Crime

Lynne Stewart passes

Featured image In late 2013 the radical lawyer Lynne Stewart received a “compassionate release” from prison in light of her terminal illness. Stewart was released with the consent of the prosecutors who joined her motion for release. On Tuesday Stewart died of the cancer that prompted her release. The New York Times has published a long and respectful obituary. I met up with Stewart at the national convention of the National Lawyers »

Our under-incarceration problem, California edition [UPDATED]

Featured image Keith Boyer, a police officer in Whittier, California, was shot and killed earlier this week. The killer is believed to be Michael Christopher Mejia. According to the Los Angeles Times, Mejia is “a career criminal with a history of drugs and violence.” He has “cycled in and out of jail for repeatedly violating the terms of his release.” Here are the details: Court records show that Mejia was sentenced in »

Will prosecutors throw the book at inauguration rioters?

Featured image The women’s protest march on the day after the inauguration of President Trump was a peaceful affair. The protesters I encountered were mostly good-natured, especially given how disappointed they must have been. Inauguration day was a different story. Rioting left six police officers injured and caused tens of thousands of dollars in property damage to vehicles and store windows. Police arrested 230 people in connection with the riot. So far, »

Crime: Don’t Look Now, But. . .

Featured image Official federal crime statistics for 2016 from the Dept. of Justice won’t be available for several more months yet, but The Economist has done some data collecting on its own from big cities in the U.S. The findings about rising murder rates are not good: The Economist has gathered murder statistics for 2016 for the 50 cities with the most murders. These places contain 15% of the country’s population and around »

Obama Pardons Sideshow Bob

Featured image Anyone recall this scene from The Simpsons from way back in its first or second season (when George H.W. Bush was president): Well good grief: But on Thursday, his last full day in office, Obama announced 330 more commutations, for nonviolent drug offenders, bringing his total number of clemencies to 1,715. He has granted commutations to more people than the past 12 presidents combined, including 568 inmates with life sentences. »

Jury sentences Roof to death

Featured image A federal jury in South Carolina sentenced Dylann Roof to death today for killing nine black parishioners inside a church during a bible study session. It took the jury less than three hours to decide upon this sentence. The sentence is obviously just, and it is a reminder of why we need the death penalty. A sentence of life imprisonment would be horribly inadequate in Roof’s case. It would not »

A window into a depraved culture

Featured image In the important City Journal column “A window into a depraved culture,” Heather Mac Donald turns to the kidnapping and torture of the disabled white man by four black men and women in Chicago last week. Heather may be our foremost public intellectual on current controversies involving race and crime. Everything Heather writes on the subject is must reading, yet this column merits special attention. What is the cultural context »

The BBC Follows Up On Hate Crime In Chicago

Featured image I wrote last night about the horrific crime in Chicago, where four young African-Americans kidnapped a mentally challenged white youth and tortured him for somewhere between 24 and 48 hours, while unaccountably documenting a portion of their vicious assault on Facebook Live. On the video the perpetrators can be heard shouting “F*** white people!” and “F*** Trump!.” I pointed out that the Associated Press’s account of the crime completely failed »

Blaming “them”; it’s the new American way

Featured image Many readers will recall the Trump rally in North Carolina where a 79 year-old elbowed a young African-American protester. The old man, John Franklin (“Quick Draw”) McGraw was unapologetic. “We don’t know if he’s ISIS; we don’t know who he is,” McGraw said. “The next time we see him, we might have to kill him.” The next time McGraw saw the protester, Rakeem Jones, was in a Fayetteville, North Carolina »

Not merry in Chicago

Featured image The New York Times reports that at least 27 people were shot, at seven of them fatally, during a 48-hour period over Christmas weekend. The seven fatal shootings brought the total number of homicides in Chicago so far this year to 745, a 56 percent increase from the number at the same time last year. According to the Chicago Tribune, this year is the first in nearly two decades that »

An Appalling Story With a (Relatively) Happy Ending

Featured image We wrote here about the horrific case of a 10-year-old boy in Vienna who was raped by an Iraqi refugee at a swimming pool: At the pool, Amir A. dragged the schoolboy, aged ten, into the changing rooms where he locked the door and violently sexually assaulted him, leaving him in need of urgent treatment at a local children’s hospital. … Amir A., who had worked in Iraq as a »

The War on Cops Comes to San Antonio

Featured image San Antonio police officer Benjamin Marconi was writing a traffic ticket outside police headquarters earlier today when a motorist pulled up behind him, got out of his car, approached Marconi and shot him twice in the head. The murderer got back into his car and drove away. The perpetrator has not yet been caught, so we don’t know whether he was inspired by the Black Lives Matter anti-police movement. What »

Comey stands by his decision not to prosecute Clinton

Featured image James Comey has told Congress that, having reviewed the emails the FBI recently obtained, he has not changed his opinion that Hillary Clinton shouldn’t be prosecuted. “Based on our review, we have not changed our conclusions that we expressed in July,” Comey said in the letter to top Republicans on the House Oversight Committee. This result seemed inevitable to me. The conclusions Comey expressed in July were based on his »

Obama vouches for Ma Clinton

Featured image Barack Obama has emerged as a forceful advocate of Hillary Clinton in the course of the presidential campaign. He is more popular than she is, but they have a lot in common. They both have an equally low opinion of the intelligence of the American voters and they have a lot of evidence to support their opinion. They also share an equally wayward relationship with the truth. Obama’s signature domestic »

Report: Clinton Foundation investigation a high priority at FBI

Featured image Fox News reports that the FBI’s investigation into the Clinton Foundation, an investigation that’s been going on for more than a year, now has a “very high priority.” According to Fox’s sources, FBI agents have interviewed and re-interviewed multiple people (some for the third time) in the Foundation case to determine whether there was a “pay to play” interaction between then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and the Clinton Foundation. The »

The Ferguson effect in Ferguson

Featured image Newly released figures show that murders increased by 11 percent in the U.S. in 2015. 1,532 more people were murdered last year than the year before. The murder rate (murders per 100,000 population) rose by 10 percent. According to Kent Scheidegger of the Crime and Consequences blog, only twice in more than a half century has the rate jumped double digits in one year. In one other year, the increase »

Violent Crime Jumped in 2015

Featured image The FBI released its definitive report on crime in 2015, so it’s now official: violent crime spiked upward in 2015. * In 2015, an estimated 1,197,704 violent crimes occurred nationwide, an increase of 3.9 percent from the 2014 estimate. *** * There were an estimated 372.6 violent crimes per 100,000 inhabitants in 2015, a rate that rose 3.1 percent when compared with the 2014 estimated violent crime rate. After decades »