Skip to main content

Issues

Drug Policy

news
Jeff Sessions decision to re-up in the drug war won't work
May 15, 2017

Jeff Sessions decision to re-up in the drug war won't work

Kara Gotsch and Marc Mauer explain why the Attorney General's newly issued sentencing directive to federal prosecutors is a devastating revival of the War on Drugs.
news
Federal Prison Population will Expand under new DOJ Directive
May 12, 2017

Federal Prison Population will Expand under new DOJ Directive

The Sentencing Project condemns DOJ’s return to harsh enforcement of low-level drug crimes
Featured Story
Featured Story

Theresa McIntyre Smith

In 1999, Theresa Smith was arrested at an airport after she met a drug courier in Roy Mercer’s network and according to the government, identified a suitcase containing eleven kilograms of cocaine for the courier. Smith said she had been told by Mercer that the suitcase contained his nieces’ clothes. For this first-time non-violent offense, Smith was sentenced to a ten-year mandatory prison term.
news
Life Without Redemption
May 09, 2017

Life Without Redemption

Ashley Nellis and Marc Mauer
When 1 in 7 Americans in prison is serving a life term, it's time to rethink our failed crime policies.
news
Number of people serving life in US prisons is surging, new report says
May 08, 2017

Number of people serving life in US prisons is surging, new report says

A person in prison who starts his or her sentence in their 30s will, on average, cost the state $1 million per year.
Featured Story
Featured Story

Christopher Poulos

When Chris Poulos was arrested, he experienced firsthand the difference that money can make in the criminal justice system. He recounts the experience in his own words.
publications
May 03, 2017

Still Life: America’s Increasing Use of Life and Long-Term Sentences

Amid historically low crime rates, a record 206,268 people are serving life or virtual life sentences—one of every seven people in prison.
news
State Advocacy Update: Efforts to Address Federal Drug Felony Ban on Public Benefits
May 01, 2017

State Advocacy Update: Efforts to Address Federal Drug Felony Ban on Public Benefits

In 2017, proposals to opt out or modify the lifetime felony drug ban on public benefits were introduced in at least three states.
Featured Story
Featured Story

Lawrence and Lamont Garrison

Sentences for federal drug crimes are based on the quantity of the drugs involved, not the individual’s role in the crime. The emphasis on quantity rather than the role of the offender, along with the conspiracy laws, too often result in disproportionate sentencing, even for first-time offenses such as the Garrisons’.
news
The Sentencing Project Releases Its 2016 Annual Report
April 20, 2017

The Sentencing Project Releases Its 2016 Annual Report

Learn more about how our research and analysis in 2016 played a major role in shaping the policy debate around criminal justice reform.
publications
March 07, 2017

Trends in U.S. Corrections

The Sentencing Project's key fact sheet provides a compilation of major developments in the criminal justice system over the past several decades.
Featured Story
Featured Story

Willie Mays Aikens

In 2008, Willie Mays Aikens made headlines when a federal judge reduced his lengthy prison term to 14 years as a result of the U.S. Sentencing Commission’s adjustment to the crack cocaine sentencing guidelines. Aikens was released in June 2008.
news
State Advocacy Update: Continuing the Effort to Advance Criminal Justice Reform
February 13, 2017

State Advocacy Update: Continuing the Effort to Advance Criminal Justice Reform

In Texas, more than 100 immigrants, formerly incarcerated individuals, and activists coalesce in a show of solidarity to advance reform efforts.  
news
Will Trump Crush the Modest Progress in Fighting Mass Incarceration?
February 07, 2017

Will Trump Crush the Modest Progress in Fighting Mass Incarceration?

Now what? Alternet interview with The Sentencing Project's Marc Mauer.
Featured Story
Featured Story

Dorothy Gaines

Dorothy Gaines's life changed when Alabama state police raided her home for drugs. Police found no evidence of Gaines having possessed or sold drugs, yet federal prosecutors charged Gaines with drug conspiracy.
Load More