Almost all the jail growth in the U.S. since 2000 has been in pretrial incarceration, but in St. Louis County, a program that allows more pretrial defendants to be released under supervision has bucked the trend. It’s been a life-changer for Renita Syas.
“If an individual has stayed out of the criminal justice system, then why should they continue to have that stain forever?” said Terry Curry, the prosecutor in Marion County, In., which includes Indianapolis,
BySarah Perkes, Alexis Scott and Ashley Kang/The Stand |
Obtaining a steady job has been a struggle for former Syracuse, N.Y. parolee Shallah “Brooklyn” Beal, who was released in 2016 after serving three years for assault. But he discovered that the first, and hardest challenge, is to break down the emotional walls he built in prison—and learn to trust in himself.
Karen Loftin was a drug addict and prostitute who served 16 years in prison. Today, at 52, she’s working towards a masters degree at Syracuse University while helping other former incarcerees rebuild their lives.
The Supreme Court struck down a part of the Armed Career Criminal Act that permitted sentencing enhancements for repeat violent offenders in 2015. But the debate over its impact on public safety and recidivism continues, pitting Attorney General Jeff Sessions against proponents of sentencing reform.
It doesn’t matter if you’re red or blue. If you’re willing to adopt—and pay for—evidence-based reforms, you can match the achievements of Connecticut, Michigan, Mississippi, Rhode Island, and South Carolina over the past decade, according to The Sentencing Project.