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Articles by Matthew Clarke

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

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 ...

Cold Case Hits Use Vastly Exaggerated DNA “Match” Statistics; Upheld by California Supreme Court

Cold Case Hits Use Vastly Exaggerated DNA “Match” Statistics; Upheld by California Supreme Court

by Matt Clarke

A recent California murder trial has highlighted serious problems in the probability statistics used to determine the odds of DNA matches in cases that involve DNA database searches. However, the California Supreme Court ...

Violence at Oklahoma Prisons Leaves Two Dead, Twenty-Five Injured

by Matt Clarke

On May 19, 2008, at approximately 12:30 p.m., a fight broke out between Native American and black prisoners at the Oklahoma State Reformatory (OSR) in Granite. When the skirmish ended five minutes later, two prisoners were dead and twelve others injured – three of them critically ...

Use of Questionable “Lie Detectors" by Law Enforcement Expands Nationwide

Use of Questionable “Lie Detectors” by Law Enforcement Expands Nationwide

by Matt Clarke

In the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001 terrorist attacks, law enforcement and other government agencies implemented new practices to obtain information from suspects during investigations and interrogations. The use of torture and torture-like techniques to extract ...

NCCHC Releases Position Statement on Abuse of Prisoners

by Matt Clarke

On October 14, 2007, the National Commission on Correctional Health Care (NCCHC) issued a position paper in response to the abuse of prisoners. The NCCHC is an organization dedicated to improving professionalism and safety in the jails and prisons by establishing national standards, accreditation, litigation and public ...

Illinois Federal Jury Awards Record $15.5 Million in False Arrest Case

by Matt Clarke

On December 20, 2007, an Illinois federal jury awarded a record amount in a civil rights case for false arrest – $15.5 million. The damage award was against the sheriff of Will County, Illinois and four of his deputies. Prior to trial, the former state attorney, forensic ...