CRIMINAL JUSTICE + POLICING

Virginia prison officials say they want to stop separating mothers who give birth while incarcerated from their newborns by opening a nursery in one of their women’s prisons.The proposal is part of what the Department of Corrections is billing as a “gender responsivity plan” they’ll begin rolling out next...
The number of Virginians who support legalized recreational marijuana spiked over the past two years to 61 percent, according to a poll conducted earlier this month by the University of Mary Washington.The last time the school asked voters for their views on legal recreational pot (in September 2017) only...
Lawyers in Richmond’s public defender’s office, in the midst of a campaign to increase their salaries, say they’re paid so much less than the prosecutors they face in court that it raises questions about whether low-income defendants are getting a fair shake at justice.“If you’re going to fund one...
Chief Larry Boone has taken to begging.As young black men continue to wield guns to settle differences, rob and murder each other, Norfolk’s top cop has repeatedly criticized, cajoled and complained this past year in community gatherings, press conferences and through social media. Boone is urging everyone to approach gun...
WASHINGTON -- When Congress passed the landmark background check legislation known as the Brady Bill back in 1993, two Virginia Republicans were among the 54 GOP lawmakers in the U.S. House who voted to send the bill to President Bill Clinton’s desk. They were: ex-Reps. Herbert Bateman and Frank Wolf....
Emporia is a well-known speed trap, dreaded by heavy-footed drivers who might think the city near the border of North Carolina funds its operations entirely through the punishment of too-fast drivers.But 124 miles away, there's a town that relies on bad drivers’ traffic fines and similar payments more than...
The same advocates. The same arguments. Many of the same pieces of legislation.Five hours of public testimony on gun safety legislation Tuesday tread familiar ground in a statehouse that’s been debating the issues in tightly-packed committee rooms for decades.A Falls Church City Council member pleaded with lawmakers to allow...
A researcher at Boston University told a state panel weighing gun legislation Monday that passing three new firearms laws in Virginia could lead to 124 fewer homicides a year – an estimate she said she considers conservative.Claire Boine, who co-authored a study on the most effective policies in reducing...
Inmates at Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women weren’t particularly surprised when Margie Ryder died last month.Sad, yes. But sick inmates at Fluvanna die with frequency.In 2016, a judge approved a settlement of a lawsuit brought by inmates alleging medical care at the facility was so poor it violated inmates’...
Taking cues from other states and cities that have implemented them, Del. Todd Gilbert, R-Shenandoah, wants Virginia to establish more programs that encourage people to leave violent lifestyles in order to curb shooting deaths.Weeks after the General Assembly abruptly adjourned a special session called to address gun violence after...