In California, a prison program run by people once sentenced to life shows how even the most serious offenders are more than the worst things they’ve done.
Some officers have recently boasted about breaking state law and collaborating with ICE, according to messages posted in the group and obtained by The Appeal.
Darwin BondGraham Nov 22, 2019
Alameda County Sheriff, Aramark Are Forcing Prisoners Into ‘Involuntary Servitude,’ New Lawsuit Says
Some pretrial prisoners and immigration detainees are forced to work without pay in violation of the 13th Amendment, according to attorneys.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Nov 21, 2019
People held in courthouse cells were shackled for up to 15 hours a day, and some were unable to eat, change menstrual pads, or use the bathroom, advocates say.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Nov 19, 2019
On a host of issues—including police shootings, bail reform, marijuana legalization, and the death penalty—critics say Lacey, once seen as a reformer, has sought to preserve the status quo.
Jessica Pishko Nov 12, 2019
Public Defender Chesa Boudin Wins San Francisco D.A. Race In Major Victory For Progressive Prosecutor Movement
Son of incarcerated parents, backed by Black Lives Matter co-founders, Boudin will be the next DA of San Francisco.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Nov 09, 2019
Chesa Boudin is just 240 votes behind Suzy Loftus, even after local law enforcement spent hundreds of thousands of dollars to defeat him.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Nov 06, 2019
People Behind the Girls Do Porn Website Were Just Charged With Sex Trafficking. But Complaints Were Filed About Them Years Ago.
At least three women made police reports about Girls Do Porn in 2015, but recruiters continued to exploit women until the FBI stepped in last month.
Meg O'Connor Nov 04, 2019
Ahead of the city’s district attorney election on Tuesday, the alleged baton beating last month of Dacari Spiers has renewed debate over police accountability.
Darwin BondGraham Nov 01, 2019
‘A Green Light For Abuse’: Despite Reforms, California Counties Still Conceal Records On Police Use Of Force
A lawsuit in Los Angeles and a motion in Orange County highlight battles to get key information.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Oct 31, 2019
Criminal case files from Oakland’s seminal Riders scandal were among documents shredded by the Alameda County Superior Court in 2015.
The officers who killed Joshua Pawlik in 2018 are asking a state judge to block a federally appointed monitor’s decision that they violated policies on use of force.
Darwin BondGraham Oct 16, 2019
Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva was elected on the promise of reforming the scandal-plagued sheriff’s department. But eight deputies now accuse Sheriff Villanueva of allowing a violent group, the Banditos, to thrive in his department's ranks.
Ali Winston Oct 10, 2019
The gang database in the state gives police increased authority to approach and harass people for virtually no reason at all.
Emily Galvin-Almanza Oct 04, 2019
Interim San Francisco D.A. Suzy Loftus is Running for Office as a Reformer. But Critics Say She Didn’t Do Enough to Reform the SFPD.
Loftus led the San Francisco Police Commission through a bloody and turbulent era.
Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood and District Attorney Cynthia Zimmer intend to openly defy a 1975 state Supreme Court precedent that says law enforcement cannot intentionally discriminate against a person or group of people.
Kate Chatfield Oct 03, 2019
With Chesa Boudin, candidate for San Francisco district attorney
Adam H. Johnson Sep 19, 2019
A narrow ruling on Brady lists ensures that protecting the police will continue to prevail over due process.
Kyle C. Barry Sep 18, 2019
‘I felt it was my responsibility’: Why A Probation Commissioner Spent 25 Hours in San Francisco’s Juvenile Hall
Vaidya Gullapalli Sep 13, 2019
California is one of only six states that allow staff in juvenile facilities to carry pepper spray. But LA’s coming ban is still facing pushback.
Charlotte West Sep 10, 2019
New Lawsuit Claims a Sacramento Deputy Unlawfully Arrested Activist Who Protested Clearing Of Homeless Encampment
Advocates and homeless people are suing Sacramento County over its treatment of homeless—and the city responded by filing a lawsuit against seven men for being a ‘public nuisance.‘
Meg O'Connor Sep 04, 2019
Our response to crime should focus on healing and accountability, not punishment and retribution.
Chesa Boudin Aug 30, 2019
At 16, Larry Rosser was imprisoned for killing a woman who sexually and physically abused him. He served 22 years in the California prison system before being released in 2017, after parole commissioners became convinced he was a rehabilitated victim.
Aaron Morrison Aug 28, 2019
Assemblymember Jim Cooper is pushing to roll back changes that have successfully reduced incarceration.
Jessica Pishko Aug 19, 2019
Heather Marlowe, now an activist, says neglected kits are a reflection of who and what police prioritize.
Raven Rakia Aug 15, 2019
Vaidya Gullapalli Aug 14, 2019
A new internal audit shows that officers disproportionately strike, tussle with, and draw guns on Black people but then fail to disclose the incidents in their reports.
Darwin BondGraham Aug 12, 2019
Black Lives Matter and other advocates have pushed county officials to abandon the $2.2 billion project with McCarthy Builders.
Lauren Gill Aug 08, 2019
A federal lawsuit claims that Palo Alto, California, police falsely detained, arrested, and beat a gay Latinx man—then boasted about their brutality.
Last year, lawmakers repealed the felony murder rule, which allowed prosecutors to charge defendants with murders they didn‘t commit. Prosecutors are trying to overturn the new law, but AG Xavier Becerra believes that the reform should stand.
Darwin BondGraham Aug 05, 2019
Oakland Police Conducted An Illegal Search And Then Lied About It. But They May Be Spared From Discipline.
A California Superior Court ruling gives officers accused of misconduct access to investigator notes and files while cases are in progress.
Darwin BondGraham Jul 17, 2019
Advocates say Anthony Aceves’s death conforms with long-standing issues in the second-largest jail system in California.
Raven Rakia Jul 10, 2019
Phone calls between prisoners in Orange County and their lawyers were recorded and accessed. How wide the eavesdropping was remains an open question.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Jun 28, 2019
Vaidya Gullapalli Jun 24, 2019
Fremont Police Said a Man Wielded a Deadly Weapon When They Shot Him. But Records Reveal He Waved a Tent Pole.
The police union’s newly elected vice president led the investigation into the shooting that cleared Officer William Gourley of any wrongdoing.
Darwin BondGraham Jun 21, 2019
Sarah Lustbader Jun 20, 2019
A new report charges the Los Angeles DA with seeking the death penalty in unjust and harsh ways.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Jun 19, 2019
The California county has a thin blue line that appears to protect not just the police, but also the DA’s office, criminal justice advocates say.
Advocates and attorneys say Jackie Lacey’s rhetoric doesn’t match her actions.
Raven Rakia Jun 07, 2019
Aylaliya Birru has served over four years in a California prison for assaulting her husband, who she said was physically abusive. A pardon from Governor Gavin Newsom is her last hope to stay in the U.S.
Aaron Morrison May 29, 2019
Newly released records show that task force members faced allegations of theft and questionable overtime, all under the watch of a commander later fired for lying as the misconduct was investigated.
Darwin BondGraham May 23, 2019
California’s expansive registry law forces people to pay for crimes they didn’t personally commit.
Kyle C. Barry May 13, 2019
The fatal shooting by Oakland police of an unconscious man as he woke is putting pressure on the California department to rethink its deployment of force.
Darwin BondGraham May 02, 2019
Advocates are pushing to abolish the office in Los Angeles and elsewhere.
Jessica Pishko Apr 24, 2019
Police union lawsuits delayed many local governments from complying with a new transparency law. In the meantime, some cities have destroyed files.
Darwin BondGraham Apr 17, 2019
Senate Bill 1437 virtually eliminated the ‘felony-murder rule,’ but district attorneys aren’t ready to let it go.
Jessica Pishko Mar 25, 2019
State bar organizations have the power to discipline prosecutors, but they studiously ignore bad behavior.
With Appeal senior staff reporter Aaron Morrison
Adam H. Johnson Mar 14, 2019
In 2009, Anaheim police shot and killed Theresa Smith’s son. A new California law promises police transparency, but her quest for answers faces a substantial cost.
Aaron Morrison Mar 13, 2019
Senate Bill 1421 requires law enforcement agencies to make public investigative records of officer-involved shootings and uses of force resulting in great bodily harm. But law enforcement unions argue that the law threatens the privacy of their members.
Darwin BondGraham Feb 20, 2019
William J. Richards was cleared in the death of his wife. But he says he was the victim of medical neglect while he was behind bars, which led to a cancer diagnosis becoming terminal. Now he's suing.
Erika Stallings Feb 19, 2019
Corcoran state prison has a history of abuse that includes forcing prisoners into ‘gladiator fights.’
Raven Rakia Feb 15, 2019
Advocates say Alameda County Sheriff Greg Ahern is an odd fit for the Bay Area, but mounting a challenge has proved daunting.
Kyle C. Barry Feb 14, 2019
Lexipol, a private for-profit company, has quietly become one of the most powerful voices in law enforcement policymaking in the country.
Scott Morris Feb 13, 2019
California amended its felony murder law, which holds accomplices responsible for murder. But reform won’t reach a man sentenced to death in a deadly robbery—even though he was never accused of firing a shot.
Maura Ewing Feb 04, 2019
In October 2018, Marshall Miles was taken into custody by Sacramento County sheriff‘s deputies outside a convenience store. About 14 hours later, he was dead.
Aaron Morrison Jan 31, 2019
As Kamala Harris begins her presidential run, her move to block gender affirming surgery for an incarcerated transgender woman deserves scrutiny, especially as new cases highlighting the struggle for the rights of imprisoned trans women emerge.
Zoé Samudzi Jan 28, 2019
In a wide-ranging interview, Boudin, a progressive reform candidate, told The Appeal he wants to redefine ‘public safety’ to encompass the rights of both victims and defendants.
Melissa Gira Grant Jan 15, 2019
Everyone agrees the jail at 850 Bryant should close, but it’s not yet clear what would happen to those locked inside.
Melissa Gira Grant Dec 14, 2018
Supporters hope the passage of Prop C may herald a more compassionate—and effective—approach.
Melissa Gira Grant Nov 15, 2018
In Santa Clara County, incarcerated people, and a former undersheriff challenging six-term sheriff Laurie Smith, have turned conditions of confinement into a potent electoral issue.
Victoria Law Oct 29, 2018
If his conviction stands, it could criminalize people who refuse to do things like unlock their phones or garages at police request.
Levi Pulkkinen Oct 17, 2018
Todd Spitzer blasted Global Tel Link for recording attorney-client phone calls, but his campaign won’t call on a PAC supporting his candidacy to return the company’s lobbyist’s donation.
George Joseph Oct 16, 2018
Lawyer seeks end to Halloween restrictions that target people convicted of sex offenses.
Elizabeth Weill-Greenberg Oct 01, 2018
A lawsuit brought by a Compton resident detailing an alleged beating by deputies is just one of nearly three dozen federal civil rights lawsuits alleging brutality and racial bias at the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department.
With activist and scholar Danny Murillo.
Adam H. Johnson Sep 13, 2018
Legislation in California would provide a direct route to resentencing, and a new tool for activists.
Kyle C. Barry Sep 07, 2018
Critics say the Berkeley Police Department’s unusual practice of posting anti-fascist protesters’ mugshots on Twitter endangers activists and violates free speech rights.
Scott Morris Aug 24, 2018
The passage of Senate Bill 10 would decimate the bail industry, but many advocates say it falls short of true reform.
Max Rivlin-Nadler Aug 22, 2018
‘They treated me like a dog’: An Immigrant Was Forced to Clean the Truck of the Border Agent Who Arrested Him
Under ‘Operation Streamline,’ Border Patrol has become responsible for the housing and transporting of immigrants.
Max Rivlin-Nadler Aug 14, 2018
‘Operation Streamline’ speeds up immigration prosecutions.
Max Rivlin-Nadler Aug 10, 2018
In the wake of Nia Wilson’s murder, it’s critical that calls for justice in response to anti-Black violence are not contingent upon appeals to white-approved notions of innocence and respectability.
Zoé Samudzi Aug 08, 2018
Earl McNeil’s family is demanding answers from the National City, California, police department.
Max Rivlin-Nadler Jul 19, 2018
Legislation passed in Massachusetts and pending in California would set a minimum age for children to enter the juvenile justice system.
Jeremy Loudenback Jul 17, 2018
A new lawsuit says Riverside County’s probation officers threaten to prosecute kids for ‘pre-delinquent’ behavior.
Carimah Townes Jul 10, 2018
New bail funds aren’t just getting immigrants out of detention—they’re helping them stay in the country permanently.
Defense attorneys say they’ll have only minutes to meet with their clients before the immigrants are convicted en masse.
Max Rivlin-Nadler Jul 06, 2018
San Francisco just became the first city in the nation to stop charging court fines and fees, but the rest of the state has a long way to go.
Teresa Mathew Jul 02, 2018
With Appeal staff reporter George Joseph.
Adam H. Johnson Jun 21, 2018
Public defenders say immigrants arrested under Trump’s “zero-tolerance” policy are being denied their due process rights.
Max Rivlin-Nadler Jun 12, 2018
Death penalty mitigation offers juries a chance to see defendants in a different light.
Maura Ewing Jun 06, 2018
Across the state, most incumbents successfully fended off progressive challengers during the June 5 primary.
By charging shoplifters with felonies, Jeff Reisig is circumventing Prop 47, intended to reduce CA prison populations.
Jessica Pishko Jun 04, 2018
Max Rivlin-Nadler May 11, 2018
Law Enforcement Takes Unearned Victory Lap for Capture of One of Their Own — The Golden State Killer
Amelia McDonell-Parry May 09, 2018
Jessica Brand Mar 28, 2018
Max Rivlin-Nadler Mar 01, 2018
Shon Hopwood Feb 02, 2018
Maura Ewing Jan 24, 2018
Jessica Pishko Jan 18, 2018
Alaska’s new comprehensive criminal justice reform law will reduce the prison population by 13% and save taxpayers $380 million.
Bryce Covert Jan 10, 2018
Courtney Oliva Jan 05, 2018
Alameda County Superior Court reversed license suspensions for 54,000 people who were punished for their inability to pay fines.
Rebecca McCray Dec 04, 2017
So far, the report card on the “Mexican Biker” prosecutor is mixed.
Carimah Townes Nov 21, 2017
Symbolic “Justice”: California’s New Rape Kit Laws Fail to Address Existing Problems with Investigating Rape
Dispatches is our series from organizers, attorneys, officials, and others working at the frontlines of local criminal justice reform.
Heather Marlowe Nov 20, 2017
Larry Hannan Nov 14, 2017
Alameda and Santa Clara County jail detainees round out the first week of a hunger strike for better conditions.
Rebecca McCray Oct 20, 2017
Larry Hannan Oct 12, 2017
Larry Hannan Sep 28, 2017
John Valerio shows that violent offenders can change.
Carimah Townes Sep 25, 2017
The decision was unanimous.
Carimah Townes Sep 21, 2017
“I was your worst nightmare.”
Sep 11, 2017
There are approximately 22,000 intravenous drug users in the city.
Carimah Townes Sep 08, 2017
Larry Hannan Aug 24, 2017
Rebecca McCray Aug 23, 2017
District attorneys want to keep an outdated system alive.