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  • report thumbnail Where people in prison come from: The geography of mass incarceration in Pennsylvania Prison Policy Initiative and the Public Interest Law Center, September, 2022“We find that incarcerated people in Pennsylvania come from every corner of the Commonwealth: every single one of the 67 counties is missing a portion of its population to prisons.”
  • The Effects of Misdemeanor Bail Reform Paul Heaton, University of Pennsylvania Law School Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice, August, 2022“Misdemeanor pretrial reform produced more lenient outcomes and reduced the system's imprint without adversely impacting public safety.”
  • Fulfilling the Promise of Public Safety: Some Lessons from Recent Research Ben Struhl and Alexander Gard-Murray, Univ. of Pennsylvania Crime and Justice Policy Lab, June, 2022“Countries with much more robust social service provision still have police forces 80-85% the size of American forces. The public safety challenge is sufficiently complex that [we] should all consider multiple kinds of responses.”
  • Three State Prison Oversight During the COVID-19 Pandemic Pennsylvania Prison Society, John Howard Association, and Correctional Association of New York, April, 2022“[We] provide data unavailable in states lacking similar independent oversight, and it tells a story of very different responses to comparable challenges, and a lack of transparency on the details of the crisis and policies developed in response.”
  • In-Cell Dining During the COVID-19 Pandemic: A Survey of People in Pennsylvania State Custody Pennsylvania Prison Society, March, 2022“The survey found that 62% of respondents want to return to eating in dining halls, and 74% report being served rotten food in the last month.”
  • Student Arrests in Allegheny County Schools: The Need for Transparency and Accountability ACLU Pennsylvania, January, 2022“Black students with disabilities (served under the federal Individuals with Disabilities Education Act) accounted for 2.3% of total student enrollment, but 8.4% of students referred to law enforcement and 9.1% of students who were arrested.”
  • Broken Rules: How Pennsylvania Courts Use Cash Bail to Incarcerate People Before Trial ACLU Pennsylvania, December, 2021“The average statewide bail amount was $38,433 -- more than half the average household income in Pennsylvania.”
  • Time for Justice: The Urgent Need for Second Chances In Pennsylvania's Sentencing System Families Against Mandatory Minimums, November, 2021“Based on average incarceration costs, the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections (DOC) is spending $220 million per year to incarcerate 3,892 people who have already served at least 20 years. The true cost is undoubtedly higher.”
  • Parole boards approved fewer releases in 2020 than in 2019, despite the raging pandemic Prison Policy Initiative, February, 2021“In over half of the states we studied--Alabama, Iowa, Michigan, Montana, New York, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, and South Carolina - between 2019 and 2020, there was either no change or a decrease in parole grant rates.”
  • Pardons and Public Safety: Examining A Decade of Recidivism Data in Pennsylvania Philadelphia Lawyers for Social Equity, August, 2020“Of the 3,037 people who applied for a pardon, only 2 (0.066%) were later convicted of a crime of violence.”
  • Revoked: How Probation and Parole Feed Mass Incarceration in the United States Human Rights Watch & the ACLU, July, 2020“The most common rule violations that trigger incarceration in Wisconsin are using drugs and consuming alcohol or entering bars. In Pennsylvania, state parole violations largely result from people failing to report address changes and using drugs.”
  • Flattening the Curve: Why Reducing Jail Populations Is Key to Beating COVID-19 ACLU, Washington State University, University of Pennsylvania, and University of Tennessee, April, 2020“Models projecting total U.S. fatalities to be under 100,0001 may be underestimating deaths by almost another 100,000 if we continue to operate jails as usual.”
  • The Race of Defendants and Victims in Pennsylvania Death Penalty Decisions: 2000-2010 Paywall :( Jeffery T. Ulmer, John H. Kramer, and Gary Zajac, August, 2019“We find that those who kill white victims, regardless of defendant race, are more likely to receive the death penalty.”
  • Shifting Power: The Impact of Incarceration on Political Representation Brianna Remster and Rory Kramer, April, 2019“Drawing on data from the Census, Pennsylvania Dept. of Corrections, and Pennsylvania Redistricting Commission, we develop a counterfactual framework to examine whether removing and returning prisoners to their home districts affects equal representation.”
  • Philadelphia Bail Watch Report Findings and Recommendations based on 611 Bail Hearings Philadelphia Bail Fund & Pennsylvanians for Modern Courts, October, 2018“Philadelphia's preliminary arraignment system disadvantages individuals charged with crimes and, as a result, threatens one of the most sacred principles in our nation's criminal justice system: a person is innocent until proven guilty”
  • A Way Out: Abolishing Death by Incarceration in Pennsylvania Abolitionist Law Center, September, 2018(This report articulates a multi-strategy, movement-building framework for abolishing death by incarceration in Pennsylvania.)
  • Examining Racial Disparities in Criminal Case Outcomes among Indigent Defendants in San Francisco The Quattrone Center & The University of Pennsylvania Law School, May, 2017“Our analysis revealed that Black, White and Latinx indigent defendants in San Francisco have substantially different experiences during the criminal adjudication process.”
  • Evaluating the Role of Race in Criminal Justice Adjudications in Delaware John M. MacDonald and Ellen A. Donnelly, University of Pennsylvania, September, 2016“African American-White disparities in incarceration sentences are largely explained by differences in most serious of arrest charge, type of arrest charge, detention between arrest and final disposition, and county location.”
  • The Downstream Consequences of Misdemeanor Pretrial Detention University of Pennsylvania Law School, July, 2016“We find that detained defendants are 25% more likely than similarly situated releasees to plead guilty, 43% more likely to be sentenced to jail, and receive jail sentences that are more than twice as long on average.”
  • Distortion of Justice: How the Inability to Pay Bail Affects Case Outcomes University of Pennsylvania Law School, May, 2016“While previous research has shown correlations between pretrial detention and unfavorable case outcomes, this paper is the first to use a quasi-experimental research design to show that the relationship is causal.”
  • Disproportionate Impact of K-12 School Suspension and Expulsion on Black Students in Southern States University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, August, 2015“In 132 Southern school districts, Blacks were disproportionately suspended at rates five times or higher than their representation in the student population.”
  • Guilty Property: How Law Enforcement Takes $1 Million in Cash from Innocent Philadelphians Every Year -- and Gets Away with It ACLU of Pennsylvania, June, 2015“Every year, Pennsylvania law enforcement agencies take roughly $14 million in cash, cars, and homes from property owners and never give it back.”
  • A Changing Landscape: Pennsylvania Counties Reevaluate Policies on Immigration Detainers Sheller Center for Social Justice at the Temple University Beasley School of Law, March, 2015(Pennsylvania counties are moving away from honoring ICE detainers; a number of counties cited that these changes were undertaken in order to comply with the Third Circuit Court of Appeals' decision in Galarza to avoid the possibility of legal liability.)
  • Investigation of the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections' Use of Solitary Confinement on Prisoners with Serious Mental Illness and/or Intellectual Disabilities U.S. Department of Justice, February, 2014“The manner in which PDOC subjects prisoners with SMI to prolonged periods of solitary confinement involves conditions that are often unjustifiably harsh and in which these prisoners routinely have difficulty obtaining adequate mental health care...”
  • The Pennsylvania Juvenile Justice Recidivism Report: Youth with a 2007 Case Closure  Pennsylvanie Juvenile Court Judges' Commission, April, 2013“Youth with only one written allegation in their juvenile offending history (i.e., first time offenders) reoffended at a rate of 13%. Conversely, juveniles with four or more previous written allegations re-offended at a rate of 37%.”

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