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Article • October 10, 2017 • from PLN October, 2017
Prisoner Labor Focus of Controversy in Texas, Alabama by David Reutter by David Reutter The use of prisoner labor and poor prison conditions are behind calls for action in Texas and Alabama, and have led to concerns over the use of prison labor nationwide. Most people believe slavery was abolished ...
Article • October 10, 2017 • from PLN October, 2017
Court Decision Favoring BOP Whistleblower Critical of BOP and OIG by Derek Gilna by Derek Gilna A December 2, 2016 decision by the Federal Circuit Court of Appeals, overturning a finding by the Merit Systems Protection Board, has cast in doubt the operations of the chief internal investigative body of ...
Article • October 9, 2017 • from PLN October, 2017
Misdemeanor Trespassing Arrest Leads to Permanent Impairment by Christopher Zoukis by Christopher Zoukis In March 2015, 53-year-old Ralph Karl Ingrim suffered a seizure at a Dollar General store in Amarillo, Texas. A store clerk was kind enough to call the police to have him removed. When they arrived, Ingrim allegedly ...
Article • September 13, 2017
Illegal 24-Day ICE Detention Nets Lawful Permanent Resident $99,000 Settlement by Lonnie Burton by Lonnie Burton In 2008 a lawsuit filed by a Mexican citizen who had obtained lawful permanent resident status in the United States and was later detained while trying to return to the U.S. from Mexico was ...
Article • September 11, 2017
"No Toilet, No Ventilation": Prisoners Describe Horrific Conditions in Harvey's Flood Zone by Candice Bernd by Candice Bernd, Truthout This story is the sixth piece in "America's Toxic Prisons," an investigative, collaborative series between Truthout and Earth Island Journal. This series dives deeply into the intersection between mass incarceration and ...
Article • August 31, 2017
Filed under: Sex Offender Residence
Texas Court of Appeals: Decriminalization of Civil Commitment Conditions Violation Applies to Cases Pending on Appeal by Matthew Clarke by Matt Clarke On November 16, 2016, a Texas court of appeals held that a legislative amendment that removed criminal penalties for violations of sex offender civil commitment supervision requirements applied ...
Article • August 30, 2017 • from PLN September, 2017
Filed under: RLUIPA, Religious Grooming
Fifth Circuit Vacates Dismissal of Texas Grooming Policy RLUIPA Claim by The Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit has reversed the dismissal of a challenge to a prison grooming policy filed by Native American prisoners. Texas state prisoners Teddy Norris Davis and Robbie Dow Goodman alleged their religious freedoms ...
Article • August 30, 2017 • from PLN September, 2017
Private Prison Companies’ Plan to License “Baby Jails” Fails in Texas Legislature by Bob Libal by Bob Libal Legislation developed by private prison corporation GEO Group that would have licensed immigrant family detention centers as “child care facilities” failed in the Texas legislature in May 2017 following widespread opposition by ...
Article • August 4, 2017
$187,000 Settlement for TX County Jail Administrator Turned Whistleblower by Joe Watson by Joe Watson A former jail administrator in Bastrop County, Texas, agreed to settle a wrongful termination lawsuit for $187,000 against his old boss, a former sheriff who had pleaded guilty to charges of corruption and abuse of ...
Going to Prison in Texas in 2015 by William T. Habern by William T. Habern, David P. O’Neil, and Debra Bone Introduction For over 30 years our firm has represented offenders and their families in prison and parole administrative and legal issues. The first version of this article was published ...
Texas Prisoner was Emaciated and Sick when Killed by Cellmate by A fight with his cellmate, Joe Greggs, led to the January 19, 2016 death of prisoner Alton Rodgers at the William P. Clements Unit in Texas. An official report listed Rodgers’ fatal injury as trauma consistent with having his ...
Article • July 28, 2017 • from PLN August, 2017
Suicide at Texas Jail Results in Firings, Lawsuit, Investigation and Legislation by Matthew Clarke by Matt Clarke On July 10, 2015, Sandra Bland was stopped while driving in Prairie View, Texas. The 28-year-old Illinois native was in the process of moving to Waller County when she was stopped by Texas ...
Article • July 28, 2017 • from PLN August, 2017
Forced to Endure Extreme Heat, Prisoners are Casualties of Texas’ Climate Denial, Documents Show by Candice Bernd by Candice Bernd, Truthout On a spring day in May, temperatures in Dallas, Texas were already in the 90s. Sunlight glinted off the barbed wire perimeter outside the Hutchins State Jail, located just ...
Article • July 20, 2017
Filed under: War on Drugs, Juries
When Laws Are Unjust: A Primer on Jury Nullification by Joe Watson by Joe Watson The 2014 trial of Jacob Lavaro—a 19-year-old from Austin, Texas, who was facing five years to life for making a pound-and-a-half of pot brownies— has again provoked the ire of criminal justice reform advocates, including ...
Ross v. City of Sulphur Spring, TX, Amended Complaint, Wrongful Death TASER, 2017 Case 4:16-cv-00095-RAS-CAN Document 66 Filed 03/03/17 Page 1 of 30 PageID #: 273 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS SHERMAN DIVISION SHELLEY ROSS, as REPRESENTATIVE of the ESTATE of TONY CHANCE ...
Ross v. City of Sulphur Spring, TX, Settlement, Wrongful Death TASER, 2017 IN THE UNITED STATES DISTRICT COURT FOR THE EASTERN DISTRICT OF TEXAS SHERMAN DIVISION SHELLY ROSS, as REPRESENTATIVE of the ESTATE of TONY CHANCE ROSS, and SHELLY ROSS and TONY ROSS, in their Individual Capacity, § § § ...
Article • June 30, 2017 • from PLN July, 2017
Filed under: Money/Property
Texas Judges Jail Defendants too Poor to Pay Fines, Debts by Matthew Clarke by Matt Clarke The original 1836 Constitution of the Republic of Texas included a prohibition against imprisoning people who were unable to pay their debts. In the modern Texas Constitution, that concept is enshrined in the state’s ...
Article • June 30, 2017 • from PLN July, 2017
Local Sex Offender Residency Restrictions Challenged in Texas by Matthew Clarke by Matt Clarke In many U.S. cities, local ordinances prohibit registered sex offenders from living in certain areas – generally within 1,000 feet or more of schools, playgrounds and daycare centers. But when a city is just a few ...
Article • June 30, 2017 • from PLN July, 2017
Filed under: DNA Testing/Samples
Texas Forensic Science Commission Addresses Problem with DNA Testing Protocols by Matthew Clarke by Matt Clarke The mission of the Texas Forensic Science Commission (TFSC) is to set standards for the use of scientific evidence in the state’s criminal justice system. In investigating the proper standards for DNA testing during ...
Article • June 30, 2017 • from PLN July, 2017
Texas Fraud Prosecutions Privately Funded by Insurance Company by Matthew Clarke by Matt Clarke Texas lawmakers recently took action to address the relationship between the Texas Mutual Insurance Company (TMIC) and the Travis County District Attorney’s Office, after finding the connection between the pair was too close for comfort. Since ...
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