Seven Days in Solitary [10/29/17]

• According to the Trentonian, James Covington, a physically and mentally disabled man held at the Doylestown detention center in Pennsylvania for unpaid fines, claims that he suffered an unprovoked racist attack when three white corrections officers picked on him for his height, called him the N-word, assaulted him to the point of breaking his […]

Prisoner Grievances: "The System for Going Up Against the System"

A piece by California inmate and jailhouse legal advisor Richard Gilliam appeared earlier this month on “The Informant,” KALW public radio’s excellent blog on “Cops, Courts, and Communities in the Bay Area.” Gilliam describes the complex system for filing grievances within California prisons–a system in which complaints against prison administration are handled by none other than the prison administration. […]

The Prisoner's Catch-22

Guest Post by Alan CYA #65085 Editors’ Note: We’ve written before about two laws from the 1990s that make it close to impossible for prisoners to challenge any injustices and abuses they encounter in various part of the American criminal justice system—whether in the courts or in prison itself. This guest post on the subject […]

Two Clinton Era Laws That Allow Cruel and Unusual Punishment (Redux)

Since late last night, when we published our post about Albert Woodfox’s appeal, several readers have written to us about the grim legacy of the AEDPA–the Anti-Terrorism and Effective Death Penalty Act of 1996. That’s because the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals cited the AEDPA extensively in ruling that Woodfox’s conviction should not be overturned, and he should not receive a […]

Cruel Punishment Is Not Unusual for Clarence Thomas

Veteran New York Times Supreme Court reporter Linda Greenhouse has an opinion piece today on Clarence Thomas’s “silent but sure” stance on prisons, and “specifically the meaning of the Eighth Amendment’s prohibition against ‘cruel and unusual punishment.’” Thomas’s position is highly relevant to the issue of solitary confinement, since critics of long-term lockdown argue that it violates […]