In a recent post on his Humanity for Prisoners blog, the Spring Lake man said he researched prison systems and sentences in Europe, more specifically those in the Netherlands and Germany.
"I started looking into the Dutch prison sentences after a native of the old country recently told me that the sentence there for first-degree murder was seven years, compared to life without parole here," Tjapkes wrote in "The U.S. prison system is doing it wrong." "I was astounded at not only the difference in philosophy between these European countries and ours, but by the incredible difference in statistics. The ratio of incarcerated per 100,000 people is far lower than ours — far, far lower! And yet crime is not rampant in these countries."
Tjapkes is president of Humanity for Prisoners, a Grand Haven-based organization that advocates for compassion for those behind bars, and their families. To read more of his blog, CLICK HERE.
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