Gov. suspends early prisoner release program

December 13, 2009 (CHICAGO) Earlier Sunday, the governor had refused to say whether he even knew about the program.

The Associated Press had reported that some inmates convicted of violent crimes spent as few as 14 days behind bars for a one-year sentence. They were awarded good conduct time before ever displaying their behavior in prison.

A corrections department spokeswoman said the program saved the agency money by not having to transfer inmates to other facilities to serve their terms.

The governor said Sunday that the program would be reviewed.

"We have serious financial problems in Illinois, but I don't want in any way to sacrifice public safety at any time to those financial considerations," Quinn.

Several prosecutors had criticized the program.

The governor now says it will be suspended while it undergoes a comprehensive review.

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