Crime victims and the FBI were two of the big winners in the annual battle over spending U. S. Justice Department funds. A Congressional budget deal for the current fiscal year that was finalized by negotiators early yesterday morning provided an estimated $2.26 billion for state and local organizations that help crime victims. Under a law dating from the 1980s, those groups are supposed to receive fines paid in federal cases, but Congress has long put a cap on the […]
On July 23, 42 law professors wrote a letter to the Attorney General, raising concerns about various policies and practices of the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP), and urging her to select BOP’s next Director from outside the agency in order to facilitate change. A few days later, three of the signatories to the July 23 letter published an . . . Want to read more? Please subscribe to The Crime Report!
In November 2002, a team of federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) employees traveled to a secret CIA prison in Afghanistan known interchangeably by its nickname, “The Salt Pit,” and its code name, “COBALT,” according to a Senate Intelligence Committee report released last year. The report, which examined the the CIA’s detention and interrogation program, describes in detail a visit in which BOP officials saw detainees shackled to walls and stripped naked. The cells holding detainees were kept in total . […]
Inmates in the federal prison system who suffer from mental illness are routinely kept in solitary confinement for extensive periods without proper treatment, according to the first-ever audit of the Bureau of Prison's (BOP) segregation policies. The 250-page-plus report, completed in December, but not made public until now, detailed numerous areas in which the BOP was failing its mentally ill inmates, but did not offer concrete solutions on how to alleviate the use of solitary confinement. “This is a very […]
The federal prison system is growing at an unsustainable rate, according to a new study from the Urban Institute's Justice Policy Center, which reports that the federal inmate population has ballooned by almost ten times since 1980. There are about 218,000 inmates in federal prisons, according to the report. More than half of the population consists of drug offenders. The study's authors attribute the length of sentences — particularly for drug offenders — as an important driver of population growth. […]
The Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) rarely seeks early release for prisoners facing imminent death or serious incapacitation, according to a report released today by the advocacy groups Human Rights Watch and Families Against Mandatory Minimums. In 1984, Congress gave federal courts authority to grant early release — also referred to as “compassionate release” — for “extraordinary and compelling” reasons, but only when a motion to do so has been submitted by the BOP. The BOP has averaged about two […]
Despite the popular assumption that incarceration makes our communities safer, the growing evidence is that the opposite is true. Prisons, jails and juvenile facilities are places of extreme violence that spread this contagion of violence rather than contain it. The new Administration can show leadership by a major reform effort of federal corrections facilities, including the very troubled and increasingly violent Federal Bureau of Prisons, the unconstitutional deportation facilities overseen by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and the totally unregulated […]