Texas Department of Criminal Justice

  • Blogs

    November 1, 2013

    Fourteen Prison Guards Plead Guilty To Running Inmate-Drug Empire

    We guess the definition of "captive audience" is pretty much epitomized by prison inmates. In Beeville, guards at the Texas Department of Criminal Justice's McConnell Unit took advantage of the potential customer base and ran one hell of a drug ring, with the aid of inmates. They also smuggled in p ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 28, 2013

    Native American Prisoner Wants Dead Parents' Hair; Prison Officials Say it's a Security Risk

    Here's what the Texas Department of Criminal Justice is terrible at keeping out of prisons: cell phones. Here's what TDCJ is awesome at keeping out: dead people's hair. Native American inmate William Chance serving 65 years for aggravated sexual assault has sued TDCJ to get 4-inch locks of his dece ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 15, 2013

    Nine Arrested for Allegedly Running an Illegal Horse Racing Track

    Breaking the law is one thing, but breaking the law when you're in law enforcement is knocks it up to a whole other level. Add horses into the mix and crikey have you got a problem. Nine people had the first court appearance Monday morning after being arrested last week for allegedly running an ill ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 7, 2013

    Out of Lethal Injection Drugs, Texas Turns to Houston to Make More

    Texas, the state with the most executions under its belt since reinstating the death penalty in 1976, is solving a shortage on execution drugs by having a Houston compounding pharmacy make the drugs required for lethal injection, according to the Associated Press. Texas and other death penalty stat ... More >>

  • Blogs

    October 8, 2012

    Thomas Lee Elkins: GEO Group Lets Sixth Rapist Stroll Away From Halfway House in 24 Months

    The rapist of a 16-year-old girl is the latest sexual predator to slip through the sieve that is the privately run Southeast Texas Transitional Center. Thomas Lee Elkins, convicted of aggravated kidnapping and sexual assault in 1991, absconded from the facility, 10950 Old Beaumont Highway, October ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 11, 2012

    TDCJ's 10 Most Terminally Ill Inmates Cost $2 Million a Year to Treat

    Jailed offenders with terminal illnesses have a price tag, and the 10 costliest inmates in the state's prison's system totaled almost $2 million in health care costs in 2011. That's a figure quoted by Sen. John Whitmire, D-Houston, who tracks such topics as chair of the Senate Criminal Justice Comm ... More >>

  • Blogs

    April 6, 2012

    Michael Elbert Young: Fifth Escapee in 18 Months from GEO Group Facility

    A high-risk child rapist who hopped over his halfway house's barbed wire fence Thursday night is the fifth sex offender to abscond from the privately run Southeast Texas Transitional Center in 18 months. According to the Houston Chronicle story linked above, authorities say Michael Elbert Young, wh ... More >>

  • News

    December 15, 2011

    WWJD? Hit and Run

    Driver gives religion, not help.

  • Blogs

    May 19, 2011

    Leadbelly's "Midnight Special" Prison in Sugar Land Closing (Although It Might Not Be the Prison He "Wrote" It in)

    Texas legislators are likely to agree to closing the century-old Central Unit prison in Sugar Land, mostly because it sits on land near the airport that can be developed. It's one of several Texas Department of Criminal Justice units in the area; a compound of four units is nearby in unincorporated ... More >>

  • Blogs

    December 29, 2010

    GEO: Private-Prison Company Somehow Keeps Getting Contracts In Texas

    Illustration by Keri RosebraughA look into private prisons​When Arthur William Brown left his Houston halfway house December 15, he did the usual: he signed the check-out form that residents of the facility have to sign whenever they leave the premises for the day. Only on that day, Brown ... More >>

  • Blogs

    June 29, 2010

    Texas Has Fewer Inmates; What The Hell Are We Doing Wrong?

    ​The U.S. Department of Justice recently released a report about state prison populations, and Texas was one of six states with large decreases in the number of people incarcerated.  These numbers continue, the report says, "the trend of slower growth observed in the prison population since 2 ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 18, 2010

    Execution Drug In Short Supply; How Will Texas Cope?

    Texas doesn't make rookie mistakes when it comes to the death penalty​The Arizona Republic reports today that a planned execution in Ohio almost had to delay a recent execution because of a shortage of thiopental sodium, the drug used for lethal injections. Arizona, it said, might be unable to do ... More >>

  • Blogs

    May 10, 2010

    Texas' Serial Killers: Someone's Selling The Dirt From Their Graves On eBay

    See that my grave is kept clean...and sell the dirt!​Digging up someone's grave and stealing whatever's down there isn't legal, but what about the dirt laying over the grave or next to a headstone? Is it against the law to take home a scoop or two? And what if the person is somewhat famous? Should ... More >>

  • Blogs

    August 8, 2008

    Victim Advocates Now Welcome At Executions

    It seems like Houston’s crime victim advocate Andy Kahan got his wish … kind of. Last week, Kahan was frustrated that despite the desires of his friend, Randy Ertman, he was not allowed to stand by Ertman during the execution of Jose Medellin, convicted of raping and strangling Ertman’s daugh ... More >>

  • News

    August 7, 2008

    Busted for Blow Jobs

    Beaumont officer says they were okayed

  • Blogs

    August 5, 2008

    Can Edouard Save Jose Medellin?

    One guy who you might think would be praying hard for Tropical Storm Edouard to be really, really bad is Jose Medellin. He's the guy scheduled to die tonight in Huntsville, after being convicted of capital murder in the notorious Ertman-Pena case. The World Court couldn't save him; George Bush and ... More >>

  • Blogs

    July 30, 2008

    Victim's Advocate Won't be Witnessing Execution

    Another of the six men who raped and killed Randy Ertman's daughter is scheduled to be executed soon. And once again Andy Kahan won't be allowed to see it. Kahan, the Crime Victim Advocate for the City of Houston, says he should be allowed to stand by the side of his friend Randy Ertman during the ... More >>

  • News

    October 4, 2007
  • Blogs

    September 19, 2007
  • News

    October 5, 2006
  • News

    March 9, 2006

    A Moon Swoon

    One Houston preacher gave up the cross for the cult

  • News

    June 9, 2005

    The Fix Is In

    UTMB is under fire in Dallas for its jail health care. So why is Houston ready to install it here?

  • News

    February 24, 2005

    Ill Will

    A parolee fights leukemia -- and the constraints of ankle monitors

  • Culture

    October 21, 2004

    A Side of Death

    The Houston Center for Photography explores mortality through food

  • News

    March 4, 2004

    Party Like It's 1899

    Super Bowl week turned out to be a slow one for HPD's vice squad

  • News

    September 18, 2003

    Doing Time

    With JC in the TDCJ

  • News

    August 21, 2003

    Make It S-T-O-P

    The Texans go scoreless on tunes as well as turf

  • News

    August 7, 2003

    Jail Hell

    Even as inmate James Mitchell was dying, Montgomery County told his relatives he'd be fine

  • News

    July 31, 2003
  • News

    October 3, 2002

    Justice for Some

    Just who is a victim? After flexing its muscles to reform the justice system, the victims’ rights movement suffers growing pains over divisive issues.

  • News

    August 22, 2002

    Hard on the Yard

    A law leaves some sex offenders banned from their own attorneys' offices

  • News

    September 27, 2001

    Face To Face

    The murder of their loved one haunted Amy and Linda White until a Texas prison mediation program brought them together with the killer. Now they've all got their answers -- and unique justice.

  • News

    September 13, 2001

    Drug Resistant

    Harris County jailers are in no hurry to hand out meds to inmates with AIDS. Inmates claim this and other lockup practices endanger their lives.

  • News

    August 9, 2001

    Lost Boys

    Judy Walker saw one son die in prison and his twin sentenced to life for shooting a cop. The prison autopsy says Reginald died of natural causes. But his mother says it was retaliation for Robert's actions that got his brother killed.

  • News

    March 29, 2001

    Captive Emotions

    Reagan Hamilton goes into Texas jails and tells inmates they better stay in touch with their kids. Her sadly powerful message has sparked some successes. Too bad they don't include her own father.

  • News

    February 8, 2001

    Hard Knox

    In an ACLU test case on brutality, jurors side with state prison guards

  • News

    October 5, 2000

    Jailhouse Crock

    Spanish-language media cries foul over Railcar Killer interviews

  • Best of Houston

    September 21, 2000

    Best Bicycle Day Trip

    Houston to Fulshear

  • News

    August 31, 2000

    Letters 08-31-2000

    Spaced Out, We Were So Wrong, Woe to the 'Stros

  • News

    August 24, 2000

    Throwing Away the Key

    A talented escape artist and con man gets more prison time. Will he serve it?

  • News

    April 27, 2000

    Letters From the Inside

    Ricardo Lara spent 19 years in Texas prisons. He got out the other day.

  • News

    September 30, 1999

    Cell Phones

    Not even prison officials can silence the irrepressible King of Con

  • News

    July 15, 1999

    Media Row on Death Row

    Will proposed media rules stifle coverage of convicts facing execution?

  • News

    January 21, 1999
  • News

    January 14, 1999
  • News

    May 14, 1998

    The Further Adventures of King Con

    Yet again, Steven Russell bluffed his way out of prison. And yet again, he got caught.

  • News

    August 24, 1995

    The Trouble with Larry

    Could castration cure Larry McQuay of his urge to molest children? He thinks it can, and wants the state to nueter him. Others would just like to neutralize him.

  • News

    August 24, 1995
  • News

    August 3, 1995
  • News

    August 11, 1994
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