Charles Sperling knows the torment and desperation of drug addiction. More than 30 years ago, when he was young and living in New York, far from his Alabama roots, he got hooked on heroin. In 1986, though, Sperling stopped using the drug and started to turn his life around. Now he runs a nonprofit helping former prisoners from Johnson State Prison in Wrightsville with re-entry into society.
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.
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.
Savannah Tech and Armstrong Atlantic State University are working to form an alliance allowing students who receive associates degrees at Savannah Tech to apply all of their coursework to a bachelor of science in criminal justice at Armstrong. The Georgia Board of Regents and the Board of Technical Colleges must now vote on whether to approve the proposed partnership.
Lawyers for a man accused of gunning down a police officer in Athens are objecting to a shock device he's forced to wear during court appearances. Jamie Hood's attorneys say the device, which is operated by remote control and can deliver an incapacitating shock, is inhumane.