Jails + Prisons

"No Trespassing" sign outside Jetson Center for Youth in Baker

Louisiana youth prison job applicants who fail abuse screening get second chance

BY: - August 9, 2022

Facing a chronic shortage of workers, Louisiana’s Office of Juvenile Justice is providing more flexibility to job applicants who want to work as guards in the state’s youth incarceration facilities, including when it comes to screening for the threat of pedophilia.   People are no longer being automatically removed from the pool of potential juvenile justice […]

Bridge City Center for Youth

Juvenile justice official suggests Louisiana prosecutors should charge more minors as adults

BY: - August 9, 2022

A new administrator for the state Office of Juvenile Justice suggested Monday that Louisiana prosecutors need to consider charging more underage teenagers with adult crimes. His stance has rankled child welfare advocates who believe people under 18 should not face adult prison sentences that can last decades.  Juvenile justice facilities across Louisiana have been overwhelmed […]

Albert Woodfox, Angola 3 member, ‘Solitary’ author, dies at 75

BY: - August 4, 2022

This story was originally published by Verite, a nonprofit news outlet based in New Orleans. Albert Woodfox, the prison activist and member of the Angola 3 whose memoir “Solitary” was a finalist for the National Book Award and the Pulitzer Prize, died Thursday (Aug. 4) at Ochsner Baptist Hospital after contracting the COVID-19 virus. He […]

Bridge City Center for Youth

Louisiana will move incarcerated youth to an adult prison. Child advocates are worried.

BY: - July 20, 2022

Child welfare advocates say they are extremely concerned about Gov. John Bel Edwards’ decision to temporarily move half of the incarcerated youth in a facility in Jefferson Parish to Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola, one of the nation’s largest and most notorious maximum-security adult prisons.  Edwards emphasized the teenagers and young adults will be kept […]

Criminal justice progressives in New Orleans face backlash over violent crime

BY: - July 6, 2022

This article was published in partnership between The Marshall Project and  NBC News. NEW ORLEANS — Fatima Muse still reaches for the phone to call her godmother, before remembering she’s not there to pick up. Portia Pollock was stabbed to death in front of her home in June 2021. The killer, who had a long […]

prison corridor

The District of Columbia allows incarcerated people to vote, a rarity in the U.S.

BY: - June 20, 2022

This article is published through a collaboration between States Newsroom and Bolts. WASHINGTON — Earlier this month, about 10 men detained in the Young Men Emerging unit in the Washington, D.C., jail sat around a TV to watch the Democratic candidates for mayor debate issues including affordable housing and gun violence.  “It was on a […]

prison corridor

Effort to bring automatic criminal records expungement to Louisiana crumbles again

BY: - June 10, 2022

Louisiana legislators once again failed to pass a new law that would allow criminal records to be expunged automatically.  A dispute between House Democrats and Republicans tanked a bill that could have made it easier for thousands of Louisiana residents to find housing and employment. Similar legislation died during the last few days of the […]

Royce Duplessis

Louisiana aims to limit release of mug shots for nonviolent criminal arrests

BY: - June 7, 2022

Louisiana will start to limit the release of police mug shots when people are arrested, but not prosecuted, for nonviolent crimes under a new law state lawmakers approved. The statute is scheduled to take effect by the end of the month. House Bill 729 contains several exceptions to that general prohibition. Under the upcoming statute, […]

Derrius Guice

Crime victims could get more access to police reports in Louisiana under approved bill

BY: - June 6, 2022

The Louisiana Legislature has approved a bill meant to guarantee crime victims’ access to copies of police reports related to their own cases, though some advocates for crime survivors said the legislation doesn’t go far enough to ensure that right. House Bill 615, sponsored by Rep. Aimee Freeman, D-New Orleans, will require law enforcement to […]

Louisiana to ensure sexual assault survivors get access to medical records

BY: - June 6, 2022

Louisiana will guarantee sexual assault victims access to written medical records following years of law enforcement and medical providers refusing to release such documents.  The Louisiana Legislature overwhelmingly approved two bills, Senate Bill 147 and House Bill 313, that work together to create this entitlement. Gov. John Bel Edwards has signed one piece of legislation […]

prison corridor

Louisiana Legislature signs off on tiered system for convicted juveniles

BY: - June 4, 2022

The Legislature passed a bill that would sort juveniles convicted of crimes into risk categories that could be used to segregate high-risk youth in secure facilities.  Senate Bill 323, sponsored by state Sen. Heather Cloud, R-Turkey Creek, would require the state Department of Public Safety and Corrections to adopt rules that would sort juveniles into […]

a fence topped with barbed wire

Their prison sentences are unconstitutional – but they’re still in prison

BY: - May 10, 2022

The U.S. Supreme Court ruled that non-unanimous jury verdicts in criminal trials were unconstitutional, but it didn't make the decision retroactive. That left it up to Louisiana and Oregon to decide if it would apply the ruling to people incarcerated by split juries.