Criminal Justice

Flickr user: hitthatswitch / CC

The complication-laden execution of Clayton Lockett, an Oklahoma death-row inmate, last week had everyone from President Obama to the U.N. High Commission on Human Rights weighing in on the tragic and torturous event.

Following a botched execution in Oklahoma, anti-death penalty groups and attorneys are once again calling on the Texas Department of Criminal Justice to provide full transparency in the state's execution process.

Ryan Poppe / TPR News

Last session lawmakers passed a bill that provides employers liability relief when they hire nonviolent offenders. In this interim period ahead of the 2015 session, members of the House are considering adding landlords to that same list.

Studies show former offenders with stable housing are less likely to commit another crime, which is one of the reasons the Texas House Committee on Judiciary and Civil Jurisprudence is discussing whether to provide legal protection by allowing landlords liability relief when they rent to ex-offenders.

According to state officials, the Texas Department of Criminal Justice counts a large number of inmates with mental illness and drug addiction because the state lacks funding for their treatment. 

On Tuesday members of the House Corrections and Criminal Jurisprudence Committee held a special joint committee hearing to discuss the huge influx of mentally ill people who are being sent to prison.  

Ryan E. Poppe / TPR News

The Human Rights Clinic at the University of Texas at Austin School of Law released a report that shows the Texas Department of Criminal Justice is violating prisoners' human and constitutional rights by exposing them to high temperatures.

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