Every month, the number of pregnant women incarcerated in Texas county jails hovers between 300 and 500, according to monthly jail population reports collected […]
Tag Archives: Criminal Justice
While criminal justice reform efforts in Texas have gotten lots of positive press, incarceration trends are complex.
Slow-paced trials at Guantanamo Bay were delayed again when a detainee said he recognized a translator as a CIA linguist from when he was tortured.
A Harris County attorney is waging a one-woman war against the way Texas uses hundreds of court fees it collects from people in the criminal justice system.
After 14 years of enthusiastic prison-building, Perry is taking credit for a tiny softening in his rhetoric on crime just in time for a presidential run.
Just four other governors answered Rick Perry’s call to defy a federal law designed to reduce prison rape.
One of the contributors to Texas’ slowly dropping incarceration rates is a growth in diversion programs that address problems like addiction and mental illness.
Harris County, for example, recently doubled its number of crisis intervention response teams, which include trained deputies and mental health clinicians who answer 9-1-1 calls where mental illness may be a factor.
The ABA report makes recommendations on every stage of Texas’s capital punishment system. Law enforcement should use model practices when dealing with eyewitnesses; interrogations should be videotaped; biological evidence should be safely preserved and defendants should be able to have it tested. Crime lab standards should be standardized and test results verified independently and often. Texas should use national standards for arson investigations, give juries better instructions, and provide adequate counsel for defendants in every stage of the process.
Yet even if these and all the other recommendations were all followed, Anthony Graves would not be satisfied.
The study found that detained defendants had it worse all around. They were less likely than bond defendants to receive deferred adjudication or probation. And they were about half as likely to have their charges dismissed. That means in addition to having spent time in jail before their trial—which, obviously, the bonded defendants didn’t—detained defendants were likelier to get additional jail time.
Finally, among bonded and detained defendants who were sentenced to jail, the detained defendants received longer sentences. In brief, for being poor, they’re punished twice.
While news that TDCJ is spending $750,000 on climate-controlled swine barns is catchy, it ignores the real story.