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Justice System

This Week in the Justice System

The Faces of Amendment 4
On Tuesday, more than 1.4 million former felons in the state of Florida will have their voting rights restored thanks to the overwhelming passage of Amendment 4 by voters in November. The Florida Rights Restoration Coaltion calls them “returning citizens.” A few spoke to the Orlando Sentinel about what Tuesday means to them. Read the full article on the Orlando Sentinel.

Cyntoia Brown Granted Clemency After 15 Years in Prison
(This was a no-brainer, and Haslam should have included her in his earlier clemency announcement.) Read the full story in Slate.

‘Criminal injustice’: How city’s cash bail system hurts poor, people of color
A 2017 study by Temple University’s Beasley School of Law entitled “The Cost of Buying Freedom” stated “Pennsylvania is detaining the poorest people before trial rather than the most dangerous.” Read the full story in the Philadelphia Tribune.

New Report Shows Impact of Mandatory Minimum Sentences on Oregon Women and Minors
“Measure 11 compels judges to ignore factors like abusive relationships and trauma when doling out sentences to women; and the law imposes harsh penalties on teenagers as young as 15.” Read the full story at Portland Mercury.

This Is How America Is Failing Its Young Opioid Generation
“This is when he nearly died on the floor of his friend’s house before being arrested for unpaid debts at the hospital.” Read the full story in VICE.

Larry Krasner’s first year as Philly DA: Staff turnover, fewer cases, plenty of controversy
In February, Krasner received national kudos for a policy memo that called for prosecutors to request shorter prison sentences upon conviction, limit the length of supervised release, and decline to prosecute some people suspected of prostitution or possessing marijuana. He also instructed his office to stop seeking cash bail for certain low-level offenses, including driving under the influence, resisting arrest, and some burglaries. Read the full article at The Philly Enquirer.

Getting Untested Rape Kits Tested Is Not Enough to Win Justice for Poor and Black Women
The not-guilty verdict suggests that no matter how polished the prosecutor’s arguments were; no matter how strong the DNA evidence was; no matter how many victims there were or how convincing their testimony was, the jurors could not overcome the deeply ingrained rape culture and history of racism that pervade our country and our criminal justice system. Read the full story on Bridge.

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