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Prisons

The United States leads the world in the rate of incarcerating its own citizens. We imprison more of our own people than any other country on earth, including China which has four times our population, or in human history. And now, a new Pew report announces that we are keeping even nonviolent inmates behind bars for increasingly longer terms.

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Prison fires prompt scrutiny of Turkey's jailsupdated: Tue Jun 19 2012 16:25:00

A series of recent fires in at least five detention centers around the country has raised questions about living conditions in Turkey's prison system.

Study finds nearly 1 in 10 state prisoners is sexually abused while incarceratedupdated: Thu May 17 2012 21:30:00

Nearly one of every 10 state prisoners is sexually victimized during confinement, according to a Justice Department study released Thursday.

Program helps imprisoned parents stay connected to kidsupdated: Thu Apr 19 2012 16:08:00

For the last decade, Carolyn LeCroy has been helping children stay connected to their incarcerated parents through video messages.

Videos keep inmates, kids in touchupdated: Thu Apr 19 2012 16:08:00

Holly Robinson Peete spends a day with 2008 CNN Hero Carolyn LeCroy, who helps inmates send messages to their kids.

Pulling children out of Nepal's prisonsupdated: Fri Mar 16 2012 12:01:00

Pushpa Basnet doesn't need an alarm clock. Every morning, the sounds of 40 children wake her up in the two-story home she shares with them.

CNN Hero: Pushpa Basnetupdated: Fri Mar 16 2012 12:01:00

Pushpa Basnet started a children's center in Nepal to help care for children of incarcerated parents.

How injustice shapes America's identityupdated: Mon Mar 12 2012 17:08:00

How does injustice influence America's identity? Public interest lawyer Bryan Stevenson explains.

Why are millions of Americans locked up?updated: Mon Mar 12 2012 17:08:00

I'm an attorney and I represent incarcerated people, both in my home state of Alabama and across the United States.

No one should burn in prisonupdated: Thu Feb 16 2012 11:32:00

In central Honduras, more than 300 inmates burned or suffocated to death in a prison. One can only imagine the cries of those trapped in their cells, while no one could find a key to let them escape the flames. We can only try to comprehend the agony of the prisoners' parents, children, relatives or friends as they saw the images on television, wondering whether their loved ones survived or, if they died, how much they suffered in their final moments.

Human Rights Watch expresses concern for aging prisonersupdated: Fri Jan 27 2012 17:34:00

The number of aging men and women in U.S. prisons is growing rapidly, Human Rights Watch said Friday, and it expressed concern for their care behind bars.

Inmate fatally stabs guard in Arkansasupdated: Fri Jan 20 2012 20:57:00

A prison guard was fatally stabbed Friday afternoon in eastern Arkansas by an inmate already serving a life sentence for first-degree murder.

California probes why guards fired seven rounds in prison riotupdated: Thu Dec 08 2011 16:23:00

California officials are investigating why correctional officers fired seven lethal rounds to quell a prison riot in Sacramento this week in which one inmate was shot in the leg, authorities said.

CNNMoney: California county to charge prisoners for their jail stayupdated: Wed Nov 09 2011 14:49:00

In the latest case of government belt-tightening, a Southern California county is charging prisoners for the daily cost of their stay.

CNNMoney: Rajaratnam's kidney transplant could cost taxpayers $300,000updated: Fri Oct 21 2011 17:12:00

Taxpayers could be bankrolling a kidney transplant for wealthy white-collar convict Raj Rajaratnam, who was recently sentenced to 11 years in federal prison for insider trading.

Hunger strike ends, California prison officials sayupdated: Thu Oct 13 2011 20:55:00

A three-week hunger strike by some California prison inmates has ended, the Department of Corrections said Thursday.

Thousands of California prisoners on hunger strikeupdated: Tue Oct 04 2011 02:36:00

Thousands of California state prisoners, angry about what they call harsh treatment, have been on a hunger strike that enters its ninth day Tuesday.

'Da sun back out' as T.I. leaves prison, againupdated: Thu Sep 15 2011 17:03:00

Rapper T.I. walked out of a federal prison Thursday to return to an Atlanta halfway house where he will spend the last 14 days of an 11-month prison sentence for a parole violation, his lawyer said Thursday.

Documents show real reason T.I. went back to prisonupdated: Thu Sep 08 2011 16:08:00

Rapper T.I.'s furlough from prison was cut short last week because prison officials objected to his manager and a reality TV producer riding with him on a trip to a halfway house, according to a prison document.

Report: Cell phone use by prisoners on the riseupdated: Tue Sep 06 2011 23:10:00

Over the last three years, the number of contraband cell phones seized in federal prisons and minimum-security facilities has quadrupled, according to a report issued by the General Accountability Office.

Bus ride detours Rapper T.I.'s early release from prisonupdated: Fri Sep 02 2011 12:34:00

T.I., who walked out of a federal prison in Arkansas Wednesday and joyously tweeted "The storm is over & da sun back out," woke up back in a prison Friday morning.

Rapper T.I. returns to prison one day after early releaseupdated: Fri Sep 02 2011 05:54:00

Rapper T.I. has been removed from a halfway house to a "different facility" a day after he was furloughed, apparently because of prison officials' objection over his using a tour bus to move between facilities in Arkansas and Georgia, his attorney said.

Rehabilitation is key in Norway prisonsupdated: Wed Aug 03 2011 10:02:00

Vice looks at Norway's progressive prison system as the fate of terror suspect Anders Breivik remains to be seen.

To save states, fix prison systemupdated: Thu Jun 30 2011 08:46:00

With a stroke of his pen last Thursday, Gov. Jerry Brown vetoed California's budget. Legislators, he said, had failed to take the "strong medicine" California needs to survive. But the state could easily save hundreds of millions of dollars by fixing its criminal justice system.

Hearings on radicalization in prisonsupdated: Wed Jun 15 2011 20:26:00

Experts testify that prisoners in US facilities have been radicalized and subsequently committed terrorist acts.

Lawmakers disagree on prisons' role in Islamic radicalizationupdated: Wed Jun 15 2011 20:26:00

The danger of Islamic radicalization inside U.S. prisons "remains real and present," said Rep. Peter King of New York, the Republican chairman of the House Homeland Security Committee. But during a Wednesday hearing on the subject, others said there are only a few cases in which prison radicalization has been linked to terrorism.

California prison remedy would send low-level offenders to countiesupdated: Wed Jun 08 2011 00:50:00

California wants to shift low-level state offenders to county jails as a way to reduce overcrowding, as ordered by the U.S. Supreme Court, under an unfunded plan that would require legislative and voter approval, the state's top corrections official said Tuesday.

Where does California put 33,000 released inmates?updated: Thu May 26 2011 08:55:00

Hasn't California suffered enough?

California officials: We'll fix prison crowding, won't free 33,000updated: Tue May 24 2011 17:49:00

California officials said Tuesday they won't arbitrarily free 33,000 inmates and they will submit plans to the federal courts in two weeks specifying ways to remedy prison overcrowding under a U.S. Supreme Court order this week.

High court orders drastic prison population reduction in Californiaupdated: Tue May 24 2011 06:59:00

The Supreme Court has affirmed a federal order telling California to reduce its overflowing prison population, a situation the majority said "falls below the standard of decency."

CNNMoney: Enron exec Andy Fastow nears prison releaseupdated: Wed May 18 2011 16:24:00

Former Enron executive Andrew Fastow has been transferred from prison to a halfway house, the last stage of incarceration before his scheduled release later this year, according to the federal Bureau of Prisons.

IMF head held in virtual isolation on Rikers Islandupdated: Tue May 17 2011 23:37:00

One hour of recreation a day. Veal patties and noodles for dinner. New York's well-known Rikers Island jail complex has been featured in films, television shows and documentaries, but life on the other side of the bars appears less than glamorous.

A look inside Rikers Island jailupdated: Tue May 17 2011 23:37:00

A former corrections official explains what it's like for Dominique Strauss-Kahn to live inside Rikers Island jail.

Born behind barsupdated: Thu May 05 2011 06:15:00

In South Africa, female inmates can raise their babies behind bars.

Babies behind bars: doing time with momupdated: Thu May 05 2011 06:15:00

In one Johannesburg prison there are 27 toddlers locked behind bars. The only crime they're guilty of is being born to a mother who broke the law and was jailed.

Prison spending bleeds education systemupdated: Thu Apr 07 2011 09:09:00

There is a bipartisan tide of lawmakers who are trying to fix our nation's out-of-control corrections system, and make funding for education the priority.

Cruel and unusual treatment of WikiLeaks suspectupdated: Wed Mar 16 2011 08:53:00

Army Pfc. Bradley Manning has been imprisoned in the Quantico Marine Corps Brig for nine months, suspected of giving highly classified State Department cables to the website WikiLeaks. He has not been tried, yet is kept in solitary confinement in a windowless room 23 hours a day and forced to sleep naked without pillows or blankets.

Did Army ignore WikiLeaks warnings?updated: Wed Mar 16 2011 08:53:00

CNN's Chris Lawrence reports on new info that the Army deployed Pvt. Bradley Manning despite concerns.

Justices debate solutions to California state prison overcrowdingupdated: Tue Nov 30 2010 15:44:00

Few doubt the prison conditions across California are disturbing and long-standing:

CNNMoney: Spending on prisons in rare dropupdated: Fri Oct 29 2010 14:11:00

The weak economy and dwindling stimulus funds are behind a rare drop in spending on prisons in many U.S. states, according to a study released Friday.

Inspector general criticizes furlough program for federal inmatesupdated: Thu Sep 02 2010 18:30:00

Federal prison officials fail to properly keep track of thousands of inmates who are granted unescorted furloughs when they are temporarily released, an investigation by the Justice Department's inspector general has concluded.

Fortune: What's costlier than a government run prison? A private oneupdated: Wed Aug 18 2010 12:17:00

Early this month, three convicted murderers escaped from a prison in Kingman, a small town along Route 66 in northwest Arizona. According to reports, the inmates had broken free from the facility by using a pair of wire cutters. They'd escaped from a medium-security facility operated by Utah-based Management & Training Corp, a private corrections company.

Prison escape becomes campaign issueupdated: Tue Aug 10 2010 20:54:00

The escape of three convicts from a prison in Arizona last week has become an issue in the state's campaign for governor.

President Obama signs into law ban on cell phones in federal prisonsupdated: Tue Aug 10 2010 19:39:00

Hoping to stop federal inmates from directing crimes from behind bars, President Barack Obama signed into law Tuesday a prohibition on cell phone use by prisoners.

CNNMoney: Prisoners cashed in on homebuyer tax creditupdated: Wed Jun 23 2010 14:03:00

More than 1,200 prison inmates, including 241 serving life sentences, defrauded the government of $9.1 million in tax credits reserved for first-time homebuyers, according to a Treasury Department report released Wednesday.

Joran Van der Sloot spotted behind barsupdated: Mon Jun 21 2010 09:43:00

TruTV's Jean Casarez spots Joran Van der Sloot leaving his cell and gives us an exclusive look inside.

Prisons going greenupdated: Thu May 20 2010 15:15:00

Prisons in Washington state are going "green." CNN's Patrick Oppmann reports how they offer inmates new opportunities.

Prisoners turn over a new leaf with eye on environmentupdated: Thu May 20 2010 15:15:00

The organic vegetables travel a short distance from the well-tended garden to the table where they are eaten.

Commentary: Lock up teen criminals?updated: Fri Apr 09 2010 15:35:00

Ten years ago, teen Daniel Giddings shot a man during an attempted robbery and was sentenced to six to 12 years in prison.

Tackling tuberculosisupdated: Tue Mar 23 2010 12:53:00

An Azerbaijani jail has been hailed for its work treating TB among its inmates.

State prison population drops for first time since 1972updated: Wed Mar 17 2010 03:10:00

For the first time since 1972, the number of state prisoners in the United States has dropped, albeit only slightly, the Pew Center on the States reported Wednesday in a survey.

SI.com: Michael McCann: Arenas could get jail time in gun chargeupdated: Sat Jan 16 2010 10:16:00

Washington Wizards guard Gilbert Arenas pleaded guilty Friday to a felony for carrying an unlicensed pistol outside a home or business. Prosecutors recommend that he should serve no more than six months in jail. D.C. Superior Court Judge Robert E. Morin, however, will decide whether and how long Arenas will spend time behind bars. Arenas is scheduled to be sentenced March 26.

CNNMoney: Jailhouse docs choose inmates over insuranceupdated: Sun Dec 27 2009 18:58:00

More doctors are dropping their private practices, choosing to go to work behind bars treating murderers, rapists and other hardened criminals.

Madoff treated for hypertension, dizziness, prison official saysupdated: Thu Dec 24 2009 17:06:00

Convicted swindler Bernard Madoff is being treated for "issues relating to dizziness and hypertension" at the medical facility of the prison where he is incarcerated, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

Reports: 3 Iranian prison officials charged in deaths of protestersupdated: Sat Dec 19 2009 20:21:00

Three Iranian prison officials have been charged with murder after three imprisoned protesters were beaten to death in the aftermath of the country's disputed presidential election, Iranian media reported Saturday.

Death penalty use declining nationwideupdated: Fri Dec 18 2009 01:57:00

Use of capital punishment by states continues its steady decline, with fewer death sentences handed down in 2009 than any year since the death penalty was reinstated by the Supreme Court in 1976.

With bleak economic forecast, some states free prisoners earlyupdated: Thu Dec 17 2009 08:37:00

The thought of her convicted attacker getting out of prison early makes Gloria Warner feel sick.

Some Guantanamo detainees to be moved to Illinoisupdated: Tue Dec 15 2009 18:12:00

Some terrorism suspects held in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, will be moved to an Illinois prison that the federal government will buy to hold them, the Obama administration announced Tuesday.

Court allows Ohio executions to resumeupdated: Wed Nov 25 2009 13:31:00

A federal appeals court on Wednesday granted Ohio's request to resume scheduled executions next month when the state will use a new, untested one-drug method of lethal injection.

Lawmakers tour Illinois prisonupdated: Mon Nov 16 2009 18:32:00

Federal officials toured an Illinois prison that could one day house Guantanamo detainees. CNN's Elaine Quijano reports.

Holding Gitmo inmates would be economic boost, Illinois officials sayupdated: Mon Nov 16 2009 18:32:00

A proposal to house federal prisoners, including some detainees from Guantanamo Bay, in a largely vacant maximum-security prison would be an economic boost to struggling northern Illinois, state officials said Sunday.

Illinois prison top contender to house Gitmo detainees, official saysupdated: Sun Nov 15 2009 18:06:00

A prison in northern Illinois is the leading contender to house some detainees transferred from the federal facility in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, two Obama administration officials told CNN Saturday.

Prison health-care costs rise as inmates grow older and sickerupdated: Fri Nov 13 2009 17:25:00

White fuzz covers his bald head. His sallow skin sags. A wheelchair and cane support limp legs.

Inmates save deputy's lifeupdated: Wed Nov 04 2009 21:14:00

A Florida deputy was nearly killed in a jail house attack that was caught on tape. WFTS' Don Germais reports.

Inmates come to guard's aid in jail attackupdated: Wed Nov 04 2009 21:14:00

Hillsborough County, Florida, Deputy Kenneth Moon was alone at his station at a county jail facility near Tampa when an inmate attacked him with no warning.

Wrongly accused?updated: Tue Oct 27 2009 14:24:00

A Chicago man accused of rape was sent to jail as he swore his innocence. Did his fiancee stand by his story too?

Prison inmates go Zen to deal with lifeupdated: Sat Oct 24 2009 11:17:00

In his darkest moment, Kenneth Brown lost it all. His wife and kids, the housebroken dog, the vacation home on Cape Cod all vanished when he was sent to prison for an arson in 1996.

Two killed in attack on Guatemalan policeupdated: Mon Oct 19 2009 10:18:00

Lethal assaults on police and prison guards in Guatemala continued over the weekend, with an attack on a national police patrol that killed two officers and left one wounded, authorities said.

'The Dhamma Brothers'updated: Fri Oct 09 2009 08:46:00

Preview a documentary about inmates that are learning to meditate.

Prison inmates go Zen to deal with life behind barsupdated: Fri Oct 09 2009 08:46:00

In his darkest moment, Kenneth Brown lost it all. His wife and kids, the housebroken dog, the vacation home on Cape Cod all vanished when he was sent to prison for an arson in 1996.

Death row female inmate denied high court reviewupdated: Mon Oct 05 2009 13:31:00

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear an appeal from a female death row inmate who said fetal alcohol syndrome should have been considered by the state court that reviewed her sentence.

Inmates fire up sales of jail-produced hot sauceupdated: Wed Sep 16 2009 10:56:00

Some Florida minimum-security inmates want to know: Can you handle the heat?

Jailhouse hot sauceupdated: Wed Sep 16 2009 10:56:00

CNN's John Zarrella reports on a jailhouse-produced hot sauce.

Report shows hike in reported sex abuse by prison officialsupdated: Thu Sep 10 2009 14:20:00

More than 100 federal corrections officials admit engaging in illegal sexual contact with inmates, and more than two dozen of them smuggled in weapons, drugs and more to cover up their misconduct, an investigation has found.

Report: Death row inmates pushed to insanity in Japanupdated: Thu Sep 10 2009 09:18:00

Death row inmates in Japan spend decades in isolation and face inhuman conditions that can lead to mental illness, Amnesty International said Thursday.

Ex-con tells story of prison lessons and second chancesupdated: Wed Sep 09 2009 10:09:00

Thirty minutes on a dark December night in 1996 left R. Dwayne Betts irrevocably changed.

Slayings of 4 Guatemalan prison officials blamed on drug tradeupdated: Tue Sep 08 2009 17:29:00

To hear some Guatemalans tell it, three coordinated attacks that killed four prison officials in five hours Monday hardly raised anyone's pulse.

CNNMoney: Michigan prison closure rattles small-town economyupdated: Fri Sep 04 2009 16:32:00

As Michigan's economy worsened last year, Michael Hester decided it was time to leave the private sector to work in the prison system, figuring a state job as a corrections officer would be more stable.

Mugabe pardons 1,500 prisoners to ease jail congestionupdated: Thu Sep 03 2009 09:54:00

Congestion in Zimbabwe's prisons is set to ease a bit after President Robert Mugabe acceded to pleas by prison authorities to pardon more than 1,500 prisoners.

Inmate-release plan hits snag in California Assemblyupdated: Tue Aug 25 2009 14:12:00

California legislators plan to keep trying to find consensus on a controversial proposal that would release at least 27,000 inmates from state prisons.

Authorities quell inmate riot at Kentucky prisonupdated: Sat Aug 22 2009 06:12:00

Authorities regained control of a Kentucky prison early Saturday after inmates torched buildings, shattered windows and threw rocks at guards.

California bill would free more than 27,000 inmatesupdated: Fri Aug 21 2009 15:23:00

A controversial bill that California legislators say would allow the early release of more than 27,000 inmates from crowded prisons will be taken up by the state Assembly on Monday.

250 inmates hurt, 55 hospitalized after California prison riotupdated: Sun Aug 09 2009 21:05:00

More than 250 inmates were injured in a riot that erupted overnight at the California Institution for Men in Chino, a spokesman said Sunday.

After 34 years, Lynette 'Squeaky' Fromme to be releasedupdated: Thu Aug 06 2009 12:58:00

The president she once pointed a gun at has been dead for nearly three years, and her longtime idol and leader, Charles Manson, remains in prison.

CNNMoney: Madoff arrives at N.C. prisonupdated: Tue Jul 14 2009 14:19:00

Bernard Madoff, the convicted Ponzi mastermind, was transferred to a federal prison in Butner, N.C. on Tuesday, according to the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

CNNMoney: Madoff: I'll do the timeupdated: Thu Jul 09 2009 15:17:00

Bernard Madoff, mastermind behind the largest Ponzi scheme in history, has decided not to appeal his 150-year sentence, according to his lawyer.

CNNMoney: Prison survival tips for Madoffupdated: Mon Jun 29 2009 07:35:00

When Ponzi scheme mastermind Bernard Madoff is sentenced on Monday, he'll be sent to a real prison with real bars and violent offenders, not a "country club" for white collar crooks, consultants say.

Hunt under way for escaped murder suspect in Louisianaupdated: Fri Jun 19 2009 12:08:00

More than 100 police officers and others were searching Friday in a southeastern Louisiana parish for a murder suspect who escaped from jail with three other inmates, a law enforcement official said.

Prison-trained puppies help wounded troopsupdated: Fri Jun 19 2009 09:48:00

If there's anything Oprah Winfrey knows for sure, it's what the love of a dog can do for your life. "There is nothing in the world like puppy love," Oprah says.

CNNMoney: Michigan shuts 8 prisons to save $120Mupdated: Sat Jun 06 2009 14:21:00

Michigan officials said Friday that the state is closing three prisons and five prison camps in hopes of narrowing a $1.4 billion budget gap for fiscal 2010.

Prison officials sniffing out contraband cell phonesupdated: Sat May 30 2009 23:54:00

In the black market of prison life, cell phones have become perhaps the hottest commodity. Now, Texas is among a growing number of state governments going after them.

Man on death row clearedupdated: Thu May 14 2009 11:05:00

A former death row inmate in Tennessee has been cleared of murder. WATE's Hana Kim reports.

Growing up is even harder when mom is in prisonupdated: Thu May 07 2009 10:43:00

"Get yourself together." Mary Williams repeated those three words often to her 28-year-old daughter, who served three years in a Kansas prison for a 1988 armed robbery.

California lawmaker proposes selling San Quentin prisonupdated: Thu Apr 02 2009 12:49:00

If one California lawmaker has his way, his cash-strapped state may have an arresting real estate listing on the market: San Quentin State Prison.

Notorious jail a hot property?updated: Thu Apr 02 2009 12:49:00

A lawmaker has introduced legislation that would sell the famous San Quentin prison to developers. CNN's Dan Simon reports.

Ex-Panther says racism put him on death rowupdated: Tue Mar 24 2009 03:07:00

Mumia Abu-Jamal sits on Pennsylvania's death row, perhaps the most recognized of the 228 condemned inmates at the Greene Correctional Facility, an hour south of Pittsburgh.

New Mexico governor repeals death penalty in stateupdated: Wed Mar 18 2009 23:06:00

New Mexico Gov. Bill Richardson signed a bill Wednesday repealing the death penalty in his state, his office confirmed.

CNNMoney: No Club Fed likely for Madoffupdated: Thu Mar 12 2009 11:54:00

The next big question about convicted scammer Bernard Madoff, who has been ensconced in his $7 million home for the past several months, is where he'll likely spend the rest of his life.

Study: 7.3 million in U.S. prison system in '07updated: Mon Mar 02 2009 15:09:00

A record number of Americans served time in corrections systems across the country in 2007, according to a report released Monday by the Pew Center on the States.

Behind the Scenes: Inside San Quentin's Prison University Projectupdated: Thu Feb 26 2009 12:17:00

San Quentin Prison sits like a fortress along the bay just north of San Francisco. It is bordered by some of the most expensive residential real estate in the country. But at the edge of this scenic peninsula, 5,400 inmates are locked up.

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