Amanda Hernández ǀ Stateline
Amanda Hernández covers criminal justice for Stateline. She has reported for both national and local outlets, including ABC News, USA Today and NBC4 Washington.
Politicians love to cite crime data. It’s often wrong.
By: Amanda Hernández ǀ Stateline - October 28, 2023
When Florida Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis announced his presidential campaign in May, he proudly told the nation that Florida’s crime rate in 2021 had reached a 50-year low. But really, DeSantis couldn’t say for sure. That’s because fewer than 1 in 10 law enforcement agencies in his state had reported their crime statistics to the […]
Sexual assault survivors can now track their rape kits in most states
By: Amanda Hernández ǀ Stateline - September 9, 2023
It can take hours for a sexual assault victim to undergo the multiple swabs, hair samples, blood and urine collections, and other invasive procedures of a sexual assault examination. And then it can take months, sometimes years, for investigators to process that evidence kit. But now, responding to demands from survivors and their advocates, more […]
States stiffen penalties for fentanyl, despite public health concerns
By: Amanda Hernández ǀ Stateline - July 22, 2023
As they struggle to reduce drug overdose deaths, policymakers across the United States are embroiled in a heated debate over creating and increasing criminal penalties related to fentanyl, a powerful synthetic opioid that’s up to 100 times more potent than morphine. Legislators pushing the new wave of criminal penalties say the laws will deter drug […]