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Common Law No. 22: Mental illness vs. prison

The majority of people in U.S. prisons suffer from some form of mental disorder. Lennie Coleman was one of them. The 66-year-old had just served nearly three years for threatening his neighbors when he was arrested again for drugs. Even his neighbors said he needed help. The law said Coleman should go to prison on the latest charge. Judge David Kaufman had to decide what was in the best interests of both the defendant and the community.

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