What the bill would do
►Establishes a three strikes rule for repeat offenders found guilty of any of 46 specified violent and sexual crimes. If a person is convicted and serves three years or more for one of the listed crimes, he or she receives a strike. After three strikes, an offender loses the possibility of parole.
►Reduces the mandatory minimum prison sentence for some nonviolent drug crimes. For example, a person convicted of distributing heroin or morphine would receive a mandatory minimum sentence of 3½ years. The mandatory minimum sentence for those offenses is currently five years.
►Increases the weight allowance of some drugs before mandatory minimum sentences are applied. For example, minimum sentences for heroin currently take effect at possession of 14 or more grams. That threshold will increase to 18 grams.
►Shortens the distance to a school before a mandatory minimum sentence applies for a drug offender from 1,000 feet to 300 feet. Also, drug offenses occurring between midnight and 5 a.m. would no longer trigger a mandatory minimum sentence.
►Creates a “Good Samaritan” provision, granting immunity from prosecution to those who report a drug overdose.
►Increases the number of members on the Parole Board nominating committee from five to nine.
What Governor Deval Patrick wants added
►A provision giving sentencing judges the option of granting some repeat offenders a pass from the three strikes rule, allowing those criminals to apply for parole after serving either two-thirds of their sentence or, in the case of a life sentence, 25 years.