NH explores alternative sentencing

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New Hampshire is involved in multiple efforts to explore alternative sentencing programs for nonviolent offenders.

A commission that includes government officials, legal experts and county, prison and mental health care administrators met twice last month to discuss how the state could save money by keeping nonviolent offenders out of jail.

Next month, a two-day conference will bring county and state leaders together to exchange ideas on creating statewide sentencing alternatives for nonviolent offenders with mental illness or drug problems. And the New Hampshire judicial branch recently was selected as one of four jurisdictions in the country for a national project designed to improve how courts respond to people with mental illness.

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