- Published on Tuesday, 01 May 2012 09:06
- Published on Thursday, 26 April 2012 09:01
The Economist Apr 20th 2012
- Published on Thursday, 26 April 2012 08:59
Eva Paterson HP 23 April 2012
Few cases involving the intersection of race, criminal law, and procedure have had the reach and impact of McCleskey v. Kemp, a United States Supreme Court decision decided 25 years ago, on April 22, 1987. This decision set the stage for more than 20 years of dramatically increasing racial disparities within the criminal justice system. In McCleskey, the Supreme Court declared that a criminal justice system that treats blacks worse than whites is "inevitable" and that the Constitution is only violated by instances of intentional racial discrimination by individual actors in specific cases.
- Published on Thursday, 26 April 2012 08:57
Patricia Kilday Har, Houston Chronicle Copyright 2012 Houston Chronicle. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
By Patricia Kilday Hart
Houston Chronicle Sunday, April 22, 2012
I've come to think of the Harris County Criminal Justice Center as Grand Central Station for Houston's misery, an opinion that was only hardened when I recently spent a few mornings observing our courts handle jail inmates charged with misdemeanors. Every day about mid-morning in Harris County's 15 Criminal Courts-at-law, a door swings open and six to 10 men wearing orange jail jumpsuits, usually shackled together in a long train, are directed by a sheriff's deputy to march in front of the judge's bench. (Women are handled separately, and often appear alone.)
- Published on Thursday, 26 April 2012 08:51
How color-blind is justice, especially in capital cases?
By JAMES R. ACKER
Albany Times Union April 21, 2012
Twenty-five years ago today, on April 22, 1987, the Supreme Court decided McCleskey vs. Kemp, a case widely regarded as presenting the last broad-based constitutional challenge to the death penalty in America. Warren McCleskey, a black man, was sentenced to death in Georgia for murdering Frank Schlatt, a white police officer. A study by professor David Baldus revealed that death sentences in the state were significantly more likely in white-victim murder cases than in comparable black-victim murders. The race of the murder victim proved to be more pivotal in life and death decisions than such legally relevant factors as whether the offender had a prior conviction for a capital crime. Race effects were especially pronounced in cases like McCleskey's, where the defendant was black and the victim white.