Justice Department set to free 6,000 prisoners

Daily News Article - October 8, 2015


1. The first paragraph of a news article should answer the questions who, what, where and when. In this article, find more details in paragraph 2. List the who, what, where and when of this news item. (NOTE: The remainder of a news article provides details on the why and/or how.)

2. a) What two reasons are given for the largest one-time release of federal prisoners?
b) What led to the orders for early release?

3. Where will these ex-convicts go when released?

4. a) How many drug offenders are currently in federal prison?
b) How many qualify for early release, according to the U.S. Sentencing Commission?

5. What has the Justice Department further instructed its prosecutors to do with certain drug offenders going forward? (see para. 9)

6. After The USSC’s 2014 vote to reduce sentencing for drug offenders, then-Attorney General Eric H. Holder proposed more restrictive criteria that would exclude people who had used weapons or had significant criminal histories. How did the Commission differ from the Attorney General in their final decision?

7.  What did U.S. District Judge Royce Lamberth write in his decision to deny two prisoners’ request for early release?

8. a) Who are the critics opposed to the release of such a large number of prisoners at once?
b) Why are they opposed to this decision?
c) Do you think this is a valid concern? Explain your answer.