In San Francisco, black people are held in jail longer than whites, their cases take longer, they are convicted of more serious crimes and they serve longer sentences.
So says a recent study by the Quattrone Center for the Fair Administration of Justice, which was commissioned by the San Francisco Public Defender’s Office.
The root of this disparity is not prosecutors or the courts. Instead, the study found it is mostly in the hands of police, who book black and minority defendants on more severe charges when they are jailed.
Once defendants are booked with the more severe charges, the rest of their cases are impacted as they move through the courts, according to the study.
The study sheds light on an often opaque process in the courts before defendants go to trial.With these new findings, the Public Defender’s Office hopes to help close this gap by creating a pretrial unit that will address booking issues before a formal charge is brought.
As it stands, defense attorneys know nothing about a case or client until a charge has been filed by prosecutors, who can only work with the evidence provided to them by police.
The whole system is stacked, by the racist SFPD, against people of color.
Source: The San Francisco Examiner