John Archibald: Can Inmates Ever Stop Serving their Time?
The problems with Alabama’s prisons are well documented. The state prison system is at almost twice capacity. It’s costing the state more money every year. Plus there are numerous allegations of poor, even illegal treatment of prisoners by employees. Those issues were part of a panel discussion this week called Issues and Ales. WBHM hosted the event along with the Alabama Media Group and the Center for Investigative Reporting. Alabama Media Group columnist John Archibald listened to that conversation and shares his thoughts.
Alabama Governor Robert Bentley is standing by his opposition to Syrian refugees settling in the state following last week’s terror attacks in Paris. Authorities say one of the suspects in those attacks may have entered Europe with refugees feeling Syria. More than half of governors, mostly Republicans, have made similar moves to Bentley. But it’s also prompted plenty of criticism. We talk about it with Alabama Media Group columnist John Archibald.
Police in Tuscaloosa are under scrutiny after video of them using a stun gun and baton in an incident involving University of Alabama students went viral. It happened early Sunday. It shows police arguing with students in an apartment. When the occupants refuse to leave, police storm in and drag out two men and woman. A police officer can be seen using the stun gun on one man. Another officer hits the man repeatedly with the baton. We talk about the situation and police response with Alabama Media Group columnist John Archibald.
Birmingham police are reviewing an incident in which an officer shot a suspect on a street in East Lake after dash cam video released this week shows the situation isn’t exactly as police reported. The two officers involved say the man pointed a gun at them prompting one to shoot. That officer, Daniel Aguirre, received a departmental award for his actions. The man, Aubrey Williams, survived but faces attempted murder charges. His attorney says the video shows he did not point a gun at the officers. We talk about the situation with Alabama Media Group columnist John Archibald. He also talks about a second mistrial in the case of a Madison police officer accused of using excessive force against an Indian man.
Alabama House Speaker Mike Hubbard isn’t scheduled to go on trial on felony ethics charges until March, but Alabama political watchers received an early helping of the courtroom fireworks this week with a pre-trial hearing. Lawyers for Hubbard are arguing the case should be thrown out because of selective prosecution and prosecutorial misconduct. Prosecutors say it’s all a distraction. We hear more about it from Alabama Media Group columnist John Archibald.
Courtroom and legal-themed shows proliferate in entertainment media, but the real nuts and bolts of the legal process don’t often attract attention. That’s not the case for a private probation company which drew outrage around Alabama for the escalating fees it charged people with minor offenses such as traffic violations. That company, Judicial Correction Services, has announced it is leaving the state and Alabama Media Group columnist John Archibald is among those who is cheering.