Imagine serving a life sentence in prison for stealing a floor jack from a tow truck? Many of the clients our guest today, Michael Romano, has represented were drug addicts or homeless when they got caught up in California’s Three Strikes law that forced minimum sentences and locked up thousands of nonviolent offenders for 20, 30 years and more. Romano, the founder of Stanford’s Three Strikes and Justice Advocacy Project, has become a leading voice in criminal reform in California and the nation—shining a light on the high cost to both the imprisoned and the taxpayer, who foots the bill. Romano, who was recently appointed to chair the state’s new criminal law and policy reform committee, the California Committee on the Revision of the Penal Code, joins Stanford Legal to talk about the criminal justice crisis in American and efforts in California to release nonviolent offenders through reform of the Three Strikes law and other legal reforms.
This episode originally aired on SiriusXM on March 27, 2021.