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State Governors Grant Over 500 Pardons, Commutations

In what is typically a politically risky move, six state governors recently granted pardons and commutations to hundreds of current and former prisoners. In California, Indiana, Kentucky, New York, Arkansas and Vermont, more than 500 pardons were granted along with another 20 commutations or grants of clemency. In January 2017, outgoing Vermont Governor Peter Shumlin

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Pennsylvania Ruling Confirms No Death Row after Death Sentences Vacated

The Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit has ruled against two Pennsylvania prisoners who were held in solitary confinement on death row for years after their death sentences were vacated. In the course of its opinion, however, the appellate court made it clear that in the future the state may not subject prisoners to

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Most Black “Neighborhoods” in Wisconsin are Actually Jails, Prisons

A 17-year-old has made a startling discovery about Wisconsin: more than half of the state’s black “neighborhoods” are actually jails. The young researcher, Lew Blank, used the Weldon Cooper Center’s Racial Dot Map and Google Maps to come to this conclusion, and released the results in August 2016. Defining a black neighborhood as “a certain

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Innocence Project Emerging in Israel

Wrongful convictions are a well-known phenomena in the United States; the administration of one of the world’s largest criminal justice systems virtually guarantees mistakes and failures. Famous cases such as that of Rubin “Hurricane” Carter, who was framed for murder and spent 20 years in prison, and whose case was made into a movie, have

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Vermont Supreme Court Upholds Rights of Jailhouse Lawyers

In a unanimous and lengthy opinion, the Vermont Supreme Court dismissed a charge of unauthorized practice of law brought against a jailhouse lawyer. Martin Serendipity Morales, a prisoner who identifies as female, was being held at the Marble Valley Regional Correctional Center when she was charged with a felony by Bennington County prosecutors. Her crime?

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