Prisoners Report on Conditions in

Texas Prisons

Got legal skills? Help out with writing letters to appeal censorship of MIM Distributors by prison staff. help out is a media institution run by the Maoist Internationalist Ministry of Prisons. Here we collect and publicize reports of conditions behind the bars in U.$. prisons. Information about these incidents rarely makes it out of the prison, and when it does it is extremely rare that the reports are taken seriously and published. This historical record is important for documenting patterns of abuse, and also for informing people on the streets about what goes on behind the bars.

We hope this information will inspire people to take action and join the fight against the criminal injustice system. While we may not be able to immediately impact this particular instance of abuse, we can work to fundamentally change the system that permits and perpetuates it. The criminal injustice system is intimately tied up with imperialism, and serves as a tool of social control on the homeland, particularly targeting oppressed nations.

[Legal] [Texas]

Legal struggles in Texas Ad-Seg

I haven't been in touch in a while. Everything here in prison is pretty much the same thing. It's very hard to do legal work because i have to deal with retaliation from the prisoners and correctional officers. The law library here on this unit for Ad. Seg. is not good at all. A lot of the legal materials i request don't come in or the wrong ones come in and i need these legal materials in order to do research so i can win the lawsuits i am filing. I don't have the time i need to sit down and write everything. i need to file multiple lawsuits because i have to deal with all of the day to day prison life and then on top of that the law library staff do not bring me the legal supplies i need in order to research.

[Abuse] [Texas]

Lawsuit against dangerous conditions in Texas

There's something big going on down here in Texas, concerning a civil suit under the civil action # 4:14C vol698 under Judge Keith P. Ellison - 515 Rusk, Room 8631 in Houston, Texas 77208 - U.S. District Court Southern District of Texas. That's the reason why my address changed. They have placed injunctions on the Pack 1 unit in Nava Sota, TX 77868 which 1100 inmates were moved off of that unit, and the Springfellow in Rosharon, TX 77583 600 were moved concerning unsafe or extremely harsh conditions.

There's no air in the T.D.C.J. system, and there's been 8 to 9 deaths within the year on the Pack 1 unit and we were over there in Sept. to Oct. 1 around about and I witness one myself. Anyway, people that take psych medication, high blood pressure, diabetic, asthma, along with a few more health condition what places heat restrictions on you can't be on T.D.C.J. units without air conditioning. So that's caused a big uproar here in Texas. None of their units or facilities has air except about 3 or 4 and that's where they had six month programs for people with an F1-6 pre-release but they've had to shut those down. There's people on the floors, disabled people on top bunks because there's not enough bottom bunks etc. etc. it's bad. These injunctions are really shaking things up here in Texas. I've wrote the courts under the action #4:14C vol698 and ask for more info - because it's a class action suit that I'm involved in, maybe I will have something to send to you all.

[Drugs] [Robertson Unit] [Texas]

Texas using drugs to keep prisoners quiet

Here's the thing about the Texas prison system, if you're the one that likes to medicate themselves with K2 or psych drugs then the system is a cake walk. I've been here many times but when I woke up and saw the real picture it was too late. Now I want you to understand that society plays a vital role in this campaign of slavery and drug trafficking. The prisoners these days don't care about nothing but K2 and commissary. The Texas prisoners won't put their foot down for nothing but when the pleasures have been taken from them. The guards bring that shit in here and they're making big money. The powers that be will let just enough drugs in to keep the masses from rioting, as long as the masses think they're being slick by getting drugs in then there won't be any waves. Society is so jacked up with their own problems, and not to mention how the smoke and mirrors are being used by the power that be.

[Censorship] [Wynne Unit] [Texas]

Wynne Unit censoring ULK, ignoring grievances

I am at the Wynne Unit. I am writing to let you know that Under Lock and Key July-Aug was denied. It contains material that a reasonable person would construe as written solely for the purpose of communicating information designed to achieve the breakdown of prisons through offender disruption such as strikes, riots or security threat group activity. "Remarks" Reason C page 11 contains information that could cause a prison disruption.

I appealed the denial, even sent a I-60 to DRC, I have not got my appeal back nor my I-60. This happens a lot at the Wynne Unit, all of our step ones come back with: "This office has investigated your grievance. After a review of statements from staff your allegation that you have not been issued your indigent supplies was not sustained, no violation of TDCJ policy was sustained no further action is required by this office and we consider this step 1 grievance closed at this time. Warden McClarin." Every one of our grievances will say something like that. "We talk to our staff, they said no, so you're wrong." Wynne is a unit where staff has a free run to do whatever they want to do, cases are wrote for anything and you can be locked up for asking "why". I hope you get this letter, sometimes Wynne Unit will stop mail from going out or coming in.

[Abuse] [Censorship] [Jester III Unit] [Texas]

Mail tampering at Jester III in Texas

Please give me notice you received this because I'm indigent and I'm forced to mail out my mail through the unit law library dept and I'm sure some of my mail is being stopped and intercepted by law library staff members. I have filed numerous grievance complaints and am threatening to file a federal lawsuit, due to being subjected to ongoing harassment, retaliation and ADA discrimination by law library supervisor Ms. Mukoro. I have written to Houston Texas FBI office two different times but I never got a response, and I wrote to The Board of Criminal Justice, PO Box 13084, Austin TX 78711 and again no response. I have written to Texas Governor Greg Abbott, letting him know it's my intentions to file lawsuit against TDCJ officials, if the matter isn't rectified very speedily. I have received numerous bogus and retaliatory disciplinary infraction s from only law library staff members in the past year, and none from unit security officers.

[Medical Care] [Texas]

Dangerous medical neglect in Texas

Last time I wrote we was on lockdown because someone murdered their cellie. We came off lockdown for only a little over a month. Now we are BACK on lockdown because someone stabbed a law. We have a new warden, rumor is we will be on lockdown 60 days. If so this will be 4 months out of 2017 the whole unit had to spend on cell lockdown. NO rec. NO 1 hour outside dayroom, only time you come out is showers Tue. Thur. Sat., or if you put in to see nurse.

Now I thought we was supposed to have rec time. But I guess that's long-term seg time. Well this is 3rd wk. lockdown so that's 3 months out of this year. THAT'S LONG-TERM to me. Also no commissary. So we can't buy stamps. We are allowed 5 letters a month. We have to use lineless print paper.

Since I've been back from my bench warrant, they placed me on top bunk on the 2nd row. I wrote a grievance because I have Wolff Parkinson White Syndrome and M.V.P. - mitral valve prolapse. Irregular heartbeat that can sometimes cause you to pass out. I've fallen off the bottom bunk a few times, and have been walking and had to lay down cause I felt as if I was going to pass out. I had an "ablation" heart surgery when I was 17. I'm 28 now. On my step 1, after 30 days they got a 45 day extension then told me they will do nothing they trust the opinion of their medical staff, nurses, doctors. I had a heart specialist and a heart electrophysiologist best doctor in the world. I wrote my step 2 a week ago and told them pretty much same thing that was in 1st grievance. But I added that sometimes I have to sleep on floor with rats & roaches for fear of cracking my head open on falling off the top bunk.

[Abuse] [Hamilton Unit] [Texas]

Parole delays due to program problems

At the Hamilton Unit, the offenders are on the way out – 6-7 months at best 10-11 at worst. Most will not stand for their rights or write grievances due to retaliation and loss of parole. Me and a few others will stand and will tell what's going on and how we are being treated and threatened. This was a youth unit for a long time, so you can imagine how we are treated. The food is now TDCJ as of Sept 1, 2017, yet they are still feeding Air Mart, TYC, or program portions, which are not TDCJ policies.

We have several medical issues at this unit, such as myself, I am awaiting lower back surgery, Dec-Jan, and sitting in a problem. The neurosurgeon who will be doing my operation has done all he can for now. He requests that I receive a pillow to sit on so I don't have pain and burning. Yet I am made to sit in a chair 8-10 hours a day. This should be cruel and unusual punishment. Also South Texas does not approve of North Texas way of medical treatment. North Texas is Texas Tech, South Texas is UTMB. If transferred all treatment could start over and my case was.

Also there is a $ issue about this program and I will do my best to explain one one of many issues, which just happens to be mine. In January, 2017 I received a favorable parole decision. A FI-6R, which is a 6 month PRTC drug program. Target release date Dec 2017. Program start date June 2017. I finally arrived at Hamilton Unit in July, at which time all smut of any kind was removed from my property. I had to and have to follow all new program rules, and mailroom rules, yet I am not actually enrolled in the program yet. I am only housed in the overflow dorm awaiting my turn to start. Now remember my months are June to Dec.

While I am in this overflow dorm waiting my turn to start, July to Jan and Aug to Feb offenders come and start the program ahead of me and several others June to Dec. Parole issued these months, but TDCJ will not get paid unless the offender completes 180 days. You see the program is behind schedule, due to counselor shortage and certain offenders must be released on the short way cause they made parole. This is not fair in my or my family's eyes.

Aug 17, 2017 on about, a Federal Judge made TDCJ clos the Pack Unit due to heat illness. Hamilton Unit is A.C. so all June month offenders were transferred to other units. Myself, I am heat restricted, along with others, yet we were moved to 24-7 lockup at the Goreee Unit for 3 weeks. 24-7 lock up, no rec, no church, no phone, no hot water, only $10 a week commissary. After 3 weeks of this treatment we were sent back to Hamilton Unit.

Why did they chose June month offenders. My thinking is, so they can start 60-100 Aug-Sept offenders and state they were on schedule – they completing offenders on time. I will not get out until April now, yet parole will tell you and my family I get out in Dec. The right hand does not know what the left hand is doing.

[Abuse] [Texas]

Texas Pack inspires litigation against abuses

I have promoted our mission and newsletter throughout my housing area and unit informing others of all you offer and on the Texas Pack which brought me to understanding of your organization. Since I have been put through the mill and received a major case for having a pair of earbuds! They went ballistic on me and I have thus been having to fight their injustice and need as much assistance – have sought out the civil rights division special litigation section for their abuse of authority that needs to be investigated.

I have also educated those who are undergoing similar abuses such as negligence in health matters; harassment and retaliation of filing grievances. I believe they (admin) have put a jacket on my file due to my assistance which has caused this extreme action they have taken on this non-threatening, non-dangerous charges.

I had a friend of mine in this system who warn me about their lying and hateful abuse of authority and he was setup for a fall. Vacca v Farrington cite as 8S5W3d 438 (Tx App – Texarkana 2002) A good case to understand just one fellow's struggle with the system: Vacca alleges that as a result of the retaliation, he experienced pain, humiliation, weight loss, emotional distress, punishment without due process, imminent fear for his life, and a "chilling" of his right to exercise access to the courts. Judgment of trial court is reversed, case remanded.

[Legal] [Allred Unit] [Texas] [ULK Issue 58]

Inspired to Act

I just finished re-reading in ULK 53 page 12 "Texas Reform Updates." It sufficiently raised my ire enough to put pen to paper and submit my 14-page memorandum which I had the balls to place into the "Head Warden's" hand personally. I enclosed a copy of the same with this letter.

As a result of that act, 90 minutes later I had a member of the Law Library staff in my cell going through my legal paperwork, devoid of the prerequisite authorization (I-186) of a Warden to do so. Whereas, other copies of my own writings — which I sent out, had duplicated, and returned via the U.S. Postal Service — were filched and used to administer a disciplinary case claiming additional fictitious contraband.

This memorandum outlines in detail how the law library (L/L) is run "out of compliance" with BP-03.81, ATC 020, 030, 050 and the Offender Orientation Handbook (I-202).

Among other things, participants of the L/L, i.e. prisoners, are disallowed the right to vocally interact in assisting each other in legal matters.

Since that fateful day, harassment and retaliation in the L/L has steadily intensified. Not being one to take this illicit conduct, I have sent a copy (oh, about eight of 'em) to various entities akin to "60 Minutes," Texas Attorney General, Texas Governor, Access to Courts (ATC) Administrator, Houston Chronicle and other prisoner-assisting organizations.

A multitude of the L/L patrons had no idea the actual truth of how a TDCJ L/L is intended to be operated and run. The staff are actually obligated to facilitate us (prisoners) in assisting one another in legal matters. Not harassing us for spreading the litigious knowledge — as per the ATC Rules.

I have several Step 2s [grievances] under review and am just awaiting their return so I can initiate State Tort action, because the Federal Courts do not have jurisdiction to make the State of Texas follow their own laws and rules. Only the State can make the State conform to its own rules.

If you think that I'm pissed, you're right! After all, I am convicted wrongfully, and wrongfully convicted in this pissant of a state. Being former military, I do not give in. I will prevail(!!) in getting things straightened out and being exonerated. In the course of accomplishing that, I will altruistically get the L/L in this POS unit to come into compliance with the legislatures' intent and the Board Policies intents too.

Other prisoners in Texas I am certain will have use for my memorandum. Go ahead and offer it up. If we prisoners in TDCJ don't start pulling together we are destined to end up fucked off. Expose these people for what they are!

MIM(Prisons) responds: TDCJ's long-term goal seems to be to hide all relevant policies from the people who are interested in them most, and then just operate its facilities however it pleases. That's why we created the Texas Campaign Pack, and why this comrade sent us eir memorandum to the Warden. If the state won't provide this information, we have to do it ourselves. Send in $2.50 to get the Texas Pack.

Exposure and lawsuits are worthwhile approaches, but can't be our be-all-end-all. We fight to not only get the law library back in compliance, but to change society to the point where these problems are no longer possible. We want oppression to become obsolete, and we want oppressed people to have the power to make this a reality!