Paying Tribute to a Hero–Sheriff Larry Amerson (1953-2020)

With a heavy heart we announce the passing of ret. Sheriff Larry Amerson (Calhoun County, AL).  Sheriff Amerson passed away December 3, 2020, after a valiant battle with cancer. Sheriff Amerson was a six term sheriff in Calhoun County, who strongly supported jails and was instrumental in getting legal-based jail guidelines in Alabama.  As president…


NIJO Case Brief: Barnes v. Ahlman , 591 U. S. ____ (2020)

By Tate McCotter, NIJO Executive Director   Case Title and Date: Barnes v. Ahlman , 591 U. S. ____ (2020), No. 20A19; Application for emergency stay to the United States Supreme Court; Decided August 5, 2020. Facts:   The administration and operations of Orange County Jail is overseen by Sheriff Don Barnes (Defendant, et al.). …


Knowing the Differences Between National Standards, Contract Agreements and Legal-Based Guidelines

By Tate McCotter, NIJO Executive Director A September 12, 2018, headline from the Huffington Post stated “Muslim Inmate Claims Kansas Prison Officers Harassed Her Over Headscarf.”1  The news article explains how the national legal advocacy group Muslim Advocates notified the Leavenworth Detention Center (LDC), the Department of Justice and the US Marshals Service the “actions…


Using Solitary Confinement as an Inmate Management Tool – Part II

An important discretionary tool in maintaining safety and security is solitary confinement. Solitary confinement is a highly effective tool needed and utilized by jail and prison administrators.  This allows for the separation of inmates who have demonstrated,through their actions,that they pose a threat to the safety of inmates,staff and the public. Administrators have no option but to isolate inmates who continue to engage in criminal activities while being incarcerated.


The Implications of Brady-Giglio for Law Enforcement

Editor’s Note:  Because the language in the Brady-Giglio policy references law enforcement agencies and police officers specifically,those terms have been used throughout this article for consistency.  However,it is important to note that the Brady-Giglio policy encompasses those who work in all areas of law enforcement,and as such,is applicable to all corrections staff/officials working in jails and prisons as well.


Can Prisoners Stand Their Ground?

In a recent case,the District of Colorado dismissed murder charges against a prison inmate who claims he acted in defense of an intrusion into his dwelling.