More than 20,000 sex offenders might get out of California prisons early now that a Sacramento judge ruled they cannot be exempt from Proposition 57.
The proposition allows the early release from prison of criminals serving time for non-violent crimes. With the judge's ruling, that also means people serving time for crimes like pimping children.
"I'm kind of in shock, first and foremost," San Jose Police Chief Eddie Garcia said in an interview with NBC Bay Area.
Garcia shares the same sentiment of crime fighters across the state. The lobbyist for dozens of police organizations in Sacramento, John Lovelle, told NBC Bay Area the ruling is "a game changer."
In addition, Mark Klaas of the Klaas Foundation, called the ruling a "travesty of justice."
"I don't know all the ins and outs on this, but I can tell you on the surface I know there's a lot of concern in the law enforcement community, and there should be," Garcia said. "And there should be concern in the community."
Garcia said he will sit down with the district attorney to determine what the ruling means for Santa Clara County.
Meanwhile, Garcia said he understands there is an over-incarceration problem facing the state, which is why he supports reform. But the judge's ruling in this case left him shaking his head.