Fault Lines examines what happens to young inmates when they are placed in adult prisons and investigates their claims of physical and sexual abuse
In the 1990s, a national trend to be “tough on youth crime” led nearly every state to pass legislation that made it easier to prosecute minors in the adult criminal justice system.
Now, an estimated 200,000 kids under the age of 18 are tried, sentenced or incarcerated as adults in the U.S. each year. And many of these cases involve non-violent crimes.
Fault Lines investigates the impacts of these policies in Michigan, where lawyers have filed a class action lawsuit against the Department of Corrections and Governor Rick Snyder on behalf of hundreds of teenage prisoners who allege harassment and abuse by older inmates and prison staff.
Executive Producer: Mathieu Skene, Senior Producer: Reem Akkad @reemakkad, Correspondent: Sebastian Walker @sebwalker, Producer: Lauren Rosenfeld @lollymr, Directors of Photography: Victor Suarez @tadashi_lives and Singeli Agnew @singeli, Editor: Adrienne Haspel @adihaspel, Production Manager: Dana Merwin @dana_merwin, Digital Producer: Nikhil Swaminathan @sw4mi, Production Assistance: Sweta Vohra @svohra, Nesa Azimi @nesaazimi, Julia Greenwald @jhgreenwald, Cameron Dodd @camerontdodd, James Pace-Cornsilk @JamesCornsilk
More from this Episode
Fault Lines’ Sebastian Walker talks to a man imprisoned as a minor who claims he has suffered years of abuse behind bars
A former correctional officer discusses how order is kept on the cellblock—and the kind of environment it is for a minor
Are we missing an opportunity to rehabilitate young prisoners by sending them to prisons made for adults?
More on Youth in Prison
UN report on torture says life sentences for youths amount to cruel, inhumane or degrading treatment
Science, not politics, should inform our juvenile justice system
Critics argue detention centers wrongly focus on punishment rather than rehabilitation for young people