Civil rights groups and ethicists allege that 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Edith Jones violated judicial codes of conduct during a February speech in which she reportedly said some minority groups are "predisposed to crime."Full Story
Brandi Grissom is The Texas Tribune's managing editor and joined the staff when the online publication launched in 2009. In addition to editing duties, Grissom leads the Tribune's coverage of criminal justice issues. During her tenure at the Tribune, she was chosen as a 2012 City University of New York Center on Media, Crime and Justice/H.F. Guggenheim Journalism Fellow and was a fellow at the 2012 Journalist Law School at Loyola Law School, Los Angeles. Grissom, along with Tribune multimedia producer Justin Dehn, received a 2012 regional Edward R. Murrow Award for investigative reporting for work on the case of Megan Winfrey, who was acquitted of murder in February 2013 after the Trib’s coverage brought statewide attention the case. Grissom joined the Tribune after four years at the El Paso Times, where she acted as a one-woman Capitol bureau. Grissom won the Associated Press Managing Editors First-Place Award in 2007 for using the Freedom of Information Act to report stories on a variety of government programs and entities, and the ACLU of Texas named her legislative reporter of the year in 2007 for her immigration reporting. She previously served as managing editor at The Daily Texan and has worked for the Alliance Times-Herald, the Taylor Daily Press, the New Braunfels Herald-Zeitung and The Associated Press. A native of Alliance, Neb., she has a degree in history from the University of Texas.
Megan Winfrey spent six years behind bars before she was acquitted of murder. Now, she is hoping to help solve the mystery of who brutally killed school janitor Murray Burr in 2004.Full Story
Megan Winfrey spent six years — nearly all of the 25-year-old's adult life — behind bars before she was acquitted of murder. She faces the colossal challenge of starting her life without compensation for the years she lost in prison.Full Story
Legislators are planning to give the Texas Forensic Science Commission authority to review many more labs and types of forensic analysis and to double the agency’s budget, hoping it will become a national model.
UPDATED: The House on Tuesday tentatively approved a bill that would require a now-defunct legislative oversight committee to hire a third party to review solitary confinement conditions in Texas prisons and juvenile lockups.Full Story
Police would have new authority to take firearms away from Texans who are in a mental crisis under a bill the House approved on Tuesday that is now headed to Gov. Rick Perry's desk.
The House on Monday approved Senate Bill 1185 by Sen. Joan Huffman, which would create a pilot program that connects mentally ill inmates with social, clinical, housing and welfare services during the first weeks after the person's release from jail.Full Story
A battle over legislation that would create an innocence commission to review wrongful conviction has turned personal — and potentially deadly for a handful of bills authored by state Sen. Joan Huffman.Full Story
Legislators are preparing to dedicate hundreds of millions more dollars to mental health care for the first time in years. Haven for Hope in San Antonio serves as a model of the services and success they aim to emulate.Full Story
With exoneree Michael Morton by his side, Gov. Rick Perry on Thursday signed a measure that aims to avoid wrongful convictions by preventing prosecutors from suppressing evidence.
Two days after an advocate for a bill establishing a commission to review wrongful convictions lashed out at a state senator who voiced opposition to the bill, the measure's Senate sponsor says he doesn't have the votes to move the legislation forward.Full Story
House lawmakers on Tuesday approved two bills meant to ensure that wrongful convictions, like the one that Michael Morton behind bars for nearly 25 years, don't happen to others. The measures will stop next on Gov. Rick Perry's desk.Full Story
On the 50th anniversary of the landmark Brady v. Maryland decision, the Texas House is set to vote on a law that some legal experts say would ensure that the ruling’s tenets are carried out to help prevent wrongful convictions.Full Story
A transparency bill that would require lobbyists to disclose the names of lawmakers who pay them using campaign funds for services, including political consulting, is headed to Gov. Rick Perry's desk.Full Story
Spending from the state's Rainy Day Fund does, in fact, count against a constitutional limit on growth in the state budget, Attorney General Greg Abbott advised on Thursday.Full Story