Incarceration, rehabilitation, recidivism: The reality of prison life and what it's like to be an inmate locked up behind bars.
The stories that define us
Compassionate1 is a word that often gets thrown in my direction. It happens often; so often it actually scares me. I’ve known myself my whole life and as much as I’d like to say I always act compassionately, in honesty, I cannot. I recognize, if not fixate on, my short comings so I have wondered why this word became a descriptor of me. I've even wondered if it was due to the fact that I am a small woman? Will the descriptor change when I stand up for myself or others? Am I still compassionate when I walk away from abusers or hold systems accountable; or does my compassionate disposition disappear the moment I show a different face of humanity?
How I survived over 16 years in the Federal Prison System
I remember my first day in prison. Almost 17 years years later I still remember my first moments in prison. I think I remember the first day so vividly because it was a day of contrast. See for the ride to the prison the bus was freezing cold. On top of that we were dressed in these paper jump suits that were literally made of a paper fiber. One snag and the whole jumpsuit was ruined. But when we pulled in front of the Federal Prison in Coleman, FL. and got off the bus, it felt like 110 degrees. The Florida heat was on high just like the United States Penitentiary I was headed into.
Mental Health and Incarceration
I have been in the mental health field for fourteen years, and I have learned more about myself than I ever thought I would. My career does not change the world in significant ways. There are no celebrations, no parades, no capes. But we do have superpowers. They aren’t generally flashy, but we have the means to mend the broken pieces in people and enable them to be their own heroes. Each mental health facility I worked in grounded new perspectives and valuable lessons that have reformed how I approach the world.
My (short) Time Imprisoned
Do I love the police? No. Do I like the police? Not really. Time is the most valuable commodity there is; so valuable, in fact, that it is hails from the realm of the priceless. If you ask an old woman on her deathbed whether she'd rather have a bank full of money or six extra hours of life, there is only one thing she will choose. In fact, our salaries and wages that we earn are based solely on how much our time is worth.
Quadriplegic Man Dies While in Jail for Marijuana Possession
Jonathan Magbie died in jail on the fourth day of a 10-day marijuana conviction sentence. The 27-year-old was paralyzed from the neck down and needed a ventilator, wheelchair, and 24-hour care. Despite the jail promising they had the necessary equipment and staff to care for Magbie, he was hospitalized within hours of his booking, only for the hospital to release him and refuse to readmit him, despite jail officials pleading for them to do so.
Facts About the U.S. Criminal Justice System
Over 2.3 million people fill the 1,719 state prisons, 109 federal prisons, 80 Indian Country jails, military prisons, detention facilities, psychiatric penal facilities, and 3,163 local county jails in the U.S. 655 out of every 100,000 people are imprisoned in the U.S. In comparison, Russia imprisons 415; England 142; France 102; and Germany 77.
The Criminal Justice Process
In the United States, the criminal justice process occurs in several stages. Each of these stages contains a number of complex contingencies and procedures. Some of these procedures are so complicated that they are beyond the understanding of most laymen. Lawyers are interpreters of the law employed not only for criminal cases but also civil matters, such as lawsuits. There are two sides to every trial, the defense and the prosecution. To prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the accused is indeed guilty of the crime for which they are being tried is the job of the prosecution. Defense takes on the greater burden of refuting the evidence provided by the prosecution, usually through the cross-examination of prosecution witnesses and discrediting the prosecution’s evidence by way of expert counter-testimony.
A Force To Be Reckoned With
Jack was taken from the county jail to the ‘Deuel Vocational Institution’ in Tracy. The primary purpose of DVI is to serve as a reception center for newly committed prisoners to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation from northern California county jails.
TFrom Bricks to Briskets…
“Rogers… You’re on the chain!” Came a voice over the Harris County Jail intercom. My heart began to beat instantly, as i stood from my bottom bunk, startled by the off-guard turn of evens. The time was here.
The Cake Was a Lie…
Well… looks like this is it. The day of my death has arrived at last. I’ve been on death row for so many years, I’ve lost count at this point. I’ve forgotten what my crime was, if I even had one to begin with. I sat alone in that cold, empty stone cell for what seemed like days. They had put us into the hardest prison to break out of. All the walls were lined with steel an inch thick in the already thick cement walls. All of the other inmates were screaming suddenly, yelling and throwing slurs left and right. I sat numbingly staring at the wall, waiting for my time to finally come. There was a loud metal click as the lock to my cage was unhinged. The door creaked open loudly as the guard came to collect me. My head lolled over to look at them. “It’s time.” I walked over with a hunch, grudgingly swaying as they clicked the handcuffs on my wrists. Way too tight for any sort of comfort. Walking slowly down the hall with my head down, there were many inmates screaming. Saying that I didn’t deserve the death sentence, that they were too harsh with my punishment. There were others that just watched me with a grin, glad to see me go at last. I had made a lot of friends in here before my trial, but I guess I made some enemies too. Away from all the inmates, as their screams and shouts became distant, everything became darker. You could smell the stench of death that emanated through the air. Toxic chemicals, burned flesh, and other odors you wouldn’t even want to identify.
Every Moment Counts
525,600 minutes 525,000 moments so dear 525,600 minutes How do you measure? Measure a year? This song plays in my head each morning, as I scratch another day off on the wall. Only for me, it’s been 4,207,680 minutes. That’s right eight years. Eight years in the same cell, and only three days to go. Well, 4,000 minutes to be exact!
The Rostov Ripper
Andrei Chikatilo admitted to 56 killings between 1978 and 1990 when he was taken into custody. The wicked murderer preyed on toddlers and young vagrants, eating their private organs.