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South Carolina

June 3, 2010 (Associated Press)
South Carolina Governor Reduces Disparity Between Crack, Powder Cocaine and Reforms Other Sentencing Policies

South Carolina passed the Omnibus Crime Reduction and Sentencing Reform Act last month, and the Governor signed the measure on June 2, 2010. The new law encompasses a package of criminal justice reforms that includes removing the disparity in sentencing between possession of crack cocaine and powder cocaine, establishing an oversight committee to follow the process of the bill's implementation and measure progress, and allowing people on probation and parole to earn good-time credit.

May 21, 2010 (Associated Press, Washington Post, NPR, Miami Herald)
The Sentencing Project Applauds Supreme Court Ruling: Life without Parole Sentences Unconstitutional for Juveniles Convicted of Non-homicides

The Supreme Court Monday issued a 5 to 4 ruling that sentencing a juvenile to life without parole for a non-homicide offense violates the 8th Amendment's ban on cruel and unusual punishment.

Monday's ruling in Graham v. Florida will affect 129 cases around the nation, 77 of which are in Florida. The remaining cases are in Louisiana (17), Iowa (6), California (4), Mississippi (2), Nebraska (1), South Carolina (1), Delaware (1), Virginia (8), Nevada (5), Oklahoma (1), and the Federal System (6).

In the case concerning Terrance Graham, age 16 at the time of his original offense, the Court was asked to determine the constitutionality of a life without parole sentence for a probation violation that included a new, violent crime.

May 24, 2009 (Florence Morning News)
Florence woman seeks to ‘crack disparity’

On April 28th people from around the country came to DC to talk to their representatives in Congress about the unfair sentencing disparity between crack and powder cocaine. Among them was Tracy Wardy of Florence, South Carolina, who became an activist after her cousin, former Lake City police officer Shanita McKnight, was arrested and charged with a drug offense.

February 4, 2009
The Sentencing Project Releases New Report, The State of Sentencing 2008: Developments in Policy and Practice

A new report by The Sentencing Project highlights 17 states that enacted sentencing and corrections reforms in 2008. The State of Sentencing 2008: Developments in Policy and Practice finds that a nationwide budget crisis coupled with widespread prison overcrowding has led many states to address critical challenges in the areas of sentencing, drug policy, parole revocation, racial justice, felony disenfranchisement, juvenile justice, and higher education in prison.

September 19, 2008
Disenfranchisement News

Alabama: Inmate Voter Registration Efforts Halted
National: Disenfranchisement Gets National Attention, Gains Momentum
Mississippi: Lawsuit Demands Right to Vote
South Carolina: Elections Officials in Need of More Training
Oklahoma: Election Board Passing on Faulty Information, ACLU Survey Documents
Tennessee: Excitement About Election, Elections Officials See Registration Increase
Florida: Statewide Ad Campaign Targets Individuals with Felony Offenses
Virginia: Increase in Vote Restoration

February 19, 2008
Groups Ask S.C. Supreme Court to Review Juvenile Mandatory Minimum Sentence

The Sentencing Project has joined in an amicus brief with 14 other organizations to ask the South Carolina Supreme Court to grant certiorari in the case of a 12-year-old sentenced to a mandatory minimum 30-year prison term.  The case raises the issue of whether a defendant's age is relevant to assessing the constitutionality of a lengthy mandatory penalty. The brief was filed by the Juvenile Law Center, and joined by organizations representing juvenile justice advocates and researchers.

January 30, 2006
State Sentencing Update

Alabama: Alabama Legislature Considering Sentencing Package
Wisconsin: New Study Finds Wisconsin Falls Short in Providing Treatment
South Carolina: South Carolina Chief Justice Calls for Sentencing Reform

September 2012 State Collateral Consequences Legislative Roundup 2012

This report documents 2012 changes in state policy regarding collateral conequences.  The report was a collaboration with The Sentencing Project, ACLU, Crossroad Bible Institute, National Employment Law Project, and the National H.I.R.E. Network. 

This paper is organized into the following policy categories: (1) “ban the box”; (2) employer negligent hiring protections; (3) expungement and sealing; (4) federal public benefits opt-out legislation; (5) felony enfranchisement; and and (6) Uniform Collateral Consequences of Conviction Act legislation.

Author: Nicole D. Porter

September 2012 State Collateral Consequences Reform Webinar

The Sentencing Project co-hosted a webinar with the ACLU, Crossroad Bible Institute, National Employment Law Project, and the National H.I.R.E. Network.

The webinar provided an overview of efforts to reform collateral consequences including access to employment, felony enfranchisement, and access to public benefits. 

Author: Nicole D. Porter

June 2010 (The Sentencing Project) State Recidivism Database

Provides references for 99 recidivism studies conducted between 1995-2009 in all 50 states and the District of Columbia.

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