This week President Obama toured a federal prison in Oklahoma to bring awareness to the need for reform in the criminal justice system. The President spoke with prisoners and toured cells. He held a press conference at the prison to outline some of his opinions of the correctional system and sentencing that he has seen.
Focused on Extreme Sentences for Drug Crimes
The POTUS focused on minorities and their treatment under the law, referring to the high percentages of black and latino men behind bars. He also focused on the extreme sentencing for non-violent crimes, such as drug related crimes. In fact, on Monday, he commuted sentences for 46 low-level drug convicts.
Defending Your Rights
It is always positive that a sitting present takes the time to physically visit one of the federal facilities, in order to improve the criminal justice system in place. Whether it is true that there are major weaknesses, there are always opportunities for improvement in such an important part of the government. As a criminal defense attorney, I understand first-hand the importance of a fair, unbiased criminal justice system. Criminal defense representation is a key part of that system: any individual charged with a crime has the right to have an attorney to represent their side and to protect their rights. I take my job as an Arizona criminal defense attorney very seriously and know my responsibility is to my client, to ensure they get the very best legal representation, top-notch customer service, as well as great results. The President’s tour of the prison may not fix all the issues, but just by shining a light on the system is a good start.