ACLU ranks Miss. incarceration rate as 2nd in nation - - Jackson, MS

ACLU ranks Miss. incarceration rate as 2nd in nation

Nsombi Lambright, ACLU of Mississippi Nsombi Lambright, ACLU of Mississippi
HINDS COUNTY, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

A new report from the American Civil Liberties Union says Mississippi has the second highest incarceration rate of any state in the country.

The ACLU of Mississippi is calling for reforms in our state's system of drug enforcement.

Nsombi Lambright had about 25 people join her on the South Capitol steps to outline some of the findings about incarceration nationally and in Mississippi in particular.

Lambright blames Mississippi's second highest incarceration rate on a system badly in need of reform.

Lambright thinks one of the biggest problems is with confidential informants and the role they play in sending people to jail on drug charges.

"One of our solutions is to make sure any evidence brought by a confidential informant is corroborated, by other evidence," Nsombie Lambright said. "Right now just the word of a confidential informant will result in an arrest and possible conviction, depending on how much defense, and how many attorneys you are able to afford."

We tried to get the other side of the story from law enforcement, the Attorney General, to district attorneys in the metro area to the Commissioner of Corrections.

We could only reach Sheriff Malcolm McMillin who had responded to the ACLU.

"I think the emphasis on drug enforcement should be placed on those who deal, in narcotics and controlled substances, for money, I think they are crooks and should go to jail." Sheriff McMillin said. "However, if somebody is an addict, somebody that can't help themselves, then I am for treating that as a medical problem."

The report says Mississippi's cost for prison expenditures went up 155 percent between 1994 and 2007.

Copyright 2011 WLBT. All rights reserved.

Powered by Frankly