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Excessive sentence of 13.3 years in prison for possession of small amount of marijuana should be reviewedApril 17, 2014
Brief Amicus Curiae of Micah Project, Prison Fellowship Ministries, Reason Foundation, ACLU of Louisiana, and Drug Policy Alliance
State of Louisiana v. Bernard Noble
Bernard Noble is a 45 year old man who was sentenced to 13 years and four months of hard labor in prison without the opportunity for parole for possessing the equivalent of two marijuana cigarettes. Eight of the 12 Louisiana judges who have reviewed Mr. Noble's case have taken issue with its disposition, and several have variously expressed "shock, literal shock" about the "absolute horrific" sentence Mr. Noble received, a sentence "grossly out of proportion for the severity of the crime," that simply "imposes needless and purposeless pain."
This brief of Amici Curiae seeks to place Mr. Noble's case in the broader context of sentencing policy and sentencing data. It is Amici's belief that the need for this Court's review of this case will become clearer and more urgent when Mr. Noble's sentence is viewed in the context of the purposed of punishment, the dramatically lower penalties that would attach to Mr. Noble's offense in virtually every other state in the union, and the tangible ways that Mr. Noble's sentence will negatively affect him, his family, his community and the taxpayers of Louisiana without enhancing public safety or health.
This brief demonstrates that Mr. Noble's prison sentence of 13.3 years is grossly disproportionate to both Mr. Noble's instant offense and his criminal history, cannot be squared with the sentencing practices of other states, fails to advance the core purposes of punishment, does not align with Louisiana public opinion, and is an affront to common decency. The Louisiana Supreme Court should grant Mr. Noble's petition for Certiorari.
The rollout of Reason Foundation's Annual Privatization Report 2013 continues today with the release of the Criminal Justice and Corrections section, which which provides an overview of the latest on privatization and public-private partnerships in criminal justice and corrections.
Annual Privatization Report 2013 examines criminal justice and corrections trendsMay 6, 2013
This section of Reason Foundation's Annual Privatization Report 2013 provides an overview of the latest on privatization and public-private partnerships in criminal justice and corrections. Topics include:
A. 2012 Corrections Privatization Overview
B. State and International Corrections Privatization Update
C. State and Local Correctional Healthcare Privatization Update
D. ANALYSIS: Recent Developments in the Federal Civil-Rights Liability of Federal Private Prisons
E. FOCUS: The Emergence of Social Impact Bonds: Paying for Success in Social Service Innovation
F. FOCUS: Colorado, Washington State Vote to Tax and Regulate Recreational Marijuana for Adults
Subsection of Annual Privatization Report 2013: Criminal Justice and CorrectionsMay 6, 2013
This subsection of Reason Foundation's Annual Privatization Report 2013: Criminal Justice and Corrections reviews the recent passage of ballot measures legalizing the recreational use of marijuana in both Colorado and Washington State.
Reason Foundation's first feature-length documentary uncovers the extraordinary costs of the U.S. government’s 40-year war on drugs. Here’s the trailer for America’s Longest War:
View Resources by Type
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- State of Louisiana v. Bernard Noble (4/17)
- 40th Anniversary of the Rockefeller Drug Laws: Time to Re-think Sentencing Policy (5/8)
- New at Reason: Privatization Developments in Criminal Justice and Corrections (5/6)
- Developments in Criminal Justice and Corrections (5/6)
- Colorado, Washington State Vote to Tax and Regulate Recreational Marijuana for Adults (5/6)
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