criminal justice

High schools promote a four year college degree to students, often placing less priority on other options like vocational training, two year degrees and more.  We learn about a program in one community that is working to explain the different choices.  

More colleges and universities are making standardized test scores from the ACT and SAT scores optional when it comes to admissions.  

And we get a lesson on coyotes and why more are showing up in urban areas.  That and more on this episode of Statewide.

Prosecutors Seek New Sentence In Laquan McDonald Case

Feb 11, 2019
Office of the Illinois Attorney General

Prosecutors on Monday asked Illinois' highest court to review the less than seven year prison sentence for the white Chicago police officer who was convicted in the shooting death of black teenager Laquan McDonald.

chicago47.org

A Democratic candidate for Illinois governor says he would commute prison sentences for low-level drug offenders.

In a policy speech Tuesday in Chicago’s Bronzeville neighborhood, Chicago Alderman Ameya Pawar put a lot of the blame for today’s violence and criminal justice issues on poverty and the war on drugs.

“The war on drugs was a success because the war on drugs was never actually about drugs,” he said. “It was against black people.”

Rauner Signs Bill Reforming Bail Procedure

Jun 12, 2017

A new law in Illinois will make it easier for lower-income individuals charged with violations to be released while awaiting trial.

The bill was signed Friday by Gov. Bruce Rauner and took effect immediately.

Until now, bail in Illinois often came down to money. An accused person who had it could be released while waiting for a court date. But those without funds would spend that time locked up. Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx said people should only be in jail if they’re dangerous or a flight risk.

Wikipedia

The Illinois House approved a plan meant to help victims of violent crime across the state.  

Many people who commit crime started out as victims. And in some neighborhoods, this can lead to a cycle of trauma and retribution.  The plan would  address the role of trauma in criminal behavior, targeting high-risk, underserved communities. People would be on the ground, building relationships to help victims better deal with their grief and anger. 

 

Department of Justice / whitehouse.gov

President Barack Obama has pardoned one Illinois resident and shortened the sentences of seven other Illinoisans convicted of federal crimes.

flickr user / Michael Coghlan "Prison Bars" (CC BY-SA 2.0)

Gov. Bruce Rauner has signed a slew of bills aimed at overhauling parts of the state's criminal justice system, including new rules for juvenile offenders.

Among the bills the Republican governor signed into law on Monday are proposals to change the minimum probation period for convicted juvenile, allow juveniles to immediately petition for expungement, and require an attorney be present when police question juveniles younger than 15.

Rauner says the criminal justice system should be approached "with more compassion."

  Who should pay for the Illinois courts?

Illinois’ judicial system is increasingly being funded by the men and women who find themselves in court. For both civil and criminal cases, fees and fines have been growing, especially in the last decade.

Now a task force is out with its examination of the system and recommendations for change.

To get the lay of the land, we thought we’d revisit our report on the subject from last year.