Arizona Prisons

Republic, KJZZ investigation examines how prison labor works
After 15 months of gathering and analyzing more than 11,000 documents and building a computer program that downloaded tens of thousands of public profiles about prisoners that the Arizona Department of Corrections refused to provide, reporters at the Arizona Republic and KJZZ News found that prison labor has become ubiquitous across the state.
More Arizona prison news
Arizona Department of Corrections building
Federal investigators say Arizona’s prison system illegally discriminates against inmates who are blind or partially sighted. The state Corrections director said his administration first learned of the federal review that went on for more than two years about two weeks ago.
Jul. 20, 2023
Arizona Department of Corrections Director Charles Ryan
The settlement conference was supposed to take place Monday, but is now set for July 13. The move comes after attorneys on both sides said they want to look at additional evidence.
Jun. 19, 2023
Barry Jones
A man who’s been on death row since the 1990s should soon be free after he pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of second-degree murder in Pima County Superior Court on Thursday. The murder conviction of Barry Jones was thrown out in 2018 by a federal judge but then the U.S. Supreme Court reinstated it last year.
Jun. 15, 2023
Rachel Mitchell
Maricopa County’s top prosecutor spoke to the media Wednesday for the first time since KJZZ News first reported plea deal negotiations are underway with a former state prisons director. Charles Ryan faces felony gun charges stemming from a standoff last year at his Tempe home.
Jun. 14, 2023
Corrections Director Ryan Thornell
A Senate panel voted Tuesday to recommend confirmation of a new head of the state prison system after he assured them his agency is ready to again start executing inmates on death row.
Jun. 6, 2023
msco logo
The inmate convicted of killing Maricopa County detention Officer Gene Lee has been sentenced to 33 years in prison. Daniel Davitt was in county jail, having been convicted of multiple sex crimes, when he attacked Lee in October of 2019.
Jun. 4, 2023
arizona prison cell
Research links both current and past incarceration to declines in mental health, and deinstitutionalization means people with mental illness often end up imprisoned. Yet a new study shows many states provide only sparse data regarding suicides behind prison walls — in violation of federal law.
May. 31, 2023
Paul Penzone
Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone has spoken out publicly several times this year as reports of overdoses and deaths in the county jails have racked up and footage of inmates being wheeled out of jails on gurneys has hit the news.
May. 4, 2023
Fronteras Desk logo
A government watchdog advisory released at the end of April finds persistent safety issues with federally run detention centers on tribal land.
May. 2, 2023
barbed wire at an arizona prison
Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs on Friday launched the first meeting of the independent prison oversight commission that she created by executive order in January.
Apr. 29, 2023
Arizona Supreme Court building
The state Supreme Court reinstated the death penalty against a man convicted in the 1995 murder of University of Arizona Professor Roy Johnson.
Apr. 17, 2023
arizona prison cell
A U.S. District Court judge has made permanent an order that aims to improve the way Arizona delivers health care to incarcerated people in state-run prisons.
Apr. 10, 2023
Katie Hobbs
Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs has been ordered to appear in court Thursday in her efforts to halt pending executions.
Apr. 3, 2023
Aaron Gunches
Arizona Gov. Katie Hobbs says corrections officials will not carry out an execution even though the state Supreme Court scheduled it over the objections of the state’s new attorney general.
Mar. 3, 2023
hickmans family farms egg ranch chicken sign
At the start of the pandemic, prisoners who worked off-site were largely sent back to prison. The work stopped – and, with it, the meager amount of money they earned to pay for things like regular soap and toothpaste.
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Mar. 1, 2023
 death chamber
Governor Katie Hobbs has chosen retired Judge David Duncan to be the Death Penalty Independent Review Commissioner.
Feb. 24, 2023
Makahiki at Saguaro Correctional Center in Eloy
Today, there are more than 1,000 Hawaiian inmates residing in the private Saguaro Correctional Center in Eloy. Every year, the Hawaiian inmates observe Makahiki — the Hawaiian New Year festival.
Feb. 22, 2023
death chamber
New Democratic Attorney General Kris Mayes is pausing executions in Arizona — putting the use of the death penalty on hold until a review of the process is completed.
Jan. 26, 2023
Arizona State Prison Complex - Florence
Saying the problems there have been have been ignored for years, Gov. Katie Hobbs formed a special commission Wednesday to review operations of the state prison system.
Jan. 26, 2023
Rachel Mitchell
Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell said she supports Gov. Katie Hobbs' executive order calling for a review of death-penalty protocols in Arizona. The state has come under fire for issues with executions.
Jan. 24, 2023


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