In a surprise announcement earlier this month, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that he is instructing federal prosecutors to stop enforcing the nation's mandatory drug sentencing laws. Instead, prosecutors are asked to process the case in such a way as to avoid triggering the mandatory sentences, which will allow judges to apply lighter punishments.
In Lincolnton, North Carolina, local law enforcement agencies teamed up to run the "16 Days of Christmas." The special operation started on December 5 with the goal of rounding up drug offenders throughout the area. During the 16 day period, 57 of the 99 offenders were arrested and charged with various drug crimes.