Week ending May 15, 2016



We ended our Corrections Week 2016 celebration with a softball tournament in Nephi. Eight employee teams squared off on the Orgill Ball Park and Canyon View Park ball fields in Nephi in a daylong softball tournament. It was great to see so many people enjoying comraderie and competition! There were lots of activities for kids, too, during this Family Day event. The employee teams represented the Utah State Prison, Central Utah Correctional Facility, Adult Probation and Parole and our Clinical Services Bureau.


Stephen Vargas admits to killing wife years after her beating death in 1995 by Mark Shenefelt, Standard Examiner

“While playing a game of pickup basketball and discussing the O.J. Simpson murder trial in 1995, court records say Stephen Vargas suggested to another player that if Simpson could get away with it, so could he.”


States Move Toward Treating 17-year-old Offenders as Juveniles, Not Adults by Erik Eckholm, The New York Times

“When Chené Marshall got into a fight in high school, she assumed she might be suspended. Instead, the police arrested her.”

Treating Pain Without Feeding Addiction at Epicenter for Opioids by Abby Goodnough, The New York Times

“The doctors wanted to talk about illness, but the patients — often miners, waitresses, tree cutters and others whose jobs were punishingly physical — wanted to talk only about how much they hurt. They kept pleading for opioids like Vicodin and Percocet, the potent drugs that can help chronic pain, but that have fueled an epidemic of addiction and deadly overdoses.”

Prisoners graduate from biblical studies program by Grace White, WXIA

“An area prison is taking a unique approach to curbing crime behind bars and reducing recidivism. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice is giving prisoners at its Darrington Unit in Rosharon the chance to earn a college degree in biblical studies.”

Pfizer says it’s blocking use of drugs for lethal injections Andrew Welsh-Huggins, The Associated Press (in The Santa Fe New Mexican)

“Pharmaceutical company Pfizer said Friday it was blocking use of its drugs in lethal injections, which means all federally-approved drugmakers whose medications could be used for executions have now put them off limits.”

OPINION: Smarter policies for safer communities by Rick Raemisch in The Denver Post

“Our criminal justice system is overburdened and costly, and is not making us safer.”

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