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Articles by Matthew Clarke

Imprisoned Connecticut Politician Gets Special Privileges

Imprisoned Connecticut Politician Gets Special Privileges

by Matt Clarke

In October 2008, the Hartford Courant reported that former Connecticut State Representative Jesse G. Stratton had received special privileges from Department of Corrections officials. Stratton, a 61-year-old widow with three grown children, was serving a four-month prison sentence at the York ...

Suit Filed Over Minnesota Jail’s Secret Recording of Privileged Phone Calls

Suit Filed Over Minnesota Jail’s Secret Recording of Privileged Phone Calls

by Matt Clarke

On October 15, 2008, a Minneapolis law firm filed a civil rights suit in federal district court alleging that attorney-client phone calls from the Becker County Jail in Detroit Lakes, Minnesota were secretly recorded and sent ...

Entire Texas Prison System Locked Down to Search for Phones; Prison Cell Phone Problem is Pandemic

by Matt Clarke

On October 20, 2008, Texas Governor Rick Perry placed all 112 prisons and 155,000 prisoners in the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) on lockdown to search for cell phones after a state senator received calls from a death row prisoner.

Richard Lee Tabler, 29, who is ...

$2,925,000 in Recent Settlements Involving Maricopa County and Sheriff Joe Arpaio

by Matt Clarke

The most recent developments in a thirty-year history of abuse and medical neglect of prisoners by Arizona’s Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) include three lawsuits in which the county paid almost $3 million in settlements. Those cases follow repeated reports and investigations that have found gross deficiencies ...

Jose Medellin Executed; Vienna Convention Controversy Lives On

Jose Medellin Executed; Vienna Convention Controversy Lives On

by Matt Clarke

On August 5, 2008 at 9:48 p.m., the State of Texas began the lethal injection that ended the life of Jose E. Medellin. In doing so, it ignored orders from the International Court of Justice at The Hague, more ...

Changes in Texas Parole Laws Violate Ex Post Facto Clause

by Matt Clarke

On March 29, 2007, a federal court ruled that changes in Texas parole laws, practices and procedures violated the federal ex post facto clause when applied retroactively.

Barry Michael Wion, a Texas state prisoner, was convicted in 1985 of three sex offenses involving children and sentenced to ...

Department of Justice Report on Prison Rape Elimination Act

Department of Justice Report on Prison Rape Elimination Act

by Matt Clarke

In September 2007, the National Institute of Corrections (NIC) of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) released the annual report for calendar 2006 on DOJ’s implementation of the Prison Rape Elimination Act of 2003 (PREA), 42 U.S.C. § ...

Texas Awards Prison Phone Contract

On August 14, 2008, the Texas Board of Criminal Justice (TBCJ) awarded a phone service contract to two companies, Kansas-based Embarq Corp. and Dallas-based Securus Technologies, Inc. Prior to this historic event, the Texas Dept. of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) was the only state prison system in the nation that did ...

Retroactive Residency Restrictions for Missouri Sex Offenders Unconstitutional

by Matt Clarke

On May 24, 2007, Cole County, Missouri Circuit Court Judge Patricia S. Joyce ruled that a Missouri statute requiring certain registered sex offenders to move if they lived within 1,000 feet of a school (§ 566.147, R.S.Mo.) was unconstitutional as applied to offenders who had established residences ...

Allegations of Contraband Smuggling, Sex and Corruption at Texas Prison

Allegations of Contraband Smuggling, Sex and Corruption at Texas Prison

by Matt Clarke

The Inspector General’s office of the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) has been investigating numerous cases of corruption at the 1,555-bed Terrell Unit near Rosharon, Texas. The allegations include sex between prisoners and guards, as well ...