Center for American Progress

STATEMENT: Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado Ruling Is Reminder that Justices Must Understand How Racial Bias and Bigotry Play Out in Court System, Says CAP’s Danyelle Solomon
Press Statement

STATEMENT: Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado Ruling Is Reminder that Justices Must Understand How Racial Bias and Bigotry Play Out in Court System, Says CAP’s Danyelle Solomon

Washington, D.C. — On March 6, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Pena-Rodriguez v. Colorado that the Constitution protects a defendant’s right to a fair trial when a juror explicitly relies on racist beliefs or feelings to convict the defendant. Danyelle Solomon, Director of Progress 2050 at the Center for American Progress, issued the following statement:

Racial and ethnic disparities are found at every point within our criminal justice system. Today, the Supreme Court held that racially discriminatory comments made during jury deliberations are serious and should be taken into account when a person’s liberty is at risk. In order for lady justice to be truly blind, racist comments made to influence a jury cannot be tolerated. This case is another stark reminder that our Supreme Court justices must understand how racial bias and bigotry play out in our court system—and ensure that legal jurisprudence is in place to stop such abuse from occurring.

CAP experts are available to speak on this topic. For more information or to coordinate an interview, please contact Tanya Arditi at [email protected] or 202.741.6258.

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