Week ending Dec. 20, 2015


elizajensen“This is what change looks like: An educator stands at a whiteboard helping students sound out words like ‘yogurt’ and ‘target.’ The teacher is Eliza Jensen and the students are inmates at the Central Utah Correctional Facility. For the past decade, Jensen has worked for Central Academy, the high school operated by the South Sanpete County School District at the prison located in Gunnison, Utah.”



Orem man receives 25 to life in prison for kidnapping, rape of young girl by Kurt Hanson, Daily Herald

“The maximum sentence will be imposed for a man convicted of kidnapping a girl and raping her in a Dumpster in February 2014 as she walked to school.”

Perry man sentenced to prison in brutal stabbing death of ex-wife by Pat Reavy, Deseret News

“A Perry man convicted of stabbing his ex-wife to death during an apparent episode of jealous rage just one month after they divorced is headed to prison.”


Utah State Prison paid $400K to settle suit over inmate death by Pamela Manson, The Salt Lake Tribune

“The Utah State Prison paid $400,000 in taxpayer money to settle a lawsuit filed by 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.”


On Sentencing reform, we have to talk more about re-entry by Ashley McSwain, The Hill.com

“As we talk about sentencing reform, we have to talk more about reentry and rehabilitation.  It’s not enough to simply reduce sentences; we need to increase access to education, housing, job training, mentorship, and counseling to prepare people to reenter.”

Opinion: To improve public safety, halt cycle of juvenile crime by Dennis Wilson and Andy Louderback, Houston Chronicle

“In 2007, Texas embarked on a juvenile-justice reform effort that drastically reduced the number of offenders who were sent to residential facilities and favored family interventions that dealt with the root causes of criminal behavior. The good news is that the approach is reducing recidivism and saving money for taxpayers. The even better news is that proposed federal legislation will enable states around the U.S. to replicate our success.”

Hogan administration commits to get more jobs for ex-offenders to keep them from returning to prison by Len Lazarick, Maryland Reporter 

“The Hogan administration is jumping with both feet into efforts to reduce the prison population and make re-entry of ex-convicts into society easier by getting them jobs.”

Opinion: Sentencing reform is only half the battle by Orson Aguilar, San Francisco Chronicle

“Ingrid Archie recently had been promoted at her job of six years when she was let go. The reason: Her employer had re-evaluated its hiring policies, laying off anyone with a criminal record, no matter how minor.”

Connecticut plans prison for inmates ages 18 to 25 in effort to reduce recidivism by The Associated Press, in the Pittsburgh Tribune Review

“A prison is being planned in Connecticut that officials say would be the first of its kind in the country to exclusively house and deal with issues unique to inmates between the ages of 18 and 25.”

Microsoft Goes Precrime With an App That Predicts Recidivism by Peter Rugg, Inverse

“In a webcast with police departments earlier this year, a senior Microsoft programmer let slip that the company was deep into developing an app that can predict whether an inmate will be back behind bars six months after release.”

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