A new study points to an even more disturbing pattern of haphazard justice: In Louisiana, juvenile court judges appear to have issued harsher punishments following an unexpected loss by the Louisiana State University football team. And disproportionately, those longer sentences fell on black children.
LSU economists Ozkan Eren and Naci Mocan came to these conclusions after studying more than a decade of state court data. In a draft of their paper, released this week by the National Bureau of Economic Research, they show that the Louisiana judges sentenced children differently during the football season, depending on how well LSU had played the previous weekend.
If I were a Louisiana criminal lawyer with a juvenile defendant, I guess I’d be doing anything I could to get a continuance this week. Thanks, Coach Miles!