Saying goodbye to the streets, and prison (Post & Courier)

Marty Hamilton has spent 30 years behind bars, and he’s only 47. The North Charleston native has been in prison seven times, and twice spent a year in the county jail. During the brief periods in between, he was a stone-cold criminal. Hamilton terrorized the streets of North Charleston during its most violent years, selling … Read more

Turning Leaf teaches former prisoners to learn from past mistakes (Charleston City Paper)

In the shadow of the razorwire fences and bleak facade of the Al Cannon Detention Center sits the small, nondescript building that houses the Turning Leaf Project. Inside, two classrooms are lined with handwritten lists that encapsulate the lessons learned by the former convicts who participate in the reintroduction program. Identifying a social support network, … Read more

This ‘Crazy’ Plan Shook Up An ‘Old School’ Federal Prosecutor’s Outlook (The Huffington Post)

Sean Kittrell has been a federal prosecutor for more than two decades. He packs a gun in Charleston, South Carolina, where he’s known as a “traditional, old-school, tough-as-nails violent crime and drug prosecutor,” according to Deputy Attorney General Sally Yates, a top Justice Department official in Washington.  “I have spent a lifetime putting people in … Read more

U.S. official says prison system’s best reentry program cut ‘dramatically’ (The Washington Post)

The Justice Department’s second­-highest-ranking official Thursday said that the federal prison’s most successful education and reentry program has “dramatically” shrunk in recent years, leaving more than 10,000 inmates on a waiting list for prison jobs and educational training. On the eve of the early release of thousands of federal inmates back to their homes, Deputy Attorney General Sally Quillian … Read more

Charleston offenders offered another chance at freedom, with new prison alternative program (Live 5 News)

Amy Barch doesn’t just take chances, she gives them. In 2011, Barch founded The Turning Leaf Project, a volunteer-led initiative focused on educating criminal offenders and preparing them for successful re-entry. After years of success inside the walls of the Al Cannon Detention Center, The Turning Leaf project has now evolved to include a new … Read more