News

Pricey Video Services Increasingly Supplant In-Person Prison Visits

Video visitation services are already available in more than 600 penal institutions, and the upward trend shows few signs of the growing trend slowing down. They’ve also sparked a debate over whether the services are a valuable, lower-cost alternative to in-person visits to distant locations (as the American Correctional Association recommended in 2016) or a

Read More »

Federal Judge Knocks Down Florida’s Way of Restoring Felons’ Voting Rights

Feb. 1, a federal judge reviewing how Florida handles restoration of felons’ voting rights ruled it unconstitutional, because the process gives the Florida Executive Clemency Board sweeping, unregulated power to decide whether to re-enfranchise former felons. Tallahassee-based district judge Mark E. Walker decided that violates applicants’ First Amendment rights of free speech and association and

Read More »

Georgia Supreme Court Rules Flipping the Bird Is Not Disorderly Conduct

The Georgia Supreme Court ruled on October 2, 2017 that a raised middle finger, without more, amounts to constitutionally protected speech that cannot be grounds for a finding of criminal disorderly conduct. David Freeman attended a church service at the Flowery Branch campus of the 12 Stones Church on August 3, 2014. During the service,

Read More »

Prison Writer Slammed with Another Stint in Solitary

  By Jean Trounstine and Christopher Zoukis It shouldn’t be surprising to hear federal prisoner and prisoner rights advocate Christopher Zoukis, who has written four books and produced countless articles for outlets such as the New York Daily News, Prison Legal News, and the Huffington Post, is under fire once again for his writing activities.

Read More »

Court Finds Prisoner’s Blog Post Not Harassment

By Christopher Zoukis The federal government’s attempt to restrict a former prisoner’s First Amendment right to free speech has been reversed by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals. Darren Chaker was convicted of a white collar crime related to a bankruptcy filing and sentenced to 15 months in federal prison. As part of his three

Read More »

Prisoner’s Complaints Protected Speech

By Christopher Zoukis The Third Circuit Court of Appeals has held that a prisoner’s verbal grievance made to prison staff was protected speech under the First Amendment, and gave rise to a civil action when the prisoner faced retaliation for making a verbal complaint. Charles Mack, incarcerated at the Federal Correctional Institution in Loretto, Pennsylvania,

Read More »

Prison Censorship in America: The Ashley Jean Arnold Case

When Americans think of prison censorship, images of prison guards throwing away letters come to mind. So too do images of books and publications like Prison Legal News being rejected for being a “threat to the good order, orderly operation, and security of the institution,” which covers about any number of theoretical penological objectives. And

Read More »

‘Prison Legal News’ vs. the State of Florida: A Battle Against Censorship

Image courtesy prisonlegalnews.org By Christopher Zoukis Last month, a small, black-and-white newsprint magazine quietly made a case in a Florida courtroom to protect the fundamental rights that nearly every citizen in the industrialized world holds dear. Yet the odds are, you didn’t hear a word about it. Prison Legal News has reported on the legal

Read More »

New Pennsylvania Law Stifles Prisoners’ Free Speech

By Christopher Zoukis On October 21, 2014, Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett signed into law the Revictimization Relief Act (HB 2533/SB 508), which enabled victims of crime to petition a judge to censor Pennsylvania state prisoners, if the prisoner’s words cause or will theoretically cause “mental anguish” to a crime victim, regardless of who committed the

Read More »
Categories
Categories
Archives