Category: Blog

Event Recap: Henry McCollum, Leon Brown Attorneys Talk Wrongful Convictions

By Annie Han In 1983, Red Springs, North Carolina, 19-year-old Henry McCollum and 15-year-old Leon Brown were wrongfully arrested for the rape and murder of a young Sabrina Buie. With the teens’ intellectual disabilities (McCollum’s IQ being 51 and Brown’s at 49) and the police’s fabricated evidence, McCollum and Brown were extremely vulnerable to coercion, […]

National Harm from Suspending Licenses in Response to Unpaid, Unaffordable Court Fines and Fees

By Annie Han Driving is critical for many people in North Carolina. North Carolinians need to drive to work, to take their children to school, and to complete other everyday tasks like grocery shopping and attending to their health. But, as important as is the right to drive, it can easily be taken away as […]

Wilson Center Releases New Report on NC Fines, Fees, and Driver’s License Suspensions

For some of us, an $80 speeding ticket is an unpleasant inconvenience. Yet for others, particularly those living in poverty, that same ticket can turn into a years-long nightmare of crushing debt and even the loss of their driver’s license altogether. Traffic tickets, infractions, and misdemeanors: these are the lowest level criminal cases. Yet the […]

#StartSmall Provides Wilson Center Almost $500,000 Gift to Fund Forensics Reform Work

The Wilson Center for Science and Justice at Duke Law is excited to announce a nearly $500,000 gift from Twitter and Square co-founder and CEO Jack Dorsey’s #StartSmall philanthropic initiative, to support a new project aimed at rethinking policy regarding how forensic evidence is used in criminal cases. “Unfortunately, the need for forensics reform has […]

LEAD Program Allows Police Officers to Divert Individuals to Resources Instead of Arrest

By Neiman Araque Charlton Roberson, a Harm Reduction Specialist who works with the Law Enforcement Assisted Diversion (LEAD) program in Fayetteville, NC, and Cumberland County, said his colleagues working in emergency services or law enforcement often experience compassion fatigue. He explained how repeat offenders often imbue police officers with a sense of hopelessness and despair […]

North Carolina Prisons See Drop in COVID Cases For Now, Delta Could Bring New Threat

By Ruthie Kesri More than a year into the COVID-19 pandemic, 10,000+ North Carolina prison-incarcerated people have tested positive for the virus. In the last three months though, the North Carolina Department of Public Safety (NCDPS) has noted a striking drop in the number of cases in the prison system. “Once people were able to […]