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Articles by Christopher Zoukis

Court Employee Fired for Helping Wrongfully Convicted Prisoner Prove His Innocence

In 1984, Robert E. Nelson was convicted and sentenced by Jackson County, Missouri Circuit Court Judge David M. Byrn to 50 years in prison for forcible rape, 5 years for forcible sodomy and 15 years for first-degree robbery, plus two unrelated robbery convictions. Nelson’s sentence for the latter two ...

Islamic Organization Petitions to Let Muslim Women Prisoners Wear Hijabs

In May 2013, the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR) petitioned the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to establish a uniform policy for all local, state and federal correctional facilities to allow Muslim women to wear hijab head coverings while incarcerated and when photos are taken, such as during the ...

Pennsylvania Jail Official Indicted for Groping Co-workers

Ronald Edward Lensbouer, 44, the Chief Corrections Officer at a jail in Somerset County, Pennsylvania, faces charges of indecently assaulting two female guards at the facility.

According to court records, Lensbouer was charged on June 5, 2013 in two separate cases with four misdemeanor counts each of indecent assault and ...

Jails Market Electronic Cigarettes to Prisoners

Jail administrators have found a new revenue stream: exploiting prisoners’ addiction to nicotine by selling them electronic cigarettes, or e-cigarettes, for a substantial profit.

Even as municipalities like Chicago, New York and Los Angeles enact restrictions on the sale of e-cigarettes, county jails across the country are peddling the nicotine ...

Crime Declines while Anti-crime Funding Increases

Crime is down in the United States, but spending measures included in the $1.1 trillion federal budget passed by Congress in January 2014 will ensure that many law enforcement agencies receive more funding.

Insiders give much of the credit for the fiscal year (FY) 2014 funding increases to Senate ...

Sweden’s Shrinking Prison Population

Sweden’s prison population has seen such a sharp drop in recent years that the nation’s prison service announced in November 2013 that it had closed four correctional facilities and a remand center.

Prisons in Aby, Haja, Batshagen and Kristianstad were closed in 2013; two will likely be sold ...

East Mississippi Prison Nightmare

On May 30, 2013, the American Civil Liberties Union, Southern Poverty Law Center and law office of civil rights attorney Elizabeth Alexander filed an 83-page complaint in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi, seeking class-action relief for mentally ill prisoners confined in “barbaric and horrifying ...

New York Prisoner Awarded Almost $16 Million Due to Poor Medical Treatment

In March 2012, a New York state prisoner was awarded $15.7 million after being left a quadriplegic due to inadequate medical care. The judgment was entered by a New York Court of Claims which found that a prison physician had failed to evaluate or order further tests when prisoner ...

Unwanted Reprieve from Execution Upheld by Oregon Supreme Court

As previously reported in PLN, Oregon death row prisoner Gary Haugen filed a legal challenge to Governor John Kitzhaber’s November 2011 decision to impose a moratorium on the state’s death penalty, which had the effect of granting Haugen a temporary reprieve from execution. [See: PLN, June 2013, p ...

Book Review: Against Their Will: The Secret History of Medical Experimentation on Children in Cold War America

by Allen M. Hornblum, Judith L. Newman
and Gregory J. Dober

(Palgrave MacMillan, 2013). 266 pages. $27.00

Book review by Christopher Zoukis

According to Oswald Spengler, writing in The Decline of the West, “Moral is a conscious and planned causality of conduct, apart from all particulars of actual life ...