Who do you think is paying for all of these verdicts? In this case, $25 MILLION. YOU are! You also are paying a fortune in the litigation costs from all of this preventable bullshit in our prisons!
Spending a fraction of this to prosecute those responsible and put them behind bars would end much of the abuse!
Excerpts from the Article:
A jury awarded a prisoner brutally beaten at the Baltimore City Detention Center $25 million, after guards allegedly worked in concert with a gang and arranged a beating as retaliation for complaints filed by a detainee awaiting trial.
The beating left Daquan Wallace in a coma for two months, and now he has to use a wheelchair and cannot talk. The incident happened in October 2014, after three Department of Public Safety and Correctional Services (DPSCS) guards cooperated with members of the Black Guerilla Family gang to set up the brutal beating. Wallace’s lawsuit claimed that the beating was in retaliation for complaints by his mother that jailers weren’t protecting her son from the gang.
Wallace’s mother told jail staff numerous times that her son was routinely beaten for refusing to join the gang, the lawsuit said. In response, staff allegedly moved him to a unit with the gang members, with more unmonitored areas to allow the beating.
Wallace claimed that when everyone went to dinner one night, guards allowed gang members to stay back with their cell doors unlocked, against policy. Within minutes, Wallace was beaten by the gang. Wallace’s cellmate returned to find him unconscious with blood on the walls.
A spokesperson for DPSCS, who did not want to be named, said the three guards involved were fired, but would not comment on disciplinary action taken or the outcome of the internal investigation. However, after the internal investigation concluded, nobody was charged criminally for the attack on Wallace, according to a different spokesman for the department.
In 2013, state and federal officials said the Black Guerilla Family had effectively taken control of the jail. They were running a drug smuggling conspiracy with jail staffers, they said. Dozens of people were charged, and at least 40 were convicted. [PLN, April, 2015] The century-old jail was finally torn down months after Wallace’s attack. The decrepit conditions at the jail were a “black eye” for the state, the governor said.
See: Wallace v. Mayor and City Council Baltimore City, U.S.D.C (D. Md.), Case No. 1:2017cv-03718.)
This is good news, in that the guards did not use lethal force! Given all the prison abuse by staff, the uprising is quite understandable to me. But stupid to do this so close to release.
Video obtained by KOB 4 shows emergency teams firing off non-lethal rounds at 22 inmates after a disturbance at a New Mexico state prison facility.
The incident occurred on March 23. at the Northwestern New Mexico Correctional Center in Grants. The facility is a pre-release facility for men, meaning it’s designed to house inmates who are two years or less away from release.
Surveillance cameras inside the facility appear to capture inmates hatching a plan. The video shows inmates re-arranging furniture inside the pods to create a make-shift barrier, blocking windows with clothing and using soapy mops to cover the cameras overhead.
At one point, the inmates are forced outside to the grounds where they were surrounded by officers from at least six different law enforcement agencies. Video: Emergency team fires non-lethal rounds at inmates after prison disturbance. “Be advised, they’re throwing rocks up at the officers on the roof,” said one officer.
Eventually, emergency teams deployed non-lethal rounds at the inmates. The move triggered the inmates to back down as prison officials worked to restored order.
The state reports the inmates caused quite a bit of damage, including some broken windows in the pods and minor damage to a fire door.
At least 22 inmates were disciplined for actively participating in the stand-off. However, none of the inmates have been criminally charged so far.
I have news for you: Health care services are killing men and women at all prisons. See scores of articles on this website or google it!
Excerpts from the Article:
With four deaths in five months at Virginia’s Fluvanna Correctional Center for Women (FCCW), a federal district court began moving its focus from care for individual prisoners to systematic change in July 2019.
The Virginia Department of Corrections (VDOC) was party to a 2016 settlement in a lawsuit alleging the provision of medical care at FCCW violated prisoners’ constitutional rights. (Scott et al v. Clarke, U.S.D.C. (W.D. VA), case No. 3:12-cv-00036.) The agreement required VDOC to meet 22 health-care standards.
VDOC failed to fulfill its end of the deal and by January 2019 twelve prisoners had died while in FCCW’s custody since the settlement was approved. “Some women have died along the way,” said federal district Judge Norman K. Moon. VDOC vowed to hire 78 more nurses at that hearing.
That order is significant but not enough, said Shannon Ellis, an attorney with the Legal Aid Justice Center. “The judge’s order did not specify what level of qualifications the nurses need to have, and a historic problem at Fluvanna and at prisons across Virginia is very underqualified medical professionals,” Ellis said.
Margaret Breslau, head of the Coalition for Justice in Blacksburg, related a story that illustrates Ellis’ point. “A woman, after trying to get on sick call forever and ever and ever finally gets to see an OB/GYN, and they discover a mass the size of an eggplant. She has had pain. She’s had bleeding. The doctor tells her — and she has paperwork on this — to eat more vegetables.”
The care provided to prisoner Margie Ryder was brought to the court’s attention. Ryder suffered from pulmonary arterial hypertension, a terminal disease if not treated properly. “She depends on life-saving medication that has to be administered every two days,” said Ellis. “She’s been hospitalized … multiple times because of failures to have her medication available, failures to have the pump necessary to administer it, administration of the medication in incorrect amounts, so at times she has symptoms of toxicity.”
Ryder, 39, died in July 2019, just three months prior to her scheduled release. VDOC issued a statement after her death. “As is public knowledge following her lawsuit, she had a terminal illness.” Left unsaid was that University of Virginia Medical Center staff expressed concern with the care she was receiving at FCCW.
“My conscience says I have to speak out on Ms. Ryder’s behalf,” nurse Lauren Bedard wrote in a court filing. “Every time I see this patient … I wonder if it will be the last time I see her alive.”
Prisoner Shannon Dillon said prisoners often have to practice Civil War medicine. “I had a tooth pulled, and I kept telling them, ‘It still hurts. I think it’s infected.’ They still didn’t have me on the appointment list,” she said. “It’s starting to smell. It is killing me, so I got a bunch of Q-tips and a bunch of salt from the chow hall, and I dug out the infection with the Q-tips and packed it with salt from the chow hall.”
Ellis said FCCW is not the only prison with poor medical care. “At Goochland Women’s Prison, which is about 20 miles down the road from Fluvanna, the same practices that led to our lawsuit at Fluvanna are going on,” she said. “For example, LPNs conducting sick call. Having these underqualified nurses making diagnostic decisions is something the Department of Corrections is clearly aware is an unacceptable practice.”
Prisoners, meanwhile, pray that they don’t have any health issues while imprisoned. “It is a fear, an inherent fear with all women here, that if you get sick it could possibly be fatal,” said Dillon.
Inside A Federal Prison With A Deadly COVID-19 Outbreak, Compromised Men Beg For Help Inmates incarcerated at the Butner federal prison complex in North Carolina have filed suit, saying federal officials have failed to take action to stop the spread.
No shit Sherlock! Prison “health care” is notoriously abominable. So if you get coronavirus – and it’s a place where you probably will! – you are in really deep shit. We shall never know the true number of inmates who die from the virus, because the lie often about cause of death!
READ Culture of Cover Up =
Excerpts from the Article:
Inmates locked up in a complex that houses some of the federal prison system’s most medically vulnerable prisoners say decrepit conditions and failed social distancing policies have allowed COVID-19 to spread throughout the facility in an outbreak that has already claimed the lives of nine men.
A new class action lawsuit filed on behalf of the inmates at federal facilities in Butner, North Carolina, gives the public an inside look at what life is like as the coronavirus pandemic ripped through a federal prison complex that houses inmates with severe medical needs.
Nine inmates incarcerated at Butner have died since the pandemic began. The latest was Eric Spiwak, a 73-year-old man serving a 15-year sentence for possession of photos of child sexual exploitation, who had been at Butner since 2009. Like most other Butner inmates who died, Spiwak was not brought to the hospital until Friday, after he had experienced respiratory failure. Spiwak was pronounced dead on Monday.
“The situation inside [Federal Correctional Complex] Butner is dire,” the lawsuit states. “Plaintiffs, many of whom are medically vulnerable because of their age or serious medical conditions, must not be forced to sit helpless, hoping that chance favors them while Defendants’ combined inaction and defective practices roll the dice with their lives.”
The lawsuit was filed Tuesday on behalf of Butner’s prisoners by the American Civil Liberties Union, the ACLU of North Carolina, the Washington Lawyers’ Committee for Civil Rights and Urban Affairs, and the law firm of Winston & Strawn. The suit names Butner warden Thomas Scarantino, Bureau of Prisons Director Michael Carvajal and BOP Medical Director Jeffery Allen.
Declarations from Butner inmates describe a dirty environment where social distancing is impossible. The lawsuit states that inmates “are housed in close quarters and forced to eat, bathe, and perform all daily life activities in a communal setting where they cannot adequately social distance and protect themselves from this dangerous disease.” Both staff members and inmates travel throughout the complex, and inmates must line up multiple times a day for food and medicine. Inmates with symptoms are only removed if they meet certain conditions ― including requesting a sick call, which they have to pay for.
Michael Harrington, a 40-year-old inmate at Butner on a sentence for unlawful possession of a firearm by a person convicted of a felony, said he has stage IV colorectal cancer that spread to his liver. Doctors told him he has 13 months to live, and he has a bit over two years left on his sentence.
Harrington lives on a floor housing other inmates with cancer. He says he’s one of the youngest on the floor, and that most are older than 65. Since mid-March, Harrington says he’s been locked down in his cell “essentially 24 hours a day.” He shares the 12-foot-by-12-foot cell with another man, and says it is impossible for them to stay 6 feet away from each other when their beds are 4 feet apart.
“Prison officials have said that my floor is covered with coronavirus and that is why they have us locked in our cells,” Harrington said in his declaration.
SOON – (room for improvement? You MUST be joking!)
I have my Court hearing this morning; super lawyers at the fore,
The goal is to get the bad guys onto that courtroom floor,
You see, the American trial process is designed to elicit the TRUTH, once you get in the door,
But if you’re a prisoner without counsel, the facts and the law, both the judge will ignore,
Heads are buried so DEEP in the sand concerning rampant problems in America’ prisons,
Legislators, clergy, so many others, even judges, see reality through very dark prisms,
The TRUTH is distorted, denied or ignored at every turn,
It’s enough to make your stomach churn,
The tragic dysfunction of our “corrections” (what!!??) system, could be easily solved,
By someone with integrity, professionalism, and sufficient resolve,
Good Lord, a handful of good managers could straighten out the mess,
And bring orderly progress to what is now chaotic distress!
Court today, moving in three days, a few days to get settled in, organized, back into gear,
Then on to expose America’s disgrace; got some new ideas to make the TRUTH perfectly clear.
I wrote this 13 months after my release, and the Courts are even more fucked up today!
Some tRumpsters say “Trump passed prison reform”. Are you shitting me! What he did was a drop in the bucket compared to what needs to be done and easily could be done! kra See so many articles on this website.
Another true horror story about “health care” in our jails and prisons. Another story of the anguish of inmates’ surviving family. I see, on average, at least two cases like this every week. All are preventable, and are costing YOU, the taxpayers, billions of dollars every year!
Excerpts from the Article:
Hardel Sherrell’s mother, Del Shea Perry, said she knew it all along.
She believes jail staff and medical personnel inside and out of the Beltrami County Jail in Bemidji completely disregarded her 27-year old son’s deteriorating health. She also says the in-house surveillance camera footage proves it.
The Department of Corrections Commissioner ordered a second more detailed investigation that uncovered a myriad of issues.
“They were doing whatever they wanted to do and treating him as a criminal, not as a human being who was sick and crying out for help, and they ignored all the signs – all of them.”
Hardel’s loved ones have filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the county, jail staff, and healthcare providers stemming from the September 2018 death.
“This is a person who slowly progressed from being healthy, to being unhealthy, to being unable to move and then unable to breathe,” said attorney Zorislav R. Leyderman, who is representing the family.
The case is slowly working its way through the courts. This week, Del Shea and her legal team learned a new Department of Corrections review of the matter found “regular and gross violation of Minnesota jail standards.”
“This has to stop in all the jails, in all the prisons. This cannot continue,” Del Shea said. The DOC is responsible for licensing and inspecting county jails, and also reviews in-custody deaths.
The first time its investigators probed Hardel’s case, they did not find any violation of state standards and protocols. But, that review only looked at the 12-hour time period immediately preceding the death.
“We found that reviews we normally do are lacking,” said DOC Commissioner Paul Schnell.
After watching a FOX 9 story on the case and meeting with Hardel’s mom, Commissioner Schnell ordered a second, more detailed investigation that uncovered a myriad of issues. The issues were outlined in a strongly worded letter recently sent to the new sheriff in Beltrami County.
“We want to make sure we are taking a look at what happens during the term of incarceration,” Commissioner Schnell said.
Among the violations Commissioner Schnell cited, included a failure to follow a medical directive to return Hardel to the hospital if his condition worsened.
The letter notes that there was a belief within the facility that Hardel was faking his medical condition, or what’s known as malingering. It states if there are continued violations, the state will be required to take action up to and including suspension or revocation of the county’s license to operate a jail.
Del Shea said she felt relief, satisfaction and validation with these new findings and said her quest for absolute justice in her son’s death remains stronger than ever. “I have to be my son’s voice, I have to be the voice for many others. It’s painful, but we will get justice.”
This is an excellent series, but far too long for me to have time to post all of it. The pertinent links are below. I did not encounter Floyd while I was in, but many, many inmates told me after the uprising that he was one of the worst for prisoner abuse. Killing him was not the answer, but I can understand why they did it!
My friend Steve Hampton continues the litigation regarding much of the illegal and brutal retaliation by guards, and the neglect of inmates’ injuries.
The Article about the Series of Articles:
For three years, reporters for Delaware Online/The News Journal have followed the aftermath of the riot at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center, which saw a correctional officer killed in the line of duty for the first time at Delaware Department of Correction.
The event remains one of the most dramatic and far-reaching stories in Delaware’s modern-day history. Our reporters have been writing about and thinking on the issue since that day and through the criminal trials that ended last year.
Despite weeks worth of trial testimony and hundreds of pages of public reports, many questions still remain unaddressed and some of those who were there that day haven’t publicly addressed those questions.
The uprising was not just inmates lashing out at a single correctional officer. Protests and unrest inside the building had been bubbling for years.
So what caused the men who did this to turn to violence? Why was Officer Steven Floyd killed while three other hostages made it out of the building alive? Why did the police wait 18 hours before breaking up the uprising? And where are those involved now?
On Tuesday, Delaware Online began publish a series of articles seeking to provide more information toward answering those questions.
18 hours in C Building:
Secret document shows as officer lay dying, prison leadership disagreed on how to handle Vaughn rioters
See how the Vaughn riot unfolded
A hostage and her protector
Never-released report shows prison officer’s death should not have happened
Correction officials say they’ve moved beyond problems that caused 2017 riot
Lawsuits claiming Delaware prisoner abuse, officer impunity continue
The Vaughn Files: The photo, videos and audio presented at trial
Our reporting includes a newly revealed internal report that sheds light on the mindset of the people protesting in the doomed building before the riot, how authorities responded to a series of peaceful protests preceding the uprising and why a plea foreshadowing disaster written by the very officer who would be killed was ignored a week before tragedy.
The articles detailing that report will be illustrated with never-before-seen sights and sounds from the Feb. 1, 2017 uprising at Delaware’s largest prison. They include the only images of inside the building immediately after police retook control of the prison, video footage of police rushing to break the uprising and the grim audio of hostage negotiations.
The photographs, audio clips and videos have not been seen outside law enforcement and the handful of members of the public who attended a series of criminal trials stemming from the fatal hostage standoff.
The News Journal has sought them from authorities for years, and with the conclusion of the criminal trials convinced the courts that those trial exhibits should be made public like others introduced in more mundane trials. Through that process, we’ve made clear to the courts and correction officials that we will not publish depictions from the building of the officer killed that day.
We understand and have heard that the photographs and videos from the scene may disturb some, particularly those who work in corrections.
We want you to know we have heard those concerns, take them seriously and seek to put enough warnings on sensitive material in the story to avoid unintended hurt.
With that said, we feel the public has a right to see and know, even if some might find the information unsettling. This can augment understanding of the situation help weigh investigators’ claims that their effort to collect evidence to seek justice for Floyd was hampered by the ransacked condition of the building.
We’ve also heard from victims of that day who say the newspaper needs to continue to press and put on record all facts related to the day.
It’s another chapter in the history of an event that will continue to bear on Delaware’s correctional system for years. This series won’t be the last installment and the situation will continue to be relevant to taxpayers and those held in lockup by Delaware.
We continue to follow the ongoing litigation against state officials that is likely to continue to cost taxpayers.
We are able to do that with the support of the public, specifically those that subscribe. We thank you and hope you will invite others to back our work.
Open All Links to the Whole Series
The Vaughn Files: The photo, videos and audio presented at trial. SEE THE EVIDENCE COLLECTED FROM WHAT HAS BEEN CALLED THE “DARKEST DAY” IN THE HISTORY OF DELAWARE’S PRISON SYSTEM
This article was sent to me by my good friend and great attorney, Steve Hampton. He is one of too few attorneys with the guts and the talent to sue D O C personell, and he represents many in their case concerning the beat downs by guards and the subsequent medical neglect.
I have written much about this prison revolt. See related articles under “prison abuse”. Although I did not encounter Floyd when I was in, I met many abusive C Os. His murder was not the answer, but it sure did not surprise me!
Excerpts from the Article:
The audio, video, photographs and documents contained here represent the bulk of what jurors saw over the course of three weeks-long trials for the murder of Lt. Steven Floyd during the Feb. 1, 2017, uprising at James T. Vaughn Correctional Center.
Throughout the course of the trials, The News Journal asked the courts to make public the evidence so that the public can review the sights and sounds of C Building on what Gov. John Carney has described as the state prisons’ “darkest day.”
For more than a year, the courts held that the material would not be made public beyond the courtroom where cameras and audio recorders are banned. But eventually, the courts agreed to release the materials months after the state abandoned criminal prosecutions for the uprising.
The material presented is most of the evidence exhibits presented at trial. Some exhibits that were shown to the jury but not entered into evidence remain closed in a vault at the New Castle County Courthouse in Wilmington. The court also withheld exhibits depicting injuries to the officers held hostage that day. The News Journal has chosen not to publish some crime scene images depicting Floyd.
The exhibits are categorized by topic as they were presented to The News Journal and are divided by media type.
This is nice, but I can already tell you what the problem is: when they change “health care” providers they hire a new company. That company retains most employees (if not all of them), who go on making the same errors or abuses because there is NO ACCOUNTABILITY!
That one Commissioner is clueless when he says this: “As county commissioners and as the general public, we don’t know what goes on in the jail other than what we’re told,” Hentschel said. “So having an accreditation I think would be very healthy for our public trust.” They will still lie like hell!
Excerpts from the Article:
Grand Traverse County commissioners Wednesday voted to hire an independent firm to evaluate the county jail’s medical and mental health services – a move that follows a rash of public criticism last fall about jail conditions and a number of inmate suicide attempts and deaths in recent years.
Commissioners voted 5-0 – with Betsy Coffia and Gordie LaPointe absent – to hire NCCHC Resources to conduct an independent review of inmate services at the Grand Traverse County Jail. The consulting group is a nonprofit entity of the National Commission on Correctional Health Care and works with approximately 500 jails and prisons across the country – including in Michigan – to provide technical assistance and expertise on best practices for jail operations. “We literally write the book, if you will, on what it is to provide correctional healthcare,” said NCCHC Managing Director Dr. Brent Gibson.
The contract’s fixed fee (including all expenses) is $24,640 and will include an evaluation of Grand Traverse County Jail health services compared to NCCHC standards, a review of medical records and interviews with staff and patients, recommended changes for improving healthcare efficiency and effectiveness, and a final comprehensive written report assessing jail conditions. With past Grand Traverse County Jail inmates and family members publicly criticizing medical and mental health treatment services at the facility – resulting in lawsuits and the launch of a Facebook page documenting alleged jail abuses – Commissioner Sonny Wheelock said the cost of the contract was easily justified if it prevented future litigation against the county.
“No matter how well we try to think we’ve got a handle on it, we do not have the expertise to evaluate the services that are in fact being provided in the jail,” Wheelock said. “Therefore, an independent evaluation is appropriate I believe at this time.”
Grand Traverse County Sheriff Tom Bensley brought forward the contract proposal, saying it would help answer lingering questions about whether jail services are adequate or in need of improvement. The county has outsourced medical care for inmates since 2010 at an average cost of $460,000 annually, according to figures previously provided by Bensley. That contract – with a company called Wellpath – spiked to $555,000 in 2018 and is expected to climb to $615,000 in 2020. The county also contracts with Northern Lakes Community Mental Health (NLCMH) to provide two full-time mental health professionals at the jail at a cost of $163,000 annually. Bensley previously told commissioners that he and other Sheriff’s Office staff aren’t medical experts and don’t necessarily have the skillsets to evaluate the quality of services provided by Wellpath and NLCMH, but that an independent company with relevant expertise could.
“(The evaluation) will do two things,” Bensley said Wednesday. “Number one, it will either indicate that what we’re doing is appropriate and follows all the guidelines and recommendations…or if there are some deficiencies, it will give us an opportunity to improve on those deficiencies for the delivery of healthcare and mental health services in the jail.” The sheriff added that NCCHC Resources is “probably the top resource for prisons and jails in the country. They will provide an independent review and evaluation and report back to the county, and I think that’s a fair way to do this.”
Commission Chair Rob Hentschel said that in addition to the evaluation, he hoped to see the county pursue NCCHC accreditation in the future, a process that would provide additional training to staff and ensure that Grand Traverse County Jail was performing in line with national best practices for inmate care. “As county commissioners and as the general public, we don’t know what goes on in the jail other than what we’re told,” Hentschel said. “So having an accreditation I think would be very healthy for our public trust.”
If a guard was fired – as they should be – every time one did this, there would be damn few left!
Excerpt from the Article:
A former Daviess-DeKalb Regional Jail guard has been criminally charged after an incident in which he pepper-sprayed a detainee who was on suicide watch, court records show. Keven Jaques, 49, is charged with the fourth-degree misdemeanor of assault.
“The deployment of the pepper spray was against orders, and in violation of the jail’s use of force policy and (the victim) was not a threat to himself or anyone else,” Jared Hogan, a law enforcement officer with the Daviess County Sheriff’s Office, wrote in a probable cause statement. “Furthermore, Jaques did not immediately notify a supervisor of the use of force.”
The charge, which was filed on April 23, comes after previous News-Press NOW reporting about the abuse allegations. Sarah LaRue, the mother of the detainee who was pepper sprayed, James LaRue, said a misdemeanor charge isn’t punishment enough.
“He was at work collecting a paycheck when he did it. He essentially got paid to harm my child and now he’s getting less charges because he was at work,” Sarah LaRue said. “There shouldn’t be less charges, there should be more, there’s less charges because he’s a cop.”
An initial investigation into Jaques’ conduct was launched days after the incident, according to emails obtained by News-Press NOW from DeKalb County Sheriff Andy Clark, who sits on an oversight board for the jail. Jaques was put on administrative leave, later fired and then criminally charged.
Even with the charge, Sarah LaRue told News-Press NOW she still fears for her son’s safety.
“If anything, I’m more concerned now because James is out of jail and this guard has been fired. And with a delay in pressing charges, what’s stopping the guard from going and finding James?” Sarah LaRue said.
According to Missouri CaseNet records, no bond has been imposed in Jaques’ case, though a summons was issued by mail to his St. Joseph address.