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Probation Sentences Capped in Minnesota

by Jordan Arizmendi

Part of an omnibus bill, Minnesota recently placed a five-year cap on probation. Any Minnesotan serving probation sentences longer than five years is now eligible for resentencing. Before this legislation, Minnesota law allowed probation sentences to be as long as the maximum sentence one could get for the crime.

For example, in 2013, Jennifer Schroeder got a year in jail for a drug offense. However, under Minnesota law, the maximum she could have gotten for the crime was 40 years. Hence, she received 40 years of probation.

Many individuals who go through the justice system will agree that the probation period is more burdensome than the incarceration. After all, probation requires someone to pay pricey fees, attend classes, and adhere to other judge-appointed conditions. Nationwide, the average length of probation is a little under two years.  




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