Iowa inmates follow earned time policy for incarceration - KTIV News 4 Sioux City IA: News, Weather and Sports

Iowa inmates follow earned time policy for incarceration

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Brian Davis is one of Iowa's 8,000 prison inmates.

He is only one of many inmates leaving prison bars behind as corrections officials take what they're calling a more "aggressive approach to paroling inmates."

The Iowa Board of Parole says the number of parolees is up by nearly 24 percent.

The prison population is now down by about 800 inmates.

The state's on track to exceed the more than 4,000 paroles granted last fiscal year.

Davis received a 50 year prison sentence, but the law at the time meant his sentence was basically cut in half the day he walked through the doors.

It was a day for day system with good behavior factored in.

The law in Iowa changed in 2000, to what's called "earned time."

So, while a second degree murder charge is still a 50 year sentence, it's an offense that carries a 70 percent mandatory.

After 70 percent of that time is served, inmates earn 1.2 days back for every day incarcerated.

Corrections officials say time spent in jail before the trial can also be factored in.

It's important to point out that state corrections officials say Iowa has one of the lowest rates of recidivism or reoffenses in the country.

They say they'll continue to release low-risk probationers and parolees based on data, which will free up resources to better supervise and treat high-risk offenders.

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