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The Sun Magazine

Culture and Society

Crime

Photography

Life On The Outside

Photographer Joseph Rodriguez grew up in Brooklyn, New York, and as a boy he watched the men in his family go in and out of prison. There were very few support programs for ex-felons at the time, and Rodriguez witnessed the difficulty his relatives had adjusting to life on the outside.

The Sun Interview

The Whole Truth

Richard A. Leo On Why Innocent People Confess To Crimes

Once the police come to the conclusion that someone committed the crime, they are trained to interrogate. At that point their goal isn’t to gather information; it’s to build a case against the person they’ve already decided is guilty. They want to get a confession.

Fiction

Girls Like Her

I got the call in the middle of the night. I dressed fast, expecting Parker to wake up any minute and make me come back, but he didn’t. It was summer, and the air felt warm even at 2 AM. I made a cup of coffee and walked down the long driveway to the road. Julie was giving me a ride, but she’d never been to my house before. Nobody ever came there to see me.

Fiction

Due To Vandalism

The copper is the easiest, isn’t it, vandal? You can clear the whole house with a hammer and a hacksaw. Start in the basement at the water heater. If the property has been properly winterized, the water will be shut off, and even if it hasn’t been, it takes hours for a basement to flood and days for someone to notice. (Just make sure the power is off, for real. In April they found a fried vandal in a cellar in Pontiac, Michigan, his body bobbing as high as the window well.)

Quotations

Sunbeams

The county jail looked like a tall, forbidding elementary school. Seven stories of dirty-brown brick, one hundred years old and now operating at 330 percent of capacity.

Richard Price

The Sun Interview

Criminal Injustice

Maya Schenwar On The Failure Of Mass Incarceration

Prison deepened my sister’s addiction, crushed her self-esteem, narrowed her options for jobs and education, and diminished her hope for a good life. She was in a much worse situation each time she came out.