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2006

Washington University Journal of Law & Policy

Prison violence

Articles 1 - 4 of 4

Full-Text Articles in Law

Excessive Force In The New York City Jails: Litigation And Its Lessons, John Boston Jan 2006

Excessive Force In The New York City Jails: Litigation And Its Lessons, John Boston

Washington University Journal of Law & Policy

The New York City Legal Aid Society, through its Prisoners’ Rights Project (PRP), has fought since PRP’s founding in 1971 to protect the human rights of prisoners. In particular, we have wrestled with the problem of excessive force by New York City jail staff through individual and class action litigation and through investigations and demands for administrative redress on behalf of injured prisoners. Our focus has been on reforming the systems that operate to control force in correctional settings including written policy, training, investigations, discipline, and supervision of staff. The single most important lesson we have taken from twenty ...


Improving Prison Safety: Breaking The Code Of Silence, Kathleen M. Dennehy, Kelly A. Nantel Jan 2006

Improving Prison Safety: Breaking The Code Of Silence, Kathleen M. Dennehy, Kelly A. Nantel

Washington University Journal of Law & Policy

A system permeated by a code of silence reinforces negative behaviors in inmates, ultimately increasing the risk to staff. As the former Massachusetts Secretary of Public Safety, Edward A. Flynn, is keen on saying, “If nothing else, inmates must leave our custody with a belief that there is moral order in their world. If they leave our care and control believing that rules and regulations do not mean what they say they mean, that rules and regulations can be applied arbitrarily or capriciously or for personal interest, then we will fail society, we will fail them, and we will unleash ...


Staff Use Of Force In United States Confinement Settings, Steve J. Martin Jan 2006

Staff Use Of Force In United States Confinement Settings, Steve J. Martin

Washington University Journal of Law & Policy

This Essay focuses on the insidious pattern or practice of prison staffs’ unlawful use of force that is cloaked with or protected by an air of legitimacy or facial validity. It is not uncommon for ostensibly lawful applications of physical force to mask the intentional infliction of punishment, retaliation or reprisal on prisoners. Manufacturing or exaggerating the need to physically control a prisoner is one means by which staff pretextually use force for inflicting punishment on a prisoner. An application of force that is legitimately initiated but which escalates to a level of force disproportionate to the objective risks presented ...


Making Prisons Safe: Strategies For Reducing Violence, Donald Specter Jan 2006

Making Prisons Safe: Strategies For Reducing Violence, Donald Specter

Washington University Journal of Law & Policy

If prison administrators provide humane conditions and require strict adherence to commonly accepted and nationally recognized techniques for regulating the unnecessary use of force, prisons can be reasonably safe for both prisoners and staff. Although the threat posed by gangs presents special problems, the traditional approach to correctional safety—suppression and isolation—has not been successful. The experiences of some innovative programs around the country, as discussed below, suggests the success of a radically different approach: closely monitored integration coupled with incentives and tools to help prisoners leave the gangs.