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HRDC/PLN Newsletter – JPay Picked Hitler’s Birthday as “JPay Day”. Really.

 
April 20, 2017

Prison Legal News, a monthly print publication that covers criminal justice issues, is a project of the Human Rights Defense Center, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization.
VIDEO: JPay Picked Hitler’s Birthday as “JPay Day”. Really.
We at HRDC thought you would be interested to know that prison profiteer JPay picked April 20, that’s right, Hitler’s birthday and the anniversary of the Columbine massacre, to be “JPay Day.”
We take their price gouging and ruthless financial exploitation very seriously, that’s why we have the www.stopprisonprofiteering.org campaign and why we have fought long and hard over their owner, Securus’ s financial phone rate exploitation of prisoners and their families, www.prisonphonejustice.org . Which got us wondering, what would Hitler think about Jpay stealing his birthday? Here’s a lighthearted take on a serious topic:
Please share the video with others and of course ask jpay why they picked Hitler’s birthday to celebrate the financial exploitation of prisoners and their families? Since they get their business through monopoly contracts with the government they don’t have to care about the sensibilities of their customers who are a captive market. Companies like Jpay and Securus would never survive in a free market where consumers had a choice.
Please consider making a donation to the Human Rights Defense Center to help us combat prison profiteers, like JPay. We are a small, lean organization and every dollar helps!
Colorado: 3 Denver deputies, including captain, suspended without pay over jail inmate’s death
 
Two Denver sheriff’s deputies and a department captain will serve unpaid suspensions of between 10 and 16 days in May for policy violations that led to the death of a Denver jail inmate in November 2015.
The Denver Department of Safety on Wednesday released its disciplinary review of the deputies’ actions in the death of Michael Marshall, a jail inmate who was pulled off life support and died several days after the confron

tation with the deputies, who staff the city/county jail.
In January 2016, then-Denver District Attorney Mitch Morrissey said he would not pursue charges against any deputies involved in Marshall’s death, despite the coroner deeming it a homicide. Morrissey said that in video he reviewed of the incident, he saw “nothing to indicate excessive force,” saying he believed the six deputies who held Marshall down were holding different parts o

f his body “so no one has to exert more force than necessary.”
 
‘I really want him to have a different life.’ How some female inmates are raising babies behind bars

Candida Suarez and Skye Logue push their babies in strollers through the courtyard, the sun glinting off the razor wire behind them.
The two women pass gardens dotted with flowers, along with signs reading, “Out of bounds – do not approach.” They chat about how they’ll dress up their sons, 10-month-old Aceyn and 9-month-old Ezra, for Halloween, and what kind of cake they’ll serve at the babies’ birthday parties.
It’s October, and Aceyn and Ezra will soon turn 1 year old inside the Washington Corrections Center for Women, where they’ve lived since they were born.
Aceyn will be 19 months old when he leaves the prison in June with Logue, who gave birth to him six months into her two-year sentence. Ezra will be 22 months old when Suarez, his mother, is released in the fall.
The babies are among 15 children living with their mothers in the prison in Purdy. They are part of the state’s Residential Parenting Program, as are two other inmates who are pregnant and waiting to deliver.

2017 Fight Toxic Prisons Convergence
The Fight Toxic Prisons National Convergence is back in 2017! This year’s convergence is taking place from June 2nd through 5th in the Denton/Ft. Worth region of North Texas. We would love to have all of last year’s participants join us again so that we can continue to learn from each other, grow our networks, and take action against toxic prisons!
Registration is now open, sign up today by clicking below! It’s free to register, with an option to contribute a sliding scale donation.
One reason we are excited to bring the 2017 FTP convergence to North Texas is the launch of the Close Carswell Campaign. In the way that last year’s conference focused both panel discussions and a day of action on the campaign to stop the proposed toxic prison in Letcher County Kentucky, this year’s convergence will focus attention on the infamous FMC Carswell federal prison, located in Ft. Worth. The facility houses over 1,500 prisoners who allegedly have special health-related needs, yet Carswell is surrounded by toxic military Superfund sites from the Naval Air Base where it is co-located.
Carswell has housed many prominent voices from the inside, from current residents Marius Mason and Aafia Siddiqui to former political prisoners Lynne Stewart and Helen Woodson. The goal of the Close Carswell Campaign is to immediately shut down the overly-restrictive Administrative Unit, which BOP states only contains 24 beds, and call attention to the general conditions of the facility. For years, prisoners and their loved ones have been documenting abuses with little to no response from the Bureau of Prisons.
Join us June 2nd – 5th to learn more about the Close Carswell Campaign and to take action directed at this toxic prison! Click below for convergence registration.
Environmentalists have long recognized Texas as the financial headquarters and political stronghold of the global oil and gas empire, and prison abolitionists know Texas as home to one of the most brutal and corrupt state prison systems in the country. It’s hard to imagine a more appropriate setting to discuss the intersections of ecological resistance and mass incarceration. We look forward to seeing you in June as we continue to build our movement to Fight Toxic Prisons!
 
California: Amid criticism over inmate deaths, SLO County Jail to hire nurse practitioner, doctor
Faced with a nationwide shortage of psychiatrists, the San Luis Obispo County Health Agency will abandon immediate efforts to hire a staff psychiatrist for the County Jail, instead filling the position with a nurse practitioner. The Health Agency also will hire a half-time staff medical doctor for the jail, replacing contract doctors, as it struggles to keep doctors from leaving for full-time work elsewhere.
The changes come as the county is under heavy criticism for the recent deaths of two County Jail inmates.
County Health Agency Director Jeff Hamm said the two new hires, approved Tuesday by the county Board of Supervisors, are in response to state-mandated staffing levels and not related to the inmates’ deaths.
The county’s difficulty in filling vacancies, however, illustrates the problems of providing medical and psychiatric care at the jail.
Under the Health Agency, the Public Health Department provides medical care and the Behavioral Health Department provides mental health services at the inpatient psychiatric health facility, the county’s three outpatient mental health facilities and County Jail.

 
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From the PLN in Print Archives
New York: Contraband Convictions Vacated After Guard Admits Planting Weapon
On January 17, 2017, Cayuga County Court Judge Mark H. Fandrich set aside the convictions of two New York state prisoners serving additional time on contraband charges.
Naythen Aubain and Donnesia Brown had both been sentenced to two to four years after pleading guilty to first-degree promoting prison contraband. Fandrich vacated their convictions after Auburn Correctional Facility guard Matthew Cornell, 33, admitted he “put a weapon on an inmate” with the intention of breaking up a prison gang. Cornell, who had worked at the facility since July 2008, was suspended without pay but not criminally charged. Two unnamed guards were placed on administrative leave for their involvement in the incident; one was suspended while the other later returned to work.
Cayuga County District Attorney Jon Budelman said several other defendants charged in cases involving Cornell would have their cases dismissed or convictions vacated. One of those cases involved Thomas Ozzborn, who spent an extra year in prison on a bogus contraband weapons charge; he filed a notice of claim on March 15, 2017 indicating that he planned to file a lawsuit.
Another Auburn prisoner, Jose Muniz, also had his conviction vacated in January 2017, while contraband charges against Tyrell Ingram were dropped because Cornell was the only witness in his case. The prisoners charged with contraband had pleaded guilty to avoid potentially longer prison sentences had they gone to trial and lost.
“As it turns out, the least ‘credible’ people in our society were telling the truth while trusted officials fabricated evidence,” stated Adam Van Buskirk, Muniz’s attorney. “I hope this will be a lesson to those within the system and within society who assume all defendants to be guilty.”
The New York Department of Corrections and Community Supervision continues to investigate the weapons-planting allegations.

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Prison suicides are on the rise nationally and it’s pretty bad in Massachusetts
It’s no secret that American’s jails and prisons are among the most dangerous and overcrowded in the world. But news of former NFLer Aaron Hernandez’s suicide in prison highlighted a recent overlooked trend in corrections facilities nationwide.
According to the U.S. Department of Justice’s Bureau of Justice Statistics:
  • After holding steady for years, suicide rates started rising sharply in 2013
  • In state prisons, it went up 30% from 2013 to 2014.
  • In 2014, there were 3,927 inmate deaths in state (3,483) and federal (444) prisons, the largest number of inmate deaths reported since tracking began in 2001. Although illness remained the most common cause of death, suicides represented 7%. That’s the largest percentage of deaths due to suicide since tracking began.
HRDC Needs Your Help to Continue the Fight for Prison #PhoneJustice!
Click the Banner to Donate Today!

VIDEO: Brave New Films – Compassionate Release
 
The terminally ill deserve to die a dignified death with loved ones able to see them go in peace. But for Allison’s father, it was too late. Watch their story about the agonizing struggle against time and red tape that is all too familiar to so many Americans dealing with the criminal justice system.
Tell your members of Congress to fix Compassionate Release!

Watch Here

Podcast: Prison Food with Danny Trejo
 
Danny Trejo joined Katherine to talk about prison: when he was incarcerated vs. how it is now (a “warehouse of insanity”), using commissary for protection, and how bad the food is inside. Plus, clowning on Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Read PLN’s 2011 Interview with Danny Trejo Here

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