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Crime Pays for Media Man

By Annie Gausn | Jul. 2, 2006

Law Office Management

Jul. 2, 2006

Crime Pays for Media Man

How one man is capitalizing on the country's high incarceration rates.

By M.C. Eckard
      When Ray Hrdlicka created Crime, Justice & America four years ago, he knew he was on to something. The 40-page publication is distributed to inmates in about 75 jails in 33 counties throughout California who are hungry for news and information about the state's criminal justice system.
      Hrdlicka, 47, is now on to something else: a talk-radio show aimed at anyone who's interested in the criminal justice system, including family and friends of the incarcerated.
      The show debuted in March on KCBQ in San Diego. Among the topics discussed so far: anger management, immigration, and the ins and outs of eyewitness testimony. In one recent broadcast, Leonard Padilla, billed as the "world's most famous bounty hunter," talked about gun violence.
      Hrdlicka himself was a bounty hunter for a time. He also was a private investigator and built his own retail bail-bond company before getting into media. "There's a huge market" for criminal-justice news, he says enthusiastically. And his zeal doesn't end there. In fact, at press time, he was planning to launch a series of criminal justice television shows aimed at local markets across the United States.
      For Hrdlicka, it's of course of no small consequence that the United States has the highest incarceration rate in the world, according to the Bureau of Justice Statistics. Indeed, at the end of 2004, 7 million Americans were either on probation, in jail or prison, or on parole-that amounts to 3.2 percent of all adult U.S. residents. With numbers like that, Hrdlicka figures, how can he possibly lose?

Annie Gausn

Daily Journal Staff Writer

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