President Obama finally used his power to pardon and commute sentences to order the release of 8 low-level drug offenders serving outrageously long sentences, but there are tens of thousands more in the same situation. The DOJ says it’s looking for others with similar sentences to commute.
Category Archive: Criminal Justice
Feb 03 2014
Jan 30 2014
A Colorado pastor has come up with a brilliant way of combating the sin of homosexuality. He takes out ads on Craigslist to set up meetings with gay men, then flashes a fake badge and confiscates their phones, computers and money. Except that’s kinda sorta illegal to do.
Jan 30 2014
I’m sure you remember John Pike, the cop from UC Davis who pepper sprayed protesters who were sitting on the ground and (eventually) lost his job over it. He sued for worker’s compensation, claiming he suffered psychologically from the incident. And he won. And got more money than any of his victims did.
Jan 27 2014
In the wake of the BP oil spill, the high-ranking Haliburton official in charge of the department that handles cementing for deep water oil platforms quickly got rid of documents that would make his company culpable in the disaster. Naturally, he received only probation for his crime.
Jan 24 2014
Lots of people know about the existence of private prisons but private probation is an equally terrible idea with equally unjust results. The Economist’s Democracy in America blog takes a look at how private probation companies pile fees and penalties on those on probation and pass the cost on to taxpayers.
Jan 23 2014
Former Virginia Governor and Ken doll come to life Bob McDonnell and his wife have been hit with 14 federal felony indictments stemming from his acceptance of $135,000 in gifts and loans from a major donor and purveyor of scam medical supplements while in office.
Jan 20 2014
The Los Angeles Times has an article about the acquittal of the Fullerton, California police officers for the murder — and yes, I’m calling it murder and I don’t care what the jury said — of a mentally ill homeless man that offers a glimpse into the argument used by the defense. Essentially, they argued …
Jan 17 2014
One of the two cops who killed a homeless man on video and then was incredibly acquitted by a jury of doing so says he wants his job back with the city of Fullerton, California. And he’ll probably get it, if not with Fullerton then with another city.
Jan 17 2014
Remember that horrifying case in New Mexico where a man had a forced colonoscopy because the police thought he was hiding drugs in his ass (well, one of the three case that have come out)? The victim in that case has settled a lawsuit with the local governments involved:
Jan 16 2014
This story reflects the sad, appalling reality of the manifest injustice of our criminal “justice” system. Four cops beat a homeless man to death, on freaking video, and a jury finds two of them not guilty with almost no deliberation. Now those murderers can go back to being cops. Here’s the horrifying video, wherein the …
Jan 13 2014
Shocking (but not surprising; those aren’t the same thing) video of a four year old assault on a young man in custody by three Seabrook, New Hampshire police officers has resulted in the officers being placed on leave pending an investigation. The man was arrested for drunk driving and the officers slammed his head into …
Jan 13 2014
Radley Balko is now officially with the Washington Post and one of his first articles is about one of the best ideas I’ve ever heard. The Center for Prosecutor Integrity has created a database that they hope will eventually contain every single instance of prosecutorial misconduct in the country.
Jan 10 2014
Readers of this blog will not be the least bit surprised by this article in the Washington Monthly about the pervasively, undeniably racist nature of traffic stops. The article looks at the difference between stops made because of a clear violation of traffic laws and stops made solely as a pretext to try to search …
Jan 09 2014
Surveys have long shown that black and white people use, buy and sell marijuana at pretty much identical levels, but the numbers of arrests, convictions and incarceration has long been wildly disparate. Adam Serwer published this chart that demonstrates this for the last few years:
Jan 01 2014
It’s the same story you’ve heard a hundred times. 40-year old guard at a juvenile detention center in Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana rapes a 14-year old girl. Girl sues the detention center and the parish that runs it. Parish says, “Sure, it happened. But she was asking for it.”