American policing has drifted disturbingly far from the liberal values that gird our democracy, warns Luke William Hunt, a justice professor and a former FBI agent. In a conversation with TCR, he discusses his new book, which offers a blueprint for getting us back to our roots.
The former AG, whom President Trump has nominated to return to his old job, is likely to continue the hardline policies of his official predecessor Jeff Sessions. Americans hoping for justice reform deserve better, writes one of the nation’s leading criminologists.
The former acting attorney general, fired by Trump for opposing his Muslim travel ban, says the “norm-busting” culture of the current administration has only stiffened the resolve of career Justice Department officials to follow the law and pursue their jobs conscientiously.
Based on recent precedent, it seems safe to assume that the FBI and Department of Justice will ignore President Trump’s tweets calling for investigations into cases like the recent unsigned op ed in The New York Times. But how long can we rely upon this assumption?
Criminal justice reforms are under attack in the Trump era and require immediate attention from state and local governments, as well as action from the formerly incarcerated, according to a Yale Law professor.
Last week, Mark Inch suddenly walked away from his job as director of the Federal Bureau of Prisons. The New York Times says that his surprising departure after nine months on the job was prompted by policy gamesmanship between Attorney General Jeff Sessions and Jared Kushner, the president’s son-in-law.
In an unlikely reversal of roles, key conservative Republicans are supporting state moves to legalize medical or recreational marijuana, while progressive Democrats are wary. That could trump hardcore opponents like AG Jeff Sessions, says an addiction specialist.
Under an initiative inspired by the Trump Administration’s crime crackdown, the U.S. attorney in Jackson, Ms., plans to expel convicted gun offenders outside the state. But criminologists say “Project EJECT” will complicate efforts to help returning prisoners rebuild their lives.
As the campaign against sex trafficking grows into a $47 million cottage industry, it has also been spurring a “moral panic” that sex workers say makes them increasingly vulnerable to police abuse, and turns them into targets for those with religious or moral objections to prostitution.