Realignment Plan Releases Mentally Disordered Offenders
LOS ANGELES COUNTY — Recent data from the Probation Department revealed that the state is releasing mentally disordered offenders (MDO’s) to the counties, threatening public safety and adding to the fiscal burden placed on the counties under the Governor’s Realignment program, according to a county report.
According to preliminary staff reports, the state is decertifying MDO’s just prior to release from prison to place them under local supervision instead of state supervision. In addition, several MDO’s that were released from prison directly to a state hospital were later decertified by the state hospital and, again, shifted to local supervision instead of remaining on state supervision.
By decertifying MDO’s prior to release from prison, who are ineligible for local supervision by county probation departments under the Governor’s Realignment program, the state is effectively relieving itself from the obligation to supervise them, and is shifting the high cost of care and liability on the backs of the counties.
“This is another example of the state’s dishonesty when they shift state felons and parolees to local governments. This dangerous situation threatens public safety and budgets in all 58 counties.”
The Countywide Criminal Justice Coordination Committee’s annual report on Realignment will be released next week.