CrimProf Blog

Editor: Kevin Cole
Univ. of San Diego School of Law

Monday, September 23, 2013

"A Tie to Mental Illness in the Violence Behind Bars"

From the New York Times:

AMARILLO — The most violent prisons in the Texas state system share a common factor: they house a high proportion of mentally ill inmates.

. . .

Advocates of overhauling criminal justice say the numbers show that the state’s approach to incarcerating the mentally ill is not working. But criminal justice department officials say the numbers do not tell the whole story. They say state facilities are safe, and programs aimed at helping mentally ill inmates are working.

. . .

Scott Medlock, director of the prisoners’ rights program at the Texas Civil Rights Project, said state officials should consider structural changes, including spreading mentally ill inmates among many units instead of concentrating them at a few.

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