A state program is seeking to even the scales between urban and rural justice, giving people who have gotten into trouble with the law an equal shot at getting their lives back on track. The state Department of Corrections offers intensive drug counseling and other services designed to keep probationers from reoffending at Day Reporting Centers, or DRCs, in 14 regional urban centers, such as Macon, Columbus, and Savannah. Until recently, no such services were available to probationers in the more remote areas of Georgia. But the DRC Lite program, now in its second year, puts bare bones equivalents in 11 rural judicial circuits across the state.
After eight years leading the Georgia State Conference of the NAACP, Edward DuBose says inequality in the state’s criminal justice system is the most significant issue greeting his successor. DuBose said the organization’s next president also must ensure access to the polls now that the Supreme Court has struck down part of the Voting Rights Act of 1965.
Georgia’s new top judge says the state is already seeing the benefits of several years of criminal justice reform. Hugh Thompson took over as the Georgia Supreme Court’s chief justice in August. He said in an interview with GPB the adult prison population is stabilizing. He also said he’s keenly interested in following the juvenile justice reforms the General Assembly enacted earlier this year.
A new state office is setting up shop this week. Its focus is Governor Nathan Deal’s third round of criminal justice reform. The Office of Transition, Support and Re-Entry will coordinate efforts to help offenders return to normal life after they get out of prison.
It’s been just under a year since a massive overhaul to Georgia’s criminal justice system took effect. The state Corrections Commissioner says jails are less crowded, but the prison population is getting more violent.
Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal is expected to sign into law a sweeping overhaul of the state's juvenile justice system. The regulations are aimed at reducing the number of repeat juvenile offenders and the costs associated with them.
Georgia’s top judge told lawmakers Thursday that the state’s tough approach to juvenile offenders isn’t paying off. Justice Carol Hunstein, the Chief Justice of the Georgia Supreme Court, said it’s time to apply lessons learned from adult criminal justice reform to youth offenders.
Georgia Supreme Court Chief Justice Carol Hunstein will give her fourth and final State of the Judiciary Address Thursday morning. A major highlight of her speech will be juvenile justice reform, a main point of concern for the Special Council on Criminal Justice Reform, on which Hunstein serves.
As Georgia state lawmakers tackle juvenile justice reform this year, they are also expected to expand on last year's overhaul of the adult criminal justice system. Last year's recommendations focused on rewriting the state's sentencing laws to emphasize rehabilitating relatively low-risk nonviolent offenders in community-based supervision programs rather sending them to prison