Criminal Justice

New report details how much more likely Black people are to be wrongly convicted than whites

BY: - October 3, 2022

Henry McCollum and Leon Brown were sentenced to death in 1984 for the rape and murder of 11-year-old Sabrina Buie in Robeson County. The teenagers — half-brothers who were 19 and 15 years old, both Black and with cognitive disabilities — confessed under pressure from police, but there wasn’t physical evidence connecting them to the […]

Louisiana won’t say when incarcerated youth might go to Angola, citing ‘security reasons’

BY: - October 2, 2022

Citing security concerns, Louisiana’s Office of Juvenile Justice won’t say when certain incarcerated young people in its custody might move to a refurbished building on the grounds of the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. “The Office of Juvenile Justice is making sure that if and when any transfers take place, they are done so in […]

an exterior view of prison cells

Inflation hits wallets of people in prison, even as their wages have flatlined

BY: - September 28, 2022

The first time Paul Whittaker was incarcerated in New Jersey, he worked behind bars as a teacher’s assistant. He made $2 a day. Last year, when a parole violation landed him back in prison, he was assigned the “job” of staying in his locked cell all day and keeping it clean. Daily pay: $1.20. If […]

How much help should Louisiana crime victims get? State board looks at restrictions

BY: - September 27, 2022

Crime victim advocates thought they had scored a big victory in June when Gov. John Bel Edwards signed a new law granting more flexibility and bigger awards out of Louisiana’s crime victims reparations fund.  But members of the state board who oversee the money are uncomfortable with the changes and considering new regulations to limit […]

a fence topped with barbed wire

Congressional hearing revisits 2017 Baton Rouge jail suicide

BY: - September 20, 2022

The 2017 suicide of a man while in the Baton Rouge jail is under new scrutiny as members of Congress examine the underreporting of deaths at correctional facilities. Jonathan Fano was booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison in October 2016 on multiple misdemeanor charges. Court records indicate that, while awaiting trial in jail, Fano […]

prison corridor

U.S. government failed to properly count deaths of people in prisons and jails, Senate report says

BY: - September 20, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Department of Justice did not properly count nearly 1,000 deaths of incarcerated people in jails and prisons, according to a bipartisan report released Tuesday by a U.S. Senate Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs subcommittee.  The 10-month investigation by the U.S. Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations, chaired by Georgia Sen. Jon Ossoff, found […]

Bridge City Damage

Lack of options behind recent moves away from progressive juvenile justice reform

BY: - September 18, 2022

Orleans Parish District Attorney Jason Williams, arguably the state’s most progressive prosecutor, swam against the current last week when he secured an indictment against a teenager accused of attempted second-degree murder to be charged as an adult. It’s the first time in his term that Williams will elevate a juvenile case for a crime other […]

U.S. Senate Republicans pan Democrats on crime, say they’ll introduce their own bill

BY: - September 14, 2022

WASHINGTON — A small group of U.S. Senate Republicans sought to draw attention to U.S. crime rates Wednesday, saying they plan to introduce a bill that would direct more resources to state and local police departments as well as require the Government Accountability Office to study the amount of time it takes crime labs to […]

Louisiana could face staffing shortage in moving incarcerated teens to Angola

BY: - September 13, 2022

Louisiana will likely face challenges in hiring the guards, medical personnel, teachers and therapists and it needs for a new, controversial juvenile justice secure care facility it plans to open later this year at Louisiana State Penitentiary in Angola.  Officials have said inadequate staffing has contributed to riots, escapes and violence at the state’s other […]

In Texas youth prisons, children trapped in their cells use water bottles, lunch trays for toilets

BY: - September 12, 2022

Sign up for The Brief, our daily newsletter that keeps readers up to speed on the most essential Texas news. Throughout this summer, children in Texas’ youth prison system have repeatedly been trapped in their cells, forced to urinate in water bottles and defecate on the floor. For months, children in at least two of […]

Louisiana’s most troubled teen offenders statewide could be moved to Angola

BY: - September 8, 2022

Incarcerated youth from across the state deemed the most troubled and aggressive could be moved to a building on the grounds of the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola, one of the country’s largest and most notorious maximum security prisons for adults. Their relocation from existing juvenile correctional centers, where violence, escapes and staffing issues have […]

HIV test at Crescent Care in New Orleans

Religious employers can exclude HIV preventative drugs in their health plans, federal judge rules

BY: and - September 7, 2022

AUSTIN, Texas – A federal judge in Fort Worth agreed Wednesday with a group of Christian conservatives that Affordable Care Act requirements to cover HIV prevention drugs violate their religious freedom. U.S. District Judge Reed O’Connor also agreed that aspects of the federal government’s system for deciding what preventive care is covered by the ACA […]