- Associated Press - Thursday, October 1, 2015

CARY, N.C. (AP) - A researcher who writes about the effects of mass incarceration is the keynote speaker at a symposium in Cary sponsored by legal groups.

Heather Ann Thompson will speak Thursday at the symposium titled “Understanding and Dismantling Mass Incarceration,” presented by the North Carolina Commission on Racial and Ethnic Disparities.

Other speakers include Nicole Porter of The Sentencing Project and defense attorney Joe Cheshire of Raleigh. Several panel discussions feature a chief district court judge, a Fayetteville police captain and attorneys, professors and advocates.

The commission says almost seven million people in the U.S. are in jails, prisons or under other forms of correctional control. In North Carolina, the ratio of blacks to whites in prison is 5.4 to 1.

The event will be held at the North Carolina Bar Association.

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