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AP interviews Professor Chin about Rhode Island's 'civil death' law

News Posted on April 1, 2019

The Associated Press interviewed Professor Gabriel “Jack” Chin about Rhode Island’s long-standing “civil death” law that deems inmates serving life in prison as legally dead in respect to property, marriage and other civil rights.

The practice goes back to Colonial America, Chin told the AP, but largely fell out of favor and was undermined by court rulings in the 20th  century. Only Rhode Island, Idaho, New York and the U.S. Virgin Islands still have some form of civil death on the books, Chin told the news service. Read more:

Gabriel "Jack" Chin is Martin Luther King, Jr. Professor of Law and holder of the Edward L. Barrett, Jr. Endowed Chair at UC Davis School of Law.  He is a prolific and much-cited criminal and immigration law scholar whose work has addressed many of the most pressing social issues of our time.