Jeff Kaufman joined the New York Police Department in 1980 because he wanted to serve his community. He left six years later because the state’s drug laws made that impossible.
"The city jails are filled with people charged with misdemeanors only because they cannot pay," says a human rights lawyer. A proposal unanimously approved by the City Council will let people out on their own recognizance.
Gov. Greitens issued a stay of execution after Williams' attorneys cited DNA evidence found on the murder weapon belonging to an unknown person.
Abu-Jamal's conviction could be on shaky ground if a new approach described by his lawyer proves fruitful.
The Department of Homeland Security has identified 20,000 beds for the detention of asylum-seekers—"a 500 percent increase from current capacity,” according to MSNBC.
"Today even harsher prison conditions [exist in the U.S.]" than those that led to the New York prison rebellion that left 29 prisoners and nine hostages dead, says Truthdig columnist Chris Hedges in a recent episode of "On Contact." He is joined by author Heather Ann Thompson.
Historian Heather Ann Thompson’s book on the 1971 Attica prison uprising details the government’s brutality, lies and propaganda, demonization of the poor, obstruction of justice and silencing of those who tried to tell the truth. She exposes the American blueprint for social control.
At age 16, Gary Tyler was wrongly sent to death row, where he spent 41 years until being freed in April. The Truthdig team spoke with him about the prison system, the death penalty and maintaining hope throughout the decades.
"Locking people up for using drugs causes tremendous harm," according to a joint assessment by Human Rights Watch and the American Civil Liberties Union.