Author Archives: Salvador Solorio

Governor Brown pardons more than 850 since taking office

By Salvador Solorio Gov. Jerry Brown has given more than 850 pardons since 2011. This trend contrasts with the three prior governors, who granted a total of 28 pardons, reported Laurel Rosenhall of CAL Matters. Clemency applications sent to the governor describe youth indiscretions, lives of poverty, drug addiction, drug deals, accidental shootings and drunken […]

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Trump’s victory means private prison growth

By Salvador Solorio Donald Trump’s presidential victory has breathed new life into the for-profit prison industry. After the Department of Justice announced phasing out privately run jails in August, shares in CoreCivic, formerly known as Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), and GEO Group dropped, but the day after the election CoreCivic traded as much as […]

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President’s deportation policy could increase prison population

America’s prison population is likely to rise for the first time in nearly a decade if President Donald Trump keeps his promise to detain and deport millions of immigrants, The Associated Press reports. Such a policy would benefit private for-profit prison companies, the story added. After Trump commented on immigrantion policies, their stock prices jumped, […]

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Daughter sues CDCR over father’s negligent death

By Salvador Solorio Hugo “Yogi” Pinell’s daughter is suing the California prison system, claiming her father was murdered because of negligent supervision, according to a Courthouse News article by Nick Cahill. Allegra Casimir-Taylor claims her father was “released into the general population despite the fact that they (prison officials) knew that he was targeted by […]

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Two views of how Prop. 47 is working out:

Positive: Barriers to employment were reduced By Salvador Solorio Proposition 47 has allowed many former offenders access to better jobs and opportunities. The voter-approved initiative downgraded drug possession and some thefts from felonies to misdemeanors. “This wave of new workers will inevitably benefit the economy, but it also decreases the likelihood of re-arrest,” USA Today […]

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New law requires inmate’s consent for federal interviews

By Salvador Solorio A new California law requires law enforcement agencies to have inmates sign a written consent before being interviewed by the federal immigration agency. Gov. Jerry Brown signed the measure, Assembly Bill 2792, on Sept. 28. It limits interviews by ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement). The governor wrote, “The author and proponents greatly […]

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SHU inmates down 65 percent since 2012

By Salvador Solorio The use of Security Housing Unit (SHU) cells in California has reportedly dropped 65 percent. As of December 2012, the state had 9,870 prisoners in SHU, according to the Center for Constitutional Rights, which represented the prisoners. This August there were 3,471. Of the 1,557 prisoners kept in SHU for 10 or […]

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Inmates earn neuroscience degree

By Salvador Solorio Cornell University instructors are now teaching neuroscience at New York’s maximum-security Auburn Correctional Facility. Prisoners are enrolled in Cornell Prison Education Project (CPEP), and those that graduate will receive an associate’s degree from Cayuga Community College reported Atlantic Magazine. Students attending the introductory neuroscience class are not seasoned scholars; they are convicted […]

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Lawsuit lowers SHU occupancy by two- third

By Salvador Solorio Following a landmark lawsuit settlement, Security Housing Unit (SHU) occupancy has been cut by two-thirds. The lawsuit followed California prison hunger strikes in 2011 and 2013 that protested indefinite isolation in SHU facilities, reported Alex Emslie of KQED news. Prisoners specifically protested against indefinite SHU terms based solely on prison authorities’ suspicions […]

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Gov. Brown names 9 to CDCR positions

Gov. Jerry Brown announced his latest appointments to CDCR offices, according to the Imperial Valley News. Kelly Santoro has been appointed warden at North Kern State Prison. She had been acting warden since 2015. Prior experience includes: chief deputy warden at Wasco Prison, associate warden at Corcoran, facility captain, correctional counselor and correctional officer. Albert […]

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