Fates Worse Than Death?

The following article was published earlier this week by the Marshall Project, the new nonprofit news organization focused exclusively on criminal justice. It can be read in full on the Marshall Project’s site.  In 1987, when he was 23 years old and in court on a drug charge, William Blake shot two sheriff’s deputies in […]

Mumia Abu-Jamal Challenges Death Row Solitary Confinement and Life Without Parole

Guest Post by Bret Grote In a story that has received scant attention so far, former death row occupant, political prisoner, and world-renowned journalist Mumia Abu-Jamal filed a legal challenge to the imposition of a sentence of life without parole. Mumia is basing his case, in part, on the idea that his thirty years in solitary confinement […]

Connecticut Votes to Replace the Death Penalty with Life in Solitary Confinement

Late yesterday, the Connecticut Assembly passed legislation to bring an end to the state’s future use of the death penalty. The governor has promised to sign the legislation, making Connecticut the 17th state to repeal capital punishment. This is, of course, a significant victory for death penalty opponents. But the legislation has two troubling components. The first is […]

Supreme Court Decision Limits Juvenile Life Without Parole (Within Limits)

CHILDREN IN LOCKDOWN The U.S. Supreme Court today barred a practice that is already considered unconscionable in the rest of the world. In a 6-3 decision, the Court ruled that sentencing juveniles to life without the possibility of parole for any crime short of murder violates the Constitution’s 8th Amendment ban on cruel and unusual punishment. In […]

Children in Lockdown: Solitary Confinement of Teens in Adult Prisons

While there are no concrete numbers, it’s safe to say that hundreds, if not thousands of children are in solitary confinement in the United States–some in juvenile detention facilities, and some in adult prisons. Short bouts of solitary confinement are even viewed as a legitimate form of punishment in some American schools.  In this first post on the subject, we address teenagers in […]