For a growing share of Louisiana’s inmates, only chance for release rests with the governor — or the grave
June 13, 2017

“Even after the total number of prisoners serving sentences in Louisiana’s sprawling and infamously swollen prison system peaked in 2012, the number sentenced to live out the remainder of their time incarcerated has continued to climb.

“The state’s heavy use of the sentence — the only punishment besides death allowed under state law for adults convicted of murder or aggravated rape — makes it a dramatic outlier nationally and puts Louisiana at odds even with neighboring Southern states.

“Louisiana has more than six times as many people serving life without possibility of parole than Texas, a state five times larger, according to a 2017 report from the Sentencing Project, a research and advocacy organization that compiled corrections data on prison systems across the country. Add Texas’ prisoners to those in Arkansas, Mississippi, Alabama and Tennessee and the five states still have fewer people serving life without parole than Louisiana.”

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