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Thousands of deaths in jails, prisons, and police custody have gone uncounted in recent years. Now the DOJ is calling for changes to federal law.
Our team at the University of North Carolina analyzed death-in-custody reporting policies at every state and federal carceral entity. Data collection is a mess—and many states don’t follow the law at all.
M. Forrest Behne, Craig Waleed, Meghan Peterson, and Lauren Brinkley-Rubinstein
The Bureau of Justice Statistics has suffered from years of poor funding and political interference by the Trump administration. Fixing it could be one of the most important tasks on Biden’s criminal justice reform agenda.
The Department of Justice is leaving researchers, policymakers, and advocates in the dark about deaths in police custody, prisons, and jails.
The Bureau of Justice Statistics relies in part on states to self-report prison capacity numbers, which can result in a misleading snapshot of overcrowding in the U.S.