Who is the Colorado Criminal Justice Reform Coalition?

Our mission is to reverse the trend of mass incarceration in Colorado. We are a coalition of nearly 7,000 individual members and over 100 faith and community organizations who have united to stop perpetual prison expansion in Colorado through policy and sentence reform.

Our chief areas of interest include drug policy reform, women in prison, racial injustice, the impact of incarceration on children and families, the problems associated with re-entry and stopping the practice of using private prisons in our state.

If you would like to be involved please go to our website and become a member.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Prisoners and Cold Cases

The Denver Post

In her perfect world, Jefferson County Sheriff's Office investigator Cheryl Moore pictures something like this:

A group of inmates is sitting in prison playing poker. The cards they use don't feature kings and queens, but instead portray the victims of cold-case homicides.

The cards spark something in one of the inmates, and he spontaneously confesses knowledge about one of the crimes. A cellmate, seeking a reduced sentence or small reward, then calls the detective. Case closed.

It hasn't happened yet, at least not in Colorado, but the cold-case playing cards have only just started to get wide circulation in the state's prison system.

"Every card has a different cold case featured on it," Moore said.

The Colorado Department of Corrections recently began selling the cards in its prisons for 63 cents a pack, less than half the price of a normal deck, said Katherine Sanguinetti, DOC spokeswoman.

Colorado prisons are the latest to seize on an emerging trend across the country to try to tap the knowledge of people who know the most about unsolved crimes — criminals. Other states using the cards include Florida, Ohio, Minnesota, Oregon and Wisconsin


Anonymous said...

False confessions to impress other inmates: more wrongful convictions; real criminal still walks the streets; CASE OPEN.

False snitching by several members as a way to get back at other gang members, etc.: more wrongful convictions; real criminal still walks the streets; CASE OPEN.

Apparently this is another unbelievable move to simply 'solve' the hard work it takes to get to the truth of each case. This faulty game playing makes the job easy for the increasingly inept and lazy law enforcement and corrupt criminal justice system.

Stupidity just fell off the scale.

Anonymous said...

You're joking right??? WTH??? Snitches are only into tattling for personal gain...so many cases have been overturned because of their reliability. Why would DOC do something so stupid? It's ridiculous.

Anonymous said...

You two are overlooking the fact that many open cases are solved by confessions made by an inmate to his cellie. I understand what you are saying about the "snitches", but their story would have to fit the known facts. That would weed out most of the false reporting. I would certainly hope they would not convict someone purely because another inmate says, "Joe did it". Yes, they would be snitching for personal gain, but don't most of the people on the outside do the same thing for personal gain. I don't think many people put their own safety in jeopardy just for kicks and giggles. I am for it. I think more good than harm could come of it.