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Juvenile Justice Week in Review: Celebrating Peace in a Community Touched By Gun Violence

Jahmel Leath, 13, wears the T-shirt of his murdered cousin, Stack Bundles at the "Children's Day of Peace" event at Redfern Houses in Far Rockaway.

This week in juvenile justice: a celebration of peace in a community struggling with gun violence, two great articles examining the roots of the youth immigration crisis, JJIE has a new social media account, and more top headlines from JJIE and around the web. Continue Reading →

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Drug Program Aids Staten Island Prescription Drug Abusers

John Scarabaggio, 23, who struggled with a prescription drug addiction.

John Scarabaggio almost didn’t live to see his 22nd birthday. In 2011, he was 21 years old and instead of going out and partying with his friends, Scarabaggio was deep in his struggle with prescription drug addiction, taking up to 50 pills a day to maintain his high. But he overdosed on July 21 that year, and took so many pills that he went into a coma for eight days. Continue Reading →

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[Photos] Children’s Day of Peace


Taylonn Murphy, Penny Wrencher, Shenee Johnson and Vernell Britt have all lost children to gun violence. Last Saturday, they came together at the "Children's Day of Peace" event at Redfern Houses in Far Rockaway. JJIE photographer Laura Bult documented the moving event. Continue Reading →

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A Celebration of Peace in a Community Touched By Gun Violence

Young girls sit together at the "Children's Day of Peace" event at the Redfern Houses in Far Rockaway.

At a children’s summer party last Saturday afternoon at the Redfern Houses in Far Rockaway, Penny Wrencher made an introduction between two friends. “This is Nene,” Wrencher said to Taylonn Murphy, “She lost her daughter, too.” Continue Reading →

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OP-ED: Illinois Gun Legislation Confuses Symptoms with Causes


At the end of last year, the Illinois General Assembly found itself in uncharted territory.

In response to an ongoing crisis of gun violence in some of Chicago’s poorest communities, Mayor Rahm Emanuel asked Illinois state legislators for increased mandatory minimum prison sentences for illegal gun possession. Continue Reading →

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From Prison to Politics: Prophet Walker’s Journey

Prophet  Walker, left, in Los Angeles. Walker spent several years incarcerated for a crime committed at age 16. Now he's running for state assembly.

LOS ANGELES — The walls of Ironwood State Prison in Blythe, Calif., were hardly unfamiliar to Prophet Walker. As a teenager, Walker spent nearly half of his six-year prison sentence at Ironwood after he was convicted of assault causing great bodily injury and robbery at the age of 16.

This June, Walker, now 26, returned to Ironwood. However, this time it was not as a prisoner, but as a candidate for state office and a role model to the young men who stand where Walker stood just several years ago. Continue Reading →

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Reporter’s Notebook: Allegations Still Plague Religious Homes for Troubled Teens

Lester Roloff

AUSTIN, Texas — While reporting recently on abuse allegations at a home for troubled teens, I realized that the article I was writing had been written before. Continue Reading →

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