InWashington was the first state in the nation to pass Out of state rule sex no-nonsense Three Strikes policy. Since then 23 other states and the federal government have enacted some form of Three Strikes, You're Out laws to deal with repeat serious criminals. The Washington State Supreme Court recently upheld this landmark legislation in three rulings on three companion cases.

The project's goal was to review current sentencing practices for violent, career criminals and make recommendations as needed. The research team found the need for a new policy that was clear and understandable: Anyone convicted of a third serious felony shall be sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

No furloughs, parole or time off for good behavior. No more excuses. The only way out of prison alive is if the offender can convince the Governor to grant a pardon or clemency. The proposal recommended that this not occur until the offender is both over years-old and deemed no longer a threat to Out of state rule sex. Sex offenders, regardless of age, are held to the "utmost scrutiny" under this provision.

In addition, the Governor's office Out of state rule sex provide semi-annual reports for a minimum of ten years on the progress and activities of any individual released from a life-without-parole sentence. When police and crime victims saw this proposal, they immediately adopted it as their own. It became an initiative in the summer of Although the necessary number of signatures was narrowly missed that year, the Three Strikes proposal was back in as both a State House Bill and as an initiative.

When the legislature failed to pass the measure, the initiative drive gathered the requisite number of signatures. To qualify under Washington's Three Out of state rule sex law, a criminal must be convicted as an adult on three separate occasions for serious felony crimes, including rape, robbery, child molestation, serious assault, manslaughter or murder.

Crime sprees, regardless of the number of offenses, only count as one strike. As an additional safeguard for borderline cases, any felony listed as a strike, but which is not classified as either a class A felony or a sex offense has a 'wash-out' provision of either 5 or 10 years of conviction-free living in the community. This gives some potential three-strikers the opportunity to remove a prior strike from their record based on their law-abiding conduct.

Supporters of Three Strikes anticipated three main benefits from adopting the law:. Critics claimed that the new law would be both ineffective and too expensive for the state. The law has been in effect for three years as of December 2, An update is in order to see if the law has met the goals set by its creators. Changed Law for the Better Washington currently uses a determinate sentencing system that involves a sentencing grid.

The more serious the crime is, according to the grid, the higher the expected sentencing range is set. In addition, prior convictions increase the sentence in proportion to both the seriousness of the priors and the type of current felony conviction. It is a complex system designed to remove personal biases from the sentencing process and to make sure that everyone convicted of similar crimes with similar criminal histories receives comparable sentences.

Although the system is more even-handed than the old indeterminate sentencing system which had much broader judicial latitude and parole, there was a major flaw. Research found the state's sentencing grid woefully inadequate in terms of both public safety and justice when dealing with violent, career criminals. Before Three Strikes became law, recommended prison terms for three-time offenders were:. Under Three Strikes, these offenders are now sentenced to life without the possibility of parole.

Crimes Prevented After Three Strikes passed, initiative supporters expected not only to sentence people with three separate convictions Jennifer garner nude fakes scarlett johansson serious crimes, but also four-time and even five-time violent criminals.

The following 'four-and five-strike' crimes would have been prevented if Washington State had enacted Three Strikes sooner.

Michael Elton Johnson was one of the first people sentenced under Out of state rule sex Strikes. Strike One was a second-degree rape in Montana, in which Johnson dragged a year-old girl into the woods and raped her. Within a few weeks of his release inJohnson committed Strike Two for an attempted second-degree rape of a year-old girl in the Wenatchee area during a burglary.

His Strike Three for second-degree assault was perpetrated just a month after his release from prison in During this attack, Johnson cut his wife's face and neck, rammed a 9-inch-bladed knife into her mouth, pointed a pellet gun at her head and told her that he "would kill her anytime" he wished. At this time, Three Strikes was only a concept, so instead of receiving a life-without-parole sentence Out of state rule sex the brutal assault, he received only a two-year sentence.

Immediately after his release, Michael Johnson returned to preying on women and children. He was arrested for domestic violence and malicious mischief in Snohomish County for again beating his wife, who finally divorced him. Shortly after that, the Department of Corrections was informed that Johnson had been caught following a year-old girl into a ferry-boat restroom in Snohomish County.

Johnson subsequently moved to Oregon briefly, where he raped his own sister and threatened her life before moving back to eastern Washington. He was also Out of state rule sex with fourth-degree assault for putting a woman in a headlock after going into a tavern with her. She escaped unharmed, but was terrified by the experience. Johnson then befriended a Springdale woman who lived with her year-old daughter.

On Christmas Day,he committed Strike Four by raping the daughter and kidnapping both her and Out of state rule sex mother and taking them to a neighboring county. The next day he raped the daughter again before releasing them both. He pleaded guilty to two counts of rape and one count of kidnapping. The other kidnapping charge, the rape of his sister, and the non-Strike assaults were all dropped in exchange for his guilty plea.

Michael Johnson's last three rapes, two kidnappings and four other assaults would have been prevented if Three Strikes had been enacted just three years earlier. Charles Ben Finch has always been a violent predator. Strike One occurred in when he was convicted of assault and battery with a deadly weapon in Oklahoma.

He was also convicted of two non-Strike burglaries that same year. He was sentenced to three years but was paroled in Strike Two was for a first-degree manslaughter conviction inalso in Oklahoma. This time he was sentenced to four years in prison. Again, he did not serve his complete sentence. In June ofFinch arrived in Seattle, where he promptly committed Strike Three for the first-degree rape of an elderly widow during a burglary. Angry Out of state rule sex intoxicated, Finch had broken into a home-furnishings store and started breaking lamps, cabinets, tables and other items.

The widow, who lived above the store, investigated the noise and was dragged into an elevator where Finch raped her at least twice. Had Three Strikes been law at that time, his violent crime sprees would have ended then. Unfortunately, Finch was released on parole just nine years later.

The consequences of his release proved deadly. In the summer ofFinch committed Strike Four when he walked into a mobile home occupied by his estranged wife and fatally shot a visiting blind man in the head. He then threatened his wife and her year-old mother with the murder weapon.

Charles Finch eventually called the police and opened fire when they responded to his call. Finch has now been sentenced to death for those cold, calculated murders, but they never would have happened if Three Strikes had been enacted sooner. Martin T. Shandel is actually a five-striker specializing in rape.

Strike One was for sexually assaulting a year-old girl in He was paroled in Shandel's Strike Two was for raping a year-old girl who was walking home along a country road in He stopped his car, forced her into a wooded area and raped her. Just an hour before the attack, Out of state rule sex had grabbed two younger girls and attempted, but failed, to force them into his car.

His Strike Three was for second-degree assault with a knife. He forced a woman off the road, brandished a knife and broke out her car window. He then grabbed her arm but was scared off by a witness. His predatory behavior would have been stopped Out of state rule sex this point by Three Strikes, had it been in effect.

It wasn't, and Shandel was paroled yet again just six years later. His Strike Four was for raping a year-old woman whose home he was visiting in He attacked her after she asked him to Out of state rule sex. This last rape occurred just three months after his Out of state rule sex recent release. This victim sued the Washington State Department of Corrections for failing to adequately supervise Shandel. The state appealed the decision and the State Court of Appeals overturned the award on a technicality.

The State Supreme Court then reinstated the monetary award and the victim finally has received it. Martin Shandel was released yet again in Less than a year later, he committed Strike Five for the second-degree rape of his sister-in-law at the Woodinville home he shared with his wife in His reign of terror ended when he was convicted under the new Three Strikes law and sentenced to life without parole.

While these first three criminals represent the kind of monstrous predators most people wanted stopped under Three Strikes, there is another category of criminal that was targeted -- the chronic street thug committing robbery and assault over and over again. Far too many of them also continue violence beyond three convictions. Paul and Stonney Rivers fit this description. Their Strike One was for attempted second-degree robbery when Paul, Stonney and another brother, Rodney Out of state rule sex, confronted and detained a man in Stonney slugged the victim while Paul told Rodney to take his wallet.

Paul's sentence was only 5 months, Stonney's was 7 months. Paul's and Stonney's Strike Two was for second-degree robbery in Paul, Stonney, and a fourth brother, Larry Rivers, robbed a man working in an adult movie theater. The victim was hit in the face as he tried to call Both Paul and Stonney were sentenced to 17 months.

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