December 04, 2018
The Meaning of Life: The Case for Abolishing Life Sentences
The dramatic growth of life imprisonment requires advocates and lawmakers to address the problem of excessive sentencing to end mass incarceration.
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.
August 07, 2018
Race & Justice News: Homicide Clearance Disparities Contribute to Capital Punishment Disparities
Homicides involving white victims are significantly more likely to be "cleared" by the arrest of a suspect than homicides involving victims of color, causing racial disparities in capital sentencing to begin as early as police investigations. Learn more in Race & Justice News.
June 29, 2018
Race & Justice News: Churches Divest from Police to Protect People of Color
As awareness around state violence towards people of color grows, several churches decide to stop calling the police to protect communities of color. A church in Oakland is instead investing in de-escalation trainings to handle situations without calling the police.
June 22, 2018
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.
May 10, 2018
Incarcerated Women and Girls
Over the past quarter century, there has been a profound change in the involvement of women within the criminal justice system. This is the result of more expansive law enforcement efforts, stiffer drug sentencing laws, and post-conviction barriers to reentry that uniquely affect women.
At 24 years old, Kemba Smith was sentenced to 24.5 years in prison for conspiracy to participate in her boyfriend's drug activities, a non-violent, first-time offense. For years, her parents galvanized a tireless movement seeking clemency for their daughter.
May 10, 2018
Impacted advocates use their experience to raise awareness around female incarceration
In honor of Mother's Day, we are celebrating leading advocates who are giving voice to the unique issues and concerns facing incarcerated and formerly incarcerated women and girls.
May 01, 2018
State Advocacy News: Grassroots Actions to Challenge Mass Incarceration
Coalitions in Maryland, Mississippi, and Kentucky mobilized to counter regressive sentencing measures by promoting solutions addressing underlying causes of crime.
April 30, 2018
Jeff Sessions is shamefully undermining WEB Du Bois's legacy
A justice department program of research fellowships in the civil rights leader’s name has been twisted to suit the attorney general’s agenda
April 24, 2018
Families and Mass Incarceration
In the United States mothers and fathers go to prison at troubling rates. One of every 12 American children, more than 5.7 million kids under age 18, have experienced parental incarceration at some point during their lives.