NEWS OF THE WEIRD

PERSPECTIVE

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Jeff Mizanskey, 61, is a poster child for one well-known criticism of mandatory-minimum sentencing laws — that nonviolent marijuana users (and small-time sellers) may wind up doing decades of hard time and in fact more time than some sociopathic offenders serve for heinous offenses. Mizanskey is 20 years into a life sentence with no possibility of parole for several violations of Missouri's "prior and persistent drug offender" law, and his only chance for freedom is a clemency plea now under consideration by Gov. Jay Nixon (and still opposed by Mizanskey's prosecutor).

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