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[Abuse] [Campaigns] [Granville Correctional Institution] [North Carolina]
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Respond to "Stop Snitching" with - Stop Collaborating!

A guy walked into special housing on HCON [High Security Maximum Control Unit] in 2022 with a head swollen to the size of a bowling ball, with skin hanging off deep face wounds above his eyebrow. He could barely walk. After the shield team beat him in the cell, then in the hallway on camera, they took him to medical and chained him to a table before beating him in front of the doctor and nurse.

Then they took him to the dry-cell and put his head against a concert bench (like a chopping block) in a kneeling position and began beating and kicking him in the head. One officer beat him on the ass with a night-stick. Then they stomped him out of consciousness. When he awoke they were still beating him. They left him there for about two hours til shift-change.

Right before shift-change they walked him back down the hall, past the nurse station where a second-shift nurse spotted the offender and asked what happened to him because he didn’t look like that when he went into the dry-cell. The Sergeant Wilson tried to make excuses but nevertheless the nurse had another assessment report done.

The guy was put in a special-housing cell next to mine. At shift-change the replacing sergeant who happened to be at competition with Sergeant Wilson for a lieutenant position reported the prisoner’s conditions to the Administration and Operating Lieutenant.

When the Lieutenant arrived the prisoner refused to take pictures – until I told him to take the pictures and go to medical. The prisoner was later taken to outside medical and diagnosed with a concussion and broken temple bone in his skull.

I myself and many other captives coached this prisoner with legal advice but he refused to appeal the grievance to step 3 in an attempt to arrange a deal with administration to be released from HCON status. He was not released.

In the process the Sergeant Wilson was transferred along with several other officers and one was fired. Shortly after being placed to work in the gate-house away from prisoners Sergeant Wilson quit. Only one of the officers is still here which is one too many.

This prisoner basically saved the officers by refusing to speak with the Warden about the incident or write statements. The prisoner later stated that writing a grievance or statement is snitching, but as I mentioned above he wrote both a grievance and statement, only to turn around and sell himself short, copping pleas and leaving everyone else hanging; while he turns his back and blind eye to fellow comrades who will suffer the same fate from these officers, he sold us out and left us to the wolves for false promises and that’s not what brothers do. Real brothers wouldn’t let any abuser anywhere near their brothers or sisters. Those were cynical decisions without revolutionary consciousness for the betterment of the people, the same people who helped him to medical treatment when he was lying on his deathbed.

Why settle to copping deals with the same foes who watched orders being carried out to kick your head in? I’m not taking anything from this prisoner’s will to self-sacrifice for others, but on an overall standpoint collectively concerning the prison population, the message here is,

“Don’t knock others for their foresight in advancing the people by any means necessary, including pen and paper.” -The Ballot or the Bullet, Malcolm X

Snitching:

  1. As long as what you say does not include someone else it is not snitching.
  2. Giving a hint that someone did something is dry snitching.

Collaborating: 1. Siding with, taking up for, or covering up for the police.

The generations before us put in decades of paperwork to get where we are today. They wrote newspaper publishers and fought for things we take for granted like bail, trials, showers and recreation etc. Nothing is final until it’s on paper. Any legal case won becomes precedent (law).

Last, police yourselves (nations, neighborhoods, etc). The reason overall Brothers in Islam are more righteous is because we police ourselves to keep each other in-line. If the brothers’ gambling and breaking bread on our watch then we are just as guilty.

“Dare to Struggle, Dare to Win.”

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[Prison Food] [Abuse] [Control Units] [Police Brutality] [Political Repression] [Bill Clements Unit] [Ferguson Unit] [Texas] [ULK Issue 84]
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How the Prison War Looks in Texas Ad-Segs

“[A]ll over the world now the institution of the prison serves as a place to warehouse people who represent major social problems.” - Angela Y. Davis

Looking at the incarcerated world around us, it is no wonder the numbers of New Afrikan and other darker hued people who are captive is so high. It is no wonder why the level of illiteracy is most highly concentrated among the incarcerated. It is no wonder the level of schooling is low among the captive population. It is no wonder why there is more money invested in mental health services behind bars than in free world facilities.(1)

All this means that when we imagine our resistance against prison systems we must see prison as being more than just the place where people who commit crimes are sent. We have to begin to analyze the interconnected and multi-layered oppression within prison.

A key feature in warfare is physical violence. In prison, “official” physical violence is documented as use of force. The most use of force and most excessive use of force in Texas takes place at Bill Clements, specifically amongst its PAMIO program participants. PAMIO, for those who do not know, is a psychiatric program designed for those in Ad-Seg.

If you follow the logic, Texas residents with psychiatric illness are more likely to be held captive by the state, while in captivity they have a greater chance to be held in Administrative segregation (Ad-Seg). While in Ad-Seg their psychiatric state is likely to deteriorate and they are likely to face “official” physical violence at the hands of their captors at greater numbers than those without documented psychiatric history.

Conditions At Clements

Our situation at Bill Clements Unit Ad-Seg or ECB, Extended Cell Block they call it, has not improved. Although less deaths we are seeing a rise in starvation, torture, neglect, and unsupervised migrant workers running the prison as they see fit with little to no training. Regardless of what administration says. These Africans on this unit have not been taught day rules, standard operating procedures, and have zero regard for this so called rule book. And why shouldn’t they when there is no enforcement and or reprimand on the side of TDCJ.

During the last shakedown, a state-wide attempt to catch contraband, they had me in a cage outdoors for 2 hours while they tossed my cell. Guards and inmates watched me in handcuffs while Major Pacheo instructed Field Boss Shrader to steal all my electronics and commissary food items – over 200 dollars worth. All this I believe is because my toilet hasn’t worked for months and I keep requesting maintenance but it never comes. Same with the broken shower and the water leak resulting in a wet floor. I have receipts for all the electronics and commissary items they stole, and I listed all this and the witnesses on grievance – they put the witnesses on chain! Nobody goes on chain unless it’s to Montford Psych or hospital.

The second week of December we were allowed to shop commissary, the second time in 4 months. Breakfast chow consisted of two tablespoons of scrambled eggs with a quarter inch of grits and applesauce. In total it was 4 spoons of food. For lunch and dinner we had a cheese sandwich. They back-doored commissary with a shakedown and stole what we purchased.

I was allowed 1 hour out of my cell twice this year. The “weekly” library ran 9 times. Average time to see a mental health professional is 9-12 months. Delivered mail can sit in the mail room for over 6 months. They are understaffed and don’t have enough people to properly run the facility. Once they tried to put some beef on dough and call it pizza, it was not cooked and the meat was bad. Raw dough and spoiled meat. No shit. No exaggeration.

Not feeding us is not only to starve us but to keep us from relaxing. We are constantly fasting involuntarily. The hunger keeps us anxious and irritable, to put it mildly. In my pod of 60 I have seen 12 people lifted out on stretchers this year, nobody checking for a pulse or performing CPR. That’s 1 per month on average. This cell is worse than the third world POW camps I visited during my time in the USMC. The corruption is so bad with so many hands in the cookie jar that one cannot even get a judge to hear them out about violations. TDCJ just ignores our requests and cites their lack of staff as to why they have nobody to process the documents.

War in Ferguson

On November 16th all the interconnected elements of prison war worked together on the Ferguson unit as five officers, unprovoked and without cause, entered the cell of two men demanding they submit to a complete strip search and handcuffs. When one of the captives asked why, he was immediately hit in his face with closed fist by CIT Gates while SGT Vasquez grabbed the captive’s head and slammed it against the concrete wall, causing injury. The captive fell to the ground and was kicked, his head was banged against the floor repeatedly. Afterwards he was dragged to the run, outside of the cell, where he was continuously kicked in his face and was even stood on. The entire time other captives were yelling in protest for the guards to stop, but they refused. While on another row, but hearing what was happening, I began launching projectiles from my cell. Eventually this caused the guards to cease their beating. They escorted the beaten man away, then returned minutes later to handcuff and escort me.

I was housed in solitary two cells down from the victim. I had the opportunity to speak with him for the first time, find out first hand what took place. He also shared with me his history of intellectual disabilities, and mild history of psychiatric illness. He had been adopted at a young age and raised in the foster care system. Our time near each other came to a close after the pressures of solitary confinement pushed this brother to attempt suicide. Days later as a result of this incident I was notified by the Ferguson Unit Warden Wheat that I would be reassigned to Administrative Segregation, under trumped up charges of assault on staff with a weapon.

Attempts to appeal the reassignment to Ad-Seg have been hampered by Unit Grievance Officer D. Turner not allowing my appeal of classification to go through.

I have personally reported the unprovoked excessive assaults these same clique of guards have taken part in in the five months I’ve been on Ferguson. There is a culture of unmitigated brutality here and the slightest show of counter-force is excessively punished. Warden Wheat has been made aware of this clique of pigs constantly assaulting people without cause, he has ignored or punished reporters.

Prison is War. Prison is Violence. Administrative Segregation is the highest form of it, where prisoncrats are allowed to hide you and abuse you away from any and all scrutiny. A tool that is used to throw away resisters in the prison battlefield. End RHU!

Sources: (1) Angela Y. Davis, Freedom is a Constant Struggle, pp. 23-24.

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[Abuse] [Civil Liberties] [Suwanee Correctional Institution] [Florida]
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Grievance Regarding Indefinite Visitation Suspension

  1. RE: Blatant & rampant First Amendment Right violation via indefinite(unconstitutional) suspension of my visitation, due to a December, 2020 Peaceful Protest in FSP(Florida State Prison) Parking lot while on CM(close management) status.

  2. In December 2020, my visitation was unconstitutionally indefinitely suspended without even a DR(disciplinary report) due to a 12/6/20 Peaceful Protest, in honor of Florida Prisoner Solidarity Organizer, Karen Smith(Rest In Power) and in solidarity with all Florida prisoners(myself included) against prison conditions: overseer abuse, brutality and lynching of handcuffed defenseless prisoners in secured cells.

  3. On 11/9/23 and 12/3/23, I submitted request to classification regarding reinstatement of my visitation, classification response states as follows:

“you have had 3 DRs since the incident & one of them being for (1-3) spoken threat, you also have an overall unsat institutional adjustment, your request is denied at this time.”

Classification response is not only inadequate, it is in direct cahoots with FDOC continuation of mendacity and retaliation, whereas, I was never served any notice whatsoever in relation to or as collateral effort to my already indefinitely suspended visitation, for any of those mendacious, retaliatory DRs, which I would have easily successfully appealed had FDOC not been so blue line KKKorrupt and cohesive. Plus, neither of those mendacious, retaliatory DRs are listed anywhere in the visitation privilege suspension matrix in Rule 33-601.729-31 FAC.

  1. If FDOC wish me to stop writing grievances, and reporting to society about prison conditions: everything from food service prisoner workers being threatened with confinement and being placed in confinement for refusing to shake the spoon, or short food portions on prisoner trays, to prison overseers abusing, brutalizing, even lynching(murdering) prisoners in handcuffs and secured cells, as was the case with Germaine French on 11/22/23, FDOC will have to do more than mendaciously, retaliatory, indefinitely suspend my visits, FDOC will have to lynch me, or send its prisoner hit-men to stab me, to silence me. The world will know that FDOC stand for Florida Department of Cruelty, not corrections. No correction or correcting going on here, just warehousing and sadist, racist, fascist, punishment, a waste of tax payer and family/loved-ones, hostage-for-ransom prisoner, dollars.

  2. And you will throw this grievance away as is culture and practice here at Suwanee, a copy has been sent to my loved-ones, and the Federal District Court, as an addendum in case #3:23-CV-01278.

  3. REMEDY: Reinstate mendaciously, indefinitely suspended visitations done in retaliation for peacefully protesting prison conditions; Overseer abuse, brutality, and lynching of handcuffed prisoners, is a blatant and rampant authoritarian violation of rights against retaliation, guaranteed by the First and Fourteenth Amendment of the United States Constitution.

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[Drugs] [Deaths in Custody] [Abuse] [Peace in Prisons] [McConnell Unit] [Texas] [ULK Issue 84]
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ULK 83 Correction: Murders Weren't About Drugs

Dear MIM-ULK Editor,

Your Fall 2023 edition, at page 11, published the article “Prisoners Punished for Drug Problems in Texas”. The article began:

“On 6 September 2023 the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) prison system mandated a statewide lockdown due to the number of deaths related to drugs: a total of 16.”

This “related to drugs” statement IS A LIE fabricated by prison administrators to cover up the TRUE basis for the 16 murders, and cast the blame and causes for the killings on solely the prisoners, with no accountability on the government. Drugs had little to nothing to do with the murders!

I am on the McConnell Unit – 5 of those 16 murders occurred here; the highest murder rate of any TDCJ-CID facility. There were, also, 3 sodomy sexual assaults. 5 murders and 3 rapes in one 12 month period. NONE of them drug related per se.

From reading the article and its various contributors’ focus; I am making an informed deduction that the fellow prisoners who contributed based their deductions solely on the TDCJ-CID “Public Information Office” press release propaganda alone, with no real knowledge of the truth. I dug deeper and actually investigated.

The FACTUAL causes of the murders was total absence of any meaningful Classification and Housing Policy/Practice to separate categories of personality types; coupled with the administration’s practice of imposing 24/7 lockdowns due to shortage of personnel; and, feeding high-carb, starchy meals that meet caloric amounts but are devoid of bio-necessary nutrients.

Of the 5 murders and 3 rapes over 12 months here at McConnell Unit, one murder was committed by a prisoner high on K-2 and one of the rapists was drunk on “hooch”. The other 4 murders were NON-drug-related – the killers and victims were incompatible personalities placed in an 8’x12’ closet-sized cell and, at the time of the murders, having to spend 24 hours a day in the cell together. Nerves got frayed, personalities clashed, someone died. All three rapes occurred under similar circumstances: cellmates who were under a prolonged in-cell period due to “Staff Shortage”; one a dominant predatory personality, the other a passive victim – the predator gave in to his nature, the victim got sodomized.

In EVERY murder and rape, it could have been avoided had TDCJ-CID enforced a legitimate and meaningful classification, Housing Policy and Practice that separated prisoners into housing with compatible personalities and dispositions. However, classification is almost universally based on:

  1. age range;
  2. physical size; and,
  3. disciplinary history.

While TDCJ-CID policy states various other factors for the classification as well, actual practice uses only the above 3. Cell assignments usually keep the occupants within a similar age and physical size, but the overall cellblocks will contain ranges in age from 18-98 and people ranging from 5’2”, 100 lb to 6’6”, 350 lb. We’ll get a 19-20 year old first offender with 10-12 disciplinary cases in prison for a few theft cases put in a cell with a hard-core Gangsta on his fifth trip to prison for domestic violence/armed assault.

Since state law does NOT allow for any kind of public oversight NOR citizens’ investigations of conditions and administrative practices in the prison facilities, TDCJ-CID can fabricate whatever tale it wants to explain the murders and rapes – hence, put the blame on drugs, gangs, etc. and deny itself any blame.

I realize ULK Editors MUST rely on prisoners’ reports to even know what circumstances are behind the walls. However, it’s prudent that you fact check what the prisoners say, because the vast majority of Texas prisoners actually take “Official Reports” as truth and never even question what they hear on the news!

CLUE: Anytime an Official Report points its finger solely at prisoners to assign blame, and/or gives excuses that open a door to imposing harsher or more restrictive “security” measures – the odds are the Official Report contains lies and is little more than “Perception Management” propaganda to deceive the public.

Courts will not pry into prison operations; they always defer to the “professional knowledge of prison authorities” and accept whatever fabricated “fact” the prison administration offers. When any public organization tries to monitor inside prison conditions, they are blocked. And, the prison administration always has “Brown Nose” prisoners willing to sing whatever song officials want in exchange for privileges.

Prisons are for the most part “black holes” where the light of truth is concerned – truth is sucked in and hidden while only the darkness of lies is visible.

TDCJ-CID has about as much transparency as the CIA – and, until Congress adopts a Law, or the people put in the state Constitution something that imposes citizen oversight (by independent organizations), TDCJ-CID will remain a near-opaque agency.

Thank you for the attention you’ve given to this reality of life in Texas prisons.


MIM(Prisons) responds: We thank this comrade for the additional information on the situation on the ground. We explain our perspective and our reliance on on-the-ground correspondents in every issue of ULK in a box titled ‘On “Objective” Reporting.’

The main point of the article being responded to was that the TDCJ was enforcing a statewide lockdown for a problem that they caused. We know there is massive drug addiction plaguing the imprisoned population in Texas and many other states right now. So in these regards we had the facts straight, and made it clear that it was the staff to blame.

That said we appreciate the additional information this comrade provides on the causes of the deaths and violence. We would not say that celling certain personalities together are at the heart of the violence. And we certainly wouldn’t blame predatory behavior on an individual’s “nature.” There are plenty of contexts in which different people can live together without killing each other. It is the particular oppressive and stressful conditions of U.$. prisons that lead to these tragedies and lost lives. As this comrade mentions, solitary confinement and poor food are serious stressors on the body, especially the brain. It is our experience that the drug economy is a big contributor to conflicts as well. This is not blaming the prisoners, this is blaming the state for promoting the current drug epidemic as a means to divide and pacify the oppressed.

The principal contradiction that defines the prison system is that between the captive and the captor. It is in the interests of the captor, who is the minority, to distract and divide the captives. This must come first, before things like ignoring celling protocols can become operative in a way that leads to deaths. A united prisoner population would not be manipulated by celling strategies.

That said, we agree that policies regarding who is celled with who can reduce these conflicts in our current situation. More importantly, we agree that some kind of outside oversight and pressure is necessary to change the ways of those who would be enforcing such policies. It is only through building true independent institutions that we can begin to apply such independent pressure in a way that serves the people by preventing these oppressive tactics.

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[Abuse] [New York] [ULK Issue 84]
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In Their War They Expect Violence

Greetings!

I received ULK 83 and I too agree prison is war. I’ve in the past heard on numerous occasions that the prison guard “respects violence!” No, they “expect violence.” They can and will never “respect” those they consider subhuman and dispensable. And they fear those knowledgeable enough to know and combat this.

This “expect violence” recently reigned true for me when a Sgt. Reid came to my cell and ripped my clothing line down (making my wet clothes fall on me and the floor) in anticipation of some violent outburst. When he didn’t receive one, he literally stalked me for the rest of the day provoking me and hoping to get a violent reaction. Singing things like, “you’re too scared to die,” to no reaction and therefore the harassment continued into the bathhouse and so forth.

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[Racism] [Abuse] [National Oppression] [Heat] [Federal Correctional Institution Ashland] [Federal]
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FCI Ashland: Ground Zero for Political Repression, Racism, and White Supremacy

"Ash: The solid residue left when material is thoroughly burned or oxidized by chemical means; The last traces of something: ruins."

"Land: The solid part of the surface of the Earth; realm, domain."

The above definitions from the Merriam-Webster school dictionary describe the reality that prisoners here at Federal Correctional Institution - Ashland are forced to contend with on a daily basis.

With all of the illusions of criminal justice reform being propagated by law makers, as well as the President of the United $tate$, to secure votes and appease their constituents, the reality here at ground zero tells a very different story.

Created in the 1940's as part boy's reformatory and part pig and horse farm, FCI Ashland is now a place where a basket of society's deplorables (to borrow a phrase from Hillary Clinton) can come to work, and with impunity, exercise their politically repressive tactics, racism, and white supremacist ideology over New Afrikans (black people) and other people of color.

Even poor whites who maintain a spiritual or political comaraderie with New Afrikans find themselves subjected to harsher treatment than their European counterparts who hold the line of white supremacy.

Since my incarceration, I have not received one conduct infraction! So in June of this year, after completing more than 15 programs, my security level was reduced from a medium to a low security.

At that time, I was told by the administration that I had to transfer to a low security institution. I requested to go to USP Atlanta since it is now a low security, plus I live in GA. However, completely against the language written in the First Step Act of 2018, I was transferred here to FCI Ashland, KY over 500 miles from my home.

Since I have been here, I have not personally been attacked in any way. But I'm sure by the time this article hits press, all that will change. Because that's how the administration operates here. The "good ol' boy" network is alive and well here, and anyone who dares to speak out against the injustices taking place in this land of ruin is retaliated against in a number of ways. But I am a war correspondent behind enemy lines, and must brief comrades and the masses on what's happening so we can create this opportunity for systemic change through national unity and action.

Different Uniform, Same Mentality

There are about 60-80 correctional officers and other administrative staff working at this prison. However, only 3 are black, 2 are Hispanic, and 1 is Asian. This presents a very antagonistic atmosphere as this super majority white prison staff oppressively police their majority black and brown kkkolonized nationals by openly expressing their "Trumpian" views; ransacking their living quarters and destroying their private property by pouring out "hot sauce" and "Asian sauce" all over their books, legal work and pictures, and opening up sealed items like potato chips and dumping them all over their floor.

They falsify statements and manufacture conduct infractions against prisoners who are not afraid to file grievances on them and expose these injustices. Like one brother who would help brothers beat these false conduct reports, as well as those filed against him. In retaliation for this, and for him refusing to withdraw his civil suit he filed against them, they manufactured false allegations that he "attempted to escape", had him placed in the SHU (Secure Housing Unit - Lock Up) and he has since been shipped to another prison! This brother is at least 400 lbs and can barely get around, let alone try to escape!

I have personally witnessed white officers call an elder New Afrikan "stupid ass" because he was walking with one of his shoes untied! I've also observed as a white officer harassed a white prisoner about his locs telling him "you need to stop trying to be one of THEM and be who you were born to be." And about a month ago, while attending the Moorish Science Studies Class in the Chapel, a brother began having breathing problems as we were leaving the building. The Chaplain called for support while a couple brothers stood beside him to make sure he was ok. About 5 C.O.'s showed up, and one officer B. Ross took it upon himself to begin yelling "get the fuck out! Go on, get!" None of the other officers that were present even attempted to correct his unnecessary and belligerent conduct. Instead, they just stood with him, with angry demeanors as if we had done something wrong and they were prepared for war.

I, and the world renown militia commander of NFAC comrade Grand Master Jay, who had just finished teaching the class, just looked at each other and shook our heads and left. As this is what we were already in the process of doing anyway. We refused to allow them to provoke us into any response, as it was obvious that this is what they were trying to do.

Here at FCI Ashland, members of the KKK have obviously traded in their white hoods and robes for correctional officer uniforms but the mindset is still prevalent. There isn't any black counselor or case manager, and there is only one Hispanic case manager, so people of color constantly are being denied institutional transfers to prisons closer to their release address or that offer FSA rehabilitative programs that meet their needs assessment(s) when they absolutely qualify for it. And white prisoners are constantly being transferred when they absolutely do not meet the criteria. White prisoners get all the benefit of the First Step Act.

I have personally been told by the counselor that he would not even consider me for an institutional transfer until I have been 18 months misconduct free in General Population. Well, I have been in General Population for almost 8 years, misconduct free! Along with many accomplishments as I stated earlier. Meanwhile, a white nationalist prisoner, who has wigged out on K2 at least 4 times since I've been here, and sent to the SHU each time, was just approved to go to a "camp", which is a lesser security level than a "low"!

These racist practices go on on a weekly basis as far as these transfers go. There is no one here that represents our best interests! When New Afrikans and other people of color complain about these issues, they are retaliated against by having a "management variable" placed on them for alleged "population control", which forces them to have to stay on this yard a mandatory 18 months, no matter how long they've been at this prison, or a counselor or a caseworker will suddenly show up at your living quarters and add points to your classification sheet for "inadequate living conditions." Then when you go to your 6 month unit term review, you get denied a transfer for 18 months. For you who have studied my brief autobiography, "Our Struggle Goes On", which can be purchased on Amazon, already know how this is bound to turn out if there is no systemic change in our conditions. History is our best teacher.

Health Concerns

There are absolutely NO certified medical doctors on this yard. There are several RN's, but that's it. The prison is completely understaffed and prisoners are routinely turned away from medical because there is no one available to address their health concerns. I know of several New Afrikans who are having kidney and/or liver issues and have been placed on the waiting list for a year until they can be seen! They have all filed grievances but their medical issues persist, and they have since filed complaints in Washington DC to the central office.

There are only 2 dorms out of 12 units, HA and HB, that have an air conditioner! These same number of dorms also have inadequate ventilation. Several prisoners on the SHU and throughout the prison have fainted and received severe injuries over the extremely hot summer months. At least 1 out of every 5 men here are coughing and/or sneezing throughout the day, myself included. Probably due to all the mold throughout each unit. R-unit, which I was in for 2 months when I got here, is the biggest dorm on the yard, is actually an old movie theater which now holds over 130 prisoners stacked on top of each other in bunk beds. It looks more like the hulls of slave ships trying to cross the middle passage. Therefore absolutely no space for prisoners to even walk around without constantly bumping into one another.

Asbestos fills the ceiling of the unit, while underneath it is the prison's kitchen, which presents an extremely dangerous fire hazard. On top of the heat coming up from the kitchen adding to an already extremely hot environment, prisoners are essentially sleeping in a crematory, because if the kitchen were to ever catch fire they would all burn alive in a matter of seconds!

Conclusion

I could go on and on about conditions and corrupt practices going on at Ashland, like how members of the "Proud Boys" who just came to this yard after trying to overturn the 2020 election results have already been awarded and rewarded with the best strategic and tactical jobs at the yard. While New Afrikans who have literally been here for months are told no jobs or programs will be available until mid 2024!!! Except for a kitchen job of course. They don't mind New Afrikans being cooks or cleaning. But if I continued on this it would easily become a book. So let me conclude with this:

We are asking you to write to the office(s) at the bottom of this message and DEMAND and inquire into the racist practices taking place here at FCI Ashland. DEMAND to know why so many people of color are having management variables placed on them compared to their European counterparts. DEMAND to know why so many black and Hispanic families are turned away from their visits because of their clothing when white families have on the same clothing or something completely unauthorized. Ashland is located in the mountains, surrounded by an all white community on the border of West Virginia. It is totally unsafe for black families to travel here, and although we can purchase tablets on commissary, we are not allowed video visits. So if black people can't get visits, they will go years without any contact with the outside world, which leads to a host of mental and emotional issues.

As I stated from the outset of this communique, this institution used to house animals. The dorm I'm in, "JA", as well as "K" across from me is still called by the administration, "The Barns". I'm literally living in a barn, like my enslaved ancestors, with bunk beds in it. Sometimes when it gets really hot in here, you can still smell the residue of the livestock that occupied the space. We are treated like animals, and without your DEMANDS for change, we will continue to be subjected to these inhumane conditions. And by all means, check up on me and make sure that after almost 8 years of incarceration there is not a "sudden change" in the quality of my living conditions. Remember, all that is necessary for evil to prevail is for men and women to do nothing.

| Federal BOP | Office of Inspector General, Internal Affairs | Central Office RM 600 | 320 First St NW | Washington DC 20534 | | Federal BOP | South Central Regional Office | U.S. Armed Forces Reserve Complex | 344 Marine Forces Drive | Grand Prairie, TX 75051

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[Drugs] [Medical Care] [Abuse] [Prison Food] [Bridgeport Unit] [Bill Clements Unit] [Connally Unit] [Texas] [ULK Issue 83]
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Prisoners Punished for Drug Problem in Texas

On 6 September 2023 the Texas Department of Criminal Justice (TDCJ) prison system mandated a statewide Lockdown due to the number of deaths related to drugs: a total of 16. They think that will stop the flow of drugs, but you and I know that it will not. You and I know that as long as you have officers that are willing, it will continue.

…Most here are having to do all of their sentence, and some have said fuck it, I will continue to get high. They don’t have to worry about going to jail, cause they are already in jail. But it seems to be that the only ones making parole are the ones that consistently stay high. Do you think that if more were making parole that would cut down on some of the drugs being used?


Choper reports from Bill Clements on the same day: The Bill Clements Unit has been continually operating at 20% to 30% short of staff for three straight years now. In Ad-Seg I have had my 1 hour out of cell 4 times in 2 years. We have had spaghetti sauce and beans 2x per day every day for 90+ days. Commissary always has an excuse why they don’t run and library runs roughly 6x per year instead of weekly.

The wardens and majors and rank walk through and focus on taking down pictures and string lines. Micromanaging the small shit instead of handling real issues like starvation and excessive suicide. There is no medical provider on staff here so don’t run medical. No mental health. Prescriptions run out long ago and nobody to refill.

Today we are on lockdown because they can’t control contraband: this itself is an admission of failure by staff. I mean you can’t manage 20-30% staff? WTF would they do with 100% staff? Their incompetence is killing, literally killing us. As in deaths. A lot of them.


A Connally Unit prisoner wrote on 25 September 2023: I am currently G5 custody level being held at Connally Unit in Kennedy, Texas at a Texas State Prison (TDCJ). We are currently on lockdown. I believe all TDCJ is under lockdown. Apparently they are cracking down on narcotics and any other form of contraband. We have been on lockdown since Wednesday, 6 September 2023. Correction, that was an annual lockdown. We had a restriction lockdown on 24 August 2023, and we have been on lockdown ever since.

Our last commissary day, the last time we actually hit, was on August 21st. I believe we are supposed to go every 30 days or so, at least a hygiene store and we haven’t had any of that! The first restriction lockdown was placed (not formally but rumor goes) because someone snitched gave TDCJ staff heads up about some contraband and people involved. Who and what I am not sure. I am not allowed out of the cell except for showers! Up until recently they was not running showers regularly.

We received tablets (all G5 custody) on Tuesday, 19 September 2023. Since then things have gotten way better! Showers run more regularly, food comes at reasonable times. We get cold water runs! The food portions are better than before. The fires have stopped! You know, I am not sure if visitation is now open. The terrors have since stopped though! What a relief. Ok, so the terrors began on the 1st day of restriction lockdown (8/24) I couldn’t see much and didn’t know what was going on but they raided (shookdown) a couple people’s cells in 8 Building L pod 3 section. We was never informed that we was placed on restriction lockdown or why. I found out gossip from another inmate.

Since day one, no showers, no cold water runs, no heat respite, (I don’t believe G5’s get any respite) small food portions and they would run late. It is extremely hot in Connally. It is even hotter back here. Connally Unit is a down south Texas max security unit. There have been multiple times I have passed out due to the heat, woken up with major headaches, bloodshot eyes, and chapped lips!

…They shook us down on September 9th, Saturday. They didn’t finish the whole building til 15th or 16th, which is about when we got our dearly beloved SSI’s back!!! The suffering ends, partially… When they shook us down – cell search – they took the whole section out cell by cell in cuffs, and placed half the section in one side multi-purpose room and the other half in another multi-purpose room.

We came back to a Great Mess! Haha, I don’t mind the mess, I had to re-organize my belongings anyways. I wonder why they would ask us to place our things, all of our property, neatly on our own bunks, mattress like this and that, come back to our things mixed up?! Comical! One dude went hysterical, yelling at the laws and complaining about coffee spilled on all his property! Clothes, sheets, family pictures, etc. Then, here come the fires! Multiple inmates was angry, each with their own complaints. By this time the guards had given up on putting out the fires. Which is unpleasant, adding heat literally to the already hot building and smoke. Many times I had to cover up not to breath the toxic carbon monoxide! The section gets so full of smoke it’s completely black. I figured the best thing to do was place one fan by the door blowing outwards and a fan by the window blowing hot air in. I would have to place a wet towel on the door to keep smoke from coming in. Every day was something new, every day an issue appeared! Every day a fire was made, some two, some three at a time, two or three times a day… The last fire was put out by an officer, a sergeant.

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[Political Repression] [Control Units] [Abuse] [Ohio] [ULK Issue 83]
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Prisoner Put in Solitary for Organizing Political Education in Ohio

I am continuing the fight in the struggle. I am recently lied on by the oppressors’ corrupt gang unit here saying I was organizing an unauthorized group activity and that I’m a leader of the White Panther Movement. They also said that I was trying to organize a riot and take over the prison from the guards because I try to unite and educate. They don’t like it. So I am in solitary awaiting to be placed in SHU here in the corrupt Ohio Concentration Camps.

I am filing grievances against the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation & Corrections, because while in SHU we cannot order no books – not even legal books. Then last time I was placed in solitary they lost my legal book “self help litigation manual” and now they won’t allow me to re-order it at my own cost.

So the inspector has put fake tickets saying I threatened him, false. So know I am truly at war here.

Now in solitary they won’t allow no porter to my door to pass me a reading book or nothing. The library lady won’t bring me nothing either. So I’m in it.

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[New Afrika] [Abuse] [National Oppression] [Police Brutality] [Federal Correctional Institution Tucson] [Federal] [ULK Issue 83]
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The Murder of Tyre Nichols - Do You Approve?

Tyre Nichols Black Liberation

27 January 2023: At about 5:30-6:00 PM the nation watched the horrific video of 5 policemen who beat a man literally to death weeks prior. The man, Tyre Nichols, was handcuffed and had no way to defend himself as 5 large officers beat the man far beyond what anyone could call humane. Dogs don’t get beat this bad.

I saw this in my dorm from USP Tucson, in the day room. Of the seven televisions in the dorm, four was on the CNN broadcast of the vicious beating. At least half the dorm of over 100 prisoners in here watched in horror and shock, witnessing the same thing the rest of the United $tates (and the world) was viewing. I have never seen such interest in a television event outside a sports event.

I sent an email to the Warden of the prison, challenging him if he approved such methods. This could be seen as an insult, but what we see on the streets of America is simply a reflection of what commonly happens in the prisons of the United $tates. For decades staff brutality has been common, and often overlooked in prisons, because many may believe that the victim probably deserved it, or the prison staff will lie and cover up the act.

I have to believe that what happened to Tyre Nichols that horrible night, which resulted in his death a couple of days later, could have happened in part here at USP Tucson… multiple times, and happens in many jails and prisons in our country.

I believe this likely happened to a prisoner here back in November of 2022, shortly after an incident in a nearby camp, where a prisoner managed to acquire a gun. He would have likely shot and killed an officer were it not for the fact that the bullets did not match the gun. We at USP Tucson went on a lockdown for 3 days, although we had absolutely nothing to do with that incident. That was a different facility, yet we were punished anyway, which led to a second incident.

A few days later, on November 18th, we went on a month long lockdown because we heard there was a “staff assault.” If this was the case then the usual protocol for prison staff is to beat that prisoner physically, then throw him in the SHU until the wounds heal… it is what they do.

How bad did they beat the prisoner here? Did they cuff him, and like cowards, beat that man with sticks, tase him, kick him and slam him on the walls? It’s pretty easy to beat a man if you outnumber him 5 to 1, and cuff his hands behind his back.

We have to compare what happens in prisons to what happens in the streets. We seem amazed that what happens to George Floyd, Rodney King or now Tyre Nichols, is so unusual. This is very common in the prisons, and you have to ask the staff here at USP Tucson if this is the method they approve of.

It must be, if it continues to happen.

Why would law enforcement treat humyn beings so horribly? And to be stupid enough to do it with a BODY CAM on? Did they not know that this would be viewable to anyone in time? Why would you beat a man to death, with the cameras on?

This is an idea that prisons fear greatly; they fear that if society knew what happens in prisons, coupled with how law enforcement is clearly losing the ethical training they have, there would be such a cry for justice that the country may not be able to contain it.

But consider: some don’t sympathize with prisoners being brutally beaten because in some way, they think that the sentence of prison comes with the brutality of abuse. Yet the Constitution clearly disagrees. No human being deserves to be treated like that, to be beaten by another officer. No officer working in the United $tates is given a green light by the government to beat prisoners. Yet, it happens, and many excuse it because maybe we believe that deep down, the prisoner must have deserved it.

So reflect back to Tyre Nichols, why would those cowardly officers beat a man to death? Could it be that maybe they felt that Tyre “deserved” to be beaten… but if so, why?

cops who killed Tyre Nichols
Five cops who were filmed murdering Tyre Nichols.

Here’s one idea, one I have seen from the prison point of view: In prisons, where there is a disturbance, they call it “hitting the deuces.” When this happens, for example from a fight, officers come running from everywhere. In seconds, you can see up to 50 officers on the scene.

But note, when this happens, these officers get into a different frame of mind. The adrenaline rush puts many of these officers in an almost rage. Once that rage sets in, that officer is looking for a reason to release it. They are almost HOPING for a physical altercation, so that they can release that rage that is created because the situation could be a violent riot where a life may be lost.

The problem here is that once an officer gets into that adrenaline they don’t know how to come down, and so they are looking for a release. This happens very often in prisons, and no doubt, it happens in society. The problem is that these officers are not taught to TALK down to de-escalation, rather they are looking to make demands and argue.

Prisons prove this happens all the time, and many prison officers are not trained to de-escalate a situation; they are left to act on their anger and rage, which results often in physical violence, most times on defenseless prisoners.

So, I asked the Warden, does he approve of the methods we saw in Memphis… based on how staff treats prisoners, I think we know the answer. Their advantage: they don’t wear body cams, so they can get away with murder, literally. All they have to do is blame it on the prisoner, lose the footage and lock everyone down for a few weeks, so they can clean up the mess.

The Warden, as of August 10th, never responded.

UPDATE: On 12 September 2023 the five pigs were indicted on federal civil rights charges in addition to the state charges of second-degree murder they are already being tried for. The four-count indictment charges each of them with deprivation of rights under the color of law through excessive force and failure to intervene, and through deliberate indifference; conspiracy to witness tampering, and obstruction of justice through witness tampering.

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Excessive Force or Not?

Proverbs 14:17:

A quick-tempered man acts foolishly, and a man of wicked intentions is hated.

Part One: What Happened?

It is imperative to recount the details of an event that happened many years ago here at USP Tucson. At about 2:15pm, Thursday, July 21 st, an incident happened which begs this question: Did an officer here at USP Tucson use excessive force against a prisoner?

First, the details At about 2:15-2:30pm: a friend and I were sitting against the fence on the soccer field yard, near the corner of the yard. From where we sat, it was close to the sidewalk, which led into the hallway that was close to Education. We were the closest prisoners to the vantage point.

About that time, it was the Northside Program move, when the prisoners here can leave the dorm and go outside, or go back inside, or go to the Library, Indoor Recreation or other places, so there was movement of the prisoners, but also of staff as well, since it was also shift-change. As my friend and Isat in the shade, we saw volunteers from religious service leaving the building from the door closest to Education. They were coming from the Chapel, which was in the same building as Education. There were also two officers, one being the officer in question. Let’s call him Officer Burt, although Officer Coward could be a better name. The other officer I do not know.

At the same time, there was an elderly prisoner, Mr. Montgomery (his name I would learn later) who came down the walkway and headed towards Education - or that area. Normally prisoners don’t use the sidewalk to go to Education, they are supposed to go through the prison yard; but for whatever reason, he did not.

My friend and I saw Montgomery go in, just as the volunteers were leaving, through the same door. He went in, then we heard some exchange of words: someone was asking Montgomery why he didn’t go through the yard as he was supposed to. He was then told to leave; and as he came out, Officer “Burt” first told him to leave. Then he changed his mind, telling Montgomery to put his hands up, because Burt was going to put cuffs on him.

Montgomery… a 60+ year old man, turned to Officer Burt, and put his hands in front of him. I saw very clearly this action, and perhaps it might took like Montgomery was being aggressive; but he did EXACTLY what Officer Burt told him to do. Montgomery thrusted his two hands up in front of him, much like one would after running their hands through a bowl of water, pulling the hands upwards. But Officer Burt paused for a split second, then immediately went and grabbed Montgomery and slammed him into the fence.

Among the endless profanities Burt spoke - while the volunteers of the religious service looked on - Burt proceeded to roughly put Montgomery on the cement, breaking his glasses and drawing blood from his nose or lips. It was very clear that Montgomery wasn’t resisting, yet Burt roughly forced the prisoner face down on the cement… on a 105+ degree day, while the volunteers looked on.’

Montgomery showed no reasonable signs of resisting; an elderly man (or any man) slammed on the fence, then on a hot cement sidewalk while profanities are spewed over him, while forcing his arms to his back, will naturally resist a LITTLE: it’s a “fight or flight” reaction.

The second officer helped Burt subdue him, as help was called. It was shortly canceled, as Burt told them it was under control. The volunteers were held away by another officer, while Burt and the officer pinned Montgomery down, and put cuffs on him, as a bleeding Montgomery cried.

I then heard Officer Burt say, “He lunged at me”, to which I felt immediate contempt. He told the officers arriving on the scene that Montgomery LUNGED at him, which justified his actions. After cuffing him, they picked Montgomery up off the cement, and took him inside, Burt cursing continually.

Later, my friend and I sat there, furious at what Burt did to that old man. From the same doors to Education, a couple of staff members came out, looking at the small area of blood left by Montgomery. My friend and l were still there, in fact moved closer to see the blood spot. I overheard the two staff members talk about the incident, but tried not to be too nosy. One said, “i can’t believe he did that in front of those people”.

Who was he talking about? Montgomery… or Officer Burt?

So, I saw what happened, and was sickened by Officer Burt’s response to the situation. Naturally, when the other prisoners on the yard saw what happened, they came over to see the situation. They asked us what was going on, and I was adamant in saying that Montgomery did NOT lunge at the officer. One of the other prisoners said that the officers told Montgomery to go through the yard, and he refused. He was stubborn about it, and decided to take his own route to Education or Psychology. I heard he was trying to go to Psychology, so he could get his medication.

So—excessive force? Was Officer Burt’s actions necessary, or was this based on a man with a quick—temper? Consider the factors: USP Tucson — although a penitentiary, is almost non-violent. One case manager once said, “this is the softest penitentiary in the country.” Most prisoners are non—violent (at that time, because MUCH has changed in the last few years), or ex gang members trying to leave that life behind. So relaxed is this prison, that during rec move, the softball field, the middle yard, and the soccer field can be full of prisoners, with ZERO guards, because it is not needed. This was not an “active” yard, so aggressive confrontations with officers are minimal; hardly existent at all.

So was this exessive force? We’ll explore that in the second part.

Part Two: So Was it Exessive Force?

So, what are we looking at? A situation where an elderly man, in his 60s, is taken down by an officer when he “went the wrong way” here at USP Tucson. The officer (let’s call him Officer Burt) told the old prisoner to put his hands up because he was going to cuff him.

The prisoner, named Montgomery, did as he was told, and in the action, he put his hands up straight in the air. Officer Burt paused, then roughly pinned Montgomery to the fence, then took him down to the hot cement… all this while visitors to the prison for the religious service stood mere feet away.

Is this “Rodney King 101”, where an officer can justify rough and excessive treatment of an elderly prisoner, who happens to be on psyche medication? How will the prison justify this action? Normally this is a simple task for the prison to do; they’d just ignore the prisoner complaint and discredit anything we say. After all, nobody believes prisoners: that’s the running theory.

But there’s a problem with that this time: there were witnesses from outside the prison. Those volunteers for religious service came from ministries outside the prison, right here in Tucson. Will the prison say that those people didn’t see what they saw? Or, will those visitors believe Officer Burt’s story, and make Montgomery the villain? I might wager the latter, but it depends on what those people from religious service is willing to believe. I mean, I know what I saw; they saw the same thing.

So now the problems in society; the abuse of authority by officers, now reflects in this prison (which has always been an issue). This isn’t new: officers have been roughing up prisoners for the longest time, but the prison never took accountability, because it’s always our word (the prisoner) vs their word (the prison). But now with about 5—6 visitors from a ministry, looking on while Officer Burt virtually assaults a 60+ year old man, breaking his glasses and drawing blood, the prison has to find a way to spin this.

It was also interesting to note: I saw officers running to the scene when the “deuces” were hit (a call on the hand unit for help). I could be wrong, but when some of them arrived, they were hesitant to physically get involved because they saw the visitors. Had they NOT been there, would they have been more aggressive? Even the second officer with Burt seemed hesitant to assist Burt, possibly having a moral check; was he thinking, “is this the right way to go about this?”

So, what happens now? If I know this prison, they’ll defend the shield and do the wrong thing. An officer with a quick-temper showed poor judgment and excessive force on an elderly man on medication in front of a group of volunteers from outside the prison: witnesses. There is no question that in my eyes, my friend’s eyes, the prison surveillance and the volunteers who saw the incident that all the facts were congruent. It all matches.

So, IF the prison chooses to side with Officer Burt, they are wrong, and no different than abusive police officers who beat people or kill them, then justify it to the victim. Something has to be done to restore respect to these officers, and I fear that this prison may not be capable of doing that.

Proverbs 17:15 says:

“He who justifies the wicked, and he who condemns the just, both of them alike are an abomination to the Lord”.

I don’t expect the prison to do the “right thing”, because it would be an admission that they make mistakes. And they’d never admit that to prisoners. They’d rather cover it up, discredit or forget the valid points of view we give. Yet in doing this, prison abuse flourishes. Just two weeks prior to this incident, a man was murdered in the SHU (Specials Housing Unit) based squarely on prison ignorance and neglect. Officers have been accused of discrimination, yet the prison has been slow to act, if at all.

Bad behavior by officers is ignored, or even rewarded, since many get promotions; but half questionable behavior by prisoners have been met with full frontal condemnation.

Where does it end? Sadly, at this rate, it won’t. Prisons don’t learn from their mistakes, even if it is shown on television shows a hundred times. Prisons believe they can do what they want to prisoners because it’s some given right; and if (when) they do abuse people, it’s like Las Vegas: “What happens in [prison] stays in [prison].” Besides, who believes prisoners anyway?

But I didn’t lose my humanity when I got locked up. I still have values, so I will stand strong on this, regardless of what people say or think. Prisoner or not, people should be treated with a level of respect until something critical changes the situation. Officer Burt is known for having a temper; I had a run in with him before, and I am not a fan of his tactics at all. That doesn’t make me prejudiced against him (from one black prisoner to a black officer). I think he’s a bad officer, and persecutes prisoners because he can get away with it; and nobody working at USP Tucson has the intestinal fortitude to hold him accountable. Lots of officers here are like that: not ALL, because there are a couple of “good” officers here, but people like Officer Burt make prison so much harder than it needs to be.

The punishment is to BE in prison, not the abuse done by any officer. So, this incident which happened several years ago, as I look back at it. Montgomery got his family to sue the prison for abuse, which I helped by documenting what I saw. I hope it got Burt fired. But, years later, not much has changed. Bad officers get promoted, while the good ones leave, going elsewhere.

USP Tucson has gotten worse since then, so, I have to keep writing.

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