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. In its third report on the demographic factors affecting sentencing outcomes, the USSC also said females received shorter prison sentences than males.
Officials in the Illinois county must make $200 million in budget cuts. Commissioners have proposed making up a quarter of the total through hundreds of layoffs, including more than 200 each from the sheriff’s department and county court system.
A Vanderbilt Law School professor says evidence of mental impairment could be a useful tool in a reformed justice system that focused on rehabilitation rather than blame. But, he argues in a recent study, under the current system, neuroscience can be used by both prosecutors and defense, and has only limited value in assessing guilt.
About 70 percent of the roughly 350 inmates exonerated by DNA evidence were convicted based in part, or in whole, on eyewitness testimony. A Philadelphia conference explores why witnesses get it wrong so often—and how to fix it.
Police shootings and former Dallas Chief David O. Brown head TCR’s list of top criminal justice stories and newsmakers for 2016. Readers and contributors also selected Donald Trump’s election win, the bipartisan justice reform movement in the states, and the probe into Russian election hackers as among the 10 developments that bear watching next year.
New York’s highest court appears troubled by the use of recorded jail calls as evidence against accused criminals. Attorneys for Pedro Hernandez, scheduled for a second murder trial next month in the 1979 disappearance of Etan Patz in Manhattan, have moved to bar prosecutors from using jail phone conversations against him.
The public wants more access to the judicial system. In the past few years, states have responded by allowing more cameras into more courtroom proceedings. But federal courts have been slower to make change. Following our story last week, “Cameras and 'Making a Murderer”, The Crime Report asked readers: “Should cameras be given unrestricted access to all phases of a courtroom trial . . . Want to read more? Please subscribe to The Crime Report!
Attorneys who specialize in juvenile justice called yesterday’s Supreme Court decision on life sentences for those who committed crimes as teens “potentially sweeping” but warned that resentencing hearings were far from a sure path to freedom, reports the Juvenile Justice Information Exchange. The court ruled, 6 to 3, in Montgomery v. Louisiana that prisoners serving mandatory life sentences without parole for murders they committed as juveniles should have a chance at release via a resentencing hearing. Though parole boards will […]