criminal justice

Guns line the walls of the firearms reference collection at the Washington Metropolitan Police Department headquarters in Washington, D.C.
AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin

For years, Tulalip tribal officials have been pressing for better access to criminal databases. Then the shooting at Marysville-Pilchuck High School last fall made the reason all too clear.

Tribal records should have blocked the purchase of the gun used in the shooting. But the records never traveled the seven miles between the Tulalip Tribal Court and the Snohomish County Sheriff’s Office.

Freedom could be just weeks away for the youngest person in the U.S. sentenced to life in prison without the possibility of parole.

Nationally, there’s a push to outlaw incarceration of students for skipping school and other non-criminal behavior and use alternatives.

But some judges are reluctant to give detention up.

School districts in Washington are required to file a truancy petition with juvenile court when a student is chronically absent. Grays Harbor County Superior Court Judge David Edwards believes detention is one way to get a kid who’s not following court orders back on track.

'I think you need a tune-up'

law court crime
Flickr Photo/Joe Gratz (CC BY-NC-ND)

On a Friday in April 2013, King County District Court Judge Victoria Seitz had 66 cases on her docket. “We have too many cases and not enough court time, and so forth, to deal with them,” she announced to the court.

Steve Scher talks with Seattle University School of Law professor Robert Boruchowitz about a federal judge's decision that Mount Vernon and Burlington municipal courts have not provided adequate public defense services to indigent clients.

Envios / Flickr

The United States Supreme Court decided Thursday that a Colville man received an excessive prison sentence when a federal judge overstepped his bounds.

The high court’s ruling was welcome news to Matthew Descamps’ family.

KUOW Photo/Deborah Wang

The Seattle Police Department is preparing to hire more than 300 new officers in the next five years, and it wants to do things differently.

U.S. Attorney's Office

A Seattle man received an 18-year prison sentence on terrorism charges on Monday after plotting to attack a military installation in South Seattle.

Joseph McEnroe
AP Photo/Kevin P. Casey

Both of King County’s death penalty cases are on hold pending appeal to the Washington Supreme Court. A key issue in both cases is whether the defendants have experienced any hardships that should have required prosecutors to be more lenient.

Flickr Photo/Leonard Chien (Cc-BY-NC-ND)

Some prisoners in Washington state are currently serving life sentences without the possibility of parole for crimes they committed when they were under the age of 18. Is that just? Last year, the US Supreme Court ruled that a mandatory life-without-parole sentence for juveniles violates the Eighth Amendment. Ross Reynolds explores what Washington state must now do.