America is the most diverse nation in the world. In this diverse nation one would assume that equality would exist. However it does not, especially in the Criminal Justice System. Racial Disparity in the Criminal Justice System results from the dissimilar treatment of similarly situated people based on race. The history of racial disparity in the Criminal Justice System in the U.S has been longstanding. With this country's shameful past of slavery, the Jim Crow laws, and numerous other racially based injustices, it seems obvious that race plays a factor in many facets of the criminal justice system, such as who is more likely to come in contact with it and who is more likely to be incarcerated. .
Racist interests trying to create causality between the Civil Rights Movement and an increase in crime is yet another early example of the issue of race being inextricably linked to crime and thus the Criminal Justice System. In earlier times, courtrooms in many jurisdictions were comprised of all white decision makers. Today, there is more diversity of leadership in the court system, but race still plays a critical role in many Criminal Justice outcomes. Studies which have been conducted has proven that young, Black and Latino males will receive harsh sentencing compared to other offender populations, and black defendants convicted of harming white victims suffer harsher penalties than blacks who commit crimes against other blacks or white defendants who harm whites. .
Our country should be ashamed, after all we are known as the country of freedom. Black Americans make up about 12% of the US population and they account for more then 30% of all arrests, 44% of all prisoners and 40% of prisoners on death row (Hunt, 1999:74). An African American child born today has a 1 in 3 chance of ending up in prison (Shelden, 2008, p.182). The unequal treatment of Blacks and Latinos within the justice system becomes evident through various forms of police misconduct such as excessive use of force against Blacks and Latinos, harassment, planting and falsifying evidence and police perjury.