District of Columbia

DC Mandatory Minimum Sentences

The District of Columbia has very few mandatory minimum sentences. They apply to murder, murder of a police officer, carjacking, armed carjacking, theft I or II (with two or more prior theft convictions), possessing armor-piercing ammunition, possessing a gun during a crime of violence, committing crimes of violence while armed, or possessing a gun with a prior criminal record. Starting on April 4, 2017, District of Columbia judges have discretion not to apply these mandatory minimum sentences to people who committed these crimes when they were under age 18.

2016 Victory: DC Passes Safety Valve for Juvenile Offenders!

On December 7, 2016, the District of Columbia Council passed Bill 21-683. The bill allows DC judges to sentence people to less prison time than the mandatory minimum sentence requires if the person committed the crime when they were under age 18. The bill went into effect on April 4, 2017. Read the full text of Bill 21-683 here.

FAMM supported Bill 21-683 and submitted a written statement in favor of the bill at a Council hearing on June 2, 2016. Read FAMM’s statement here.

How You Can Advocate for Sentencing Reform in Your State

You can do several things to work toward reforming your state’s sentencing laws – go to our get involved page to find out how.

Encourage your state lawmakers to support mandatory minimum sentencing reform. Be sure to connect with FAMM and other sentencing reformers on Facebook, Twitter, and by signing up for our email list.

Sentencing/Criminal Justice Reform Groups in this State: