The conservative approach to criminal justice:
fighting crime, supporting victims, and protecting taxpayers.

West Virginia

As documented by the Pew Charitable Trusts, since 2010 West Virginia has led the nation in average annual prison population growth. The state’s prison population has averaged a growth of 73% from 2000 to 2010, costing the state $169.2 million.  With such a rapid increase of inmates, as of 2012 there were more than 1,800 prisoners waiting for a bed to open up.  Also, the number of inmates sent back to prison because their release was revoked has increased 47% from 2005 to 2012, costing the state $168 million. Furthermore, the average offender completed 51% more time served than those in 1990, costing the state another $74.8 million. According to Correctionalnews.com, Senate Bill 371 was proposed by Governor Earl Ray Tomblin and enacted in 2013 to take steps to address these challenges and right-size the state’s prison system. The bill is projected to ease overcrowding and expand proven substance abuse programs for inmates. It creates an earned time incentive for non-violent inmates and expands  drug court programs. More drug courts were needed to address substance abuse related recidivism given that 75% of all inmates are serving their sentences due to drug related crimes.