Shredding The Sessions Memo (FAMM Article)

Published by: Ro ❤ CoFounder/President on 18th May 2017 | View all blogs by Ro ❤ CoFounder/President
Families Against Mandatory Minimums  

Dear Ro,

Last Friday, Attorney General Jeff Sessions gave new marching orders to federal prosecutors across the country instructing them to seek the most serious charges in every drug case. This is a terrible idea — and you and I know why.

When mandatory minimums were first passed in the 1980s, the politicians said that they would be reserved for the most dangerous and high-level offenders. But then we saw what happened. Prosecutors demanded and got mandatory life sentences for people like Evans Ray and 15-year sentences for first-time offenders suffering from addiction like Mandy Martinson. These cases are not exceptions. Overall, 93 percent of individuals who receive mandatory minimum sentences played no leadership role in their offense.

Requiring more low- and mid-level offenders to serve unnecessarily lengthy prison terms will impose a larger burden on taxpayers. Greater still will be the opportunity costs. To hold more low-risk offenders in federal prison, how many fewer murders will go unsolved? How many fewer prosecutors and police will be hired? How many more rape kits will go untested? The tradeoffs required by the attorney general’s directive will make families and communities less safe.

The new charging memo will also have an enormous and negative impact on the families whose loved ones are forced to serve disproportionately lengthy prison sentences. More kids will grow up without a parent, causing a host of economic, educational, and social challenges. Families will struggle to stay together. Economic self-sufficiency will become much more difficult to achieve.

We must fight back. Since Sessions' memo was announced, FAMM has appeared on TV and in the press highlighting the dangers of this failed approach. And in the weeks and months ahead, we plan to:

  • Continue to call for greater oversight of the federal prosecutors who will implement the new charging policy;
  • Expose the danger and stupidity of this new policy by identifying and highlighting cases where mandatory minimums are applied to the wrong people; and
  • Build support for legislation to eliminate mandatory minimums, like the bipartisan Justice Safety Valve Act, which was introduced in Congress this week.

Thanks for your continued support.


Kevin A. Ring
President, FAMM

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  • twinkle
    by twinkle 1 year ago
    Things are going backwards :(
  • Angel4umybeloved2020
    by Angel4umybeloved2020 1 year ago
    What is does this mean for my man since he wasn't put in prison for drugs though? He was placed in prison for no reason...he was set up...he is innocent? Does this mean he could come home sooner? I hope so.
  • Ro ❤ CoFounder/President
    Twinkle.... Ugh I know...Totally agree. Have to keep pressing forward. @angel No honey. This is for federal cases only and guys who have not been sentenced yet. It's a directive from the attorney general to give MORE time and go "tough on crime." (dumb on crime, if u ask me.... But I'll refrain from Saying anymore at risk of sounding negative.
  • Angel4umybeloved2020
    by Angel4umybeloved2020 1 year ago
    He is at a federal prison though in Pekin, IL...
  • Ro ❤ CoFounder/President
    If he has already been sentenced this won't change anything. It has to do with prosecutors and AUSA being more strict when sentencing. It's got nothing to do with post sentencing. Don't worry.
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