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CA Voters Opt to Change State's 3 Strikes Law

LOS ANGELES (AP) - The nation's harshest three strikes law has been reformed to allow for shorter sentences for some offenders.  Under Proposition 36, an offender's third felony conviction now must be a serious or violent crime to mandate an automatic sentence of 25 years to life in prison.  Previously, any felony conviction - even for a relatively minor offense - triggered the automatic sentence for an offender with two previous felony convictions for serious or violent crimes.  Opponents argued the law needed no alteration and was meant to punish California's habitual  offenders.  Supporters argue the state will save millions a year by cutting down on the number of parole hearings and shortening long prison sentences.

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