January 10, 2018
Oklahoma’s Life-Sentenced Population Rising Faster than National Trends
Oklahoma has increased its life-sentenced population steadily over the past 20 years to the point where one in eight prisoners is now serving life.
June 28, 2017
Incarceration Rates in an International Perspective
A nation’s rate of incarceration is the number of people incarcerated as a proportion of its total population. Internationally, there is broad variation in the degree to which nations incarcerate their citizens, with a nearly 40-fold difference between the highest and lowest rates. The incarceration rate is often interpreted as a measurement of the degree of punitiveness in a society, although it is an imperfect measurement.
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.
June 26, 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.
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.
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.
April 14, 2017
Race & Justice News: Examining Racial Disparity in Exonerations
Black people represent almost half of innocent defendants wrongfully convicted of crimes, lawsuit charges Milwaukee police with racially biased stop-and-frisks, and more in the latest Race and Justice News.
December 16, 2016
Race & Justice News: Black Women Overrepresented in Solitary Confinement
Among 40 jurisdictions providing data, black women constituted 24% of the total female incarcerated population but comprised 41% of the female restricted housing population. More in our latest Race & Justice News.
October 28, 2016
Race & Justice News: "The Jude Effect": Police Brutality Reduces 911 Calls
Study finds that blacks reduce their crime-reporting behavior in the wake of high-profile cases of police brutality, black women with criminal records more likely to face housing discrimination in D.C., and more in our latest Race and Justice News.