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Entries tagged prison

September 29, 2013 9:01 AM How Justice Department Sentencing Reforms Could Make Racial Disparities Worse

Attorney General Eric Holder’s new policy on the application of mandatory minimum sentences in drug cases reserves tough sentences for offenders who work within larger organizations rather than being independent operators. Under this policy, a banker who will launder drug...

By Keith Humphreys

August 26, 2013 11:05 AM Black Women’s Rate of Imprisonment Has Fallen Sharply

Rates of imprisonment have been declining among African-Americans for over a decade. This trend began long before the recent decline in the overall size of the prison population. The change is mainly due to reduced black male incarceration because prisoners...

By Keith Humphreys

August 14, 2013 11:44 AM Federal Prisons Are a Pretty Small Part of the U.S. Prison System

I praised Attorney General Holder’s proposed changes to mandatory minimum sentencing procedures in federal drug cases. That said, the way some media outlets touted them in the subsequent news cycle grossly overstated their impact by not understanding the nature of...

By Keith Humphreys

August 07, 2013 12:00 PM South Dakota to Make Big Changes to its Prison System

South Dakota has passed an extensive package of legislation that will forestall the planned building of new prisons and invest in community-based supervision and health services. Sentences for violent offenders will stay tough and even in some cases get tougher....

By Keith Humphreys

August 01, 2013 1:23 PM Non-Violent Offenders Have Been a Declining Part of Prison Populations for 20 Years

Prison is the subject of many myths in the public policy world. For example, many people believe that the size of the prison population has continued to rise under President Obama, when in fact it has fallen. Other observers maintain...

By Keith Humphreys