Search
866-630-2389
Roberts Law Group, PLLC
North Carolina Criminal Defense Attorneys
We FIGHT to Get Results
We FIGHT to Get Results

Greater Discretion For Federal Judges In Sentencing

The current safety valve allows judges to sentence below mandatory minimum levels for a non-violent drug crime. Bills introduced in both the House and the Senate this year would expand the use of the safety valve beyond just drug crimes and would give relief to judges and defendants facing overly-punitive mandatory sentences.

A prison sentence is, among other things, intended to punish the individual. However, mandatory minimum sentences are often overly punitive, putting a non-violent offender in federal prison for years because of the constraints of federal sentencing laws.

Mandatory minimums were enacted as a way to get tough on crime, but have contributed to the overcrowding of prisons, the ballooning expense of the Department of Corrections and the destruction of families as one parent or partner is sent away for several years. The proposed act would allow judges to sentence below mandatory minimum levels if:

  • The mandatory minimum would end in an over-punishment for the crime
  • Notice is given to both the defendant and the prosecutor that the judge intends to sentence below mandatory minimums
  • The judge makes specific findings as to why the lower sentence was appropriate

There has been little movement on the bills since introduced in both houses of Congress; both headed to committees within their respective branches this spring. However, the need for increased sentencing discretion is still very real as the Justice Department implements its own plan to avoid charging offenses that would trigger mandatory minimum sentences when appropriate.

For more information, please see: Sentencing Discretion For Judges? A Look At The Current And Proposed Safety Valve Acts

Client Reviews

Get Legal Help Now
Let Us Help You

Put our team of criminal defense lawyers on your side today. You are one phone call or email away from getting your questions answered by an experienced defense attorney.

Call now to set up a free consultation.

Fill out the form below for a Free Consultation.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information
disclaimer.

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.

close
Nation's Top One Percent - National Association of Distinguished Counsel - NADC Top 100 Trial Lawyers - The National Trial Lawyers LC - Lead Counsel Rated BBB Accredited Business - Rating: A+ National College for DUI Defense - General Member Client Distinction Award Super Lawyers Avvo Rating 10.0 Superb - Top Attorney Criminal Defense

Call 866-630-2389 to schedule a free initial consultation.
Offices open weekdays 8am - 7pm, Saturdays 9am - 5pm