Albemarle court rejects earned sentence credit challenge
After an Albemarle judge struck down from the bench a challenge to the General Assembly’s last-minute change to a program that granted early release for state inmates with a record of good behavior, the American Civil Liberties Union of Virginia said it plans to appeal the ruling to the state Supreme Court.
“You have to apply the language of the statute as it’s written,” said Geri Greenspan, an attorney for ACLU of Virginia. “We feel the court in this case failed to do that.”
The case, Anderson v. Clarke and Bowles, is one of two the organization is bringing against the Virginia Department of Corrections over its interpretation of a provision added to the state budget in June rolling back some sentencing reforms.
In 2020, Democrat-backed legislation allowed Virginia inmates to earn more credits for good behavior or rehabilitation efforts that could reduce their sentences. While previously all inmates could earn up to 4.5 days of “good time” credit for every 30 days served, the new law allowed some to earn up to 15 days every 30.
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