Scioto County Prosecutor Challenges Ohio Prison Release Option

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A prosecutor says a procedure allowing the Ohio prisons director to recommend to judges early release for certain offenders violates the constitutional separation of powers.

At issue in a complaint by Scioto County Prosecutor Mark Kuhn is a law allowing the prisons chief to recommend early release for offenders who have served at least 80 percent of their sentence.

The motion filed in Scioto County court earlier this month says the law sets up an unconstitutional procedure that judges must follow when they get a recommendation from the prisons director.

Ohio enacted several changes to sentencing law in 2011 aimed at saving money by reducing the number of low-level offenders in prison.

The Department of Rehabilitation and Correction declined to comment.