The conservative approach to criminal justice:
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Breakfast Briefing Kicks off Conversations for Reform in Arizona

| January 12, 2018

Arizona legislative session opened Monday, January 8th but it really got moving today, January 11th, for criminal justice reforms in the state.  Right on Crime hosted a legislative briefing breakfast for lawmakers to introduce reform ideas from both Arizona and around the country.  In addition to briefing lawmakers on ROC priorities for 2018, which include significant fines and fees reform, driver’s license reform, and importantly the sealing of certain felony convictions by amending Arizona’s “Vacate and Set Aside” statute, they were introduced to policy ideas that have worked around the nation.  The breakfast was well attended. Among the more than 100 people in attendance, were approximately 30 members of the legislature, policy staff, and criminal justice reform coalition partners from both sides of the aisle.  Policy discussions were lively, and it was clear that momentum is on the side of reform.  The experience of listening to varying perspectives on issues from pre-trial diversion to re-entry, and everything in between, only served to enhance understanding and spawn further interest in the issues.

Now the real work begins.  Although the desire to score touchdowns and win big is present, the plays still need to drawn and executed and the ball moved down the field, one yard at a time.  Sometimes we hit the deep route, but mostly laws get passed with a ground game that eats up three yards at a time with a cloud of dust.  The next three to four months the Capitol will be home to this Right on Crime State Director, moving three yards at a time.  Reform takes real work to become reality, but 2018 could not have kicked off any better.

Special thanks goes out to all our reform partners who helped ROC make the breakfast a reality, especially my good friends Marilyn and Sam at Creosote Partners.   The successful kick off doesn’t happen without you guys!

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KURT ALTMAN became a signatory for Right on Crime in early 2016 and recently more fully joined the reform movement, promoting Right on Crime’s policies in the State Houses of Arizona and New Mexico. He has nearly 24 years of criminal law and Constitutional litigation experience. As a former Deputy Maricopa County Attorney and Assistant United States Attorney, Kurt has conducted literally hundreds of felony jury trials and lead investigations of criminal conduct ranging from homicide and capital cases to complex white collar matters. Formerly, as a member of the Department of Justice, Kurt earned the Director’s Award, the highest honor bestowed upon Department of Justice lawyers, and has twice received the Federal Bureau of Investigation Director’s Award for his tireless efforts on behalf of FBI-conducted investigations. Since 2008 he has operated his own practice defending the accused in criminal matters of all varieties also ranging from homicide to white collar.

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