Disturbing New Report Reveals NY Judges Imposing Shockingly Long Prison Sentences

lady justice holding a source and balance scale
Via Truth Dig
Tremain Prioleau II
April 30, 2024

A recent report by judicial transparency organization Scrutinize, analyzed more than 300 appellate decisions from 2007 to 2023. Higher courts have shaved over 2,500 years off of sentences from this period. Why were so many people sentenced to such long prison terms?

Judicial transparency is a big issue in the criminal legal system and information surrounding judges' choices isn’t easily accessible. One justice, Vincent Del Giudice, presides over the Brooklyn Supreme Court. He imposed 19 excessive sentences himself. Judges like him shouldn’t have this much power over someone else’s life.

In response, the report calls for detailed sentencing data going forward, but we can’t stop there. We need more than steps to reform. Length of sentencing shouldn't be the end goal when ultimately incarceration isn’t justice.

If judges can hold this much power over people’s lives, we must envision a better society—one that looks to improve lives rather than destroy them. Exposing the evils of draconian judicial sentencing could pave the way to this possibility.

This lack of judicial transparency and immense use of power by the judges in question comes at the expense of incarcerated people. Their lives are upended because of systematic oppression and anti-Black racism. Accountability starts with rejecting this way of operating.