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Prison News | Prison Culture & Lifestyle

Recent events concerning the corrections industry and the topic of Prison Culture & Lifestyle. Comments, suggestions and contributions (below) appreciated.

  • America: The land of no second chance
    Here, sins can remain emblazoned on our job and college applications and sever our access to basic civil rights, in perpetuity. An estimated 5.85 million Americans, for example, were unable to exercise the franchise in Tuesday's midterm elections because of a felony conviction, with disproportionate impacts on people of color. (One in every 13 black adults across the country could not vote in this election because of a criminal record, according to the Sentencing Project.) And many millions more won't make it past a resume screener because so many employers say that lawbreakers of any stripe "need not apply."...[more]

  • Exonerated inmate seeks compensation from D.C. for his pain, distress in prison
    When he was first sent to the federal prison in Lorton, Va., for a crime he did not commit, Kirk Odom was warned never to tell other inmates about his rape conviction. If he did, the information could make him prey to inmates seeking vengeance....[more]

  • Finding Hope After Prison -- An East Bay writer and social justice advocates document the struggles and accomplishments of formerly incarcerated people.
    Yema Lee grew up surrounded by crime in West Oakland. Members of her family started selling cocaine and heroin when she was eleven years old. At twelve, she committed her first burglary. Lee, now 41, spent a total of eight years in jail and prison during her twenties and thirties. Each time she was released, it seemed impossible not to return....[more]

  • Montana jail that once sought Guantanamo detainees filling empty beds with American Indians
    HARDIN, Mont. — A Montana town that once offered to take in suspected terrorists from Guantanamo Bay out of desperation to fill an empty, $27 million jail has finally started to fill its cells with American Indian inmates from across the Northern Plains.

    The Two Rivers Regional Detention Facility in Hardin was built in 2007 on hopes it would boost an economically-depressed area of southeast Montana bordering the Crow Indian Reservation....[more]


  • Letter: He objects to too-free use of the term ex-convict
    Wiping the slate clean for ex-cons: In recent days, there were reports about a deranged person gaining access to the White House, with a follow-up story about a contractor being in an elevator, having a concealed weapon, with the President of the United States....[more]

  • Convicted killer launches online petition to gain Facebook access for inmates
    Frenchis Abraham doesn't cotton to the idea of the government interfering with his ability to keep up with family and friends on Facebook, and he's trying to rally people to oppose such intrusions by the state....[more]

  • Jailbreak in Washington state goes unnoticed for two days
    (Reuters) - A Washington state man jailed on robbery charges managed to slip away from a detention facility last week in an escape that went unnoticed for two days until his lawyer arrived for a visit, officials said on Tuesday....[more]

  • Ohio prisons, private vendor, developing new menu
    Inmates and staff were surveyed about current foods they like and dislike, along with items they want eliminated or added, according to a list of responses by the Department of Rehabilitation and Correction to recommendations by a legislative oversight committee.

    The agency also said it has raised the bar for determining when Philadelphia-based Aramark Correctional Services must take action based on evaluations. Previously, action plans were required if evaluation scores fell below 80 percent. The agency has raised that to 84 percent, according to the recommendations provided by agency director Gary Mohr....[more]


  • Attica Prison Riot’s 43rd Anniversary a Special One
    ATTICA, N.Y.—Hundreds of personal items collected after the 1971 Attica prison riot have been returned to their owners and families.

    New York corrections officials, members of the guards’ union, and family members of those killed marked the 43rd anniversary of the nation’s deadliest prison uprising with a series of events Saturday in front of the western New York prison....[more]


  • Vegas jail visits halted for 9-11 anniversary
    LAS VEGAS — Clark County Detention Center is putting social visits to inmates on hold for a day because it's the anniversary of the Sept. 11 attacks.

    Las Vegas Police Officer Laura Meltzer says the move is a precaution due to the significance of the date, and in light of recent world events....[more]


  • ‘Lockup’ off to solid start in portraying life in Fairfax County jail
    The fruits of spending four months, day in and day out, in the Fairfax County jail were unveiled Saturday night when “Lockup: Fairfax” premiered on MSNBC. The show did a fine job capturing slices of life in a jail in one of America’s wealthiest counties, particularly in portraying the professionalism of the deputies here, but it will be interesting to see how deeply they dig into the one issue that bedevils corrections officials everywhere: mental health. It was hinted at in Episode One, but we’ll see how far they go. Some viewers also expressed concerns about the exploitation aspect of the show. It’s a legitimate concern....[more]

  • Graying of SC prisons will cost state’s taxpayers
    An inmate at Camille Griffin Graham Correctional Institution for women keeps a wheelchair tucked away in the corner of her small, cinder-block cell.

    She has a walker, too.

    The wheelchair and walker are just two of the signs of the exploding population of aging inmates in South Carolina’s prisons.

    Another sign? The dollar sign, as in the increasing cost that S.C. taxpayers will have to pay to care for those aging inmates....[more]


  • Colorado prisons chief orders Sterling review after 6th inmate killed
    Colorado prison chief Rick Raemisch has ordered a review of the circumstances leading to the murders of six inmates at Sterling Correctional Facility over the past four years, officials said Wednesday. Cody Gray, who was serving a life prison sentence for a sex offense, was the latest casualty. He killed Monday morning in a general population cell, said Adrienne Jacobson, spokeswoman for the Colorado Department of Corrections. The review will consider whether mistakes have been made in the classifications of inmates, which dictates whether they are placed in secure prisons. “It’s a high number,” Jacobson said, referring to the six murders. “M...[more]

  • New York inmates riot over missing favourite TV shows due to early bedtimes
    A riot broke out inside one of America’s toughest prisons after an early bedtime prevented inmates from watching their favourite TV shows.

    More than 60 prisoners inside New York’s notorious Rikers Island facility refused to comply with a newly introduced 9pm curfew on Monday night....[more]


  • A tour of Old Montana State Prison reminds you that life is better on the outside
    Located about three quarters of the way along the I-90 between Missoula and Butte, Deer Lodge is a quiet town that was home for more than a century to the Montana State Prison, a troubled institution that was perennially overcrowded and the sight of several riots, culminating in one that took the life of a deputy warden....[more]

  • America's convicted juveniles: The stories of those growing up behind the razor wire
    Jesus Macedo-Perez was out driving with friends in his neighbourhood of Elkhart, Indiana, an industrial city on the banks of the St Joseph River known as the "RV capital of the world", but locally renowned for high crime rates, unemployment and communities ravaged by drugs....[more]

  • Eastern State Penitentiary Hosts "Family Weekend: Pets in Prison" on Saturday and Sunday, August 9 and 10
    PHILADELPHIA, July 30, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Eastern State Penitentiary will host "Family Weekend: Pets in Prison" on Saturday and Sunday, August 9 and 10 and again on September 27 and 28. The event, designed for kids and adults of all ages, will feature interactive and educational activities all weekend long. Visitors can learn about the role of animals throughout Eastern State's history, meet (and adopt) shelter dogs from a local prison-training program, and participate in animal-themed activities. ...[more]

  • Inside Oregon prisons: Most inmates at Two Rivers never see the horizon
    Two Rivers Correctional Institution sits about 100 yards from a bucolic bulge in the Columbia River called Lake Wallula. But prisoners inside seldom, if ever, see this grand green pool of water and the irrigated crops beyond....[more]

  • John Oliver Brilliantly Tears Apart America's Broken Prison System
    The growing population of prisoners in the U.S.: America's prison population has been exploding since the war on drugs led to tough-on-crime laws being implemented in the 1980s and 1990s. The new mandatory minimums for even low-level drug offenses helped America's prison population grow to be the biggest in the world. As Oliver points out, the U.S. now has more prisoners than even China, whose population is four times that of the U.S....[more]

  • Church bell at Angola prison has its own criminal past, a Lake Charles newspaper reports
    The bell that hangs in the chapel of the Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola has a criminal record to match that of the inmates who pray here, according to a Lake Charles newspaper....[more]

  • Serial killer Alfredo Prieto is still claiming he’s intellectually disabled. Seriously?
    Alfredo Prieto has been convicted of murdering three people, raping two of them, and DNA or ballistics link him to another six homicides and two rapes. That is nine slayings in a little more than two years. Four of his victims were in Northern Virginia. He is one of the “great” unrecognized serial killers of our time. Yet a recent Supreme Court ruling has revived the prospect that he could avoid the three death sentences he currently faces, because his defense raised the possibility that he was intellectually disabled, and the news media have begun discussing Prieto as a serious candidate for post-conviction relief. Specifically, Virginia law...[more]

  • 3 Inmates Escape in Quebec In Latest Helicopter Jailbreak
    OTTAWA — Three men escaped from a Quebec jail on Saturday night aboard a helicopter, the second aerial breakout in the province in 15 months.

    The Sûreté du Québec, the provincial police force, said the men fled about 7:45 p.m. local time in a green helicopter after it landed in the courtyard of a detention center in suburban Quebec City. The aircraft then flew west, in the general direction of Montreal....[more]


  • Ohio inmates advise students on 'what not to do'
    LIBERTY, Ohio (AP) — At one time, the four men standing in front of the roomful of eighth-graders at W.S. Guy Middle School were just like them.

    They were making their transitions from childhood to adulthood — about to step up from junior high to high school.

    They had their dreams about what they wanted out of life. For them, it was careers in law enforcement, engineering, construction and sports....[more]


  • A few ‘inmates’ from ‘Orange Is the New Black’ discuss prison life
    An upper-middle class blonde from Brooklyn goes to jail for a drug-related screw-up years before.

    The women’s federal prison of "Orange Is the New Black" is a different world than Piper Chapman had known, populated with a wildly varied group of characters played (alongside series star Taylor Schilling) by TV’s most diverse cast of actors....[more]


  • Prison inmates train guide dogs
    OSHKOSH, Wis. (AP) - Eight dogs, ranging in age from 9 weeks to 2 years, are in training to become working companions. And their training ground might surprise you....[more]

  • After Prison, No After-Hours Michael Alig, the Former King of the Club Kids, After Prison
    At 10:50 a.m. on Monday of last week, outside the Mid-State Correctional Facility in Marcy, N.Y., which looked like an Ivy League school ringed in concertina wire, Michael Alig emerged from a white prison van....[more]

  • It's hard to study black men because so many of them are in prison
    The high incarceration rates of black men generate a lot of attention, and are known to have all sorts of negative downstream effects on the inmates and the communities they leave behind. A new study out of Yale medical school and published in the journal Health Affairs hits on a less recognized one: all that prison time makes it hard to study health conditions in black men....[more]

  • Year of freedom after 4 decades behind bars difficult for Louis Taylor
    Louis Cuen Taylor? spent most of his life living in the structured environment of prison.

    Every day for 42 years he was told when to wake up, what to wear, where to go and what to eat....[more]


  • State's oldest female inmate earns respect among younger convicts
    PURDY, Wash. (AP) - Darlene Green is always perplexed whenever she sees other inmates at Washington Corrections Center for Women watching television shows set in prisons....[more]

  • Regret, relief draw former inmates to Philadelphia prison reunion
    PHILADELPHIA, May 4 (Reuters) - William Harrison knows the Eastern State Penitentiary all too well, having spent years locked up in the imposing fortress that today is a popular tourist attraction in Philadelphia....[more]


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