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Incarceration for any race group is traumatic in itself, but the odds mights be drastically different when it comes to Black offenders.
A new study found proof that Black people who commit crimes are actually more likely to get federal life sentences than both Hispanic and white criminals, based off an examination of more than 366,000 convictions in 90 federal district courts from 2010 to 2017.
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What makes the situation even more racially unbalanced is the fact that researchers discovered Black offenders only accounted for fewer than a third of all cases. However, nearly half of cases eligible for life behind federal bars involved someone Black. When comparing that number to white offenders, who accounted for more than a third of all cases, they only made up less than a quarter of cases eligible for a life sentence. Hispanic offenders were hit with more life sentences than white offenders, but compared to Black offenders were only half as likely to be served with a life sentence.
Take a look at some brief details and bullet points that show these numbers matter, via Axios:
“What they’re saying: ‘Two out of three people serving life terms are defendants of color, and some believe that life sentences are fraught with racial bias,’ Brian D. Johnson, a University of Maryland criminology and criminal justice professor who led the study, said in a statement.
- ‘If there are racial disparities in this type of sentencing, we must investigate the mechanisms that contribute to them.’
The intrigue: The study comes as advocates in various cities seek to advance police and criminal justice reforms amid rising crime.
- Rev. Markel Hutchins, CEO of MovementForward, told Axios the study showed that Black leaders, police organizations and lawmakers need to work together to end racial disparities.
- ‘We have to deal with issues of systematic racism and inequity … from those who get the most speeding tickets to those who get the healthiest sentences for federal crimes.”
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All of this isn’t said to further divide the races on another level, but more or less to show how racial disparities impact us in more ways than we think. Let us know what you make of these number by sounding off with your thoughts.
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