Members of both the House and Senate Republicans recently held a public hearing in Hartford regarding Connecticut’s highly controversial Risk Reduction Earned Credit (RREC) Program.
The program, which passed last year despite heavy Republican opposition, allows criminals who have committed violent crimes to be released from prison on an earlier date if they exhibit good behavior while incarcerated.
This public hearing comes after two horrific murder cases, both of which were committed by prisoners who were released from jail early after earning credits under the program.
Also in attendance at the hearing was the State’s Victim Advocate, Michelle Cruz. According to Cruz, at least 775 early-release offenders have already been re-arrested since the programs launch and more than 7,500 convicts were released at once because the credits were made retroactive for five years.
There was significant evidence presented during the hearing that indicated many who are being released under this program have not had enough time to be fully reformed before they are released, and so far, there has been no credible evidence suggesting this program reduces recidivism rates or reduces crime.
I have joined my fellow Republican colleagues to once again ask Governor Malloy to suspend the program and allow a comprehensive investigation into how the RREC is being administered so we can further examine the programs potential risks to society.
The number one duty of government is to protect its citizens, and we should be doing all we can to ensure potentially dangerous criminals, especially those who have violent criminal records, remain imprisoned until there is significant evidence of their rehabilitation. The safety of Connecticut’s residents should never be questioned, and unfortunately, today’s hearing shed a light of uncertainty on our state’s policies on crime and public safety.