More So-Called “Non-Violent Second-Strikers” Get Early Prison Release

Many who are released quickly reoffend

Press Release

(Woodland, CA) – July 3, 2017 – The Yolo County District Attorney’s Office regularly publishes a list of convicted criminals who have been granted early release from prison by the State of California.

Since the beginning of the program, 41 inmates with committing felony offenses from Yolo County have been released early, despite the opposition of the Yolo County District Attorney. Of those 41 already released, nine have been rearrested for crimes such as: violation of post release community supervision, burglary, drug possession, and drug sales.

The history of the early release program is as follows: Beginning in 2015, in an effort to reduce prison overcrowding, a number of measures were put into place by the State of California which have resulted in early prison releases, including early parole consideration for individuals characterized as "non-violent second-strikers." To qualify, inmates must not currently be serving a sentence for a crime which is legally categorized as a “violent felony” and must not be required to register as sex offenders.

Once a "non-violent second-striker" has served only 50 percent of their sentence, or if they are within 12 months of having served 50 percent of their actual sentence, they are eligible for parole consideration under the program. A prison official conducts an administrative review of each eligible prisoner. No oral testimony from victims or witnesses is taken during the paper-review process and no actual hearing is conducted. Instead, the prison official merely notifies district attorneys and any victims that they may submit a written statement for consideration. If the prison official determines that the inmate would not pose an unreasonable risk to public safety based on criteria included in their criminal history, prison behavior, rehabilitation efforts, and written statements, they are released.

The Yolo County District Attorney's Office takes an active role in evaluating these cases and writes letters opposing early prison release to the Board of Parole Hearings. Many of these offenders have violent and lengthy criminal histories.

Since our last report, the following Yolo County convicted criminals have been approved for early prison release by the State of California:

Dakota Carboni - Carboni has a criminal history that includes multiple convictions for drug charges and felony burglary. Since his first adult arrest in November of 2012, he has been ordered to serve a total of five years and four months in state prison. He has a past that reflects unsatisfactory performance on probation and parole. Upon his release under the Non-Violent Second Striker program, he quickly reoffended by breaking into an unlocked garage and stealing numerous items including an electric bicycle. He was caught riding the stolen bicycle a short time later by police. He has recently been sentenced to four years in state prison.

Elgin Davis - Davis has a criminal history that spans more than four decades. He has many prior convictions that involve weapons and violence. In addition, he has been previously convicted of criminal threats, domestic violence, assault and fighting. He has spent nearly all of his adult life on probation or parole. His last two probation terms have not been successful and he has had multiple violations. He was sent to prison in the most recent case for drug sales and possession of a weapon by a felon forbidden to possess any weapons. The weapon in question had been reported stolen in a residential burglary less than a month prior to being found in his possession.

Paul Savala - Savala's criminal record is so extensive, it takes 28 pages to contain it all. His convictions are numerous and include felony convictions for false imprisonment, auto theft, evading a peace officer, false impersonation, drug possession, and first degree burglary. He first went to prison in 1998. Since that time he has accumulated seven new felony convictions and at least 11 parole violations. The case that sent him to prison this time was for possessing methamphetamine for sale, felon in possession of ammunition, a prior strike and four prison priors. Since his release he has been arrested in Sacramento County for drug possession.

At the request of members of the public, the Yolo County District Attorney has recently sought to expand the information being provided on its website by obtaining and publishing the latest prison “mug-shot” of the inmates who are being released early. Unfortunately, officials at the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation have, thus far, refused to provide the requested photos for this purpose.

According to Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig: "We remain dedicated to analyzing each case and will oppose the release of inmates when appropriate. Most citizens have no idea that serious criminals are being released from prison early under these new state programs. Many of these individuals have very violent criminal histories and continue to pose a danger to our communities. Our website link is designed to inform the public and improve the transparency of the state’s early release decisions.”

The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation publishes the results of all of its early release decisions on its website at: http://www.cdcr.ca.gov/BOPH/NVNS_secstrkreview.html

To view Yolo County’s website and the opposition letters that we have submitted in our attempts to prevent early releases of convicted prisoners, go to: http://yoloda.org/early-prison-releases/

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