Some Questions About Washington’s Carceral Take-Backs

Earlier today I looked at the legal basis (or lack thereof) for Washington to re-incarcerate individuals who had been released from state prison early due to a computer glitch. Regardless of the legality, these “take-backs” are happening. Some questions:

  1. If police officers are going to individual homes to notify people they need to return to prison, what is the process to create those orders? Does the chain of information go directly from the Department of Corrections to the police departments? Is there a judicial intermediary?
  2. Do the individuals have a right to counsel during the re-incarceration process?
  3. If the individuals have a right to counsel, are they ever told they have a right to counsel?
  4. Who would that counsel be? Would the individual’s lawyer be his same lawyer from the initial proceeding that led to the incarceration? A new lawyer?
  5. If federal habeas relief is the proper vehicle to test these detentions, is there an organization in Washington looking into habeas claims for any of these individuals?
  6. If state collateral proceedings are the proper vehicle, is there a state organization looking into those claims?
  7. Even if improperly released prisoners have no right to avoid re-incarceration, shouldn’t there be some process to determine whether an individual is in fact an improperly released prisoner before he gets re-incarcerated?

I’m sure more questions will come to mind. But so far much (all?) of the press on this issue has focused on (1) the fact of the glitch, (2) the state’s assertion that early released prisoners will be re-incarcerated, and (3) individuals who committed crimes after early release. I’ve yet to read anything about the administrative and judicial process operating here.


One thought on “Some Questions About Washington’s Carceral Take-Backs

  1. Pingback: New Details Call Washington’s Carceral “Take-Backs” into Question | Ziff Blog

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