TBA Law Blog

Posted by: Katharine Heriges on Dec 21, 2018
A federal judge in Memphis is challenging the local federal prosecutor's office, saying the prosecutors are bringing harsher charges against African-American defendants than white defendants for similar crimes, The Commercial Appeal reports. U.S. District Judge John T. Fowlkes Jr. has raised questions of racial discrimination in at least three different cases recently, including one in which a black man and a white man involved in the same drug deal were sentenced to 15 years and one year, respectively. Representatives of the prosecutor's office say they do not discriminate based on race. "We make charging decisions based on the rule of law, the facts of the case and department policy," said U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant in a statement.