In February, 41-year-old Joel Francisco — dubbed the “Crown Prince” of the Latin Kings gang in 2005 was released from prison as part of the “First Step Act” plan. Now, he is on the run after killing a man. He is the first high profile inmate that was released from prison under the Act to been known to have committed a crime. He was sent to prison in 2005 on his third drug dealing offense. Under the law at that time, a third felony conviction earned Francisco a life sentence. Just seven months after being freed, he is on the run from law enforcement.
A notorious leader of the “Almighty Latin Kings” gang is now on the run after allegedly stabbing a man to death in Rhode Island, just nine months after being released from federal prison thanks to the “First Step Act.”
In February, 41-year-old Joel Francisco — dubbed the “Crown Prince” of the Latin Kings gang in 2005 — was released from federal prison after President Donald Trump signed into law the First Step Act, promoted by a coalition of Democrats, Republicans, and progressive and libertarian nonprofits.
According to an investigative report by the Providence Journal‘s Brian Amaral and Katie Mulvaney, Francisco was convicted in 2005 for dealing crack cocaine and powder cocaine. The conviction was Francisco’s third drug conviction and therefore he was given a mandatory life sentence in federal prison.
After Trump signed the First Step Act into law, though, Francisco had his life sentence for crack dealing reduced and he was released in February of this year, along with the other 3,100 convicts released this year by the new law.
Before his release, Francisco pleaded with the court that he had turned his life around, noting his taking part in rehabilitation programs in prison, which advocates of the First Step Act readily cited to make their case that even violent convicts could be reformed and thus released.