America Incarcerated


Will New York Scrap Its Broken Bail System?

A state senator from Queens wants to scrap the archaic system of holding some people in jail before their trial unless they can pay for freedom.


How the Expensive, Shady Process of Making a Phone Call from Behind Bars Is Finally Changing

Inmates are excited about the plan to impose new caps on how much it costs to call their loved ones.


A Veteran Brooklyn Cop and Prosecutor Explains Why America's Criminal Justice System is a Disaster

What we need to do to put fewer Americans behind bars.


How America Became the Most Imprisoned Nation in the World

Over the past 50 years, an era of mass incarceration took shape in the US as politicians raced to erect a sprawling detention system. Today, the country locks up more people than any other on the planet.


How a Woman Locked Up with Breast Cancer Became a Prison Activist

Sue Ellen Allen went to prison when she was 57 years old and emerged determined to improve conditions for every woman who goes to prison.


Why Solitary Confinement in America Needs to Finally Stop

Now that solitary is on the national radar, systemic problems with "the hole" are being laid bare for all to see.


How Drug Trafficking Conspiracy Laws Put Regular People in Prison for Life

If you rub elbows with big-time drug dealers, you can get sentenced to decades behind bars thanks to laws passed at the height of the drug panic in the 1980s.


Even White-Collar Criminals Can Get Screwed Over by the Prison System

A man I once knew in prison got out but was unable to return to anything resembling a normal life thanks to aggressive parole restrictions.


Heroin, Murder, and the New Front in the War on Drugs

When heroin users die from an overdose, some prosecutors pursue full-fledged murder charges against the dealers or friends who provided the drugs. Possible sentences include life without parole.


Fixing the System: An Interview with President Obama on Prison Reform

VICE accompanied President Obama to a federal prison in Oklahoma to film a special episode about the US criminal justice system for our show on HBO. Read an excerpt from a sit-down interview conducted during the visit.


How to Get Involved in Changing the Criminal Justice System

After tuning into Sunday's special episode of VICE on HBO, here are some ways to get involved with the organizations fighting for criminal justice reform.


Prison Yoga Is Helping Inmates Transcend Their Cells

The Prison Yoga Project is bringing mindfulness, meditation, and physical release to hundreds of prisoners.