“Iowa businessman Clarence Rice had been imprisoned for wire fraud for a matter of months when he was diagnosed with bile duct cancer. The prognosis was grim: He would have just a few more months to live.
“His one hope for freedom was a federal program that permits the early release of certain aging and ailing prisoners. But a warden rejected his request on grounds that he had served only a fraction of his sentence. Rice died in January 2013 at the age of 64, less than two years after convictions for fraud that officials say caused millions of dollars in losses — and just weeks after his bid for release was turned down.
” … Now, the U.S. Sentencing Commission, the independent panel that sets sentencing policy, is weighing changes to the Bureau of Prisons’ compassionate release program that can free prisoners for ‘extraordinary and compelling’ reasons.”