In, “Land of the Free: The Best Investigative Reporting on U.S Prisons” a piece by Cora Currier on ProPublica, Juvenile in Justice was included for the feature story which ran on Wired.com in April of this year. Currier writes, “America locks up children at a quicker rate than all other developed countries, with about 60,000 juveniles imprisoned on any given day. Photographer Richard Ross spent five years photographing the little-seen conditions inside 350 correction centers across the U.S.”
You can read the entire report over at ProPublica: http://www.propublica.org/article/land-of-the-free-the-best-investigative-reporting-on-u.s.-prisons
Or download a PDF here: http://www.juvenile-in-justice.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/07/Land-of-the-Free-the-Best-Investigative-Reporting-on-U.S.-Prisons-ProPublica.pdf
Thanks Cora and ProPublica!
I graduated from high school in Louisiana, I was the valedictorian of my class. Then my mom and I were in a shelter, so I ran away. That was nine months ago. My mom was on drugs and drinking heavily. I was hospitalized with a concussion, and got charged with assault on a family member. My mom has visited me three times, but I haven’t seen my dad since I was six. There was a lot of physical and mental abuse. My brother goes to school at Lone Star and works two jobs. My mother now lives with him. I also have a 13-year-old sister who is living with a family friend. I stopped going to school for a while because I felt beneath everybody because I lived in a shelter, but then the lady at the YMCA … Read More »
Harris County Youth Village, a non-secure facility on a lake. The boys are in dorms; the girls are in suites. There are 90 boys and girls in treatment and hey all get vocational education at Santo Jacinto Community College– about half of them have their GED. They have real problems staffing the whole system; according to the Juvenile Probation Department Executive Director Tom Brooks, the Family Medical Leave Act decimates the staff. 4-point restraints used to be implemented here, but by using different de-escalation techniques, the number of restraints has been greatly reduced. It is a small change, but an important step in their transitioning to a more restorative, less punitive system.
I’ve been here for two weeks, and this is my third time in. I’m in the sixth grade. I was in placement but I ran away. They accused me of assault against my mom, but she scratched herself and said I did it. My dad lives in Atlanta and works in a barber shop.
-E.Y, age 11, Juvenile Detention Center, Houston, Texas
Today, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an historic ruling in Miller v. Alabama and Jackson v. Hobbs holding that mandatory life-without-parole sentences for all children 17 or younger convicted of homicide are unconstitutional. The ruling will affect hundreds of individuals whose sentences did not take their age or other mitigating factors into account.
Last November, we wrote about a young man, S, facing a life sentence without parole for a homicide committed when he was 16. (also pictured below) In a conversation with him about his crime and his case, he said, “I was sixteen, and it was a series of events—bad peer pressure and alcohol. The oldest of my friends—co-conspirators–was convicted of four counts. He was over 18 at the time so he was convicted as an adult. He has successfully appealed three of the convictions and had them overturned. … Read More »
I’m here just shy of one year. I hope they send me home or put me on probation. I’m in the 11th grade. This has been my first time here, I’m here for aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon, but I didn’t do it. I came in at the end of something happening, and my friend thought that since he was in trouble for something before, if he told on me, he would be in less trouble. He’s in Texas Youth Corrections now. My sister stays with my dad… I stay with my mom. There are four boys and one girl. My dad was in trouble before. I don’t know why.
-T.F, age 17, Juvenile Detention Center, Houston, Texas
I’ve been here two and a half months. Before I was in Gulf Coast Training for burglary of habitation. It was my first felony, my first offense. I was with my friends. I was the getaway driver. One went to Leadership Academy; another went to an adult facility. I live with my grandmother. I’ve been living with her since I was 11. She’s 51. I don’t know where my mom is… she’s on drugs… and I think my dad lives in Houston, but I never see him. I’ve got two little brothers and a sister. I’d like to go to Santa Jacinto College this summer and become a firefighter.
- M.C, age 16, Juvenile Detention Center, Houston, Texas