Criminal Justice


David Michael Miller

It’s only childish political grievances between the state’s top three Republican leaders that will prolong the misery at Lincoln Hills. more

Mar 20, 2018 11:37 AM Citizen Dave

The documentary “Circle Up” explores the potential of Native American-style talking circles in restorative justice initiatives. Members of the Dane County Timebank hope the film will inspire Madison to expand the programs in operation here. more

Mar 8, 2018 5:00 AM Movies

Stories on police settlements and reality stars made our most-read list. more

Dec 27, 2017 5:00 AM News

According to an annual report from the UW-Madison Police Department, hate crime reports on campus property surged in 2016, jumping from two in 2015 to 20 last year. There were no reports of hate crimes on campus property in either 2013 or 2014. more

Oct 4, 2017 10:48 AM News 1 Comments


Chris Roberts

Whether Steven Avery and Brendan Dassey are guilty of murdering Theresa Halbach matters to millions of people, thanks to the documentary “Making a Murderer.” Four new books dig into the case reaching definitive, yet incompatible, conclusions. more

Mar 9, 2017 12:00 AM Isthmus Cover Stories 3 Comments


Lauren Justice

Before he was elected judge, Everett Mitchell made his mark on Madison as a pastor and a social justice activist. Now that he’s on the bench, he’s continuing his community involvement because he says it makes him a better, fairer judge. more

Feb 23, 2017 5:00 AM News


Steven Potter

Attorneys representing the family of Tony Robinson say they had strong evidence directly contradicting Madison Police Officer Matt Kenny’s account in the 2015 killing. On Thursday, the city settled the case for $3.35 million. more

Feb 23, 2017 12:01 AM News 1 Comments

Donald Trump was elected president running on a law-and-order platform that called for tougher stance on crime. That creates serious challenges for those who see the criminal justice system in dire need of reform. more

Feb 21, 2017 10:52 PM News

It’s conventional wisdom that prison populations have swelled because of get-tough-on crime laws that have forced judges’ hands. But in a new book, Marquette law professor Michael O’Hear argues that judges are also part of the problem. more

Feb 16, 2017 5:00 AM News


David Michael Miller

Prison inmates already struggle to afford things they must buy with the little money they get doing prison jobs and from family. But under a new law, prison officials are taking this money to settle inmate obligations. more

Feb 16, 2017 5:00 AM News 3 Comments

It’s depressing to learn that a white supremacist who was convicted of arson attacks on black churches is now a UW-Madison student. But changing the university’s admissions policies will only hurt those who genuinely deserve a second chance. more

Jan 27, 2017 3:43 PM Madland

Weeks after a 700-page report outlined two comprehensive proposals for consolidating the jail at the Public Safety Building, County Executive Joe Parisi is asking for more options. more

Jan 12, 2017 4:31 PM News 1 Comments

True crime was once devoted to recounting the lurid, gruesome details of murder, mayhem and more. But the purveyors of the “new true crime” — filmmakers, journalists and others — are now using it to shine light on a broken justice system. more

Dec 15, 2016 12:00 AM Isthmus Cover Stories


David Michael Miller

For three years, Dane County has given a select number of addicts a chance to avoid prosecution, provided they complete a rigorous deferment program. The county is now looking to double the program’s capacity. more

Dec 1, 2016 5:00 AM News


James Heimer

A first-of-its kind media campaign is being launched in Dane County to prevent domestic violence. It shifts the focus from victims of abuse to those who abuse and need treatment. more

Nov 17, 2016 5:00 AM Isthmus Cover Stories

After a decade of investigating the disappearance of Amos Mortier, journalist Nathan Comp is now working on a documentary about the case. He hopes the film might prompt police to take another look at the evidence. more

Oct 18, 2016 12:00 AM News


David Michael Miller

Since the early 2000s, states across the country have been pulling back from the more punitive measures passed in the 1980s and 1990s. Now it’s time for truth in sentencing to also go. more

Oct 6, 2016 5:00 AM Opinion 1 Comments

News-Sotomayor-Sonia-crMikeHall-09092016 (2).jpg

Mike Hall

Sonia Sotomayor walked the aisles of Shannon Hall while answering questions posed by two of her former law clerks. She said she saw her public role as helping to demystify the court and inspiring others to “help make the world better.” more

Sep 9, 2016 1:09 PM News

A relatively new state law requires an outside investigation of police-involved deaths. Rep. Chris Taylor of Madison wants to prohibit officers from investigating those police departments where they used to work. Schimel — arrogantly — opposes this. more

Sep 8, 2016 5:00 AM Opinion 1 Comments

Madison is once again facing a bleak budget outlook and Mayor Paul Soglin is considering deep cuts throughout city hall. But will the police department be exempt? more

Aug 18, 2016 5:00 AM Isthmus Cover Stories