Number of Prisoners Age 55 and Older Rose Sharply Over The Past Decade

The [Justice] Short List 11-1-13

Posted by Richard Ross

[Highlights from the week’s juvenile justice and justice related articles, videos and more that are worth your time.]

Can Theater Help Solve California’s Prison Overcrowding Crisis?

Allowing prisoners to express themselves is a successful tool in reducing recidivism–significant proof of the power of the arts, in every field of life. What viable argument exists against arts-in-corrections programs when participants get the chance to reflect on their actions and identities? One participant said, “I made a major transition. I got to express my emotions …. I made a real connection with the men here …. It’s made me a better man.”


Target Bans the Box

Now there is more to love about one of the nation’s largest employers, Target Corporation: they have banned the question of criminal history on preliminary job applications. This allows individuals to prove their qualifications without stigma of their criminal history blinding a potential employer from fairly assessing their skills.


State Spending on Prison Health Care is Exploding. Here’s Why.

In recent decades, mandatory minimums have led hundreds of thousands to be sentenced to multiple decades in prison. Our confinement facilities rampantly abuse solitary confinement to further punish the incarcerated, and the needs of America’s prisoners are neglected day in and day out. What do these practices end in? A rapidly rising amount of state expenditures going towards prison healthcare.


Illinois Prisoners Stage Hunger Strike for Books

Many people think that if they were behind bars, at the very least they’d be able to stay mentally stimulated by catching up on their reading. At the very least. Unfortunately, this is not the case at Illinois’ Woodford County Jail, where books have been banned from entering the facility for the last 6 weeks. An outraged public is taking to their smartphone and iPads, showing their protest with a hashtag: #right2read.



Cyntoia Brown: a Heart Breaking Tragedy. MISERICORDIA for CYNTHOIA

    I would never, never Name a child a KILLER!


Cyntoia Brown


In 2004, Cyntoia Brown was arrested for murder. There was no question that a 43-year-old man is dead and that she killed him. What mystified filmmaker Daniel Birman was just how common violence among youth is, and just how rarely we stop to question our assumptions about it. He wondered in this case what led a girl — who grew up in a reasonable home environment — to this tragic end?Me Facing Life: Cyntoia’s Story explores Cyntoia’s history and her future. Without attempting to excuse her crime as youthful indiscretion nor to vilify her as an example of a generation gone off the rails, Birman simply follows Cyntoia through six years of her life after the crime, and searches for answers to persistent questions.The camera first glimpses Cyntoia the week of her arrest at age 16 and follows her for nearly six years. Along the way, nationally renowned juvenile forensic psychiatrist, Dr. William Bernet from Vanderbilt University, assesses her situation. We meet Ellenette Brown, Cyntoia’s adoptive mother who talks about the young girl’s early years. Georgina Mitchell, Cyntoia’s biological mother, meets her for the first time since she gave her up for adoption 14 years earlier. When we meet Cyntoia’s maternal grandmother, Joan Warren, some patterns begin to come into sharp focus.Cyntoia wrestles with her fate. She is stunningly articulate, and spends the time to put the pieces of this puzzle together with us. Cyntoia’s pre-prison lifestyle was nearly indistinguishable from her mother’s at the same age. History — seemingly predestined by biology and circumstance — repeats itself through each generation in this family.Cyntoia is tried as an adult, and the cameras are there when she is convicted and sentenced to life at the Tennessee Prison for Women. After the verdict, Cyntoia calls her mom to tell her the news.In the end, we catch up with Cyntoia as she is adjusting to prison, and struggling with her identity and hope for her future.

California´s Innocence Project is marching to Sacramento so a dozen wrongfully imprisoned inmates can be freed to run around the block!

[California delegates cheering on stagecoach a...
[California delegates cheering on stagecoach at the 1912 Republican National Convention held at the Chicago Coliseum, Chicago, Illinois, June 18-22, 1912] (LOC) (Photo credit: The Library of Congress)
California’s Innocence Project is marching to Sacramento so a dozen wrongfully imprisoned inmates can be freed to run around the block.

See on

circle of hope: convicted falsely & sentenced to life (petition for Terrell)

Hopes (Photo credit: matley0) Never give up! 
Scooped by Circle of Hope 


Circle of Hope – Today, 7:45 AM