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Study shows murderers and rapists are least likely to return to prison

By Laura Weber, Michigan Public Radio Network

EAST LANSING, MI – A new study suggests paroling more people convicted of violent crimes would not pose a significant risk to the public.

Citizens Alliance on Prisons and Public Spending - or CAPPS - conducted the study. It showed 3% of sex offenders in Michigan returned to prison for another sex crime. The study also showed murderers and rapists are often denied their first parole.

Barbara Levine is with CAPPS.

"The parole board should be deciding not whether someone's been punished enough, but whether now that they've served the time that the judge imposed, whether they are too high a risk to release," she says. "Whether there's some reason not to release them; either because of institutional misconduct or because of objective factors that suggest that they are too high a risk to release."

Levine says the findings should be considered as the state comes up with corrections reforms.

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