What We're ReadingNews that caught our attention or cited the Texas Justice Initiative from across the Lone Star State and beyond.
With a stalled court system, some Texas jails are dangerously overcrowded in the pandemicPublished on January 28, 2021
Jolie McCullough with the Texas Tribune writes that under the coronavirus pandemic, jails – potential hotspots – are filling up as the criminal justice system has been paused: "State prisons stopped accepting new inmates for several months last year, and most counties have not held a single criminal jury trial since last March."
Fatal Police Shootings Of Unarmed Black People Reveal Troubling PatternsPublished on January 25, 2021
Cheryl Thompson reports that NPR dug into police and court records to investigate the deaths of 135 Black Americans who were unarmed when they were shot and killed by law enforcement since 2015. "At least 75% of the officers were white," Thompson reports. "The latest one happened this month in Killeen, Texas, when Patrick Warren Sr., 52, was fatally shot by an officer responding to a mental health call."
Opinion: How Dallas police are reducing shootings of unarmed citizensPublished on January 26, 2021
John Shjarback (Rowan University), Michael White (Arizona State University) and Stephen Bishopp (UT School of Public Health - Houston and Dallas Police Department) evaluated Dallas PD's "point-and-report policy to see whether shootings went up or down after the 2013 policy.
S4 Bonus: Not a Gotcha or Anti-Policing Sentiment (Analysis)Published on December 28, 2020
A bonus episode of KXAN's podcast series Catalyst features an in-depth conversation between the series' reporters Josh Hinkle, David Barer and TJI Executive Director Eva Ruth Moravec about TJI and our data collection work. The episode capped off the Catalyst's latest season, which highlights the in-custody death of Herman Titus.
Inmates facing big virus risks not near top of vaccine listsPublished on December 16, 2020
Reporting by Colleen Sleven and Patty Nieberg shows that incarcerated individuals are far from the front of the line for the COVID-19 vaccine, despite being hard-hit. Texas and four other states comprise the highest number of coronavirus cases in prisons, they write, yet none of those states' plans to the CDC in October included prioritizing incarcerated people.