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New Report Highlights the Challenges and Innovations in D.C.'s Criminal Legal System in 2021

Executive Summary
Full Report

On May 27, 2022, CCE published D.C.’s Justice Systems Overview 2021, a new report that offers a data-forward look into the significant challenges and innovations in the District of Columbia’s adult and youth criminal legal systems during the last year. As the District continues to navigate the public health crisis and address the racial disparities at the center of D.C.’s criminal legal system, the tenacity of local residents and advocates led to meaningful changes in 2021.

Throughout the last year, we saw the ways in which the District stood up and supported its residents during the ongoing pandemic, while also highlighting longstanding deficiencies within its criminal legal system that made D.C.’s justice-involved residents uniquely vulnerable to the health, social, and economic impacts of COVID-19. “Despite the logistical complexities caused by the ongoing pandemic and the collective grief and outcry surrounding the rise in gun violence, the community continued to come together to demand more, and better, for the District’s justice-involved residents and those impacted by crime,” says Misty Thomas, Executive Director of the Council for Court Excellence.  

Building off the
2019 and 2020 editions, CCE’s newest report provides easy-to-read updates on various challenges and developments in D.C.’s criminal legal system, as well as data visualizations to show significant trends or insights. With support from Public Welfare Foundation, this report presents the most recent available data in five areas of concern: Policing and Violence; Adult Prosecution and the Courts; Incarceration; Reentry; and Youth Justice.

“By providing an annualized, bird’s eye view of the District’s criminal legal system, advocates, policymakers, journalists, and interested residents are able to observe trends in local progress towards reducing D.C.’s criminal legal system’s disproportionate impact on Black residents, fixing systemic issues, and enacting meaningful, lasting reforms,” says Casey Anderson, CCE’s Policy and Communications Manager, who was the report’s primary author.  

For media inquiries, please contact Casey Anderson at


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