Stories tagged: criminal justice
UPDATED: Mon., Jan. 22, 2018, 9:40 a.m.
Spokane County ex-public defender accused of meth use represented hundreds of clients
From the moment Emily Blumenauer met her court-appointed public defender, she knew something was off. There was the arm scratching, the forgetfulness, the shiny glaze on her eyes that suggested …
UPDATED: Mon., Nov. 27, 2017, 11:02 p.m.
Spokane City Council votes to ‘ban the box’ for private employers, fines delayed one year
A five-vote supermajority of the Spokane City Council voted Monday night to “ban the box” and potentially impose fines on noncompliant businesses beginning in 2019. The law will take effect …
UPDATED: Sat., June 24, 2017, 10:45 p.m.
As groups chafe at pace of criminal justice reform, county administrator points to progress
It’s been a year since Spokane County was awarded a $1.75 million MacArthur Foundation grant to reduce its jail population. And while little has visibly changed since then, Jacqueline van …
Wed., April 26, 2017, 5 p.m.
Wisconsin Gov. Walker says he won’t remove sheriff over inmate’s dehydration death
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker said Wednesday that he won’t remove Milwaukee County Sheriff David Clarke from office over the death of an inmate who was denied water for seven days.
UPDATED: Thu., April 20, 2017, 7:26 a.m.
Shawn Vestal: Legalizing marijuana a no-brainer
There are a lot of reasons to celebrate the fact that Washington ended the costly, counterproductive and racist war on marijuana.
UPDATED: Sat., April 15, 2017, 8:53 p.m.
Man wrongly convicted in 1957 killing files federal lawsuit
A Washington state man wrongly convicted in the 1957 kidnapping and killing of a 7-year-old girl has filed a federal lawsuit in Illinois.
Thu., Oct. 20, 2016, 5:11 p.m.
U.K. to pardon thousands convicted under past anti-gay laws
Thousands of men who were convicted under now-abolished British laws against homosexuality are to receive posthumous pardons, the government announced Thursday. Those who are still alive can will be eligible …
Wed., June 29, 2016, 8:07 p.m.
Spokane County District Court can get by with fewer judges, county commissioners say
With fewer cases moving through Spokane County District Court, county commissioners say there’s no need to replace retiring Judge Sara Derr.
Wed., April 13, 2016, 10:38 a.m.
Spokane County Jail receives an additional $1.75 million from MacArthur Foundation to reduce overcrowding
Criminal Justice Adminstrator Jacqueline van Wormer informed stakeholders at the city and county level Wednesday afternoon the national nonprofit had selected Spokane County as one of 11 sites to receive …
Mon., April 4, 2016, 5:30 p.m.
GOP Congress being labeled with do-nothing moniker
Congress increasingly is being defined by what it’s not doing this election year.
Sun., March 13, 2016, 4 a.m.
Spokane parents get alternative to jail, but victims feel slighted
Bryan Morales and Amanda Macklin have received reprieves from jail to care for their young children as part of a sentencing alternative heralded by criminal justice reformers. But victims worry …
Thu., Jan. 21, 2016, 11:18 p.m.
WSU Spokane professor picked to provide new criminal risk assessment tool
Zach Hamilton, a professor at WSU Spokane in criminology, will help develop a customized tool for the region to determine who should be in the overcrowded Spokane County Jail and …
Thu., Dec. 24, 2015
Spokane County signs deal with Central Washington counties for mental health beds
Spokane County will get 10 additional beds at Eastern State Hospital for mental health patients as the result of an agreement with Central Washington counties. The deal is necessary after …
Sun., Oct. 25, 2015
Editorial: Jailing not always smart justice
Police, prosecutors join effort to reduce incarceration rates.
UPDATED: Sat., Oct. 17, 2015, 10:17 p.m.
Officials say adding courtroom to jail would ease overcrowding
A regional criminal justice council is considering a proposal to build a courtroom in the Spokane County Jail, a plan jail staff say is a first step towards more systematic …
Thu., June 11, 2015
Criminal justice panel, others have openings
The Spokane Regional Law and Justice Council is looking for two community members interested in aiding efforts to reform the county’s criminal justice system. The group, responsible for evaluating and …
Wed., May 27, 2015
MacArthur Foundation grant will reduce jail crowding
Spokane County has been rewarded for its efforts at criminal justice reform, with the deep-pocketed MacArthur Foundation selecting the area for a competitive grant to reduce overcrowding at the aging …
Mon., May 11, 2015
Effort underway to restore jail’s ‘gallows gates’ at county courthouse
Sue Walker hopes the gates that once welcomed Spokane criminals to their jail cells – and two to their deaths – will return as a symbol on the county courthouse …
Sat., Nov. 8, 2014
Symposium on tested, creative justice reform aims to maintain local momentum
Most communities would jump at a chance to reduce crime while keeping more people out of jail. Julian Adler is coming to Spokane to show them how it’s done. Adler …
Fri., May 30, 2014
All of us share stake in Gerlach’s defense bill
How much should you and I pay for the defense of Gail Gerlach? A judge will hear arguments today over bills submitted by the legal team for Gerlach, the Spokane …
Sun., March 23, 2014
Spokane Community Court offers chronic offenders another chance
When Aubrey Shults landed in jail in January, it was the end of a long, sad slide. Her longtime boyfriend had left her, and Shults – a drug-addicted 38-year-old who …
Wed., Jan. 22, 2014
Shawn Vestal: Outdated computers say a lot about Spokane County justice system
The elegant, historic Spokane County Courthouse was built almost 120 years ago. The inelegant, historic computer system can’t be much newer.
Sat., Nov. 9, 2013
Shawn Vestal: Merging city, county courts an idea whose time has come again
A former judge, former federal prosecutor and longtime local attorney have taken a close look at the region’s criminal justice system. The trio – dubbed the Spokane Regional Criminal Justice …
Thu., Nov. 7, 2013
Spokane criminal justice reform ideas met with praise
Criminal justice reform ideas for Spokane drew positive reviews Wednesday evening from people knowledgeable about the system. The Spokane Regional Criminal Justice Commission last week released 58 pages of draft …
Fri., Oct. 25, 2013
Lewis and Clark criminal justice studies being expanded
Even a man nicknamed “SuperCop” by his peers gets distracted sometimes. After all, it’s not every day Atifete Jahjaga, the president of Kosovo, calls you personally.
Wed., Oct. 23, 2013
Spokane County commissioners extend mental health services tax
A tenth of a penny sales tax that pays for local mental health and criminal justice services was extended through 2019 by Spokane County commissioners on Tuesday. Commissioners Todd Mielke …
Sun., Sept. 22, 2013
Prison psychologist earns award for ‘innovative’ programs
WALLA WALLA – Tamara Russell has found the old saying to be true: Big things do come in small packages. In Russell’s universe at Washington State Penitentiary, tiny has proved …
Wed., July 24, 2013
Spokane needs better tack with repeat offenders
On Sunday, police arrested Christopher Cannata on suspicion of car theft. It was the first time Cannata had been arrested since May. Which was the first time he’d been arrested …
Wed., May 8, 2013
Report: Justice reforms working
Spokane County in the past five years has made progress in reforming its criminal justice system, but there is still a lot of work to do to reduce costs and …
Tue., March 19, 2013
Clark: Execution for Yates is absolutely proportional
Last week’s run of Spokane crime news made the “Psycho” shower scene look almost subtle. There was the hatchet attack on a homeless man by two other indigent men.