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High-risk youth who were diverted from court showed 40 percent lower recidivism rates than their peers who were petitioned in court.

In order to reduce racial and ethnic disparities and enhance outcomes for young people in our country’s juvenile justice systems, those systems need to focus on diversion - generally more productive and developmentally appropriate for young people. Read more»

A new Arizona law will give those with a criminal background a chance to seal their records, which may expand access to jobs and housing – but the complexity of the process and longevity of online information may hinder the law’s impact.

A new Arizona law which goes into effect Jan. 1, 2023, will give people a chance to seal their criminal records, under certain circumstances - but the complexity of the process and longevity of online information may hinder its impact. Read more»

Crediting people for time served — giving criminal defendants “credit” against their sentence for the time they spend detained pretrial — is a deceptively harmful practice that punishes innocent people. Read more»

The return to society after spending time behind bars is difficult, so organizations such as the Yavapai Reentry Project and Building Promise work to provide access to health care and resources to help with housing, job training, and health counseling. Read more»

Holding most individuals accused of an offense in jail for any length of time before trial may not guarantee the safeguards that many people assume detention provides, and in most cases pretrial detention can increase the likelihood of an individual becoming involved in criminal behavior. Read more»

Kids in juvie might see their financial load lightened, thanks to new legislation approved by the state House of Representatives that would eliminate the rollover of court fees on them and their families. Read more»

What officers think about de-escalation likely affects how willing they are to use it, researchers said.

De-escalation training is more likely to improve police-civilian interactions when it’s perceived by cops as a way to keep them safe on the job, according to an Arizona State University study in conjunction with the Tempe police force. Read more»

Pro-Trump protesters at TCF Center in Detroit.

Following the turmoil of the 2020 election, election officials across the country have faced threats and harassment, but attempts to include them as a protected category under harassment statutes - raising charges from a misdemeanor to a felony - have has run into opposition. Read more»

While most Americans believe arrested people go to court soon after their arrest, Constitutional guarantees of a “fair and speedy trial” are infrequently honored in our under-resourced criminal justice system. Read more»

Ariz. Gov. Doug Ducey answers questions during a press conference after his State of the State address Friday morning in Tucson.

Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey’s final budget calls for $14.25 billion in spending for the 2023 fiscal year that includes nearly $1.4 billion in new spending, the bulk of which will be spending on K-12 education, water infrastructure, beefing up the state’s rainy day fund and expanding I-10. Read more»

A few states that this year approved the use of racial impact statements, evaluating how new laws might affect disparate populations.

More states are trying to assess the racial impact of new laws, as the consciousness of many legislators has been raised by the murder of George Floyd, the Black Lives Matter movement and the pandemic’s disproportionate effect on minorities. Read more»

In Maricopa County, the former sheriff, Joe Arpaio, gained considerable notoriety for encouraging website visitors to cast votes on mugshots.

As the country debates the path forward for criminal justice reform, the practice of running digital mugshot galleries of arrestees, and the long-lasting harm caused by law enforcement agencies’ practice of publishing booking mugshots online, has largely flown under the radar. Read more»

Forestry experts believe one of the best ways to fight wildfires is to deprive them of fuel through forest thinning, as in this file photo from Oregon. Those efforts will get an extra hand this year in Arizona under an expanded program that uses prison inmates to help with forest maintenance.

Arizona's $24.5 million Healthy Forest Initiative will allow a long-running program that lets the Department of Forestry and Fire Management use inmate crews to do forest maintenance to add as many as 700 more inmates to help battle wildfires. Read more»

A Navajo County Sheriff’s Office deputy makes a traffic stop near Holbrook, Arizona, on Nov. 22, 2016, in an effort to find and seize drugs along Interstate 40. Navajo County uses forfeiture money to partially fund the salaries of its drug task force.

Under a landmark bill reforming Arizona’s civil asset forfeiture laws signed by Gov. Doug Ducey, prosecutors and law enforcement agencies will no longer be permitted to permanently seize people’s property for alleged criminal wrongdoing without actually convicting them of a crime. Read more»

The new bill replaces Blackman’s House Bill 2713, which passed unanimously out of his House Criminal Justice Reform Committee and cleared the full House on a bipartisan 47-11 vote.

A multi-year push to loosen Arizona’s strict sentencing laws was resurrected Tuesday, despite the resistance of a key Senate Republican who refused to hear the bill. The House Appropriations Committee on Tuesday approved legislation that would allow drug offenders to get out of prison after serving half of their sentences, and other nonviolent offenders to earn up to a third off their sentences. Read more»

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