Prisons across the country are releasing inmates early in an attempt to stop the overcrowding of jails to prevent the spread of COVID-19. While many of these inmates had almost served their sentence, there have been specific dangerous instances in which violent criminals have been released, before even getting a trial.
In Massachusetts, a man accused of attempting to blow up a Jewish nursing home with a gas canister was released and put into home confinement Thursday. Thankfully, prosecutors are currently fighting the decision.
According to The New York Times, he “was charged in federal court in Western Massachusetts with two counts of attempted arson after the authorities said he tried to ignite a five-gallon plastic gas canister outside Ruth’s House, an assisted-living home in Longmeadow, Mass., on the morning of April 2.”
The question that needs to be asked is:
How is releasing prisoners early, especially ones that pose a significant threat to public safety, going to benefit anyone during such a time?
Sure, the Massachusetts man was put under house arrest, but due to social distancing rules, nearly everyone else in Massachusetts is stuck in their homes as well unless they need to go to the local Stop & Shop! Home confinement is the new “freedom” in America under COVID-19, arguably making a dangerous anti-Semite and hundreds of other potentially violent criminals roaming free. This carelessness from soft on crime leadership will add additional public risk to an already scary and uncertain time for all Americans.
The other concerning problem that needs to be addressed is that there is a need to release people to prevent the potential spread of disease in our prisons in the first place. Prison overcrowding and criminal justice reform need to be an even higher priority coming out of this crisis. But now is not the time to release inmates, mainly because the process is going to be rushed.
We are already in the defining crisis of our generation, and the American people do not need another reason to be living in fear.