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Incarceration

publications
June 22, 2021

Letter in Support of the Eliminating a Quantifiably Unjust Application of the Law (EQUAL) Act

In a letter of support submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee, The Sentencing Project's Executive Director Amy Fettig expressed the importance of passing the Eliminating a Quantifiably Unjust Application of the Law (EQUAL) Act.
publications
June 04, 2021

WEBINAR: A Second Look at Injustice

Activists and criminal justice leaders discuss the latest research and advocacy around second look reforms.

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Featured Story

Kemba Smith

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.
publications
May 27, 2021

Letter in Support of the COVID-19 Safer Detention Act and First Step Implementation Act

In a letter of support submitted to the Senate Judiciary Committee, The Sentencing Project's Executive Director Amy Fettig expressed the importance of advancing the COVID-19 Safer Detention Act (S.312) and the First Step Implementation Act (S.1014).
publications
May 25, 2021

Annual Report 2020

With your support, The Sentencing Project is transforming our racist, broken criminal and juvenile legal systems.
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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.
publications
May 24, 2021

Juvenile Life Without Parole: An Overview

Josh Rovner
The United States stands alone as the only nation that sentences people to life without parole for crimes committed before turning 18. This briefing paper reviews the Supreme Court precedents that limit the use of juvenile life without parole (JLWOP) and the challenges that remain to its abolition.
publications
May 18, 2021

COVID-19 in Juvenile Facilities

Josh Rovner
The widespread incidence of COVID-19 inflicts devastating impacts on incarcerated youth, their families, the staff who work in those facilities, and the communities they call home. The Sentencing Project is tracking COVID-19 positive diagnoses among youth and staff at juvenile facilities and the number of known cases in each state.
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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.
publications
May 17, 2021

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.
publications
May 12, 2021

A Second Look at Injustice

Nazgol Ghandnoosh
Ending mass incarceration and tackling its racial disparities require taking a second look at long sentences.
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December 01, 2017

James Inge

James D. Inge is one of 300 individuals age 60 or older arrested between 1965 and 1980 that was sentenced to life imprisonment in Pennsylvania. Learn more about his campaign to give rehabilitated seniors serving life a second chance.
news
April 29, 2021

Youth Justice News: The Sentencing Project Continues the Fight for Youth Justice

Youth justice has been a critical component of The Sentencing Project’s mission for years but in 2021 we are greatly expanding our capacity to address racial disparities and protect children from the most extreme elements of the adult criminal legal system.
news
April 28, 2021

State Advocacy News: Mid Session Trends in 2021

In addition to police reforms, state coalitions mobilized in support of anti-racist solutions to counter the nation’s punitive and discriminatory criminal legal system.
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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’.
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