Criminal Justice

Bexar County Jail
9:25 am
Fri January 10, 2014

Bexar County Jail Cracks Down On Security After Discovery Of Smuggled Cell Phones

Secondary jail entrance where staff, contractors, and volunteers must now go through security checkpoint for admission to jail
Eileen Pace TPR News

There are only two entrances open to the Bexar County Jail after officials discovered several incidents of security violations involving cell phone use in secure areas of the jail. 

Sheriff Susan Pamerleau announced Thursday that one contractor had been arrested after jail officials learned he had brought cell phones into the jail.

"The individual was granted access to the jail to perform his job, but he abused that access by bringing in a cell phone and providing it to an inmate," Pamerleau said.

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The Source - October 9, 2013
12:49 pm
Wed October 9, 2013

The Source: Former Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson | Reforming How Texas Chooses Judges

University of Texas

In the first segment:

"The question is not how is the judiciary? We must ask instead whether our system of justice is working for the people it has promised to serve. Do we have liberty and justice for all? Or have we come to accept liberty and justice only for some?" - Chief Justice Wallace Jefferson's State of the Judiciary, March 2013.

 

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Criminal Justice
4:46 pm
Tue October 8, 2013

State Refusing To Give Back Execution Drug

Flickr User: 710928003 cc

A Houston-area compounding pharmacy has sent a letter asking the state to return the drugs it sold the Texas Department of Criminal Justice for death row executions.

The name of the drug is pentobarbital and it has been a hard item for the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to track down after the state’s overseas sellers backed out of their contract to sell the drug used in lethal injections.  

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Criminal Justice
2:33 pm
Mon September 23, 2013

Pre-Trial Program Will Dismiss Misdemeanors For Young Adults

Bexar County

A new diversion program in Bexar County will allow young adult offenders ages 17-21 a chance to correct one-time indiscretions that have gotten them into trouble.

District Attorney Susan Reed said the M.I.L.E.S. program -- Meaningful Intervention Leading to Enduring Success -- will protect young offenders from spending their lives paying for one mistake as they begin their military, college, or work careers.

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TDCJ Education
10:22 am
Mon September 23, 2013

New Education "Flex" Plans Could Help Reduce Recidivism In Texas Prisons

Flickr User: 710928003 cc

State Board of Education member Thomas Ratliff is looking into how House Bill 5, a bill passed in the last legislative session that reduces standardized tests and creates multiple educational paths for public school students, can benefit convicted criminals who are locked up.

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The Source - September 4, 2013
1:42 pm
Wed September 4, 2013

The Source: No Child Left Behind's Legacy | Texas And Prison Reform

Flickr user biologycorner (Shannan Muskopf) cc

In the first segment:

No Child Left Behind had a controversial life. It was maligned from the right for seizing local control from school districts and boards and was was hit from the left for its punitive nature and its narrow focus on test scores.  

This is probably the reason why nearly 50 percent surveyed felt it had done nothing or been bad for schools as congress was ramping back up for reauthorization back in 2007.

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The Source - July 9, 2013
1:59 pm
Tue July 9, 2013

The Source: Cuts At The Federal Public Defender's Office | Contemporary Islamic Art At SAMA

Fashion Week is one collage by artist Soody Sharifi from her 'Maxiature' series.
Soody Sharifi

In the first segment:

San Antonio is the headquarters of the United States District Court - Western District of Texas. The U.S. defenders office here has the second highest rate of cases per attorney in the entire country and we are looking at the single largest budget cut in the district's history. A minimum 25 percent of the personnel will have to be let go, so what now?

Maureen Franco, the federal public defender here in San Antonio, gives us a look at what is going on in her office.

In the second segment:

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Criminal Justice
9:34 am
Mon July 8, 2013

County Developing Program To Fight Recidivism In Non-Violent Offenders

The old Toudouze Building on Comal St., which was used previously for a jail annex, will be built out in a campus-like setting to provide education and counseling services to repeat misdemeanor offenders.
Bexar County

Bexar County is moving ahead to the next step in their effort to reduce the number of non-violent repeat offenders in county jails, which costs the county millions per year.

The county’s re-entry program, which was proposed in a think-tank that met in San Antonio last year, now is getting a building and a curriculum.

The new center will be constructed in an old jail annex building down the street from the existing jail. Mike Lozito is designing the program according to the different needs identified by the committees in the re-entry council.

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Texas Legislature
10:41 am
Wed May 15, 2013

State Sen. Escorted To Office By DPS After Heated Exoneration Debate

Ryan Poppe TPR News

The Senate Criminal Justice Committee hearing was to be one of the last phases for a bill that would set up the state’s first exoneration commission to examine past wrongful convictions to determine what went wrong.

The hearing began with Sen. Joan Huffman, R-Houston, stating she didn’t feel the Tim Cole Exoneration Commission was a needed item, and then it escalated from there.

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12:21 pm
Fri December 28, 2012

Success After Prison: Business Behind Bars

Lead in text: 
As the major metropolitan counties in Texas push the state legislature to rethink the criminal justice system and reduce recidivism, one program is already seeing results. This special four-part series from KUHF in Houston takes a look at the ups and downs of the Cleveland Correctional Center program.
One in every four inmates released from the Texas prison system is back in prison within three years. But an hour north of Houston, an experiment is unfolding that could slash the rate of recidivism. In the first of our four part series, KUHF business reporter Andrew Schneider looks at the Prison Entrepreneurship Program.

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