NJ to release more than 2,000 prisoners next month

New measures will reduce prison population, create more space among inmates, launch compassionate release program

There are big changes coming for the state’s prison population. A historic first-in-the-nation law is now in effect, allowing for the early release of more than 2,000 eligible inmates the day after the general election. Gov. Phil Murphy on Monday signed bills to reduce the prison population, create more space among inmates and launch a compassionate release program that could free inmates suffering from a terminal or permanent physical condition.

Murphy says reducing the number of prisoners will help combat the spread of COVID-19. New Jersey’s prison system has the highest coronavirus death rate of any such system in the country. The move is being hailed by advocates as a win for racial justice, but there is growing concern over where those inmates will go upon their release. Senior Correspondent and Anchor Michael Hill reports.