Tag: Criminal Justice Reform

Conservative Judges Are Brawling Over Originalism

The Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals handed down a notable ruling on police shootings this week, ruling in favor of a man whose encounter with law enforcement nearly a decade ago left him with profound injuries. It’s the latest development in a case that’s already taken a circuitous path through the judicial system. What’s enlightening […]

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Sanders and Warren Left Sex Workers Out of Their Criminal Justice Plans

Some sex workers and their allies are feeling left behind by Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders and Massachusetts Senator Elizabeth Warren, who have both unveiled wide-reaching policy platforms on criminal justice reform this week that don’t include a single mention of decriminalizing sex work. The senators are two of just five 2020 Democratic candidates with a […]

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Meek Mill Weighs in on Stifling Criminal Justice System Ahead of Amazon’s Free Meek Documentary

Meek Mill has been stuck in the criminal justice system for practically his entire adult life. First arrested at 19 for gun- and drug-related charges, Robert Rihmeek Williams—like many other black and brown people—has found himself on a merry-go-round, in and out of the criminal justice system. Now the 32-year-old is an internationally known rapper […]

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Innocent Man Released After 21 Years in Prison, Star Witness Confesses to Killing: ‘I Can’t Live With This on My Conscience’

John Miller (center) boards a bus to take him home after being released from prison after 21 years. Screenshot: CNN After 21 years behind bars, one Pennsylvania man will finally resume the life he left behind. CNN reports that 44-year-old John Miller has been released from prison after David Williams, the star witness in a […]

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Orange Is the New Black Tackles Criminal-Justice Reform With the Launch of ‘Poussey Washington Fund’

Samira Wiley Photo: Mike Coppola (Getty Images for Turner) In a case of life imitating art, groundbreaking fan favorite Orange Is the New Black is looking to make an impact on criminal-justice reform in the real world with the launch of the Poussey Washington Fund. Named for the character Emmy winner Samira Wiley played in […]

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Patrice Cullors, Reform LA Jails Lead the Charge to Decriminalize Mental Health with #CancelMcCarthyContract Campaign

Screenshot: PublicTheaterNY (YouTube) For years, activist and community organizer Patrice Cullors has poured her passion for the people into cofounding movements and coalitions such as Black Lives Matter and Reform LA Jails. But with the announcement of her #CancelMcCarthyContract campaign comes one of her biggest challenges yet—the fight for the mental health and wellbeing of […]

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Patrisse Cullors, Reform LA Jails Lead the Charge to Decriminalize Mental Health with #CancelMcCarthyContract Campaign

Screenshot: PublicTheaterNY (YouTube) For years, activist and community organizer Patrisse Cullors has poured her passion for the people into cofounding movements and coalitions such as Black Lives Matter and Reform LA Jails. But with the announcement of her #CancelMcCarthyContract campaign comes one of her biggest challenges yet—the fight for the mental health and wellbeing of […]

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Biden Pushes Back on Civil Rights Critics by Playing Up His Obama Connects, While Booker Slams Biden As an ‘Architect of Mass Incarceration’

Former Vice President Joe Biden speaking at the NAACP’s convention in Detroit July 24, 2019.Photo: Bill Pugliano (Getty) Joe Biden attempted to ward off doubts raised about his civil rights bona fides Wednesday by reminding attendees of the NAACP convention that he was Barack Obama’s pick to be his vice president. “I doubt he would […]

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Meek Mill Keeps the Dream Going With Launch of Dream Chasers Records

Photo: Kevin Winter (Getty Images) It might be official: Meek Mill is better at catching the dreams he’s chasing than everyone else. Meek Mill (born Robert Williams) and RocNation announced in a pair of Instagram posts the launch of Dream Chasers Records, a joint venture label between the two in which Meek will serve as […]

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Biden’s Big, Obvious Ideas for Criminal-Justice Reform

Joe Biden, ahead of two major speeches before black civil-rights groups later this week, unveiled his plan on Tuesday for reforming America’s broken criminal-justice system. “Equality, equity, justice—these ideas form the American creed,” the plan begins. “We have never lived up to it and we haven’t always gotten it right, but we’ve never stopped trying.” […]

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It Looks Like Meek Mill May Get a New Trial: ‘We Are One Step Closer to Justice’

Rapper Meek Mill departs with his son Rihmeek “Papi” Williams after a hearing at a Pennsylvania appeals court in Philadelphia, Tuesday, July 16, 2019. Photo: Matt Rourke (AP Photo) Meek Mill, born Robert Rihmeek Williams, has spent the last 11 years of his life hounded by a drug and gun conviction that stole his freedom […]

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NYC District Attorney Candidate Backed by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Among Other Progressives Claims Democratic Primary Victory

Public defender Tiffany Cabán declares victory in the Queens district attorney Democratic primary race, June 25, 2019, in the Queens borough of New York City. Photo: Scott Heins (Getty Images) In what will be a major upset to the Democratic Party machine and old-guard Democrats if it holds, a progressive and openly queer Latina attorney […]

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NYC District Attorney Candidate Backed by Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Claims Democratic Primary Victory

Public defender Tiffany Cabán declares victory in the Queens district attorney Democratic primary race, June 25, 2019, in the Queens borough of New York City. Photo: Scott Heins (Getty Images) In what will be a major upset to the Democratic Party machine and old-guard Democrats if it holds, a progressive and openly queer Latina attorney […]

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Manhattan District Attorney Refuses to Reopen Cases Handled by Central Park Five Prosecutor Linda Fairstein

Photo: Paul Hawthorne (Getty Images) Since the release of Netflix’s haunting masterpiece When They See Us, karma has been working overtime to derail the lives and careers of former prosecutor Linda Fairstein and attorney Elizabeth Lederer—two of the biggest beneficiaries of the Exonerated Five’s 1990 convictions. When Karma Has GPS: Linda Fairstein Dropped By Literary […]

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Kim Kardashian West Partners with Lyft to Provide 5,000 Former Prisoners With Transportation to Job Interviews

Photo: Evan Vucci (AP Photo) Kim Kardashian is problematic as hell. She’s also inexplicably gone from socialite to social justice superheroine as of late, being instrumental in commuting the life sentence of non-violent offender Alice Johnson; deploying her legal team to assist Cyntonia Brown in her eventual clemency; and unleashing her white privilege to address […]

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‘Appalled’ and ‘Disappointed’: Federal Judge Tells St. Louis to Stop Dragging Feet on Cash Bail Order

The city of St. Louis can no longer hold people in jail simply because they’re too poor to pay bail, a federal judge ruled last week. The decision was celebrated by the city’s civil rights advocates, who have argued for years that its cash bail system was unconstitutional. But following the ruling—which gave city officials […]

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If Democratic Lawmakers Get Their Way, 1 Million Convictions in California Could Be Expunged

Image: iStock After being released from prison, those who were once incarcerated often experience tremendous difficulty getting re-acclimated to society, but if Democratic lawmakers get their way, California citizens still being punished for mistakes from their past will be able to get a new lease on life. The Associated Press reports that after moving to […]

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New Louisiana Law Allows Expert Testimony on the Flaws of Eyewitness Accounts of Crimes

In 1971, when Wilbert Jones was just 19 years old, he was arrested and charged with kidnapping a nurse at gunpoint from the parking lot of a hospital in Baton Rouge, La., and raping her behind a building. Black Man in Louisiana to Be Freed From Prison After Judge Overturned 1974 Conviction, but He Still… […]

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America’s Public Defenders’ Offices Are Broken. Here’s How to Fix Them

Photo: iStock As a former prosecutor and attorney general of California, I saw our legal system at its best when we pursued justice and stood up for victims of murder, rape, and other serious crimes. It made me feel proud. But I also saw the parts of our criminal justice system that were failing—including overworked […]

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