Philly420: Mandatory Minimum Sentences Revived In Pa.

But the bill has ended with many of the provisions specifically relating to marijuana offenses. It is moving fast in Harrisburg. The structure of most mandatory minimums was struck down by a U.S. Supreme Court ruling in 2013 calledAlleyne vs. United States. Prior to the ruling judges could impose a minimum sentence without having a jury consider all elements of the crime at hand. HB1601 seeks to re-instate these sentences by changing some wording in the statute. Ultimately such provisions tie the hands of judges who might dole out less prison time or even probation over incarceration. “Mandatory minimums have been on the books for 30 years,” says Rep. Marsico, “we are just correcting the procedural defects,” following the Supreme Court decision. “We’ve found there’s been a good reason for these mandatory minimums because of numerous lenient sentences across the commonwealth,” said Marsico. An amendment by Marsico also toughens up offenses that occur within Drug Free School Zones. This policy is a federal law implemented by states. Drug Free School Zones encompass an area within 1000 feet of schools, campuses or daycare centers and within 250 feet of playgrounds or recreation centers. “This is not about possession.

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