Last night, California narrowly escaped another public safety disaster when SB 94 (Cortese), which would have let murderers sentenced to life without the possibility of parole out of prison, wasn’t taken up for a vote and died its own quiet death – unlike the horrific deaths the victims suffered at the hands of their murderers.
Prosecutors, law enforcement, and crime victims across California campaigned aggressively against SB 94, which would have undone lawful sentences for people who have committed some of California’s most heinous crimes – and given them another chance at freedom. Meanwhile, victims of violent crimes would have been robbed of the justice they thought had been served.
But don’t be fooled. SB 94 is dead for now. But it is expected to come back next year.
Life without the possibility of parole should mean just that. And there are crimes that are so horrific that juries, judges, and appellate courts have ruled that the perpetrators of those crimes deserve to die in prison without any opportunity for parole.
Thankfully, this time, the voices of victims were heard over the voices of criminals and SB 94 was defeated.
The Orange County District Attorney’s Office, along with the California District Attorneys Association, and our law enforcement partners and victim advocates across California, remains committed to defeating legislation that threatens public safety and prioritizes the rights of convicted criminals over the rights of victims.