison as well. He is also 37 years of age. I tell our 3 year old daughter that her father is on a trip. Every time he calls she asks; "Daddy when is your trip over, can me & mommy come". It is hard-- so yes, I am following this law constantly. I have my Masters' Degree and is working on my law degree so I am constantly talking this up and asking alot of questions. So it is somethings I can not really talk about but continue to search the websites on this new law. It is coming VERY SOON. However, the question is will it be retroactive which, is what we want for our loves ones. Have to wait on the vote from the House. So continue to pray

I will Keep everyone in my Prayers

Sat, 07/17/2010 - 9:57pm Permalink
ConcernedCitizen (not verified)


As promising as this bill sounds, the idea of retroactivity is a long ways off.  There was a deep concern during the arguing of this bill on the negative impact of too many drug dealers released to the bigger cities during such an economic collapse.  I have also heard that they wanted to wait to consider retroactivity until after enough time elapses to see if the new bill will result in an increase in crack cocaine offenses.  This could be a major problem if it appears that less crack cocaine prosecutions has resulted in increased drug problems in your larger inner cities.  I think we all just better be patient in regards to retroactivity as increased crime or perceived soft on crime  accusations are election year killers.

Thu, 07/29/2010 - 3:24pm Permalink
sierra (not verified)

my husband has been behind bars for 14 years greatly appreciated of the law but it needs to be retroactive . its not fair at all for the people goin in now goes n gets right out n the older ones r still serving there time he has been away from his family for so long please bring him home nex year

Fri, 07/30/2010 - 4:32pm Permalink
wedney (not verified)

My brother was a victim to this about two years ago. Hopefully instead of getting 15 years he will only serve about 2 to 3 more years. This has been a relief for my family and i. We spent nights crying and about a year that we could not seem him. Now if God is willing, he will be able to come home and take care of his toddler and meet his niece. We r praying for more justice..there still needs more to be done in the system

Mon, 08/09/2010 - 12:53am Permalink
snaggs loc (not verified)

My brother was a victim of the system he had 9 grams of crack in Pittsburgh pa. And reed gave him 9-18 years I call no man or women judge only god he didn't even care my whole family asked this person for mercy now we are trying to get appeal money what keeps me strong is that all those clowns giving out those outrageous sentencing will get there turn from Allah!!!!!!!
Fri, 08/13/2010 - 4:26am Permalink
Nelson (not verified)

I'm so glad this law was passed because my son is not sentence yet he going through this right now where they want to give him over 10 years for crack cocaine, because he was helping some friends as they driver to drop off in the city and not even state to state, and they had him on tape for 2 weeks only, and they did not see him no more because he stop hanging around them and due to his past record they want to give him all that time and he have a baby on the way. When they get out of prison as a felony they can't even get a job and my son was lock up for driving with suspended license now that he have his license he still can't get a job due to a felony record now that crazy.

Thu, 08/19/2010 - 1:20am Permalink
madeline (not verified)

My boyfriend is been in fbop for ten years,please help to free him!
Fri, 08/20/2010 - 10:10am Permalink
lety (not verified)

My mother was picked up because she was friends with these big time drug dealer but that wasn't her life style just her hometown friends from the Bronx and now she serving 40 years for conspiracy, he said, she said. Finger pointing just so the next man can get less time. I remember growing up with my mother struggling to support three girls on her own. Waking up to no food or like and you know what they said, I dealer can make $5 dollars a day. My mother don't belong in prison. That's been her home now for ten years. I pray that this law brings her home
Tue, 12/07/2010 - 11:24pm Permalink

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