Lukas Knight’s Projects

Blank Check: How local police fund themselves with fines and fees

For almost every city around America, fines and fees are a useful law enforcement tool, offering a way to punish everyday infractions without the immediate threat of jail or a permanent mark on a criminal record. But what happens when governments stop thinking of fines as a deterrent, but as a crucial source of funding? How does it change policing when the goal is neither to serve and protect, but to ensure that the budget doesn't take a hit? The Sunlight Foundation and MuckRock are partnering to find out.

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