Due Process Year in Justice Part 2
12/26/2010



Solitary: Who and Why?
11/21/2010


Imagine yourself in a small cell, 23 hours a day, locked up, for weeks, months, even years ... entirely alone. Now imagine that for more than 1,600 New Jersey inmates ... that's life.


On this week's edition of Due Process, Solitary Confinement - a cruel and unusual punishment, or an essential Corrections tool?


Sandra King introduces us to a man who spent 22 years in isolation, and hosts a spirited debate in the studio.


This week's studio guests: Prof. Alexander Reinert of Cardozo Law School, Bonnie Kerness of the American Friends Service Committee's Prison Watch Project, and former New Jersey Corrections Commissioner Jack Terhune.



Charles Ogletree: Race and Justice
11/14/2010


He was mentor to Barack Obama, advisor to Anita Hill and attorney for Henry Louis Gates, Jr.


He’s Harvard Law School Professor Charles Ogletree, our only guest on this week’s episode of Due Process, in a candid conversation with Sandra King on race, justice and his new book, “The Presumption of Guilt.”



Dick Hughes: Governor and Chief Justice Remembered
10/3/2010


He was the only person to head both the Executive and the Judiciary in New Jersey - leaving his mark indelibly on both.

 

A politician's pol, who, 50 years ago, campaigned himself from obscurity to the State House with a flare that few others could even hope for, Dick Hughes lives on ... in the laws and the collective memory of this state, and in a new biography by Seton Hall Law Prof. John B. Wefing: The Life and Times of Richard J. Hughes - The Politics of Civility."

 

On this week’s Due Process, Sandra King and Raymond Brown share the essence of the inimitable Gov. Hughes by weaving excerpts from an in-depth interview Sandy did in his final years, with the research done by Prof. Wefing, and the memories of Rutgers Law Prof. Frank Askin, who worked on that first Hughes gubernatorial campaign.



Five Teens: Case Solved?
9/26/2010


Over three decades ago, five Newark teenage boys headed out to play basketball - and were never seen again.


It's been a mystery that's haunted five families and an entire city; a case marked by unanswered questions and an absence of forensic evidence ... allegedly, until now.

 

In her opening mini-doc, Sandra King looks back at the case of the missing boys, a case authorities say they've now solved.

 

Cold cases like this have launched special units in police departments across the country. But do they get results?  And are they good public policy at a time of diminished public funds?   

 

Answers to this question and more in the studio, when Raymond Brown talks to former Somerset County Prosecutor Wayne Forrest, who initiated that county’s Cold Case Unit; Fordham Law Prof. Jim Cohen, a one time public defender who teaches criminal defense, and Terry Lawson, a sister of one of the five Newark boys who disappeared over 30 years ago.



Justice Brennan: Judicial Philosophy
8/29/2010


In this second of two special programs on Newark’s own US Supreme Court Justice William Brennan (1906 – 1997), we look at the judicial philosophy that so influenced the court for over 30 years.

 

As Sandra King outlines in her opening mini-doc, Brennan’s notion of a “living constitution” led to many of the victories for individual American rights and liberties. But she also underscores the opposing side – the originalists who see Brennan as at best, misguided, and at worst, contemptuous of the Constitution. Featured in Sandy’s piece: Rutgers Law Professors Frank Askin and Earl Maltz.

 

In the studio, Raymond hosts a spirited debate between Professor Jamal Greene of Columbia Law School and Curt Levey of the Washington based Committee for Justice.


Newark's Justice Brennan
8/22/2010


He's been praised as the most influential U.S. Supreme Court Justice of the 20th Century, some say the greatest who ever served on The Court.  And yet among the general public in his home state of New Jersey, his home city of Newark, he's been virtually unknown.


A new statue raised on the steps of the Essex County Hall of Records is designed to change all that - honoring Justice Brennan as a liberal champion, who spent 34 years on The Court, fighting for the individual rights and liberties we today take for granted.


Sandra King takes us to the installation ceremony - with interviews including daughter Nancy Brennan and Harvard Law Prof. Laurence Tribe, while Raymond Brown looks back on the Brennan years with Rutgers Law Prof. Bernard Bell, Nicole Austin-Hillery of The Brennan Center for Justice, and Brennan Biographer Seth Stern.



Youth Court
7/25/2010


It's an age-old dilemma:  How to deal with what we used to call juvenile delinquency?  How to keep minor teen offenses from progressing to major adult crime?

 

On this edition of NJN's "Due Process," one idea for breaking the pattern - an idea, a program, called Youth Court. 

 

As Sandy King's field report shows, although no one gets sent to jail by Newark's Youth Court, it is a system of peer judgment, peer counseling and even peer-imposed punishment.

Sandy takes us inside two actual cases, and to the "graduation" of the first "class" of Youth Court members.   In addition to the young people themselves, those featured in the field piece include Newark Mayor Cory Booker and New Jersey State Bar Foundation President Richard Badolato.

 

Raymond Brown's studio guests are: Dr. Gloria Hancock, deputy executive director of the state's Juvenile Justice Commission; John Lore, the founding co-director of Rutgers Law-Camden's Children's Justice Clinic; and Newark's former chief judge and current chief counsel, Julien Neals.



Justice Wallace: Judicial Independence
7/18/2010


On this edition of "Due Process": The continued fallout from Gov. Christie's refusal to reappoint Justice John Wallace - the only African American on New Jersey's High Court - on the grounds of "judicial philosophy."

 

The Governor concedes that it's just his opening salvo in a campaign to change the character of the Court.  But does his action constitute both a move away from racial diversity on the bench and a serious threat to judicial independence?

 

Those are the questions explored as Sandra King takes the audience to the New Jersey Law Center and a forum featuring protest from a range of legal academics, practitioners and former members of the Court - among them retired Chief Deborah Poritz and retired Justice Gary Stein.

 

In the studio, Raymond Brown probes both sides of the controversy with a panel consisting of NJ State Bar President Richard Steen, former State Bar President Karol Corbin Walker, former federal prosecutor Eric Jaso and former NJ Attorney General John Degnan. 



DWI: Penalties Rise
5/16/2010


It was the longest sentence ever handed down for deaths caused by drunk driving.   Forty years in state prison for the DWI deaths of two young girls, teenage cousins killed while walking to the movies.  Sandra King is in Morristown for the sentencing, where the defendant weeps as the victims’ families demand retribution – and the judge imposes a virtual life sentence.


In the studio, Raymond Brown talks to Steve Benvenisti, a DWI plaintiff’s attorney who was himself nearly killed by a drunk driver, and Robert Bonney, a DWI defense lawyer, who thinks the trend toward harsher DWI sentencing may not be serving justice.



SCOTUS Update
5/9/2010


The nation's High Court: a source of endless import and interest.  And few in America know it better than Steve Shapiro, who lectures on, studies and regularly argues before the US Supreme Court as national legal director of the American Civil Liberties Union. 


On this edition of Due Process, Shapiro talks with Raymond Brown and Sandra King about the pending Court nomination and the confirmation fight that may consume the political landscape this summer.  Shapiro also outlines the major cases already decided this term -beginning with the Citizens United ruling on corporate campaign financing - and the decisions still awaited, including the question of whether juveniles should be subjected to life in prison.  There are currently 2,500 people serving life sentences for crimes they committed before the age of 18. 



Sexual Predators: Civil Commitment
3/14/2010


Convicted of a crime, sentenced and jailed.  You do your time, and you're released - right?  Well, not necessarily, if the state decides that you're a sexually violent predator.  New Jersey's one of just 20 states with civil commitment for some sex offenders.  And though the U.S. Supreme Court has said it's legal, the jury's still out on whether it's sound public policy - or even effective.


On this edition of Due Process, Sandra King's mini-doc takes us inside a civil commitment detention center, introducing us to a "patient" who maxed out after 15 years in prison - but has remained locked up for the 7 years since.


Then Raymond Brown takes the debate inside the studio where Seton Hall Law Prof. Kip Cornwell faces off against Criminal Defense Attorney Jack Furlong. 



Paul Fishman: US Attorney
3/72010


He’s the new U.S. Attorney for New Jersey, the state’s chief federal prosecutor, and successor to now-Gov. Chris Christie.  He comes to the office with more trial, government and defense experience than any U.S. Attorney in decades. 


And, as evidenced by his star-studded swearing-in, he also brings an impressive array of powerful friends and former bosses – among them Attorney General Eric Holder, former Homeland Security Chief Michael Chertoff and Supreme Court Justice Sam Alito.

 
Paul Fishman talks to Raymond Brown and Sandra King about his history, his legal philosophy and his plans for his tenure – in this Due Process exclusive.



Dean Farmer & His "9/11 Ground Truth"
2/14/2010


The senior counsel to the 9/11 Commission - former NJ Attorney General John Farmer - goes in-depth with Raymond Brown and Sandra King about his explosive new book: "The Ground Truth."  Farmer, who's now the Dean of Rutgers-Newark Law School, insists that in the wake of 9/11, the Bush Administration systematically lied to the American public about the government's grasp of, and response to, the terrorist attacks.



Pot Now Medicine in NJ
2/7/2010


Due Process takes an in-depth look at the law that made New Jersey the 14th state in the nation to allow the use of medical marijuana.  In Sandy King's opening mini-doc, we meet an ALS sufferer who helped lead the fight for medicinal pot - and we're in the State House for the critical vote and the compromises that made it possible.


In Raymond Brown's studio discussion, we explore how the new law is supposed to work - and the strict controls designed to keep New Jersey from becoming another California, where medical marijuana has meant de facto legalized pot for recreational, as well as medicinal use. 

 

Studio Guests: Powell Stevenson of The Partnership for a Drug-Free New Jersey and Roseanne Scotti, the Executive Director of the New Jersey Drug Policy Alliance.






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