Skip to main contentSkip to main content
Updating results

Correctional Systems

  • Updated

Authorities say a Texas inmate who was serving a life sentence for murder when he escaped from a transport bus last week got out of his restraints and a cage before stabbing the driver. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice said Wednesday that 46-year-old Gonzalo Lopez is still on the run. Lopez was being transported May 12 to a medical appointment in a caged area of the bus. The department says Lopez freed himself from his hand and leg restraints, cut through the metal of the cage and crawled out through the bottom. Officials say he then attacked the driver.

  • Updated

In oasis towns and villages by the desert in China’s far west Xinjiang region, over 10,000 Uyghurs have vanished – ripped from their families and sentenced to years, even decades in prison on vague, secretive charges. Data leaked to The Associated Press shows that in a single county in the Uyghur heartland of China, the imprisonment rate is by far the highest known in the world – over 30 times higher than the rest of China. Experts say that Xinjiang officials are using the formal legal system as a “fig leaf” for mass incarcerations, distracting the international community from state abuses and lack of due process.

  • Updated

In oasis towns and villages by the desert in China’s far west Xinjiang region, over 10,000 Uyghurs have vanished – ripped from their families and sentenced to years, even decades in prison on vague, secretive charges. Data leaked to The Associated Press shows that in a single county in the Uyghur heartland of China, the imprisonment rate is by far the highest in the world – over 30 times higher than the rest of China. Experts say that Xinjiang officials are using the formal legal system as a “fig leaf” for mass incarcerations, distracting the international community from state abuses and lack of due process.

  • Updated

Federal prosecutors have recommended a prison sentence of more than two months for a Virginia man who stormed the U.S. Capitol wearing a “Camp Auschwitz” sweatshirt. Photographs of Robert Keith Packer wearing the sweatshirt with the antisemitic message went viral after the Jan. 6, 2021, attack. U.S. District Judge Carl Nichols is scheduled to sentence Packer on May 23. He faces a maximum sentence of six months imprisonment after pleading guilty in January to a misdemeanor count of parading, demonstrating or picketing in a Capitol building. On Monday, prosecutors asked Nichols to sentence Packer to 75 days of incarceration followed by three years of probation.

  • Updated

The search continues for a Texas inmate serving a life sentence for murder who escaped from a transport bus after stabbing the driver. Gonzalo Lopez escaped custody Thursday. Officials say 16 prisoners were aboard the bus, but no one else escaped. The bus driver’s injuries weren’t considered life-threatening. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice says a $22,500 reward is being offered for information leading to Lopez's capture. Lopez was convicted in 2006 of killing a man along the Texas-Mexico border. The inmate escaped in Leon County, a rural area between Dallas and Houston. Classes were canceled Friday in the nearby Centerville Independent School District as a precaution.

  • Updated

A former Tennessee nurse whose medication error killed a patient has been sentenced to three years of probation. Hundreds of health care workers rallied outside the Nashville courthouse Friday during the sentencing of RaDonda Vaught. They say criminalizing honest hospital mistakes will lead to more deaths in hospitals because health care workers won’t be as forthcoming. Vaught apologized to relatives of the victim, Charlene Murphey, and several said she wouldn’t have wanted to see her jailed. Vaught was found guilty of criminally negligent homicide and gross neglect of an impaired adult. Many nurses who blame systemic problems and say the risk of prison has made nursing intolerable.

  • Updated

When police were called to deal with a teenager in the throes of a mental health crisis, everything went wrong. Cedric “C.J.” Lofton had had a troubled life, and his final hours were horrendous — he was dragged from the porch of his foster home, taken to a juvenile facility instead of a mental hospital, and shackled face down until he lost consciousness. No one has been charged in C.J.'s death; the prosecutor in the case raised questions about nearly everyone involved in C.J.’s care, from the juvenile workers to the foster care system, and said this death never should have happened.

Authorities say two inmates have been found dead in the same unit of a local jail in South Carolina. The Greenville County Coroner's Office says the Greenville County jail inmates were found unconscious by employees around 4 p.m. Thursday. Paramedics pronounced them dead inside the jail. Autopsies are planned for Friday. The coroner's office didn’t release any additional information including whether there was any sign of trauma or the names of the inmates or the charges they faced. The Greenville County Sheriff’s Office runs the jail and hadn’t released any information on the deaths Thursday night.

  • Updated

Texas authorities say a prisoner escaped from a transport after stabbing a guard in a rural county roughly halfway between Houston and Dallas. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice say a search is underway for 46-year-old Gonzalo Lopez in Leon County who escaped Thursday. Prison officials haven't provided details about the events leading up to Lopez’s escape but say the guard's injuries are not considered life-threatening. Lopez was convicted of murder in 2006. Prison records show he was most recently being held at a lockup in Gatesville, more than 100 miles from where authorities are searching.

  • Updated

An Indiana sheriff says the Alabama murder suspect and jailer who evaded authorities for more than a week were heavily armed and preparing for a shootout when they were captured. Vanderburgh County Sheriff Dave Wedding said they were carrying four handguns and an AR-15 rifle along with $29,000 in cash. He said convict Casey White showed no remorse over the death of jail official Vicky White, who was found mortally wounded with a gun in her hand. He said they believe Vicky White killed herself, but a coroner will make the final determination.

  • Updated

A prominent national criminal justice advocacy group is pushing the Justice Department to support the release of women who were sexually abused by staff at a federal women’s prison in California. The group, known as Families Against Mandatory Minimums, sent a letter Tuesday to Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco pushing for the Justice Department to file motions for compassionate release for those who have been victimized at the prison. It follows reporting from The Associated Press that revealed a toxic culture that enabled sexual abuse of inmates to continue for years at the Federal Correctional Institution in Dublin, California, a women-only facility called the “rape club” by many who know it. 

  • Updated

Authorities say a former Alabama jail official has died and the murder suspect she is accused of helping escape from custody has been apprehended in Indiana after more than a week on the run. The two fugitives were caught Monday in Evansville, Indiana, after U.S. Marshals pursued their vehicle and then crashed into it. Officials say Casey White surrendered and Vicky White shot herself, and was taken to a hospital. The two are not related.  Vanderburgh County Coroner Steve Lockyear said White died from her injuries. The arrests ended a nationwide manhunt that began April 29.

  • Updated

Authorities in Tennessee say they have located an abandoned vehicle used by a man wanted in Alabama for murder and the jail official who disappeared with him. Williamson County Sheriff said via Twitter on Friday that a vehicle used by escaped Alabama inmate Casey White and former Correctional Officer Vicky White was located in Bethesda. A nationwide manhunt is ongoing for the pair. Casey White was awaiting trial in a capital murder case. Vicky White was the assistant director of corrections for the jail in Lauderdale County, Alabama.

  • Updated

A New York City judge’s son who stormed the U.S. Capitol wearing a furry “caveman” costume has been sentenced to eight months in prison. U.S. District Judge James Boasberg also sentenced 35-year-old Aaron Mostofsky to one year of supervised release and ordered him to perform 200 hours of community service. Mostofsky was dressed in a furry costume during the riot on Jan. 6, 2021. He told a friend that the costume expressed his belief that “even a caveman” would know that the 2020 presidential election was stolen from former President Donald Trump. Prosecutors say Mostofsky was among the first to breach the Capitol building after pushing against a police barrier that officers were trying to move.

A $100 million fund to settle sexual and physical abuse claims at New Hampshire’s state-run youth detention center is headed to the governor’s desk. The state Senate voted 14-10 Thursday in favor of creating a fund to compensate those who were abused at the Sununu Youth Services Center in Manchester. Eleven former workers were arrested last year. Nearly 450 former residents have sued the state with allegations involving more than 150 staffers from 1963 to 2018. Victims of sexual abuse would be eligible for payments of up to $1.5 million each. Payments to victims of physical abuse would be capped at $150,000.

  • Updated

Attorney General Merrick Garland says an escaped murder suspect and jail officer who aided him are “regarded as extremely dangerous." Garland says the U.S. Marshals Service has taken over leading the search for the two fugitives. Law enforcement officials in Alabama have been looking for Casey White, who was awaiting trial on a capital murder case, and Vicky White, a jail official, after the pair vanished after leaving the Lauderdale County Detention Center last week. The two aren't related, but authorities say they had a “special relationship.” Garland says the two should be considered armed and dangerous and that anyone who spots them should not approach them. 

North Carolina state employees will be getting an extra day of vacation for receiving a COVID-19 booster. Gov. Roy Cooper issued an executive order Wednesday that provides the leave to workers whose Cabinet-level agencies report to him. The extra time off will be given to those who have already received the first COVID-19 booster or those who show documentation by Aug. 31 of receiving one. Cooper also announced that agencies are pausing a policy that began last September in which unvaccinated employees would have to be tested at least weekly. It still may apply to workers in health care facilities or prisons.

  • Updated

An ongoing Associated Press investigation has uncovered deep, previously unreported flaws within the Justice Department’s largest law enforcement agency, the federal Bureau of Prisons. Its secrets have long been hidden within its walls and barbed-wire fences. The AP’s reporting has revealed layer after layer of abuse, neglect and leadership missteps. Serious problems include rampant sexual abuse by workers, severe staffing shortages, inmate escapes and the mishandling of the COVID-19 pandemic. Such revelations led directly to the agency’s director announcing his resignation earlier this year.

  • Updated

The director of the federal Bureau of Prisons and a task force of senior agency officials traveled recently to a federal women's prison in California. The officials were under pressure to end a culture of sexual abuse at the facility. What they found was a prison in deep despair. An inmate screamed through tears about sexually abusive staff. A demoralized workforce confronted senior leaders but with no success. A new warden acknowledged broken trust. An aging facility was woefully unequipped to prevent further misconduct. A follow-up to an Associated Press investigation finds that the crisis at the federal correctional institution in Dublin, California, is far from over.

The director of the federal Bureau of Prisons and a task force of senior agency officials traveled recently to a federal women’s prison in California. The officials were under pressure to end a culture of sexual abuse at the facility. What they found was a prison in deep despair. An inmate screamed through tears about sexually abusive staff. A demoralized workforce confronted senior leaders but with no success. A new warden acknowledged broken trust. An aging facility was woefully unequipped to prevent further misconduct. A follow-up to an Associated Press investigation finds that the crisis at the federal correctional institution in Dublin, California, is far from over.

  • Updated

An Alabama sheriff says a jail official visited a murder suspect in prison months before helping him escape and that her actions suggest their plan had been in the works for some time. Lauderdale County Sheriff Rick Singleton said Wednesday that investigators have learned the female jail official had visited the inmate in a state prison between his stints at their county detention facility. A nationwide manhunt is ongoing for Casey White, who was awaiting trial on a capital murder case, and Vicky White, the assistant director of corrections for the jail in Lauderdale County. Authorities say the twor disappeared Friday.

  • Updated

A judge has ruled that an Arizona prisoner convicted in the 1978 killing of a university student is mentally fit to be put to death next week. That keeps on track what would be the first execution in the state in nearly eight years. Pinal County Superior Court Judge Robert Olson rejected defense lawyers' argument that Clarence Dixon’s psychological problems prevent him from rationally understanding why the state wants to end his life. Dixon was convicted of murder in the killing of 21-year-old Arizona State University student Deana Bowdoin. The ruling was signed late Tuesday night and released on Wednesday. Dixon's lawyers said they will appeal the ruling.

A judge plans to issue a ruling Tuesday night on a request by an Arizona prisoner to stop his May 11 execution on the grounds that his psychological problems keep him from rationally understanding why the state wants to end his life. Lawyers for Clarence Dixon say executing their client in the 1978 killing of 21-year-old college student Deana Bowdoin would violate protections against executing people who are mentally unfit. Prosecutors said there was nothing preventing Dixon from understanding the reason for the execution. Dixon would be the first person executed in Arizona in nearly eight years

  • Updated

Authorities say an Alabama inmate had a “special relationship” with the jail official authorities believe assisted his escape. The Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office said in a Tuesday news release that inmates indicated there was a special relationship between the two, and  investigators were able to confirmed that. The sheriff's office did not elaborate. A manhunt is underway for Casey White, who was awaiting trial on a capital murder case, and jail official Vicky White after the pair vanished after leaving the Lauderdale County Detention Center on Friday morning.

  • Updated

The head of New Orleans' juvenile jail has resigned amid investigations by the city and a TV station. The city made a brief announcement Monday that Kyshun Webster had resigned Friday from the Juvenile Justice Intervention Center. The statement was released hours before WWL-TV aired a report on its investigation. After four youths escaped and hijacked a car in January, Webster said the center was budgeted for 103 employees but had only 47. The station reported that after Webster took over in October 2018, 50 employees were fired and 79 left voluntarily. The station reported that Webster was often away from the office.

Get up-to-the-minute news sent straight to your device.

Topics

News Alerts

Breaking News

Husker News