Thu March 1, 2012

California death penalty ban headed towards the November ballot

This morning at San Francisco’s City Hall, members of the SAFE California Coalition submitted signatures to the Department of Elections to put an initiative on the November ballot that would end the death penalty in California. Proponents say they gathered over 800,000 signatures, which will now be reviewed by elections officials before they’re able to send the proposal to voters. If passed, the initiative would replace capital punishment with life without the possibility of parole.

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Thu February 9, 2012
Cops & Courts

Q&A: Alan Jackson on why counties should be able to send inmates out of state


A new bill is on the block would allow counties to use AB 109 funds to pay for out-of-state contracts to house inmates, similar to how the states currently contract with other states. Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Alan Jackson and Senator Tony Strickland introduced the bill in hopes of giving counties more options for housing inmates sentenced to local jails. Jackson spoke with KALW’S Nicole Jones on why he thinks this is a smart move for overburdened counties.Al

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Wed February 1, 2012
Cops & Courts

A look inside California’s toughest prison

Photo by Rina Palta

If you’re convicted of committing a felony in California, you can end up in many kinds of prisons. Steal a lot of money in a Ponzi scheme – you might end up in minimum security. Locked up, but with little supervision. Commit a violent crime, and you could be sent to a medium-security prison, like Folsom. Kill someone, and you could be headed for supermax.

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Thu January 12, 2012
Cops & Courts

Oakland: Federal ammo running short for War on Crime

Oakland has surpassed 100 murders this year but because of severe financial problems has cut the number of police officers on its streets.
Ali Winston

This piece comes to us from City Limits, an independent, non-profit, investigative magazine based in New York City. 

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Thu January 5, 2012
Cops & Courts

Unexpected stats about the revolving door to prison

Dan4th Nicholas

As with much conventional wisdom on crime and punishment, popular notions of what actually causes recidivism--people cycling repeatedly in and out of prison--don't hold up when you look at the statistics. California's latest report analyzing its notoriously high (currently 65 percent) recidivism rate contains an array of numerical nuggets that shed new light on the cycle of crime. A sampling:

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