Every instance of a man's suffering the penalty of the law is an instance of the failure of that penalty in effecting its purpose, which is to deter.
We who live in prison, and in whose lives there is no event but sorrow, have to measure time by throbs of pain, and the record of bitter moments.
The only difference between me and my fellow actors is that I've spent more time in jail.
One man meets an infamous punishment for that crime which confers a diadem upon another.
They were being driven to a prison, through no fault of their own, in all probability for life. In comparison, how much easier it would be to walk to the gallows than to this tomb of living horrors!
Oh who is that young sinner with the handcuffs on his wrist? And what has he been after that they groan and shake their fists? And wherefore is he wearing such a conscience-stricken air? Oh they're taking him to prison for the colour of his hair.
The only real prison is fear, and the only real freedom is freedom from fear.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
If we were brought to trial for the crimes we have committed against ourselves, few would escape the gallows.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.
It is more dangerous that even a guilty person should be punished without the forms of law than that he should escape.
Three hundred years ago a prisoner condemned to the Tower of London carved on the wall of his cell this sentiment to keep up his spirits during his long imprisonment: “It is not adversity that kills, but the impatience with which we bear adversity.”
Organized crime in America takes in over forty billion dollars a year. This is quite a profitable sum, especially when one considers that the Mafia spends very little for office supplies.
Probably the only place where a man can feel really secure is in a maximum security prison, except for the imminent threat of release.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
Law is merely the expression of the will of the strongest for the time being, and therefore laws have no fixity, but shift from generation to generation.
There are dreadful punishments enacted against thieves; but it were much better to make such good provisions, by which every man might be put in a method how to live, and so to be preserved from the fatal necessity of stealing and dying for it.