An Oregon State University professor says his comparative study of prison demographics also supports critics who claim private prisons “skim the best inmates with the lowest needs in their attempt to minimize costs.” The study found that inmates in for-profit institutions serve disproportionately shorter sentences than those incarcerated in state and federal prisons.
Blacks are 17 percent of Florida’s population but have accounted for 46 percent of the state’s felony drug convictions since 2004. Blacks spend two-thirds more time behind bars for drug crimes, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports.
African Americans got 55 percent of all tickets issued for pedestrian violations in Jacksonville over the past five years. Nearly all such tickets were written in the city’s poorest sections. “There is not an active effort to be in black neighborhoods writing pedestrian tickets,” says the local sheriff.
African-American male offenders receive sentences averaging 19.1 percent longer than white males—a gap that has largely remained unchanged since the U.S. Sentencing Commission began studying the issue in 2010.
A pro-death penalty “punitive culture” in some federal jurisdictions ensures that poor defendants in capital punishment cases never get the quality of public defense they are entitled to, argues a study published in the Journal of Criminal Law and Criminology. The authors say their findings help explain the stark racial disparities in the application of death sentences across the U.S.
The central Tennessee cities of Shelbyville and Murfreesboro are preparing for demonstrations Saturday by white-nationalist groups. Many fear the rallies could turn violent like the August demonstration in Charlottesville, Va.
Over the past decade, Long Island’s blacks, Hispanics and other minorities were far more likely than whites to be arrested and wind up behind bars for crimes that experts say are the suburban equivalent of “stop and frisk” charges, Newsday reports.
University of Florida president Kent Fuchs said white nationalist Richard Spencer wants the speech he will deliver Thursday to provoke violence that will gain sympathy for the alternative right movement he represents.
Does the race or ethnicity of police officers make a difference in how police behave on the streets of the neighborhoods they patrol—and how they see their jobs? A study released Friday suggests it does, and the authors—both from the University of Central Florida—say it supports arguments that law enforcement diversity is crucial to restoring trust and legitimacy in America’s police forces.