Pretrial Detention in Jails

Harris County: tougher punishment for poor/people of color

Mar 21st, 2014 | By

By Lise Olsen, Houston Chronicle, September 15, 2013 Johnnnie Mason, then 55, declared his innocence in March 2012 after his girlfriend claimed he hit her with a board. Mason, an African American who was homeless, was held without bond for eight months before being acquitted of felony assault charges. A new study shows that African Americans

Behind bars for lack of money

Nov 16th, 2013 | By
Behind bars for lack of money

The teenager opened her neighbor’s unlocked car, grabbed the iPhone off the armrest and ran home, a few doors away in her downtown neighborhood in New Orleans.

How Pretrial Detention Ruins Lives

Mar 25th, 2013 | By
How Pretrial Detention Ruins Lives

“He lost his apartment and his car. Most of his possessions were in a dump somewhere. His debt was in the thousands. The brother he provided for was sent into transitional housing.
“Anthony Dorton was finally out of jail. But his path to freedom had come with a cost.”
This well-written story from California describes and explains what happens to so many people held in Texas county jails, in lengthy pretrial detention, awaiting hearings or trials or paperwork the county just can’t get around to. Just like this innocent man who was released after ten months, their personal lives are shattered and they often end up with no job, no car, no home–due to the failure of our local courts to serve all the people fairly.
The truth was stated in the tag line for this story and it sums up the bottom line in Texas: “Most inmates are in our jails because they’re poor.”
When are our counties going to step up and find solutions to correct these inequities for impoverished Texans?

RIP and Thank You to Greg Cheek

Aug 1st, 2012 | By
RIP and Thank You to Greg Cheek

Awesome new tribute to Greg Cheek who had mental issues and died in the Nueces County Jail in 2011: I knew Gregory from 2002 to 2003. I was 33 at the time. I was depressed and on drugs. He helped me clean up and he was a true friend. There was not a mean bone

Texas Inmates with MRSA Staph?

Jan 11th, 2012 | By
Texas Inmates with MRSA Staph?

“Punishment for crimes does not mean subjecting people to deadly diseases.” That is from a story you should read if you know anybody who went into a county jail and caught MRSA staph. Or if you know anyone who already had staph and the jail wouldn’t treat their infection. Also, please email about any such cases in Texas.

Deadly Doctor at Wichita Falls Jail

Jun 29th, 2011 | By

Via Time Record News By Kenneth Fibbe, 6/25/11 The widow of a man who died in the Wichita County Jail called the jail’s treatment of her husband “cruel and unusual” and is suing Wichita County, Wichita County Sheriff David Duke and jail-contracted physician Dr. Daniel Bolin for not giving her husband the medical attention she

Another Person Dies on Gregg County “Death Row”

Jun 9th, 2011 | By
Another Person Dies on Gregg County “Death Row”

An otherwise excellent story from the Texas Tribune startled us with the headline: “Another Methadone Addict Dead in Longivew”.

Must we highlight the young man’s addiction, reducing his life to the tragic fact of an addiction—something that thousands if not millions of us deal with?

Schizophrenic Man Was Jailed for a Year

Feb 6th, 2011 | By

A severely schizophrenic man held in the Dallas County Jail for nearly a year was released Tuesday to a mental institution.
Nicholas Sauve was arrested for shoving his mother last June. He was sentenced in September to 45 days in jail for a mental evaluation and five years of probation. Time and again, he was slated for release, but he never got beyond his cell in the jail’s north tower.

News on the Death of Amy Cowling: Gregg County Jail Ignored her Seizures

Jan 4th, 2011 | By

A preliminary report reveals shocking treatment of Amy; Robyn Claridy’s excellent story begins with these 2 chilling paragraphs: A Gregg County inmate found unresponsive in a jail separation cell was discovered kneeling in a praying position beside her bed before being removed and declared dead a short time later. Amy Lynn Cowling, 33, of Gilmer

Captain says: He Should Not be in Jail

Nov 28th, 2010 | By By LOGAN G. CARVER, Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, September 26, 2010 – 6:01am (THE INMATE IN THIS STORY WILL BE REFERRED TO ONLY AS ROBERT.) Robert presses his face against the feces-smeared window in his jail cell as he alternates between song and inscrutable vocalization. Bits of fecal matter cling to his dirty hair, yet he