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Justice Department Chief Visits Peoria

Thu, 14 Nov 2013 21:14:20 CST

Justice Department Chief Visits Peoria U-S Attorney General Eric Holder calls a Peoria area program that helps certain non-violent offenders stay out of prison a model for what his office wants to do. Holder touted the federal "Smart on Crime" initiative announced in August during a visit Thursday to the Peoria Federal Courthouse. Holder says the 11 year success of the Central District of Illinois program is noteworthy.

"Over 90% of the people who have gone through the program completed it successfully leading productive lives. So I wanted to come out here, observe it, and hopefully take some ideas back with us."

Holder says the nation spends 80-billion dollars a year on incarceration.

He also talked with those going through the Alternatives to Detention program, and encouraged them to work hard to stay out of prison. The program is voluntary for selected candidates with substance abuse problems. They are required to receive treatment and are closely monitored to help them become productive members of society.

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