Week ending Dec. 6, 2015



For the 14th year, women at the Timpanogos Women’s Correctional Facility at the Utah State Prison have turned gingerbread, dough, sugar, rice paper and Rice Krispies into magical creations for the Festival of Trees’ benefit for Primary Children’s Hospital!


Plan a sweet trip to Festival of Trees and its gingerbread village by Kathy Stephenson, The Salt Lake Tribune

“The arduous trek that the Mormon settlers made more than 160 years ago has been heralded in books, films, paintings — and now gingerbread. The sweet depiction of Utah’s heritage is the work of inmates at the Timpanogos Women’s Correctional Facility in Draper. The group has spent three months and nearly 2,000 hours, as well as 100 pounds of flour and many gallons of molasses, to create the display for this year’s Festival of Trees.”

Utah prison settles suit after inmate missed dialysis, died by Pamela Manson, The Salt Lake Tribune

“The Utah State Prison has reached a settlement with the family of an inmate who died in April after a medical technician failed to show up for work to give him a dialysis treatment.”


Utah pediatrician convicted of killing ex-wife must wait 28 years for first parole hearing by Jennifer Dobner, The Salt Lake Tribune

“A former Utah pediatrician convicted of killing his ex-wife lost his bid for a new trial on Monday, new court papers show. Third District Judge James Blanch has denied two motions from attorneys for Johnny Brickman Wall. The motions sought to overturn his March conviction on the grounds that portions of testimonies from two witnesses were admitted improperly during the trial.”

Utah woman gets 2016 parole date after serving more than 20 years for daughter’s death by Jessica Miller, The Salt Lake Tribune

“An Ogden woman who has spent more than 20 years behind bars for killing her young daughter has been given a 2016 parole date.  Shelly Flemal, 44, will be released from prison on March 15, 2016, according to the Utah Board of Pardons and Parole.”


Veteran courts in Pennsylvania dubbed remedy for recidivism by Brad Bumsted, Trib Live

“Concerned that a defendant in mental health treatment court was not focused on his recovery, Buffalo City Court Judge Robert T. Russell noticed in the man’s file that he was a Vietnam War veteran.”

Four ways the Legislature could  reform drug sentencing in Minnesota by Andy Mannix, MinnPost

“Next year could be a turning point for drug reform efforts in Minnesota. Since the 1990s, the state has been cracking down on drug users and sellers, creating new and stricter penalties for controlled-substance crimes. As a result, Minnesota has relatively harsh drug penalties compared to other Midwestern states. And though attempts to change those measures have all fallen flat in the past, that could soon change. The difference now: Minnesota’s bloated prisons.”

Mental health courts significantly reduce repeat offenses, jail time by North Carolina State University (Research)

“New research from North Carolina State University finds that mental health courts are effective at reducing repeat offending, and limiting related jail time, for people with mental health problems – especially those who also have substance use problems.”

Letter: Senator Dick Durbin on Sentencing Reform, The New York Times


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