SB 105, which reforms the state’s probation system, was put into effect this week by Governor Brian Kemp.
ATLANTA – A law signed by Governor Brian Kemp this week will soften a system in Georgia where more people are serving suspended sentences than any other US state
SB 105 will provide a path to early termination for people serving long suspended sentences, according to the Georgia Justice Project.
Individuals who have completed three years of their probationary period are entitled to early termination if:
- No new arrests
- No parole revocations in the past 24 months
- All refunds paid
The Georgia Justice Project says the new law immediately qualifies for early termination up to a quarter of the state’s 191,000 people serving suspended sentences.
“As someone who has been doing this job for more than a decade, it’s great to see these people have another second chance,” said Rachel Holmes, senior attorney for the Georgia Justice Project. “SB 105 takes a look at the long probation periods we have here in Georgia and streamlines a way for rehabilitated people to gain access to early termination.”
WE MADE IT! Georgia has a new law on the books that will help people serve long suspended sentences! # SB105 went into effect today and is effective immediately. pic.twitter.com/Snj1DKALn6
– Georgia Justice Project (@gajustice) May 4, 2021
Holmes said people on probation could be denied housing and employment opportunities. The Georgia Justice Project, she said, has worked with people who have been on parole for 15 years or more for convictions such as counterfeiting, with the suspended sentence preventing them from ever getting fully back on their lives.
“That will really give them that opportunity,” she said. “I know so many of our customers have been waiting for this day and we will work with them on an early termination.”