The state health department has agreed to provide more bed space for Louisiana inmates found incompetent to stand trial and those found not guilty of crimes by reason of insanity. 


Prisons are built on the supposition that time, discipline and routine transform inmates into new people. Nelson Davis has lived with this idea since 1980, when he arrived at the Louisiana State Penitentiary to fulfill a life sentence.

An inmate in the new Orleans Parish Prison.
Cheryl Gerber / Unprisoned

The Listening Post is teaming up with the Unprisoned project, a new media initiative by award winning independent radio producer Eve Abrams. We want to understand better how jails and prisons impact society here in Louisiana, where 1 in 75 residents are incarcerated, the highest rate in the world.

President Barack Obama is visiting Louisiana Tuesday in support of issues he highlighted in his final State of the Union Address. One area with bipartisan support for change is in criminal justice reform – an issue he recently reviewed at the White House with a former New Orleans police chief.

Ending The Reign Of Burl Cain: An In-Depth Interview

Jan 1, 2016
Blake Nelson Boyd

In January, 1995 Burl Cain became warden of the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola. In his 20 years on the job, Cain became practically synonymous with the infamous prison plantation, known both for sweeping reforms based in a Christian ministry at the prison, and for frequent controversies over business deals involving inmate labor, goods and services.

Cheryl Gerber

Democrat John Bel Edwards has been elected to serve as Louisiana’s next governor. That’s partly because more voters than expected cast ballots in Saturday’s election.  Some go to greater lengths than others to vote… including some current and former inmates.

89.9 WWNO — New Orleans Public Radio is launching an experimental new community-embedded reporting series, focused on the Louisiana criminal justice system. The station was one of 15 organizations chosen from over 200 entrants in a nationwide competition to incubate storytelling experiments and expand public media to more Americans.

Micheal Boedigheimer

On Friday morning 50 cyclists set off on a three-day bike ride from New Orleans to Louisiana State Penitentiary. They're raising money to support a free bus service for families and friends to visit their loved ones in prison.

Katy Reckdahl/Juvenile Justice Information Project

At age 17, Henry Montgomery went to jail for killing a deputy in Baton Rouge. He's been in jail ever since, serving a life sentence in Angola penitentiary with no possibility for parole.

On Tuesday the Supreme Court hears a case bearing his name: Montgomery v. Louisiana. Lawyers will make their arguments before the court about mandatory life sentencing for juveniles, specifically who should get a chance at freedom.

It’s moving day at the Orleans Parish Prison. Starting Monday morning, inmates will be taken to the new $145 million jail next door.