The contagion of crime is like that of the plague. Criminals collected together corrupt each other; they are worse than ever when at the termination of their punishment they re-enter society.
There are few better measures of the concern a society has for its individual members and its own well being than the way it handles criminals.
Mere factual innocence is no reason not to carry out a death sentence properly reached.
The only effect of public punishment is to show the rabble how bravely it can be borne; and that every one who hath lost a toe-nail hath suffered worse.
It is not at the table, but in prison, that you learn who your true friends are.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
It is hard, but it is excellent, to find the right knowledge of when correction is necessary and when grace doth most avail.
Faults of the head are punished in this world, those of the heart in another; but as most of our vices are compound, so also is their punishment.
We're in a war. People who blast some pot on a casual basis are guilty of treason.
Concepts of justice must have hands and feet to carry out justice in every case in the shortest possible time and the lowest possible cost. That is the challenge to every lawyer and judge in America.
Crimes lead one into another; they who are capable of being forgers are capable of being incendiaries.
I asked a man in prison once how he happened to be there and he said he had stolen a pair of shoes. I told him if he had stolen a railroad he would be a United States Senator.
It is impossible to go through life without trust: That is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.
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!
Before we can diminish our sufferings from the ill-controlled aggressive assaults of fellow citizens, we must renounce the philosophy of punishment, the obsolete, vengeful penal attitude. In its place we would seek a comprehensive, constructive social attitude - therapeutic in some instances, restraining in some instances, but preventive in its total social impact. In the last analysis this becomes a question of personal morals and values. No matter how glorified or how piously disguised, vengeance as a human motive must be personally repudiated by each and every one of us.
The penalty for laughing in a courtroom is six months in jail; if it were not for this penalty, the jury would never hear the evidence.
I am certain that nothing has done so much to destroy the juridical safeguards of individual freedom as the striving after this mirage of social justice.