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Furlough inmates' behavior questioned

Original post made on Mar 13, 2008

For over 20 years, the county work furlough program at 590 East Middlefield Road has given inmates a chance to hold down a job while serving out their sentences.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, April 13, 2007, 12:00 AM

Comments (8)

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Posted by jamie losada vargas
a resident of Old Mountain View
on Mar 13, 2008 at 2:56 pm

like to know if in the program


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Posted by 4l4n
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 13, 2008 at 5:01 pm

If they break the law they should be punished, but it sounds like the neighbors are mostly whining about legal activity.


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Posted by DG
a resident of Whisman Station
on Mar 13, 2008 at 9:13 pm

I think whenever something like this sort of lewd and lascivious behavior happens all the inmates in the program should be punished - perhaps they all lose weekend exercise/outdoor privileges or something. It's kind of like having the whole football team run extra laps when just one teammate screws up. Pretty soon the peer pressure to behave will take over and the inmates will be policing themselves.


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Posted by 4l4n
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2008 at 12:03 pm

Its unjust to punish all the inmates for the behavior of one. They do not have complete control over each other, nor should they.


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Posted by DG
a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 14, 2008 at 12:31 pm

I think the whole point of punishing all the inmates for the behavior of one IS that it is unfair. It the very nature of that unfairness that drives the innocent to exert peer pressure on the guilty to control their behavior, whether it be a sports team or a group of inmates or whatever. The inmates are a group that should be held accountable for each other's actions because the bad behavior of one could jeopardize the fate of the whole work furlough program as a whole.


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Posted by 4l4n
a resident of Monta Loma
on Mar 14, 2008 at 4:02 pm

> I think the whole point of punishing all the inmates for the behavior of one IS that it is unfair.

It is important for society to treat inmates fairly so they have respect for society. Punishing everyone for the crimes of one person is arbitrary and capricious punishment, and would probably be a violation of the law.

> It the very nature of that unfairness that drives the innocent to exert peer pressure on the guilty to control their behavior, whether it be a sports team or a group of inmates or whatever.

The innocent can only exert that kind of pressure when they are present. 99.9% of the time this would not be the case, and therefore punishes the rest of the innocent inmates for no good reason.


> The inmates are a group that should be held accountable for each other's actions because the bad behavior of one could jeopardize the fate of the whole work furlough program as a whole.

How would you feel if I attempted to hold you accountable for your neighbors actions?

Would that cause you to watch your neighbors every move to make sure they don't slip up, or would it instead cause you to think that I was being unreasonable?

Punishing someone for someone else's action is a sure way to foster an attitude of distrust and long term resentment.


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Posted by DG
a resident of North Whisman
on Mar 16, 2008 at 12:04 pm

According to the Voice article, a lot of these inmates ARE together during the periods in question (while waiting for and riding on the light rail train. This is the only time during the day they are exposed to the public and the only time I'm really concerned about). Presumably, these inmates act up during this time because it is the only time during the day they go unsupervised, either by law enforcement officials that work at the furlough building or by their supervisors and co-workers at their places of employment. I think this freedom is a tremendous privelege that convicted inmates do not normally get. If they abuse it and take it for granted then maybe they do deserve to be placed on house arrest instead. How would you feel if I was riding/waiting on the bus with my neighbor and he made lewd and lascivious gestures/comments to some lady and I stood by and didn't do anything about it? How about if that lady was your wife or daughter or mother? Seems to me this is the perfect opportunity for inmates to learn responsibility and accountability for one another and they're blowing it.

"Sometimes it's just me, me and a bunch of guys," said one woman, a nearby resident and engineer who until recently used the station in the early morning to get to her job in Sunnyvale.

She said the Middlefield light rail station is mostly populated by inmates in the mornings, and that they engage in crude language and behavior, making it an intimidating place to wait for a train.

Recently, she said, she saw one of the men grab his crotch and gesture towards a young woman in her early 20s who was also waiting at the station. For both her and the young woman, she said, taking a bus suddenly seemed like a better alternative.

She said that when she finally did start taking a bus, the driver asked her, "Tired of riding with those jailbirds?"

The woman added that one detail bothers her in particular: Some of the inmates are registered sex offenders.

According to the Megan's Law Web site, which was established to track sex offenders, at least two residents of the work furlough program have been convicted of "lewd and lascivious acts" with children under 14 years of age."


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Posted by LULU
a resident of another community
on Jul 12, 2008 at 8:03 pm

MY SON WAS 15 YEARS OLD WHEN THE INCIDENT OCCURRED, AND WAS TRIED AS AN ADULT AS SOON AS HE TURNED 16 YEARS OLD. HE IS NOW 39 AND WHEN HE WAS PICKED UP FROM OUR HOME, HE WAS WAS BEING QUESTIONED BY SEVERAL DETECTIVES FOR SEVERAL HOURS AND WHEN IT WAS TIME FOR HIM TO GO BEFORE THE JUDGE HIS PARENTS OR NO LAWYER WERE THERE TO REPRESENT HIM. WOULD'NT YOU AGREE THAT SOMEONE IN HIS SITUATION SHOULD BE ABLE TO BE GIVEN ATLEAST ONE OPPERTUNITY TO GET ON THE FURLOGH PROGRAM ATLEAST ONE TIME LIKE SO MANY HAVE THAT CHANCE AND THEY KEEP GOING BACK TO PRISON AGAIN AND AGAIN? MAYBE THIS IS NOT EVEN CLOSE TO MATCHING THE STORY YOU ARE REFERRING TO, OR MAYBE I AM JUST A MOTHER WHO IS DESPERATE TO FIND HELP FOR HER SON'S RELEASE AFTER 21 YEARS BEING INBCARCERATED. I AM HAVING HEART SURGERY COME JULY 17TH AND I PRAY I ATLEAST GET TO SEE MY SON. TWENTY- ONE YEARS IS TRULY A CRUEL AND UNUSUAL PUNISHMENT ONLY BECAUSE WE HAVE NO MONEY.GOD BLESS TO ANYONE WHO EVEN READS THIS.


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