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Data-Driven Sentencing May Punish the Poor and More in MuckReads Weekly

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"If everybody's getting hooked up, nobody's going to say anything." Federal air marshals may have skipped some "high risk" flights that would not fit into their busy schedule of romantic affairs.  The alleged transgressions aren't the first for this service that expanded from a few dozen prior to 9/11 to a few thousand. "The male-dominated agency long has suffered from  allegations of sexism, cronyism and other  misconduct," writes Reveal. — Reveal via @mtfarnsworth

Data-driven sentencing may punish the poor. In an effort to cut prison populations and save billions of dollars, prisons across the U.S. are using lengthy questionnaires to determine inmates' sentencing and the risk of releasing. But while the questionnaires asks about the criminals' history, it also explores issues beyond it. Questions like: Do you have a phone? How many times have you moved? Was one of your parents in jail? Some experts feel that the questions put the poor in an outsized risk of longer sentences. "It's basically an explicit embrace of the state saying we should sentence people differently based on poverty," one law professor says. — The AP via @mattapuzzo

"These kids are virtually hog-tied." At least 100,000 children are handcuffed, belly chained and put in leg irons for their day in court each year in the U.S., MotherJones reports. Prosecutors and law enforcement say shackling can help maintains courtroom order. The American Bar Association disagrees and is pushing to end the practice. — MotherJones via @mintymin


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