Posted by Media Release
Hamilton County Commission President Todd Portune met this afternoon with Justin Jeffre and other members of the Southwest Ohio Green Party, attempting to gain the support of progressives for his nearly billion dollar jail proposal.
"I appreciate Commissioner Portune taking time to sit down with us,” said Jeffre. “But I am still waiting to see a real comprehensive plan that addresses the racial disparity in our justice system. And I also want to call on City Council to repeal their Draconian marijuana ordinance. Portune reaffirmed, at our meeting, his desire to see that ordinance repealed. I’m disappointed David Pepper has not followed Portune’s lead on that issue.”
Though the Southwest Ohio Green Party has not voted on an official statement, Jeffre said he continues to oppose the jail plan. That’s why he joined Christopher Smitherman and the NAACP on the steps of the Courthouse for a press conference this afternoon.
“Portune and Pepper have said that 300 prisoners need to be released early due to a lack of jail space,” said Jeffre. “I am behind the NAACP in asking that they make Levonn Smith their first early release.”
In a press statement issued last week, Smitherman claimed that Levonn Smith’s situation is an example of a broken criminal justice system.
“We keep being told about a great need for new jail beds, but I don’t think Levonn Smith is an example of a threat to our community,” explained Jeffre. “This is why so many people oppose the nearly billion dollar jail. We must work towards the equal application of justice.”