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Nearly 18 months after the state's prison realignment law took effect, Merced officials agree the jury is still out on whether it meets its intended goals.
Merced County Sheriff Mark Pazin on Thursday unveiled a new one-stop shop to provide various services to county jail inmates released under the guidelines established by Assembly Bill 109, the state's prison realignment law.
Overall crime in the county's unincorporated areas went down more than 5 percent in 2012, according to data released by the Merced County Sheriff's Department this month.
Merced County Sheriff Mark Pazin acknowledges more inmates are released early in the wake of AB-109, but he points to a new report from the center on juvenile and criminal justice. It says FBI statistics show realigning offenders is not connected with increases in crime.
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