Tag Archives: costs

Three Years Without a Trial for a 16 Year Old

Fact: Kalief Browder spent more than 1000 days in jail on Rikers Island without a trial. He was first jailed when he was 16 years old.

Fact: In 2011, 74% of felony cases in the Bronx were older than six months.

Fact: At the beginning of 2013, there were 952 felony cases in the Bronx that were more than two years old.

Fact: In 2011, 165 felony cases in the Bronx went to trial. In 3,991, the defendant pleaded guilty.

Fact: in 2013, 27% of adolescent inmates on Rikers Island are in solitary confinement.

Source: Before The Law, The New Yorker

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Alabama Prisons Face Chronic Issues

Fact: Alabama’s prisons have grown 840% since 1977. The state population has grown 23%.

Fact: In 1995, Alabama briefly re-introduced the chain gang for the first time in America in 30 years, before dropping the practice amid criticism and court challenges.

Fact: In 2002, the U.S. Justice Department ordered Alabama to stop chaining inmates to hitching posts, a widespread practice.

Fact: Alabama spends 1 of every 4 dollars in the state’s General Fund on prisons.

Source: Alabama’s Prison Problems, Al.com

United States of America (plaintiff) vs. $25,180.00 in United States Currency (defendant)

Fact: The above title was an actual court case last year.

Fact: There have been almost 62,000 cash seizures without search warrants or indictments since 2001, totaling $2.5 billion in revenues for federal, state, and local authorities.

Fact: In many cases, the owner is not even charged with a crime.

Fact: Half of all seizures were below $8,800.

Fact: Almost 300 departments and an additional 210 task forces have seized 20% or more of their annual budgets since 2008.

SourceStop and Seize, the Washington Post

Charging Defendants for Court Employees’ Gym Costs

Fact: In some states, defendants are charged hundreds or thousands of dollars for their own arrest warrants, court-ordered drug and alcohol rehabilitation services, to have DNA samples collected, and even for jury trials.

Fact: In Michigan, an impoverished man was charged $1000 in court costs related to forging a prescription to pay for the following:

  • his court-appointed attorney
  • salaries of court employees
  • heat in the court building
  • operating telephones and copy machines
  • underwriting the cost of the court employees’ fitness gym

Fact: In some cases, a defendant can do community service in lieu of fines. However, there is often a per day fee for this.

Fact: A 2004 Department of Justice survey estimates that over 65% of prisoners leave jail financially indebted to the state. A more recent estimate places the figure at 80 to 85%.

SourceGuilty As Charged, NPR

Imprisonment To Pay Fees

Fact: Many services that were once free, including constitutionally protected ones, are increasingly subject to fee schedules. Failure to pay can result in imprisonment.

Fact: In at least 43 states and the District of Columbia, defendants can be billed for their public defender’s services.

Fact: In at least 41 states, inmates can be charged for room and board during jail and prison stays.

Fact: In at least 44 states, offenders can be billed for their own probation and supervision.

Fact: In all states except Hawaii and the District of Columbia, there is a fee for electronic monitoring devices that defendants and offenders are ordered to wear.

Source: Guilty As Charged, NPR