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Arrested people across the United States often wait in jail for days, weeks, or even months before seeing a judge or meeting an attorney. In November 2021, the Deason Criminal Justice Reform Center published Ending Injustice: Solving the Initial Appearance Crisis, a comprehensive report about this ongoing crisis in pre-trial due process. That report described the devastating consequences of delayed and uncounseled initial appearances.

Now, these Initial Appearance Report Cards offer a closer look at the laws governing post-arrest procedures in each U.S. state, the District of Columbia, Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. While the Deason Center’s previous report provided an overview of the initial appearance crisis nationwide, the Initial Appearance Report Cards are a rigorous assessment of the laws in almost every jurisdiction in the country. These report cards reveal enormous gaps in the legal protections accorded to people accused of crimes, illuminating both the scope of the initial appearance crisis and our urgent need to solve it.

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License.

Grading Injustice: Initial Appearance Report Cards

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