Most of the Santa Barbara County AB 109 inmates ​— ​released to county jails from state prison in a custody “realignment” in October 2011 ​— ​haven’t reoffended, according to a UCSB-authored report on the program. The study found that 33 percent of the offenders who went on to be supervised by County Probation received a new conviction, and most were misdemeanors; that overall population was predominately thirty-something, male, and Latino and presented an 81 percent risk of reoffending.

The two types of inmates in the second category under the law — those who spend their entire prison terms in county jail or split the sentence between jail and supervision — were likewise mostly Hispanic males in their thirties and posed a 72 percent recidivism risk; only 12 percent were reconvicted. Deputy Chief Probation Officer Tanja Heitman said the passage of Proposition 47 will mean fewer realignment participants in the future but a consequential decrease in the number of inmates who could benefit from the treatment programs offered by the law.


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