A Requisition for Rehabilitation Part 2

Dear Reader, in my last post I stated that the next topic would be the Plausibility of Art. 1 Sec. 11 hearings. Plausibility was not the appropriate term. The word I should have used is feasibility. So in this post we will cover in part, the Feasibility of Art. 1 Sec. 11 hearings.

Alow I want to apologize for not properly introducing myself. I just jumped right in spitting facts without any indication of who I am. My name is Richard Morris. I’m 44 years old. I’ve been incarcerated since 1995 for murder, aggravated vehicular hijacking and aggravated kidnapping. A crime I did not commit, but was physically and psychologically tormented into fabricating and signing a false confession. I, also was a member of the Stateville Debate Team, whose class was cancelled for unknown and unspecified reasons. So in the spirit of the class and Professor Katrina Burlet, I am continuing in the effort to re-establish a parole type system in Illinois called Article 1 Section 11 hearings.

An Art. 1 Sec. 11 hearing is a consideration hearing in which a qualified decision-making panel considers first the person that committed or was involved in the act before considering the act that the person committed or was involved in, weighing the incarcerated-person’s age, education level, and temperament when the offense was committed and recognizing the progress, if any, that he/she has made during that duration of incarceration in not only his/her required programs, but also in environmental evaluations, and determine what, if anything, more shall be completed (such as advanced education courses, group sessions, vocational trainging, or time) in order to conclude, in the intrest of justice, by a preponderance evidence if the incarcerated-person has mitigated the nature and\or seriousness of the offense, reconciled the debt to society and atleast is crossing or has crossed the bridge to being restored to useful citizenship.

If you recall Art. 1 Sec. 11 of the Illinois Constitution requires that all penalties shall be determined both according to the seriousness of the offense and with the objective of restoring the offender to useful citizenship. A judge is qualified to determine the first provision of the article, but not the second. For the second provision requires morethan a mere spot assessment. In fact, the “phraseology,” with the objective of restoring..; demands that the individual be evaluated over an extended period of time. Because consideration for re-integration into society is less about personality and more about rehabilitation potential and risk, the prevailing question becomes-if this person is allowed to return to society, will he\she be a productive member of the community or revert back to behaviour that is detrimental to others?

In an Art. 1 Sec. 11 hearing an acturial evaluation would also be incorporated to assess an incarcerated-person’s risk of recidivism, which in most cases (with the exception of murder, offenses involving great bodily harm or mitilation, sex offenders, and any offense involving children) would be binding for an incarcerated-person’s release if he\she passed the risk assessment.

Sone of the factors that go into the implementation of comprehensive Art. 1 Sec. 11 hearings are already within the employment of the I.D.O.C., but are not being applied in an intended manner. It is these land of inadequacies that has led to a systemic breakdown and failure within I.D.O.C.

Every incarcerated-person has a right to consideration according to Art. 1 Sec. 11 of the Illinois Constitution which is supreme law of the state. So if “we” are to have this right enforced and executed accordingly, then it is incumbent upon every incarcerated-person as well as any and every citizen with an interest in and for public safety to notify the Governor that he has supreme executive power and is responsible for the faithful execution of the laws. (Art. 5 Sec. 8 of the IL Constitution) As governor of the state of Illinois, it is his constitutional duty to establish Art. 1 Sec. 11 hearings in the Department of corrections, as well as appoint a qualified panel of decision-makers capable of conducting these hearings.

To Be Continued


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