94 entries

Category: Law & Justice

Photo Essay: From Oakland To Ferguson, People Hit The Streets For Mike Brown

Last night a grand jury in St. Louis came back with a verdict of not indicting Officer Darren Wilson who shot and murdered unarmed Mike Brown. Familiar feelings for Oakland arised, in the similar case of Oscar Grant who was also a young unarmed black man shot by a police officer.

Remembering Antonio Guzman Lopez: Family of SJ State Police Shooting Death Holds Birthday Celebration

On November 15, 2014, Antonio Guzman Lopez's family gathered to celebrate what would have been his 39th birthday. In February of this year, Antonio was shot and killed by San Jose State Police officers Mike Santos and Frits Van Der Hoek. Antonio left behind his partner Laurie, and his children -- 5 year old Josiah and daughter Angelique. Almost 7 months later, the Santa Clara County District Attorney has yet to complete their investigation as to whether the shooting was justified. In the meantime, his family -- through the leadership of Laurie Valdez -- launched the Justice for Josiah campaign to seek accountability for their loved one's death. A humble man who loved his children above everything, Antonio was remembered last Saturday among family, community, and supporters who pledged to support Antonio's family through the long road ahead.

Shifting From Prisons To Schools: Redemption In California

Raj Jayadev writes how passing Proposition 47 may mean the redemption of California.

Artesia On Our Minds -- An Immigration Attorney's Diary of a Detention Camp

This past week I went with a 10-attorney contingent from the Bay Area to provide pro-bono legal services for a week in an immigration detention center in Artesia, New Mexico that holds between 400-500 ​women and children who were detained in the border refugee crisis this summer. Our primary purpose was to represent women and children in bond and asylum cases in this remote facility. We are all still unpacking the experience.

Bringing Social Biography Videos to Alabama to Reduce Charges and Sentences

We recently had the opportunity to travel to a historic touchstone of the civil rights movement — Montgomery, Alabama — to work with and train six public defender offices in producing social biography videos to reduce charges and sentences.

Building with Gideon’s Promise in North Carolina

We were honored to give a training session at Wake Forest University Law School to the next generation public defenders from across the South on how they can make social biography videos. The attorneys were a cohort of Gideon’s Promise, the amazing training program for Southern public defenders that is also focus of the HBO film Gideon’s Army.

3 Words: "Do Or Die" -- A Jean Melesaine Photo Essay

We traveled to a small city in St. Louis to do a video to stop a young man from being executed. When asked about his life he said, "You grow into the shape of the container you were raised in." To tell his story, we needed to tell the story of the city and era he grew up in. The city was war-torn from what many called a "storm"; a plague of violence, poverty, drugs, and incarceration. The height of that war was the 90's. We asked the community members who survived to describe their city during that period. The first person we asked, while showing his bullet wounds said, "Do Or Die".

Arrested While Brown: Chicago Police Profile Two Latino Health Care Advocates

Two young latino community organizers were arrested while trying to organize in a predominantly white neighborhood in Chicago when a neighbor had called the police for the two young men saying they looked like criminals. This piece was originally published in Equal Voice News.

San Jose "COPS" Show Is A Bad Idea For Police Department

Bringing the show "COPS" to San Jose seemed a bizarre PR move at first, but given the timing, it can be downright damaging to police and community relations. This article was originally published in the San Jose Mercury News.

The Untapped Movement: Why Challenging Mass Incarceration Hinges Upon a New Dynamic Between Communities and Public Defenders

By Raj Jayadev
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