Trials and Error
Trials and Error

The Criminal Justice Gospel

Religious leaders in Texas are on a crusade to end cash bail.

Oct. 20 2017 4:25 PMPunished for Being PoorIn theory, bail reform is ascendant in San Francisco. In practice, defendants are still locked up because they can’t afford to buy their freedom.
Sept. 24 2017 2:03 PMThe NFL Protests Are PatrioticThe kneeling players are asking America to do better on criminal justice. If I could, I’d take a knee and join them.
Aug. 30 2017 5:05 PMThere Are Many Joe ArpaiosThe former Arizona sheriff is famous for his abhorrent behavior. He’s not an anomaly.
Aug. 4 2017 9:07 AMWhen Prosecutors BullyDefense lawyers who get threatened by opposing counsel rarely have a recourse. Here’s how that could change.
July 27 2017 4:55 PMHow to End Civil ForfeitureNebraska and New Mexico show it’s possible to ban the abhorrent practice of taking money and property from citizens without due process.
July 12 2017 12:07 PMJailing the VictimIs it ever appropriate to put someone behind bars to compel her to testify against her abuser?
July 6 2017 5:11 PMSCOTUS Gives Bad Prosecutors a PassIn Turner v. United States, the court signals that it doesn’t care when the government withholds evidence.
June 29 2017 3:59 PMProfiling in Your PocketLocal sheriffs want you to use their app to point out potential terrorists. That’s a terrible idea.
June 7 2017 9:45 AMJeff Sessions’ Rejection of Science Leaves Local Prosecutors in the DarkHis decision to disband the National Commission on Forensic Science has implications for criminal cases across the country.
May 30 2017 5:56 AMCanada Figured Out How to Win the Drug WarDon’t fight it.
May 22 2017 3:10 PMDontae Sharpe Did Not Kill George RadcliffeHe’s been in prison for more than two decades for a crime he didn’t commit. Why won’t North Carolina set him free?
May 15 2017 5:55 AMCan Protesting Trump Inspire White Awareness About Racially Biased Policing?Portland, Oregon, at once a liberal epitome and the whitest city in America, might find out.
May 1 2017 9:02 AMMandatory Minimums Don’t Make Us SaferMany states are realizing this and changing the rules. But district attorneys seem intent on blocking the progress.
April 13 2017 12:43 PM“I’ve Read The New Jim Crow … ”How to tell if a prosecutor is only pretending to be a criminal justice reformer.
April 5 2017 1:29 PMThe New War on DrugsJeff Sessions and the DOJ are pushing for hard-line marijuana policies. Prosecutors across the country are pushing back.
Sept. 29 2017 3:04 PMDistrict Attorneys Gone WildThe anti-marijuana San Diego prosecutor’s office is out of control.
Sept. 8 2017 1:07 PMHow to Stop the Panic Over Violent CrimePresident Trump and Jeff Sessions perversely misrepresent America’s crime data. Here’s a smarter way to read it.
Aug. 14 2017 9:00 AMMy Brother, the Violent OffenderAn imprecise, capricious label handed down by the criminal justice system can mark a person for life.
Aug. 1 2017 3:23 PMThe War on Drugs Never EndedIt will be up to thousands of state and local prosecutors to kill it once and for all.
July 17 2017 9:00 AM55 Years Behind BarsSheldry Topp was a juvenile when Michigan sentenced him to life in prison. He’s 72 now. It’s time to let him go free.
July 11 2017 2:31 PMWhy Jurors Are Rejecting the Death PenaltyThere used to be 300 death sentences each year in the United States. Last year, there were just 30.
June 30 2017 3:59 PMThe Reverse Mass Incarceration Act Won’t Reverse Mass IncarcerationA new bill from Cory Booker and Richard Blumenthal has the right concept. It won’t work.
June 16 2017 1:14 PM“This Person Never Counted Anyway”When a prisoner dies behind bars, justice can be impossible to come by.
June 5 2017 5:08 PMHow Is This Man Not a Gang Member?Jeremy Christian was a known white supremacist with a criminal record. The Portland police still didn’t have him in its gang database.
May 25 2017 2:20 PMJustice ScuttledLouisiana was about to fix one of the state’s most shameful laws, but politics got in the way.
May 15 2017 5:47 PMIs the Centre County DA Using a Hazing Death to Get Good Press?Stacy Parks Miller, who’s up for re-election, has previously been accused of unethical behavior in office.
May 12 2017 5:58 AMThree Murders in PhiladelphiaIn the early 1990s, the police arrested three men for crimes they didn’t commit. It’s taken more than 25 years for justice to be served.
April 19 2017 3:57 PMThe Poor Shouldn’t Pay for PunishmentA terrible system in Georgia required poor people who couldn’t pay small fines for misdemeanors to pay for their probation costs.
April 6 2017 6:58 PMIs the “Incarceration Capital of the World” Finally Ready to Lose Its Title?Louisiana’s governor is ready to embrace criminal justice reform. The state’s district attorneys want to stop him.
March 31 2017 4:42 PMConservatives Are Leading the Way as States Enact Criminal Justice ReformCan their enthusiasm stop Donald Trump from pushing his backward “tough on crime” agenda?