What We're ReadingNews that caught our attention or cited the Texas Justice Initiative from across the Lone Star State and beyond.
Bexar County Is No. 2 in Texas for Officer-Involved Shootings; Black Residents Are in the CrosshairsPublished on September 9, 2020
Sanford Nowlin, editor-in-chief for the San Antonio Current, localized TJI's new report on shootings of and by Texas law enforcement for the cover story of his weekly newspaper. Nowlin's story focuses on Bexar County/San Antonio, home to the 2nd-highest number of officer-involved shootings in Texas from 2016-2019.
Covid-19 has killed more police officers this year than all other causes combined, data showsPublished on September 2, 2020
Christopher Ingram reports that at least 100 law enforcement officers have died after contracting COVID-19 on the job, and another 150 deaths remain under investigation. "At the state level, Texas stands out for having the highest number of law enforcement covid fatalities with at least 21, according to NLEOMF. At least 16 of those represent officers with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, which manages the state’s correctional facilities."
When Asthma in Jail Becomes a Death SentencePublished on September 2, 2020
Since 2005, nearly 800 people have died in Texas jails of causes labeled by officials as natural. "But in recent years, lawsuits," Michael Barajas reports, "Texas Rangers reports, and newspaper investigations have shown many of those to be preventable tragedies that appear to result from negligence on the part of jail staff."
Save Black LivesPublished on August 5, 2020
A new report from the Center for Justice Research and the Black Public Defender Association explores racial injustices and the impact of COVID-19 and incarceration in Black communities. Howard Henderson, the founding director of the center, said: "Black people are being infected and dying from COVID-19 at alarming rates. They are also overrepresented in carceral systems that increase their risk of exposure to this deadly virus.
Coronavirus in Jails and PrisonsPublished on July 27, 2020
Kelly Davis reports on conditions at federal facilities including FMC Carswell, in Fort Worth, where three women have died of COVID-19: "Three women sleep four to a room and the rooms have no doors. As COVID-19 tore through the Texas prison—cases grew from 50 on July 7 to 571 by July 23—staff shut off the air conditioning and hung plastic curtains in the doorways to stop the virus’ spread."