Fairfax, Virginia Commonwealth’s Attorney Steve Descano Says His Office Will Not Seek Cash Bail

  Fairfax Commonwealth’s Attorney Steve Descano (D) announced Monday that he would not be seeking cash bail for non-violent offenders, formalizing a policy he and his prosecutors have been practicing since Descano took office in January 2020. “I’ve long said that the laws on the books should match the values…

Read More

Virginia Lawmakers Pass Bill Allowing Jury Trials With Judge Sentencing

Virginia lawmakers passed legislation Friday that allows those accused of a crime to receive a jury trial and a judge’s sentence, which proponents believe will reduce sentence lengths.

Under current law, a defendant must opt for a jury sentence if he or she requests a jury trial, which can often result in longer sentences than guidance normally would suggest. The law allows a judge to reduce the sentence, but this happens in only about 8.1% of cases.

Read More

Kamala Harris Had Nearly 2,000 People Locked up on Marijuana Charges: Report

Sen. Kamala Harris, presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden’s running mate, reportedly prosecuted nearly 2,000 people on marijuana-related charges during her time as California attorney general.

A total of 1,974 people were sent to state prisons for marijuana-related offenses during Harris’s 2011-2016 tenure as the Golden State’s lead prosecutor, the Washington Free Beacon reported.

Read More

New York City Has 39,200 Criminal Cases Backlogged Amid COVID Outbreak

The New York City legal system has more than 39,000 pending criminal cases after trials were postponed in February, the city confirmed to the Daily Caller News Foundation.

Trials by jury were postponed, prosecutions decreased as officials aimed to decrease the incarcerated population and various hearings were held virtually, The New York Times reported.

Read More

Report: Ohio Prison Population Still Growing Despite Bipartisan Criminal Justice Reform

Despite bipartisan calls for a reduction in the prison population and a slew of laws aimed at doing just that, a new report released this week has found that the prison population of Ohio has continued to climb over the past decade. Since 2011, the state has passed several new…

Read More

Buckeye Institute Legal Fellow to Lead Ohio Task Force to Fix ‘Broken’ Prison Bail System

Friday, the Buckeye Institute announced that Daniel J. Dew, a legal fellow with the institute, would lead an Ohio Supreme Court Task Force, focused on reforming the bail system throughout Ohio. Dew has done some of the most extensive research and analysis on the state’s current bail system and his findings are…

Read More

Outgoing MN Rep. Jason Lewis’ Juvenile Justice Reform Bill Signed Into Law

Rep. Jason Lewis’ (R-MN-02) Juvenile Justice Reform Act (JJRA) was signed into law Friday by President Donald Trump as part of Congress’ sweeping criminal justice reform measures. According to Lewis, the JJRA hadn’t been “reauthorized or modernized since 2002.” Lewis’ reforms respond to the need for alternatives to detaining juveniles…

Read More

Ohio Sheriff Under Investigation for Stealing Drug Arrest Money

A Pike County Sheriff has been accused of stealing thousands of dollars, seized in various drug arrests throughout the county, and using the funds to fuel his “compulsive” gambling problem. The investigation, currently underway, stems from an anonymous complaint filed against Sheriff Charles Reader on November 9. The complaint (copied…

Read More

Trump’s Use of Pardon Power Aims at Rectifying Injustice

by John-Michael Seibler   Since taking office, President Donald Trump has granted pardons and sentence commutations for a number of individuals who he thinks received an unjust federal prison sentence or were unjustly prosecuted and convicted of a federal crime. In some cases—particularly in granting the early-20th century black boxing champion…

Read More