Mar 19, 2018

Jay-Z backs prison reform startup

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata

Jay-Z in concert. Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images.

Promise, a provider of incarceration alternatives to local governments, has raised $3 million in venture capital funding from investors like Jay-Z's Roc Nation.

Why it matters: Thousands of Americans each year are jailed because of their inability to afford bail, even if their alleged offense is a low-level misdemeanor. It can be devastating for the individual, and expensive for taxpayers.

First Round Capital led the investment round, and was joined by Roc Nation, 8VC and Kapor Capital.

Per TechCrunch:

"Promise provides counties with a comprehensive intake procedure and then sets up each participant with a care plan specific to them. Promise will then monitor and support participants by helping them ensure they know when they’re supposed to appear in court, and remind them of obligations like drug testing or substance abuse treatment needed. The app also provides participants with job training, housing, counseling and referrals."

Go deeper at Axios: How the U.S. imprisons the poor

Go deeper

Updated 8 mins ago - Politics & Policy

U.S. enters 6th day of nationwide protests over George Floyd's killing

A protest in Philadelphia on May 31. Photo: Mark Makela/Getty Images

Cleveland police informed media outlets on Sunday that they are included in the city's downtown curfew, which began at noon and runs until 8 a.m. on Monday, police said. Cleveland police tweeted earlier that curfew violators are subject to arrest.

The big picture: Protests have continued across the country for six days, as demonstrators call for justice in response to the deaths of George Floyd and other other black Americans who have died in police custody or who have been killed in racist attacks.

Updated 13 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Journalists get caught in the crosshairs as protests unfold

A man waves a Black Lives Matter flag atop the CNN logo outside the CNN Center during a protest in response to the police killing of George Floyd, Atlanta, Georgia, May 29. Photo: Elijah Nouvelage/Getty Images

Dozens of journalists across the country tweeted videos Saturday night of themselves and their crews getting arrested, being shot at by police with rubber bullets, targeted with tear gas by authorities or assaulted by protesters.

Driving the news: The violence got so bad over the weekend that on Sunday the Cleveland police said the media was not allowed downtown unless "they are inside their place of business" — drawing ire from news outlets around the country, who argued that such access is a critical part of adequately covering protests.

Updated 33 mins ago - Politics & Policy

Tanker truck plows into Minneapolis protesters

The tanker after plowing into protesters on the shut-down bridge in Minneapolis on Sunday evening. Authorities said it appeared protesters escaped injury. Photo: Jeff Wheeler/Star Tribune via Getty Images

Minnesota authorities said in a statement they're investigating as a criminal matter what happened with a truck that "drove into demonstrators" on a Minneapolis bridge Sunday evening while the eight-lane road was closed for a protest.

What they're saying: Minnesota Department of Public Safety tweeted, "Very disturbing actions by a truck driver on I-35W, inciting a crowd of peaceful demonstrators. The truck driver was injured & taken to a hospital with non-life threatening injuries. He is under arrest. It doesn't appear any protesters were hit by the truck."