As long as large numbers of Hawaiian inmates continue to reside in mainland private prisons, they often must focus their energy on surviving their prison sentences rather than on rehabilitation. However, the expected reopening of the Kulani Correctional Facility may help meet the governor's goal of moving inmates back to the mainland and establishing a restorative justice program that can help provide the skills prisoners need to succeed within the community while on parole or upon release.
In Hawaii, charges of driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs (DUI) are not like common traffic citations. While these crimes are commonly treated as misdemeanors, offenders face significant long-term penalties, even for a first conviction. Since blood alcohol content (BAC) tests measuring less than the .08 percent legal limit do not protect drivers from conviction if they exhibit any form of driving impairment, individuals facing DUI charges need to retain immediate legal support to obtain the best possible results for their cases.
Eyewitness identification is considered among the most accurate evidence available in criminal investigations. Yet, lineup identification has a serious error rate and sends many innocent individuals through a stressful and lengthy criminal process that can end in wrongful conviction and incarceration.
The seemingly unlimited resources of the Federal Government present a decidedly tilted playing field against an average person facing white collar criminal charges. Some defendants may expect their employers to cover their defense bills, but instead they face termination, creating a loss of income that makes the legal expenses that much harder to bear. A guilty plea often presents the most affordable option - even when a defendant is actually innocent.
On the surface, the Prison Litigation Reform Act (PLRA) might sound like a law designed to protect the rights of prisoners. This 1996 federal law was, in fact, created to reduce the incidence of potentially-frivolous prisoner litigation within the federal court system. Since the inception of the PLRA, prisoners with valid complaints regarding their civil rights must undergo a complex process before taking their claims to court.