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    By SOPHIA TAREEN, Associated Press CHICAGO (AP) — Mayor Lori Lightfoot signed a measure Tuesday strengthening Chicago's sanctuary policies by removing exceptions where local police can cooperate with federal immigration authorities. The revised ordinance, which easily cleared the City Council last month, follows years of campaigning by immigrant rights advocates who’ve said issues of immigration and the criminal justice system are separate. Previously, Chicago's Welcoming City ordinance allowed police to work with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement in limited circumstances, including if a person living in the country without legal permission had an outstanding criminal warrant, a conviction or was named in the city's gang database. “Chicago has been a welcoming city and a city of immigrants since its very founding, and proudly so,” Lightfoot said. Opponents, including aldermen, cited concerns about crime and protecting gang members. But supporters said immigrants can now call authorities and cooperate with investigations without...
    BROWARD (CBSMiami) — Black history was made in Broward County last fall as voters elected three African-American men to the top elected offices in law enforcement and criminal justice.  For the first time in South Florida history, the County Sheriff, the State Attorney, and the Public Defender are all African-American and all three men understand the historical importance of that accomplishment. The November 2020 election brought change to Broward County in ways never seen before. Voters elected Gregory Tony as Sheriff, Harold Pryor as State Attorney, and Gordon Weekes as Public Defender. Three African American men overseeing criminal justice in Broward from arrest, to prosecution and defense. READ MORE: COVID In Florida: 4,151 Additional Cases, 161 New Deaths Reported Sunday “I’m excited about the opportunity given me to bring a different perspective to the criminal justice system and I think we need to new level of diversity in our leadership...
    Merrick GarlandMerrick Brian GarlandGOP signals Biden AG pick will come under pressure over Cuomo Pelosi, lawmakers denounce violence against Asian Americans ACLU pushes Garland on criminal justice reform policies ahead of hearing MORE, President BidenJoe BidenClose to 70 dead in states with severe winter weather: report Two more deaths confirmed in Louisiana related to severe winter weather Lawyer who filed suit to reverse 2020 election results referred by judge for discipline MORE's pick for attorney general, is vowing to see that the Justice Department root out domestic political extremism and fight discrimination in the criminal justice system if confirmed by the Senate.  "It is a fitting time to reaffirm that the role of the Attorney General is to serve the Rule of Law and to ensure equal justice under the law," Garland will say as part of his prepared remarks before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Monday. "And it is a fitting...
    SANTA ANA, Calif. (CNS) -- Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer announced a set of "guiding principles'' Wednesday to address systemic racism in the criminal justice system."We as a society have engaged in systemic mass incarceration,'' Spitzer said. "As a prosecutor, I will stop it. We as a society have prosecuted people of color differently. As a prosecutor, I will stop it.'"We cannot fix a systematic problem without a systematic approach," he said. "That approach must be thoughtful, thorough, and include different perspectives, different experiences, and different ideas. Justice is not evidenced by the longest sentence; justice is what is best for the individual, the victim, and society as a whole.''Spitzer said some of the initiatives he wants to establish include:-- A conviction integrity unit;-- Recidivism reduction units "that address an individual's chances for success'';-- Support efforts to have mentally ill defendants be diverted to mental health care to address...
    SANTA ANA, Calif. (CNS) -- Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer announced a set of "guiding principles'' Wednesday to address systemic racism in the criminal justice system."We as a society have engaged in systemic mass incarceration,'' Spitzer said. "As a prosecutor, I will stop it. We as a society have prosecuted people of color differently. As a prosecutor, I will stop it.''"We cannot fix a systematic problem without a systematic approach. That approach must be thoughtful, thorough, and include different perspectives, different experiences, and different ideas. Justice is not evidenced by the longest sentence; justice is what is best for the individual, the victim, and society as a whole.''Spitzer said some of the initiatives he wants to establish include:-- A conviction integrity unit;-- Recidivism reduction units "that address an individual's chances for success'';-- Support efforts to have mentally ill defendants be diverted to mental health care to address "underlying issues'';--...
    More On: super bowl 2021 The Weeknd’s dating history: Bella Hadid dominates the girlfriend list The ladies of Super Bowl LV are lovelier than the Lombardi Tom Brady’s dating history: His girlfriends and exes before Gisele Bündchen Miley Cyrus shows off her abs in ‘FTW’ bikini ahead of Super Bowl 2021 Billionaire Michael Rubin has gifted Super Bowl tickets to two families impacted by the criminal justice system in Florida, Page Six has learned. We’re told the Philadelphia 76ers co-owner is giving the tickets to people who have been negatively affected by the “state’s broken probation and parole policies,” a source said, including a man named Michael Orlando and a woman named Ysabelle Mobelle. Insiders told us Orlando was sent to county jail for three months for “leaving the country without permission” in what was considered a violation of his probation, although he was allegedly told by his probation...
    Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL) said Tuesday on Fox News Channel’s “Your World” that he opposed an impeachment trial in the U.S. Senate as a remedy for former President Donald Trump because he was a private citizen and could be prosecuted by the criminal justice system. Cavuto asked, “Do you think he provoked that crowd when he said, ‘These are the things and events that happen when a sacred landslide election victory is so unceremoniously & viciously stripped away from great patriots.’ Do you think he should be punished for those remarks?” Rubio said, “Yeah, so if someone makes those remarks, he’s a private citizen. So he’s now — the reason why we have impeachment is the following; you can’t charge a president. So you have to remove them from office and then subject to criminal penalty. That’s why Ford Pardoned Nixon because after he resigned, he could have still been prosecuted. If he did something that rises to...
    DENVER (CBS4)– Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day is a opportunity to honor what King did for the civil rights movement, but it’s also a chance to reflect on the work that still needs to be done. More than 50 years after his death, America still has a criminal justice system that disproportionately impacts people of color. The MLK Colorado Holiday commission hosted a virtual panel on Monday to discuss criminal justice transformation. (credit: CBS) “Everyone talks about criminal justice reform. In order for that to be done, there has to be a transformation,” Dr. Vern Howard, chairman of the MLK Colorado Holiday Commission. The panel was joined by Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser, newly-elected district attorneys and state prosecutors. The discussion also included those affected by the current criminal justice system “I want to be able to look at what we do well, but more importantly, where we’re falling short. That...
    Chief Judge Janet DiFiore today announced the appointment of Hon. Deborah A. Kaplan, Administrative Judge of New York County Supreme Court’s Civil Term, as co-chair of the New York State Justice Task Force. Judge Kaplan will replace Hon. Mark R. Dwyer, who has retired from the bench and is stepping down as Task Force co-chair but will stay on as an advisory member. In her new capacity, Judge Kaplan, alongside Co-chair Carmen Beauchamp Ciparick, will assist Task Force Chair, Hon. Paul G. Feinman, in carrying out the group’s critical mission to promote fairness, effectiveness, and efficiency in the criminal justice system; eradicate the harms caused by wrongful convictions; further public safety; and recommend judicial and legislative reforms to advance these causes. Over the past decade, the Task Force — which comprises judges, prosecutors, defense attorneys, law enforcement officials, victim advocates and others across the criminal justice system — has made...
    After a tumultuous 2020 that forced issues of race, criminal justice and policing to the forefront, justice reforms in Illinois will no doubt be at the center of discussion in 2021. Gov. J.B. Pritzker has proposed seven principles that he said will reform and modernize Illinois’ criminal justice system. The proposals include ending cash bail, reducing prison sentences, and increasing police accountability. Khadine Bennett, with the ACLU, applauded the proposals. "It is really important that policing reform and criminal justice reform happen together because if you think about it, the prison pipeline system starts when people interact with law enforcement,” Bennett said. Jim Kaitschuk, executive director of the Illinois Sheriffs' Association, said law enforcement groups have been left out of the discussion. “Quite honestly, it is pretty disturbing to see the seven principles for an equitable criminal justice system being outlined with no conversation with those...
    MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — For nearly two decades, Myon Burrell had nothing but time. Locked up for life at 16 for a high-profile murder he swore he had nothing to do with, he was stuck in a tiny cell without even a window to watch the seasons change. The years dragged on slowly, and he saw the bodies of once-robust men age and decay. Still, he couldn’t help wishing that the outside world would slow down. In the Stillwater prison visiting room and in family photographs, his own son seemed to grow overnight from toddler to teen to man. Then, on Tuesday afternoon, everything changed. In the wake of an investigation by The Associated Press and APM Reports that raised grave doubts about his conviction, the Minnesota Board of Pardons said Burrell could go home. With no opportunity for real goodbyes, men in his unit rattled their bars or reached out...
    Shootings in New York City surged by 330 percent in the last week compared to the same time last year. NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea said that all he wants for Christmas is laws that aren't 'fake' so he can get the guns off the streets. As well as the huge surge in shooting incidents, the city saw a 425 percent increase in shooting victims on the last seven days compared to 2019. Overall there have been 27 percent more gun busts in 2020, but Shea says his men are overstretched, lack funding and are undermined by 'fake' laws. New York Police Department (NYPD) Commissioner Dermot Shea speaks at a news conference earlier this year. Shea said that all he wants for Christmas is laws that aren't 'fake' so he can get the guns off the streets 'It's Christmastime, so I'll ask for one thing under the Christmas tree,' Shea told...
    All he wants for Christmas is some backup on gun busts. The NYPD is pulling its weight to get illegal guns off city streets, but needs the help of prosecutors, judges and pols to ensure laws are actually enforced rather than rendered “fake,” Commissioner Dermot Shea said Thursday. “It’s Christmastime, so I’ll ask for one thing under the Christmas tree,” said Shea during a wide-ranging virtual sit-down with The Post’s editorial board. “We need to get serious about guns.” Despite an alarming rise in shootings, attrition in the ranks and city-imposed budget cuts, NYPD gun busts have actually climbed by 27 percent this year, the top cop said. But too often those caught packing heat end up back on the street in short order thanks to a reticence by the rest of the criminal justice system to use the full force of existing gun laws, said Shea. “From a...
    More On: nypd Upstate NY police probing viral video of teen beating Instagram butt model gets cheeky with NYPD cops, flashes subway in lurid snaps How NYC’s DNA database helps not only solve crime, but prevent it Video shows security guard stab man in the face in bloody Penn Station brawl All he wants for Christmas is some back-up on gun busts. The NYPD is pulling its weight to get illegal guns off city streets, but needs the help of prosecutors, judges and pols to ensure laws are actually enforced rather than rendered “fake,” Commissioner Dermot Shea said Thursday. “It’s Christmas time, so I’ll ask for one thing under the Christmas tree,” said Shea during a wide-ranging virtual sit-down with The Post’s editorial board. “We need to get serious about guns.” Despite an alarming rise in shootings, attrition to the ranks and city-imposed budget cuts, NYPD gun busts have...
    The U.S. state of Minnesota on Tuesday released a Black man who was sentenced to life imprisonment in 2002 after he was convicted of the murder of an 11-year old girl, officials said. The Minnesota Pardons Board commuted Myon Burrells sentence to 20 years from life plus 12 months, and said he will serve the remainder of his sentence on a supervised release, according to an internal memo from Commissioner Paul Schnell of the Minnesota Department of Corrections to various officials. "Based on the Boards action, I authorize you to immediately process Mr Burrell for release from secure custody to serve out the remainder of his time on supervised release status," Schnell said in the memo, a copy of which was emailed to Reuters. Burrell was sentenced as a teenager for the murder of Tyesha Edwards, who was killed when she was hit by a stray bullet that struck her...
    Lewis Hamilton said racing after getting COVID-19 destroyed him, and slammed world leaders for laughing off the virus How to prepare for working past retirement How a Spreadsheet Could Change the Criminal-Justice System Judges have various restrictions on what they can say publicly, and for that reason, you don’t often hear our voices in contemporary public-policy debates. But as momentum builds to address deep inequities in our criminal-justice system, we feel it’s important to highlight a problem lurking in the background that could jeopardize these efforts: Many court systems lack basic data about themselves, including about their criminal-sentencing decisions. This means that when a judge considers a sentence for a criminal defendant, he or she has no way to evaluate it against others handed down for similar crimes in the same state, or even the same county. © Shutterstock / The Atlantic Most people agree, in theory, that a...
    Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx vowed to focus on criminal justice system reform as she was sworn in for a second term on Monday. Foxx, the first black woman elected to the Chicago prosecutor position four years ago, talked about how she will now prioritize substance abuse and mental health issues as well as her work to combat a rise in violent crime in the Windy City during the pandemic. "We will work to continue to fix the broken criminal justice system," Foxx said, according to the Chicago Tribune. Today I was sworn in to serve the people of Cook County as your State’s Attorney for a second term.While there is still much work to do, and I cannot wait to get started, I'm immensely proud of the incredible strides we’ve made in just four short years. pic.twitter.com/k4gekd8QWS— State’s Attorney Kim Foxx (@SAKimFoxx) December 7, 2020 On Twitter,...
    The man who fought for his freedom while behind bars, inspiring a television show — ABC's For Life — has announced his candidacy for New York City mayor. Isaac Wright Jr., who spent seven years behind bars on drug trafficking charges, announced his plan to pursue the office currently occupied by Bill de Blasio last week. “Our city faces many difficult problems: The challenge of economic recovery during COVID-19, policing and criminal justice reform, school desegregation, and a growing housing crisis,” said Wright, who will be running as a Democrat. “In order for New York to not only get back to where we were, but to finally fulfill our potential as the greatest city on Earth, we need people in charge who are going to fight for the working class, and not the corrupt institutions that have taken advantage of a broken system.” “This campaign is motivated by the...
    BOSTON (AP) — A new fund has been established to carry on late Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court Chief Justice Ralph Gants' legacy and commitment to justice, racial equity and criminal justice reform. The Chief Justice Ralph D. Gants Access to Justice Fund has already raised about $100,000, according to a statement from the Massachusetts Bar Association. Gants, who died unexpectedly in September at age 65, devoted his six years as chief justice to ensuring that the court system worked for people of all backgrounds and income levels. After the death of George Floyd sparked a nationwide movement for racial justice in May, Gants and his colleagues issued a letter urging legal professionals to help eliminate systemic barriers to universal equity under the law. “Ralph wore his heart out trying to rid the criminal justice system of systemic racism, improve access to justice and implement criminal justice reforms," his wife, Northeastern...
    Rep.-elect Troy Nehls, a Texas sheriff and newly elected congressman, is in Washington preaching a message of "mutual respect" as America grapples with racial unrest, criminal justice reforms and efforts to dismantle police departments. Nehls, who has served as sheriff of Fort Bend County for the last eight years, said his 22nd Congressional District outside of Houston should be a model for the rest of the country on how to build positive police and community relationships that are "colorblind." While other cities are still reeling from Black Lives Matter protests after the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis, Nehls said his community didn't experience civil unrest because law enforcement is respected in Fort Bend. "They trust us, and we, in turn, trust them. It is mutual respect," Nehls told Fox News. "If you look at the cities where you see the civil unrest, there's a disconnect. There's not a whole lot of love and mutual respect for each...
    Amidst calls to divest from policing and invest in communities, the mayor has announced his office’s plan to spend millions of dollars on Alternative to Incarceration (ATI) programs. While these programs are excellent service providers and we support increased focus on diversion programs insofar as they are preferable to time in jail or prison, this model continues to reflect a misplaced reliance on the criminal punishment system — from policing to post-conviction programs — to solve issues facing our communities. As public defenders, our power within this system is often limited. We are familiar with helping people we represent choose the least harmful option when faced with choices such as plea deals involving incarceration or taking a case to trial, sometimes under threat of mandatory minimum sentences. Factors such as harsh sentencing rules, which forbid the exercise of judicial discretion or consideration of a person’s unique circumstances, and a systemic...
    (CBS DETROIT) – Former Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith has been hospitalized and is exhibiting “severe symptoms” of the coronavirus disease, according to his attorneys which has delayed his plea hearing WWJ reports. Days after being charged with 10 criminal counts related to the illegal use of forfeiture funds and spending campaign dollars, Smith resigned in March. Smith pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice in September. The plea hearing was set for Friday, but moved to Dec. 17 according to WWJ. In Smith’s resignation statement, he said, “There have been several allegations leveled against me by the Michigan Department of Attorney General in the past few days. I intend to whole-heartedly defend myself against those allegations. I have been part of the criminal justice system for close to thirty years.” He also mentioned, “Know that I have absolute confidence that our cherished justice system will bring forth the truth and...
    By DON THOMPSON, Associated Press SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California voters stuck with the state’s traditional cash bail system in this year's balloting, rejecting a nation-leading move to rely instead on risk assessments to decide which suspects should remain jailed awaiting trial. Voters in the most populous state overturned a 2018 law that stalled when the bail industry challenged it at the ballot box through Proposition 25. With more than 11 million votes counted, the measure failed Wednesday with 55% opposing and 45% favoring an end to the current bail system. Supporters of the change had said the traditional bail system punishes the poor — often racial minorities — because they lack the money to buy their freedom or can least afford to pay a bail bondsman. Opponents included some prominent civil rights groups who said the alternative’s risk assessment tools also are racially and socioeconomically biased. THIS IS A...
    By DON THOMPSON SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California has upheld several criminal justice changes, endorsing recent efforts to ease mass incarceration by reducing penalties and allowing for earlier releases. Voters on Tuesday defeated Proposition 20, rejecting supporters’ pleas to address what they called the “unintended consequences” of two previously approved ballot measures. One lowered penalties for drug and property crimes in 2014, while the second two years later allowed the earlier parole of most felons. Voters rejected proposals that would have barred criminals convicted of certain serious offenses from earlier release, increased penalties for repeated retail thefts, toughened parole standards and allowed for broader DNA collections. Opponents said the measure would have set back reforms just as the nation focuses on a criminal justice system that has treated people of color inequitably. THIS IS A BREAKING NEWS UPDATE. AP’s earlier story follows below. SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California voters were...
    SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California voters were narrowly leaning toward maintaining the status quo on two measures related to criminal justice: keeping the current cash bail system and the criminal justice reforms they approved in previous elections. In early returns Tuesday, about 54% favored retaining the current bail system with more than 6 million votes counted for Proposition 25 shortly after the polls closed. The margin went the other way on Proposition 20, which would scale back two earlier ballot measures approved by voters in 2014 and 2016. About 62% of voters were rejecting that measure in early returns. It would restore some criminal penalties, including again barring those convicted of certain serious offenses from earlier release. It also would increase penalties for repeated retail thefts, toughen parole standards and allow for broader DNA collections. Former governor Jerry Brown said he was confident the rejection would stand. He championed the...
    By DON THOMPSON, Associated Press SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California voters were narrowly leaning toward maintaining the status quo on two measures related to criminal justice: keeping the current cash bail system and the criminal justice reforms they approved in previous elections. In early returns Tuesday, about 54% favored retaining the current bail system with more than 6 million votes counted for Proposition 25 shortly after the polls closed. The margin went the other way on Proposition 20, which would scale back two earlier ballot measures approved by voters in 2014 and 2016. About 62% of voters were rejecting that measure in early returns. It would restore some criminal penalties, including again barring those convicted of certain serious offenses from earlier release. It also would increase penalties for repeated retail thefts, toughen parole standards and allow for broader DNA collections. Former governor Jerry Brown said he was confident the rejection...
    By DON THOMPSON SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — California voters were narrowly leaning toward maintaining the status quo on two measures related to criminal justice: keeping the current cash bail system and the criminal justice reforms they approved in previous elections. In early returns Tuesday, about 54% favored retaining the current bail system with more than 6 million votes counted for Proposition 25 shortly after the polls closed. The margin went the other way on Proposition 20, which would scale back two earlier ballot measures approved by voters in 2014 and 2016. About 62% of voters were rejecting that measure in early returns. It would restore some criminal penalties, including again barring those convicted of certain serious offenses from earlier release. It also would increase penalties for repeated retail thefts, toughen parole standards and allow for broader DNA collections. Former governor Jerry Brown said he was confident the rejection would stand....
    CHICAGO (WLS) -- The Better Government Association partnered with several other media outlets to produce a data-driven journalism project exploring the Cook County criminal justice system.Casey Toner from the BGA joined ABC 7 Chicago Saturday to talk about the project, dubbed The Circuit.DataMade wrote a program that copied the entire Cook County Courts database, enabling the team to analyze decades of data on every single event that occurred in every single criminal case going back to 2000.This project allowed the team to look at millions of cases at once and do aggregate analysis. Two stories and a data visualization are already published, but that is only the first step, Toner said.The visualization shows how criminal charges have changed over time. Murder charges, for example, have dropped by half since 2000, a result of both falling crime rates and falling clearance rates for homicides within the Chicago Police Department, Toner said.RELATED:...
    Colorado voters could change the state's criminal justice landscape next year as every district attorney is up for election in November. As President Trump and Democratic candidate Joe Biden argue about what criminal justice reform should look like on a national level, more than half of all district attorneys in Colorado will be replaced come the New Year, according to a report by the Denver Post. Though several incumbents are running unopposed in the Nov. 3 election, many new candidates are running unchallenged in the state’s 22 judicial districts. The new district attorneys will not only play a part in shaping criminal justice policy in Colorado, but will also affect case-by-case decisions on issues like plea deals, charges, and rehabilitation stints over prison sentences. Colorado could be one of the first states to see sweeping criminal justice reform with the new class of attorneys entering the scene, as the debate between increased policing or shifting...
    This should be a no-brainer: The rape of an unconscious woman is a violent crime. But under current California law, such an assault is categorized as nonviolent. So is trafficking a child for sex. Or firing a gun into a house if no one is hit. It matters because under previous ballot propositions approved by voters, state prison inmates who have been convicted of felonies categorized as violent are not eligible for early release and parole. Proposition 20 on the Nov. 3 ballot would tweak Propositions 47 and 57, passed in 2014 and 2016, respectively, and correct what 20’s law enforcement and prosecutor backers consider flaws. Supporters claim that too many potentially violent criminals are being set free. Opponents, including Gov. Gavin Newsom and his predecessor, Jerry Brown, contend that Proposition 20 represents a step backward in forward-looking criminal justice reform. “Prop. 20 wants to basically eliminate all hope in the prison,” says Brown, the architect and...
    Photo via Andrew WarrenHillsborough County State Attorney Andrew Warren (D) was first elected to the State Attorney office in 2016, after successfully running an ambitious campaign for criminal justice reform. During his tenure, he’s expanded substance abuse and mental health courts that serve to promote treatment and rehabilitation for eligible offenders; created a convictions review unit in 2018 to investigate and fix wrongful convictions; and has pushed for data-driven strategies to reduce recidivism, divert individuals from the criminal justice system, address racial disparities in the criminal justice system, and improve support systems for formerly incarcerated individuals. Warren, who’s being challenged for reelection by Republican Mike Perotti, has received backlash from the controversial Tampa Police Chief Brian Dugan for dropping charges against nonviolent Black Lives Matter protestors in recent months. Nonetheless, Warren maintains that his prosecutorial discretion is based on principles of fairness, safety, and justice. He acknowledges there’s more...
    The D.C. Police Reform Commission has hired an outside consultant to help examine police practices and the criminal justice system. Impact Justice, a research center based in D.C. and Oakland, California, will provide assistance in the coming months. The Police Reform Commission was launched just months ago as part of the Comprehensive Policing and Justice Reform Second Emergency Amendment Act of 2020, which the D.C. council passed in June. It called for the formation of the commission from various backgrounds to examine and analyze six topics: the role of police in schools, alternatives to police responses, police discipline, the integration of conflict resolution strategies and restorative justice practices into policing and provisions from the act. According to its website, Impact Justice was established to imagine, innovate and challenge the status quo when it comes to our current justice system. “As an innovation and research center, we work to foster a more...
    SACRAMENTO —  This should be a no-brainer: The rape of an unconscious woman is a violent crime. But under current California law, such an assault is categorized as nonviolent. So is trafficking a child for sex. Or firing a gun into a house if no one is hit. It matters because under previous ballot propositions approved by voters, state prison inmates who have been convicted of felonies categorized as violent are not eligible for early release and parole. Proposition 20 on the Nov. 3 ballot would tweak Propositions 47 and 57, passed in 2014 and 2016, respectively, and correct what 20’s law enforcement and prosecutor backers consider flaws. Supporters claim that too many potentially violent criminals are being set free. Read about the 12 propositions on the ballot and see more coverage Read about the 12 propositions on the ballot and see more coverage Opponents,...
    Football great Herschel Walker said Friday that as a black American he can “totally dispute” that Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden has made the justice system “more fair and decent.” “I totally dispute that, because he had 47 years to make it more fair, why hasn’t he made it fair?” Walker asked during an interview on Fox News’ “The Story with Martha MacCallum.” “Being an African-American, we’ve been promised things for years, that’s what I want people to wake up for.” “We’ve been promised things for years that have fallen short. So now we are going to give him a chance to get it correct today … We need to wake up. I’m not sure what he is going to do but he’s not really telling the truth right now because he’s had 47 years to correct it.” (RELATED: Alveda King: Joe Biden Has Put ‘Our People In Jail’...
    Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., pressed Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett on her views on racism and implicit bias in an extended exchange during day two of her confirmation hearing on Tuesday. The former Democratic presidential candidate said that he was “troubled” by remarks Barrett had made that issues of racial justice and equality were questions of policy rather than judicial views. Booker asked Barrett if she was “surprised” to learn the findings of a U.S. Sentencing Commission study that found Black defendants were more likely to face harsh mandatory minimum sentences than White defendants in similar cases. “I don’t know, Sen. Booker, that seems an odd thing for me to express an opinion on,” Barrett said in response. “I’m not asking – these are facts. These are just facts,” Booker said. BARRETT VOWS TO CONSIDER 'EVERY FACTOR' IN DECIDING WHETHER TO RECUSE FROM ELECTION CASES Video“I’m not familiar with that...
    By CEDAR ATTANASIO, AP/Report for America SANTA FE, N.M (AP) — New Mexico legislators are considering proposals to reduce court fees and declutter courts in an effort to bring socioeconomic equity to the state’s justice system. “We’re trying to achieve a consensus,” on potential legislation, said Angela Pacheco, a retired Santa Fe prosecutor and member of the New Mexico Sentencing Commission, which includes victim and prisoner advocates. In a presentation to state legislators Wednesday outlining initial proposals, criminal justice advocate Monica Ault used the story of a previous criminal defense client to illustrate how court fines can snowball out of control, to the detriment of defendants and the courts. “I had a client who was working at Denny’s and was required to pay ($746) in 30 days. He of course could not do that,” said Ault, a criminal defense attorney and State Director of the New Mexico branch of the...
    Gov. J.B. Pritzker released a set of principles Tuesday for changing Illinois’ criminal justice system. The governor has released 7 guiding principles, including ending cash bail, reducing prison sentences, and increasing police accountability and training. The governor’s office said the principles build on the agenda outlines by Pritzker and Lieutenant Governor Juliana Stratton in January as an event announcing the administration’s Justice, Equity and Opportunity initiative. “We’re building toward an Illinois that works for everyone, and criminal justice reform is a key element of that holistic approach,” said Pritzker. Khadine Bennett, director of Advocacy and Intergovernmental Affairs with the ACLU applauded the proposals. “It is really important that policing reform and criminal justice reform happen together because if you think about the prison pipeline system starts when people interact with law enforcement,” he said. Jon Sandage, the McLean County Sheriff, said the governor isn’t thinking...
    A joint hearing of the Senate Criminal Law and Public Safety Committees on Tuesday took up the subject of drug sentencing reform. The meeting was a subject-matter only hearing, meaning it was for informational purposes and no legislative remedies were proposed or voted upon. Ben Ruddell, criminal justice policy director with the American Civil Liberties Union, called for the reduction of penalties for all drug offenses. “Our recommendation is reforms for all drug offenses to take them down by at least one class, including reducing simple possession from a felony to a misdemeanor,” Ruddell said. White County States Attorney Denton Aud said downgrading drug charges would not give offenders an incentive to seek help. “If they are coming into contact with the criminal justice system with a felony hanging over them as a possible penalty is believed to be the incentive to get them to...
    At MPR, Jon Collins says, “A majority of Minnesotans say that the criminal justice system doesn’t treat Black and white people equally and that George Floyd’s death was a sign of broader problems in policing, according to the newly released MPR News/Star Tribune/KARE-11 Minnesota Poll.  But the poll also showed Minnesotans sharply divided on issues of policing and race, largely on the basis of whether they support President Donald Trump or former Vice President Joe Biden for president. … Just 36 percent of statewide residents surveyed thought Floyd’s death was an isolated incident, while more than half said it was part of broader problems in how Minneapolis police treat Black people.” The Forum News Service says, “President Donald Trump will fly in to Duluth for a reelection rally Wednesday night, bringing with him public health fears as the Northland experiences its most significant surge of COVID-19 cases to date. Trump...
    SACRAMENTO (CBS SF) – California is expanding the pool of prospective jurors beyond those with driver’s licenses and the voter rolls, under new legislation signed into law by Gov. Gavin Newsom. The governor this week signed Senate Bill 592 by State Sen. Scott Wiener (D-San Francisco), which has been dubbed the “Fair Juries Act.” Under SB592, jury commissioners across California would be required to include anyone who files state taxes along with DMV records and lists of registered voters. “Today, we are one step closer to having a criminal justice system that is equitable and just for all Californians,” Wiener said in a statement. “By moving beyond DMV and voter rolls, and including all taxpayers, our jury pools will be much more diverse. We’re in a moment where we finally have momentum to excise structural racism from our criminal justice system.” According to Wiener’s office, using only DMV and voter...
    Author Horace Cooper said Friday that The Bail Project is “a radical assault on our criminal justice system” that assumes poverty forces people to commit crimes. The organization’s website promotes the group as “a critical tool to prevent incarceration and to prevent racial disparities in the bail system.” “This is a radical assault assault on our criminal justice system,” Cooper told Fox News’ “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “It is apparently predicated on the theory that if you are poor, if you are a minority, you have no choice and no control and you are forced to engage in many of these acts of wanton and violent crime. The problem of that is the data shows exactly the opposite,” he continued. (RELATED: ‘They Have An Agenda’: Detroit Police Chief Says ‘Necessary’ Force Used When Protesters Aren’t Peaceful) “Just because you are poor — and there millions of people who are poor...
    Imagine a world dominated by computer algorithms deciding who’s a danger to public safety and made by the same predictive models that help you discover a new TV show on Netflix. It might sound like bad science fiction, but it’s a reality that could be California’s future unless Proposition 25 is defeated on Nov. 3. California has made significant progress in recent years on creating a better criminal justice system, but Prop. 25 represents regression and warrants your no vote. For anyone arrested in California, Prop. 25 will end the constitutional right to choose bail or one of the pre-trial release programs administered by 46 counties. Instead, computer algorithms will determine who qualifies for release before trial. As a retired Superior Court judge, I fear Prop. 25 is a radical experiment, eliminating the surest, quickest option for people to get out of jail before trial and replacing it with a...
    Late-night comedians got serious on Wednesday following a Kentucky grand jury’s decision to not indict the police officers involved in the shooting death of Breonna Taylor. The grand jury’s decision ignited widespread protests and violence throughout Louisville, with demonstrations cropping up in other cities across the country. In Louisville, two police officers were shot amid the rioting. Officials said the two cops are in stable condition and the suspect is in custody. Protestors in Louisville were captured on video chanting “We didn’t get it, burn it down!” Another video showed a U-haul truck delivering a sign that said “Abolish the police.” The Daily Show with Trevor Noah tweeted shortly after the grand jury’s decision was announced the criminal justice system doesn’t value black people. If only the criminal justice system valued Black people as much as drywall https://t.co/UycSP6BXNJ — The Daily Show (@TheDailyShow) September 23, 2020 NBC’s Tonight Show host Jimmy Fallon...
    (CNN)Soon, hopefully, former Vice President Joe Biden may be able to atone for missteps made by him, as well as State and Local officials, in designing a criminal justice system that perpetually disenfranchises people of color and the poor. Earlier this year, when the former vice president spoke on justice issues, he recognized his shortcomings: "I know we haven't always gotten things right, but I've always tried." Ashish PrasharDeAnna HoskinsClearly, "trying" by Biden and others hasn't been enough. The United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world, a result of decades of bipartisan legislation -- like the 1994 Crime Bill -- that propped up institutional racism. About 2.3 million people are locked up in jails and prisons, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics, and 40% of those locked up are Black Americans, who in turn only make up 13% of the general population. While elected officials...
    In the pursuit of justice for Breonna Taylor, the 26-year old Black medical worker who was shot and killed by Louisville police officers in March during a failed raid on her apartment, the writing was on the wall from the very beginning. The political divide was set in motion, and so were the questionable decisions of those responsible for giving the public answers. Even so, many of us just wanted to believe that this time could be different. Until it wasn’t. On Wednesday, a grand jury indicted a former Louisville police officer, Brett Hankison—for wanton endangerment for his conduct during the raid. No charges were announced against the other two officers who shot Taylor multiple times, and none of the three men was charged for causing her death. On Monday, the Louisville Metro Police Department issued an emergency declaration delaying time off and vacation for officers, while Mayor Greg...
    Demetrius Harvard was reportedly “smiling” as that Manhattan A-train flew off the rails Sunday morning, sideswiping at least 10 steel beams and tearing a huge chunk of metal off one car. It was another failure of the systems that are supposed to protect New Yorkers from sickos. Harvard is accused of tossing metal construction debris onto the tracks at the West 14th station as the train pulled into the station. The derailment did nearly $1 million in damage, the MTA says. Luckily, only three people were injured — none killed. So on Monday night, he was held in lieu of $50,000 cash bail at his arraignment in Manhattan Criminal Court. He was charged with assault, criminal tampering, reckless endangerment, criminal mischief and unlawful interference with a railroad train. But he should’ve already been in custody: He was arraigned earlier in the month on one count of misdemeanor criminal mischief for...
    About time THE justice system exists to punish the guilty and protect the innocent. But it isn’t working: every year, dangerous criminals are released into the community after serving short or truncated sentences behind bars. 2Good on Justice Secretary Robert Buckland for finally reforming our broken criminal justice systemCredit: Getty Images - Getty And many, like London Bridge killer Usman Khan, go on to reoffend. Which is why The Sun welcomes the Government’s new slew of reforms to the system with a huge sigh of relief. Jailing killer motorists for life makes complete sense: the measure will keep reckless drivers off the roads for good. Closing the loophole that lets some monsters avoid life sentences because they’re under 21 at the time of their crime is wise too. If, as an adult, you plot to murder dozens of innocent children in cold blood — like Manchester Arena accomplice Hashem...
    IT’S easy to think there is just one threat facing us right now – a pandemic that risks so many of our lives. But the hard truth is that in ­corners of our society crime goes on, and it will continue once this terrible virus has been defeated. 5After 30yrs of confusion, it’s time for a tougher criminal justice systemCredit: Getty Images - Getty 5Robert Buckland is the Lord Chancellor and Justice SecretaryCredit: Alamy Live News Our brave police will still be straining every sinew to tackle despicable acts of thuggery, rape and terrorism. It is this Government’s absolute priority to protect the public from such threats. Sadly, the system we have today too often falls short of the mark. Victims deserve a justice system they can trust. One that has the power to punish properly those who have harmed them and does everything to protect them from falling victim...
    Photo via HCSOHillsborough County Sheriff’s office announced Thursday that it has made changes to its Juvenile Arrest Avoidance Program (JAAP) as of Sept. 1. The program offers juvenile first-time offenders the opportunity to receive a civil citation rather than a criminal charge when they commit qualifying misdemeanors, according to a HCSO press release. It also offers treatment and counseling to juvenile offenders in hopes of addressing the issue and preventing repeat offenses.  “We don't encourage bad behavior, but we understand children and teens make mistakes," said Sheriff Chad Chronister. “At this highly impressionable stage of life, we want to guide them to make better decisions through a more tailored approach. In many cases, an arrest only worsens their troubles and can lead to a life of crime." The changes include making all but five misdemeanor offenses eligible for the JAAP, no longer requiring parental consent for someone to qualify for...
    SAN ANTONIO – The fatal shooting of a combat veteran by a Bexar County sheriff’s deputy who was responding to a mental health call was apparently the last straw for Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff regarding the criminal justice system. The county judge on Tuesday released a letter critical of the system that he said is “flawed” and needs to be “fixed.” “Our criminal justice system is systematically flawed to the extent that it fails to administer justice to the poor, the homeless, minorities, and to the mentally ill and drug dependent citizens,” the letter stated. Wolff has been very critical of the Aug. 25 shooting of Damian Daniels, who family members said served two tours of duty in Afghanistan. Daniels was killed during a two-minute struggle with deputies. The victim’s brother, Brendan Daniels, said his brother had no criminal history, but he did have mental health issues. However, what...
    MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Longtime Miami-Dade State Attorney Katherine Fernandez Rundle won another term in office in a landslide. She handily defeated one of her former assistant state attorneys, Melba Pearson, with 61 percent of the vote. “My first order of business will be to create a collaborative task force made up of community and faith-based leaders, activists, law enforcement, sociologists, and other experts to examine our local criminal justice system and work to make it better, more representative, and stronger,” she said after declaring victory. Rundle has served as Miami-Dade’s State Attorney for 27 years.
    Virginia Senate Democrats released a series of proposals aimed at addressing law enforcement and criminal justice reform amid the continued widespread protests following the death of George Floyd in Minneapolis police custody. The Virginia Senate Democratic Caucus Justice Reform and Racial Equity package comes on the heels of an Aug. 18 special session for the General Assembly. A large portion of the legislation tackles policing across the commonwealth and includes a host of ideas proposed by Caucus Chair Mamie E. Locke, D-Hampton. They include bans on no-knock warrants, chokeholds, and sex between officers and those under arrest. Other proposals require police to attempt to de-escalate encounters with citizens before use of force, issuing warnings before shots are fired and forbid law enforcement from firing at moving vehicles. “Our package is more focused on the entire system and not just policing,” said Caucus Vice Chair Scott Surovell, D-Mount Vernon, during a...
    This content was republished with permission from WTOP’s news partners at Maryland Matters. Sign up for Maryland Matters’ free email subscription today. The Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee’s Courts & Criminal Justice Workgroup published a report Tuesday with 19 recommendations to help the state’s correctional and judiciary systems navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. “COVID-19 has prompted a reckoning with Maryland’s need to reform its criminal justice system. A system, which like the virus itself, disproportionately harms the state’s black residents,” said Sen. Jill P. Carter (D-Baltimore City), leader of the workgroup, in a statement. “The steps outlined in this report can make our courts and criminal justice system better during this crisis, and can provide a path forward as we move forward to a more just criminal justice system.” Senate Judicial Proceedings Committee Chairman William C. Smith Jr. (D-Montgomery) said he believes the recommendations put forth by the workgroup will “save lives.”...
    On the heels of the Seattle City Council's vehement support for cutting the police department by 50%, the council's next plan is to abolish prisons, municipal courts, and ultimately the entire criminal justice system, according to several documents leaked from the King County Executive's Office in Seattle. The documents, which read like a critical race theory paper or a far-left diversity training pamphlet, detail a plan that has apparently been years in the making. They argue America's criminal justice system is a "white supremacist institution" that must be dismantled entirely. Christopher Rufo, editor for City Journal and director of the Discovery Institute's Center on Wealth and Poverty, joined Glenn Beck on the radio program Monday to reveal exactly how and why city leaders plan to abolish the foundational institutions responsible for catching and prosecuting crime, including police departments, jails, prisons, and court systems. ...
    What if you were unable to access housing or find a job with a livable wage? And you couldn’t access public benefits that might be able to help, you lost your parenting rights, and were not able to exercise your right to vote? This is often the reality individuals with a criminal record face in our society simply because they cannot remove the stigmatizing label of “criminal.” One legal remedy available in Minnesota is criminal expungement, the sealing of criminal records. But it’s not working: The cost, time — including an in-person hearing — and intricacy of the process make expungement something many Minnesotans can only dream of. This is a miscarriage of justice. Our criminal justice system demands rehabilitation but does not support individuals as they try to re-enter society after a criminal conviction. The current system keeps people in poverty or engaging in other criminal activity as a...
    Discovery Institute Research Fellow Christopher Rufo told Fox News host Tucker Carlson Wednesday that Seattle plans to close its county jail and that this will result in “a huge increase in crime.” “The effects are actually quite simple. When you have 50% fewer officers, when you have 60% fewer jail cells, you’re going to have a huge increase in crime,” Rufo told “Tucker Carlson Tonight.” “For everything but the most serious offenses — murder, rape, armed robbery — people are going to be booked and immediately released back on the streets.” “So you’ve destroyed any deterrent for criminal activity and what happens when you create a void of lawlessness, that will be filled very soon with violence, with disorder and with mayhem.” (RELATED: Trump: Seattle Only Shut Down CHOP Because ‘We Were Going In’) He explained that the county jail currently incarcerates 60% of Seattle criminals sentenced to serve...
    Malaya Nordyke July 19, 2020 6:00PM (UTC) "If a cop is going to kill you anyway, what's a little bit of COVID?" Dr. Melody Goodman asks pointedly. Goodman is the Associate Dean of Research at New York University's School of Global and Public Health, where she focuses on improving health in Black and brown communities. She clarifies her earlier pithy statement, adding, "when your life and health is constantly in danger … you're willing to risk COVID to see real change happen in our country." Goodman's blunt words speak to a reality for many Black and brown Americans: the risks of COVID-19 are real, but perhaps pale in comparison to the day-to-day fear of violence at the hands of law enforcement — an omnipresent mental and physical health threat that predates the virus and may outlast it. Yes, the pandemic is killing Black Americans, but so are the police....
    Talk show host Dave Rubin said on Tuesday that the St. Louis couple who brandished their firearms in front of protesters were “protecting their property,” a move necessary amid the destruction of cities during the protests over police brutality. “The McCloskeys did not wake up that morning with the decision that they were going to go down there and hunt people down,” the host of “The Dave Rubin Show” told “Fox & Friends.” “It was a private street and a gate was broken into.” INVESTIGATION INTO ST. LOUIS COUPLE WHO DEFENDED THEIR HOME AGAINST PROTESTERS IS 'ABUSE OF POWER,' SAYS SEN. HAWLEY Authorities in St. Louis executed a search warrant Friday evening at the home of Mark and Patricia McCloskey, the couple who made headlines last month when they took up arms to defend their home from protesters. During the search, police seized the rifle that Mark McCloskey was shown holding during the June 28 incident, KSDK-TV...
    Turning to incarceration as a last resort, declining to prosecute low level and non-violent crimes, ignoring a person’s past criminal history when making present-day charging decisions. Those are just some reforms two national justice organizations are pushing prosecutors across the country to consider as a way to address racial disparities in the criminal justice system. The Ramsey County Attorney’s Office was one of three offices across the country chosen to participate in the Vera Institute and the Institute for Innovation in Prosecution’s new pilot program focused on strategically shaking up traditional prosecutorial approaches in the name of racial equity. Prosecutors’ offices in Suffolk County in Boston as well as Ingham County in Lansing, Mich., also were selected. A DEEP DATA DIVE The organizations’ staff will do a deep dive into data collected by three offices to understand how prosecutorial decisions have impacted black and brown communities, and then work to...
    DETROIT -- Proposed federal legislation that would radically transform the nation's criminal justice system through such changes as eliminating agencies like the Drug Enforcement Administration and the use of surveillance technology was unveiled Tuesday by the Movement for Black Lives.Dubbed the BREATHE Act, the legislation is the culmination of a project led by the policy table of the Movement for Black Lives, a coalition of more than 150 organizations.It comes at an unprecedented moment of national reckoning around police brutality and systemic racism that has spurred global protests and cries for change after several high-profile killings of Black Americans, including George Floyd, Rayshard Brooks and Breonna Taylor."We stand on the shoulders of giants and there has been 400 years of work that Black people have done to try to get us closer to freedom," Black Lives Matter co-founder Patrisse Cullors said."This moment is a watershed moment. I think this moment...
    While Black Lives Matter faded from the national spotlight after the election of President Donald J. Trump, two of the activist network’s key players built an organizing infrastructure in Los Angeles County that is significantly changing the nation’s largest criminal justice system. BLM co-founder Patrisse Cullors, and Dr. Melina Abdullah, who leads the L.A. chapter, have a long-term vision based on a philosophy of anti-capitalism. They teach that law enforcement agencies and correctional facilities are institutional structures of racial oppression that must be dismantled, existing to maintain America’s capitalist social order. Read members only content for just 99¢You’ll also unlock an ad-free experience and the Daily Wire mobile app and help support the web’s best conservative commentary.Get a Reader's Pass118 days until electionDon't miss a beat of our coverage.View 2020 Election PageThe Daily WireAdvertise With UsBook our SpeakersHelp CenterContact UsAboutStandards & PoliciesPrivacy PolicyTerms of UseCareersInternshipsFacebookTwitterInstagramYouTubeRSS© Copyright 2020, The Daily Wire
    "This moment is a watershed moment. I think this moment calls for structural change and transformative change in ways that we haven't seen in a very long time. We see this opportunity to push for the BREATHE Act as a part of what we're calling the modern-day civil rights act." The proposed changes, first shared with the Associated Press, are sweeping and likely to receive robust pushback from lawmakers who perceive the legislation as too radical. University of Michigan professor and criminal justice expert Heather Ann Thompson acknowledged the uphill battle, but noted that the legislation is being introduced at a highly opportune time. "I think those programs that they're suggesting eliminating only look radical if we really ignore the fact that there has been tremendous pressure to meaningfully reform this criminal justice system," said Thompson, author of "Blood in the Water: The Attica Prison Uprising of 1971 and Its...
    Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) stated on Tuesday that Democrats “must begin the work of dismantling the whole system of oppression wherever we find it,” which she suggested meant “our economy and political systems.” Omar made the remarks during a press conference held by the Minnesota People of Color and Indigenous caucus in St. Paul, Minnesota, which centered around racism. “We can’t stop at criminal justice reform or policing reform for that matter,” Omar said. “We are not merely fighting to tear down the systems of oppression in the criminal justice system, we are fighting to tear down systems of oppression that exists in housing, in education, in healthcare, in employment, in the air we breathe.” “In America today, white families have 42% times more wealth than black families,” Omar continued. “When we say housing is a human right, we need to guarantee homes for all. When we are speaking to...
    Progressive Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar (Minn.) called for the "dismantling" of the entire American economic and political system Tuesday, calling it is a "system of oppression." "As long as our economy and political systems prioritize profit without considering who is profiting, who is being shut out, we will perpetuate this inequality," Omar said while speaking at a news conference Tuesday afternoon. "We cannot stop at criminal justice system. We must begin the work of dismantling the whole system of oppression wherever we find it."Democrat Rep. Ilhan Omar calls for "dismantling" of the U.S. "economy and political systems" https://t.co/c4n8U2deIV https://t.co/mrKvlaiGyi — RNC Research (@RNC Research)1594144583.0The news conference, which featured Omar and leaders of the Minnesota People of Color and Indigenous Caucus, was put on for the purpose of addressing racism in policing and in the criminal justice system following weeks of protests over George Floyd's death. But in her remarks,...
    Tuesday at a news conference on systemic racism with Minnesota leaders, Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) called for dismantling systems of oppression, including America’s “economy and political systems.” Omar said, “Right now in Congress the Senate is sitting on a comprehensive bill to transform criminal justice and the policing system. All along with the Congressional Black Caucus, I helped led the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act. And because of Mitch McConnell and Donald Trump, it is being ignored. I guess the president would rather attack thew people who are protesting than actually address the issues people are out here protesting for.” She continued, “We can’t stop at criminal justice reform or police reform for that matter. We are not merely fighting to tear down the systems of oppression in the criminal justice system. We are fighting to tear down systems of oppression that exist in housing, in education, in health care,...
    Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) called Tuesday for “dismantling” what she described as “the whole system of oppression” in America, including the country’s ““economy and political systems.” “We can’t stop at criminal justice reform or police reform,” Omar said at a news conference outside the Minnesota Capitol in St. Paul. “We are not merely fighting to tear down the systems of oppression in the criminal justice system. We are fighting to tear down systems of oppression that exist in housing, in education, in health care, in employment, in the air we breathe.” Noting the fact the fact that her father died as a result of complications stemming from the coronavirus, Omar said, “the mortality rate for Black Minnesotans [who contract the virus] … is twice as high as it is with other races.” “I see the pain and the havoc it is wreaking on the black community in Minneapolis,” Omar...
    The Covid-19 crisis closed local, state, and federal courtrooms, put trials on hold, and delayed justice. Now courts are evaluating how to resume operations in a world where social distancing and limited contact are the new norm. The reopening process is not just vital for our constitutional rights, but necessary to begin to address stark racial disparities that have become all the more apparent through the pandemic and recent reckoning on police violence and systemic inequities. Before courts return to “business as usual,” it’s important to remember that the system in place before the pandemic was in many ways inequitable, inefficient, and in serious need of a 21st century upgrade. Failure of technological imagination is no longer an excuse. WIRED OPINIONABOUTLucy Lang (@LucyLangNYC) is the Director of the Institute for Innovation in Prosecution and a former Assistant District Attorney in Manhattan, where she investigated and prosecuted domestic violence and homicides....
    Reuters July 1, 2020 0 Comments Despite a renewed focus on wrongful arrests and racial discrimination after the death of George Floyd, meaningful reform of the massive U.S. criminal justice system is unlikely ahead of the November election, politicians and activists say. The United States, where evidence points to COVID-19 tearing unchecked through some jails, has the world’s largest prison population and highest incarceration rate, studies show. A toxic relationship between some city police departments and their communities was highlighted by the May death of Floyd, an unarmed Black man who died after a white Minneapolis police office pressed his neck into the pavement. But Congress has been unable to reach a bipartisan agreement on how to respond to demands for change in recent weeks, making it unlikely in months to come. As such, nationwide protests under the umbrella of the burgeoning Black Lives Matter movement are unlikely to...
    New York City Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said that the city’s criminal justice system is falling apart for a combination of reasons. “We cannot keep people safe without keeping bad, dangerous, people off the streets,” Shea said this week. “You have a criminal justice system that's imploding. That’s the kindest way to put it.” Shea’s remarks come as New York City’s homicide rate hit a five-year high. The number of people shot in the city has also increased by 42% from last year, according to NBC New York. Shea pointed to a number of reasons why he believes the system is breaking down, including shutdowns in the judicial system over COVID-19, bail reform laws, lack of social safety nets for released prisoners, and case deferments. The commissioner said that there must be some way for arraignments and grand jury proceedings to continue, urging courts to “do it...
    The city’s top cop said the criminal-justice system was “imploding,” as he highlighted a rise in shootings and killings on the city’s streets and slammed pols for refusing to support the Finest at an invite-only press conference at NYPD headquarters this week.SHOOTING OUTSIDE NYC'S MADISON SQUARE PARK LEAVES 19-YEAR-OLD WOMAN DEAD, MAN WOUNDED: REPORT “You have to step back and look at this. You have a criminal-justice system that is imploding,” Police Commissioner Dermot Shea bemoaned during a small meeting with reporters on Wednesday at One Police Plaza in Manhattan. “Imploding. That’s the kindest way to put it.” New York City Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said the criminal-justice system was “imploding,” as he highlighted a rise in shootings and killings on the city’s streets and slammed pols for refusing to support the Finest at an invite-only press conference at NYPD headquarters this week. Shea went on to point out that many criminal...
    NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said that the criminal justice system is 'imploding' as New York City sees a dramatic spike in street shootings and killings during the month of June.  During a meeting with reporters Wednesday, NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea addressed the rise in shootings throughout the city and the stagnancy of criminal cases.   'You have to step back and look at this. You have a criminal-justice system that is imploding,' Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said, according to the New York Post.  'Imploding. That's the kindest way to put it,' he added.  NYPD Police Commissioner Dermot Shea said the city's criminal justice system was 'imploding' while addressing the rise in shootings throughout the city RELATED ARTICLES Previous 1 Next Trump says lawlessness in Baltimore and Oakland is 'like... House passes sweeping police reform bill put forward by the... Share this...
    The city’s top cop said the criminal-justice system was “imploding,” as he highlighted a rise in shootings and killings on the city’s streets and slammed pols for refusing to support the Finest at an invite-only press conference at NYPD headquarters this week. “You have to step back and look at this. You have a criminal-justice system that is imploding,” Police Commissioner Dermot Shea bemoaned during a small meeting with reporters on Wednesday at One Police Plaza in Manhattan. “Imploding. That’s the kindest way to put it.” Shea went on to point out that many criminal cases that were “ongoing,” “stagnant” or “deferred.” “Each one of those represents somebody not being held accountable and no consequences,” Shea said. The comments come as the city is gripped by a steep rise in shootings — though crime is actually down for the year 2.5 percent, according to NYPD data.
    The vast majority of Americans support some type of criminal justice reform, a new Associated Press (AP)/NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll shows.  The Tuesday poll found that 95% of Americans were in favor of some type of reform; 29% of respondents supported a “complete overhaul” of the criminal justice system, 40% wanted “major changes,” and 25% supported “minor changes,” while only 5% did not think the system needed to be changed, according to an Associated Press report.  A new AP-NORC poll finds nearly all Americans believe the country’s criminal justice system needs some type of reform. There is overwhelming support for clear standards for when officers use force and consequences for cops who do so excessively. https://t.co/9PyfmqUgNQ pic.twitter.com/EcmhhW6DX4 — The Associated Press (@AP) June 23, 2020 The poll, which was conducted between June 11 and June 15, surveyed 1,301 American adults with a margin of error of...
    Meaghan Ellis June 17, 2020 0 Comments Sen. Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) is addressing concerns about her criminal justice record following ongoing allegations of being bias toward minorities. During an interview on CNN’s “Outfront” on Tuesday, Harris was asked about civil rights activist Tay Anderson’s disapproval of her possibly becoming Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden’s running mate. Due to the series of events that have transpired over the last three weeks, the Denver school board member also criticized Harris’ criminal justice record saying, “Nominating someone who’s put black people in jail doesn’t make sense at this moment.” “I think that he needs to figure out somebody that’s not just there because they’re a black woman, because they check a box,” said Tay Anderson , 21, a Denver school board member and a leading voice in that city’s protests.https://t.co/KgqhjV9Mck— Tay Anderson (@TayAndersonCO) June 11, 2020Host Erin Burnett asked Harris, “What’s...
    The man who inspired the new ABC TV show “For Life” joined Daily Caller White House correspondent Maranda Finney to discuss his journey from being set-up, convicted and sentenced to life behind bars for a crime he didn’t commit to becoming a lawyer and fighting the very system that mistreated him. Isaac Wright Jr. served nearly 7 years behind bars in federal prison before justice would be served. While serving time in prison in New Jersey, Wright Jr. begun his journey to becoming a lawyer. Wright Jr. started working as a paralegal while in prison and helped over two dozen fellow inmates get their sentences reduced. When the time came for his own appeal, Isaac made strides in proving his innocence, but it was a trail of misconduct by the prosecutor who essentially put him away that would end up helping clear his name and set him free. Today Mr....
    DETROIT (AP) — Black activists believe the police killing of George Floyd and the nationwide civil unrest that followed could be the catalyst for overhauling the criminal justice system. Following Saturday’s massive demonstrations against racism and police brutality, some are pushing for incremental change, such as requiring more rigorous training, reviewing policies and mandating that officers live in the communities in which they work to deepen their relationship with residents. But others are advocating for more sweeping responses, such as defunding law enforcement agencies or even dismantling police departments. Tens of thousands of people marched in places from coast to coast Saturday in what was perhaps the largest one-day mobilization since Floyd died on May 25. “What we’re facing is a real reckoning on a lot of levels,” said Alicia Garza, co-founder of Black Lives Matter. “This (coronavirus) pandemic pulled back the curtains on decades of disinvestment, decades of devaluing...
    Washington — Former President Barack Obama is participating in a virtual town hall Wednesday focused on the death of George Floyd, 46, in Minneapolis last week and how to best address racial bias in the criminal justice system. The event, hosted by the Obama Foundation's My Brother's Keeper Alliance, will also feature former Attorney General Eric Holder and other political and community leaders. Floyd's death and those of other unarmed African-Americans have led to an eruption of nationwide protests against police brutality and have prompted heightened calls for police reforms.  Trending News Fauci says U.S. could have "couple of hundred million" vaccine doses by new year Controversial GOP Congressman Steve King defeated in primary McConnell blocks resolution condemning Trump's response to protests D.C. National Guard opens probe into low-flying helicopter over protest Catholic archbishop: Trump visit violates "religious principles" How to watchWhat: Former President Barack Obama participates in a virtual town...
    Minnesota Attorney General Keith Ellison, who will lead all prosecutions related to the death of George Floyd, said Monday that "injustice has been a hallmark of our criminal justice system."  "We are working expeditiously, as fast as we can, but we have a duty to be fair and we're going to be fair," Ellison told Elaine Quijano, anchor of "Red & Blue" on CBSN. "But let me tell you, my eyes work pretty well, I saw what everybody saw, and I am committed to justice in this case."  Ellison's comments come after nearly a week of nationwide protests, which have turned into violent clashes between police and demonstrators in many U.S. cities. In Minnesota, Governor Tim Walz fully mobilized the state's National Guard this weekend. The protests were sparked by the death of George Floyd, the Minnesota man who died on May 25 after a police officer pressed his knee...
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