The Probation Trap
October 24, 2019 6:53 AM Subscribe
Counting jail, prison, probation, and parole, Pennsylvania now has the nation’s second-highest rate of people under correctional control. We found a system that routinely punishes poverty, mental illness, and addiction. We met a woman who was jailed two months for failing to report to probation because she wasn’t permitted to bring her newborn child and couldn’t afford a babysitter. We met a man who was locked up because he didn’t have $227 to pay for a court-ordered drug evaluation. As a result, some people remain under court control for years after being convicted of low-level crimes, resentenced two, three, four, or five times over for infractions including missing appointments, falling behind on payments, or testing positive for marijuana.
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