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Governor says no easy answers on troubled prisons


SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Jerry Brown says problems remain in California's prison system even as he argues that conditions have improved so much that the state should take over control from the federal courts. During a speech Thursday in Washington, D.C., Brown called the system a mess, "although far less of a mess than it ever was before." He said he knows improvements are still needed "because the federal courts have a gun at my head ..."

That was a reference to a federal judicial panel threatening him with contempt if his administration did not meet the court's demand to reduce the prison system by an additional 9,600 inmates by the end of the year. The judges have since extended the deadline. The long-running legal case focuses on improving inmate medical care.

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