National Catholic Reporter

The Independent News Source

Book relates public defender's experience with police cover-ups

 |  NCR Today

The St. Louis Catholic Action Network is going to read and discuss The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness by Michelle Alexander. I heard Alexander interviewed on public radio. Here's what I remember her saying about her motivation to write the book:

She was a public defender in San Francisco, and their office had begun tracking stop-and-frisk because clients were saying the police were framing them, saying they were holding dope when they were clean. This young man walked in with documented police searches, a long list of them, neatly laid out with dates, witness names and names of arresting officers.

Alexander interviewed him and was delighted with his data until she learned he had a felony conviction for possession. "But I wasn't holding," he said. "I was framed." She said she couldn't use the data and in front of her, he tore it up and walked out. She never found him, even though two years later it turned out the cops had indeed lied over and over about drug possession and many young men were exonerated.

Attention subscribers and donors! We’re rolling out an
online account management tool. Don’t miss out. 
Add or confirm your email address today.

I'm eager to read the book and hear what other readers make of it.

NCR Comment code: (Comments can be found below)

Before you can post a comment, you must verify your email address at Disqus.com/verify.
Comments from unverified email addresses will be deleted.

  • Be respectful. Do not attack the writer. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the original idea will be deleted. NCR reserves the right to close comment threads when discussions are no longer productive.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through. If you see something objectionable, please click the "Report abuse" button. Once a comment has been flagged, an NCR staff member will investigate.

For more detailed guidelines, visit our User Guidelines page.

For help on how to post a comment, visit our reference page.

 

Friends of NCR 300x80 web ad.jpg

NCR Email Alerts

 

In This Issue

February 27- March 12, 2015

02-27-2015.jpg

Not all of our content is online. Subscribe to receive all the news and features you won't find anywhere else.