First came the sound of someone running hard on the breezeway outside, then a banging on the apartment door. Irene Vera opened it to see her neighbor, twenty-year-old Rosa Jimenez, holding a little boy who lay limp in her arms. “Help me! Help me!” Jimenez cried hysterically in Spanish. The…
A COVID-19 outbreak in a maximum-security unit has created rifts between the local government and the Texas Department of Criminal Justice.
Robert Draper, like the people he interviewed for this month's cover story, is driven by a need to understand the past.
In 1978, an eighth grader killed his teacher. After 20 months in a psychiatric facility, he was freed. His classmates still wonder: What really happened?
Texas prison officials think they can curb contraband by banning greeting cards, but prisoners say the drugs come in through guards, not mail.
Four years ago, Ogg won election by promising to reform the county’s justice system. Now she’s getting primaried by two of her former prosecutors, who say she hasn’t done enough.
Not long after criticizing Ted Cruz and John Cornyn for ignoring gun violence, the Houston police chief sat down to talk about his headline-making comments, why he’s a RINO, and the balance between criminal justice reform and public safety.
Genene Jones, suspected for decades of killing multiple children, was sentenced to life after accepting responsibility for a second San Antonio death.
Settle in for a by-no-means comprehensive list of some of the most popular stories in our pages this year.
Pedro Villalobos handles felony cases in Travis County, but his own legal status could be in jeopardy.
A.P. Merillat helped send at least 15 people to death row. On Wednesday, Travis Runnels will become the third this year to be executed, even though a former prison official calls Merillat’s testimony “bullshit.”
In a landmark legal case, Harris County has agreed to release the vast majority of misdemeanor arrestees instead of locking them up. But reformers aren’t done yet.
On this week’s National Podcast of Texas, the cofounder of Austin nonprofit Proclaim Justice on inequality in the justice system and the Rodney Reed saga.
The case, which has attracted huge amounts of attention, will go back to the trial court.
Rodney Reed has been on Texas’ death row for 21 years, but new evidence and witnesses have drawn national attention ahead of his upcoming execution date.
The straightforward circumstances of Jean's slaying proved too difficult for the jury to ignore.
What good is a law that promotes lawlessness?
The lieutenant governor's pledge to "take an arrow" from the NRA is a surprise, but the move is not as politically risky as it looks.
There’s something dishonest in the state’s bureaucratic approach to killing its own citizens.
He renounced his violent San Antonio childhood during 28 years behind bars. A new life and new love awaited him outside the prison gates.
Of the four major mass shooting suspects in Texas in recent years, the only one it would impact is the man who wants to die as soon as possible.
Can’t afford a lawyer? Don't expect justice.
James Fulton reunites with his family, as victim Haile Beasley’s parents decry justice undone.
We reached out to prosecutors for all 254 Texas counties to ask whether they will still prosecute marijuana cases.
How does a man wrongly convicted of murder get released twenty years later? It helps to have a wife who loves you, a podcaster who believes in you, and an army of amateur sleuths who won’t stop digging for the truth.
Justices grant James Fulton a new sentencing hearing: “Tragic consequences do not elevate ordinary negligence to criminal negligence.”
A non-profit compiled racist, sexist, and xenophobic social media posts from police in Dallas and Denison.
In one of the worst legislative sessions for criminal justice reform in years, bipartisan legislation got caught between an ugly fight between the police lobby and prominent Democrats.
In a fit of idiocy and confusion, Democrats in the Legislature not once, but twice derailed bipartisan legislation prohibiting police from making arrests for minor infractions.
Big-city prosecutors are now driving the conversation around mass incarceration, and some lawmakers and law enforcement officials just can’t abide that.
Bob Ruff is working on his fifth Texas case in fewer than four years, this time hoping to prove the innocence of Sandra Melgar in the killing of her husband, Jaime Melgar.
New insights about Redrick “Red” Batiste emerge after his accomplices are found guilty.
Carly Mayo, eighteen, is now back in Tyler and living with her mom as she reckons with her past.
UT-Austin’s tennis coach and an exam administrator in Houston are facing federal charges.
The Legislature remains far from allowing recreational use, but baby steps toward decriminalization could come this session.
Because the charges were dismissed pretrial, prosecutors have the right to refile a criminal complaint.
The announcement comes amid growing questions about the legitimacy of the investigation that led to the deadly raid.
Driving through a dangerous curve in Tyler, James Fulton crossed into oncoming traffic and killed a young woman. He wasn’t drunk, and the cops said the crash was an accident. But the Smith County DA saw it differently.
The police tactic is controversial but common—particularly in Texas.
It won’t bring back the seven-year-old girl killed in a drive-by shooting on Sunday morning, but it might make it easier for her family to get through their mourning.
Found guilty in 1987, the freed man will be paid $2.5 million by the state of Texas, which he'll use to support his prison ministry.
Jacob Walter Anderson has been kicked off of campus and will not be allowed to attend his graduation ceremony.
Jacob Walter Anderson, charged with raping and choking a fellow student, will pay a $400 fine as part of the deal.
The Dallas police officer who shot and killed Botham Shen Jean in his own apartment, indicted for murder, now awaits trial. Here's a quick primer on where things stand.
A controversial Dallas civil rights lawyer is holding police accountable—and being held accountable, too.
How the Texas Organizing Project is transforming the electoral landscape.
After discovering the convict cemetery in March, the city appointed a panel of stakeholders. Now it’s ignoring their recommendation.
In 1967, a 56-year-old lawyer met a young inmate with a brilliant mind and horrifying stories about life inside. Their complicated alliance—and even more complicated romance—would shed light on a nationwide scandal, disrupt a system of abuse and virtual slavery across the state, and change incarceration in Texas forever.
Brownsville police officer Valerie Rivas was charged with smuggling her undocumented boyfriend. She’s been acquitted. He’s likely to be deported.