In Arizona, crime doesn’t pay, unless you’re on the other side of the law.
Arizona instituted a new law that now charges visitors to state prisons a one-time fee of $25. The fee is supposedly to do background checks on the visitors 15 state prisons. And many are claiming this fee to be unconstitutional.
The Middle Ground Prison Reform has sued the state Department of Corrections seeking to have the fee declared a tax and any money paid so far returned to visitors.
The group says it believes the fee is unique among states.
Corrections officials deny allegations that it targets vulnerable groups and that it’s unconstitutional. They say the fees will help ensure inmate safety.
Some 30,000 people visit prison inmate each year.