New Blog Spartacus Project of Nevada comments on Timothy Redman´s violent death

We have a new website in our midst of Nevada prisoner advocates and human rights abuse watchers:

The Spartacus Project of Nevada has joined the ranks, and is now online at this address:

<a href="http://spartacusprojectofnevada.blogspot.com
/”>spartacusprojectofnevada.blogspot.com

Following the terrible news of the violent death of Timothy Redman in Unit 3 of Ely State Prison on November 18th, 2009, The Spartacus Project of Nevada`s Director Don Hinton wrote the following comment:

It is time for this abuse and foolishness to stop!

I have corresponded with Mr. Redman in the past. His crime was terrible, but he deserved better than what he got from Ely State Prison and E. K. McDaniel, warden of that sump hole prison. Mr. Redman’s treatment is pervasive throughout the Nevada Prison System, and there are many examples to show this treatment is extensive. Revert back for a moment to the Report of Doctor Noel on Ely State Prison’s medical treatment of prisoners–that were left to literally rot to death, because the prison’s medical staff, and the warden, refused to give medication to prisoners.

Tim Redman was a young man when his crime was committed and received no help while in prison. Tim needed psychiatric help, not murdered by the hands of his keepers. His death was calculated and preventable. This is what Nevada has to look forward to today and in the future: “Murdered in Nevada’s prisons by Nevada Department of Corrections guards and administrators”.

Nevada’s Department of Correction, their employees and their director is beyond disgraceful–they are pathetic, and Nevada’s voters are permitting this behavior to continue. Aren’t we all so proud? OK, Nevadan’s, remember this: “Paybacks are a bitch”.

The picture we display of Mr. Redman, where the side of his face is torn off, was obtained by Ms. Mercedes Maharis, of the Spartacus Project of Nevada–from the district court in Ely, Nevada. This photo was labeled by Warden, E.K. McDaniel, of Ely State Prison: as “a trophy photograph”.

Way to go State of Nevada! Aren’t we the proud Nevada Citizens to have such great wardens and employees of the Department of Corrections? One could almost wonder how these men, Nevada’s correctional guards and wardens, treat their wives and families–couldn’t one? We know how they treat Nevada’s prisoners.

Does any citizen believe this type treatment towards prisoners is going to make them safer from the prisoners scheduled for release–when they are released from prison, with $20.00 in their pockets to start their lives over? Wake up Nevadan’s–this is your tax dollars going down into the pockets of the Department of Correction’s pay checks. You are not getting a good return on your dollars.

The harsh reality of life is the example you see everyday. Do you want this same treatment the prisoners receive from Nevada’s prisons to be brought home to your parents, grand parent and/or children, and possibly–YOU? Only you can stop this abuse, before it is at your door step, thanks to the department of corrections. You might want to think about this for a minute–it is just a heart beat away. It is time to get this Idiot Governor to wake up to the reality of what is being done to Nevada’s prisoners by way of “Legal Rehabilitation”. He needs to fire the entire department of correction’s administrators and many guards, and start over with decent human beings as “keepers of Nevada’s errant ones”. If not, do not expect things to get better and your tax dollars going to more deserving programs.

It is time for this abuse and foolishness to stop!

Donald Hinton. Sr., Director
Spartacus Project of Nevada

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Minutes, exhibits Meeting (Oct 13, 09) of the Board of Prison Commissioners

Here is the link to the minutes and the record of the Meeting of the Board of Prison Commissioners with the public, held on October 13, 2009.

Prisoner advocates yet again asked for oversight of the prison system, and they wondered why the public has not yet heard about the cooperation with the Vera Institute for oversight.

There was also discussion about the budget and the department being understaffed, the furloughs, and inmates possibly having to pay for a gym and a shop. There was nothing said about how inmates are going to pay, yet someone asked how her husband can parole, if there are no jobs for the inmates, and if there is no money to get a post-high-school education. The parole board would like to see inmates who have jobs and who can prove they have educated themselves….

These and other questions are usually not answered by the Prison Commissioners. But as it is the only public way to raise voices (and we all pay for it!), it is important for as many people who want crime prevented, human rights respected, and safety for those working in the prison system to speak up. If the budget is too little for so many prisoners, maybe the Prison Commission should consider preventing crime, paroling people faster, installing less long sentences and starting to educate and rehabilitate prisoners. Maybe they should listen more attentively to the people at these meetings speaking up, out of experience. Just a thought….

The next Meeting will be on January 12, 2010. You can prepare a short statement for the record, and read it out during the meeting (no longer than a few minutes per speaker).

Furlough exemptions granted, correctional officers, other prison staff excluded from mandate

Nov. 11, 2009
Copyright © Las Vegas Review-Journal

STATE SPENDING: Furlough exemptions granted
Correctional officers, other prison staff excluded from mandate

By ED VOGEL
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL CAPITAL BUREAU

CARSON CITY — To better ensure public safety, the state Board of Examiners voted unanimously Tuesday to exempt Department of Corrections employees from the one-day-a-month furloughs mandated for other state employees.

The board, chaired by Gov. Jim Gibbons, decided to use almost all remaining money in a $4 million furlough exemption fund to free correctional employees from a requirement to take an unpaid day off each month through June 30.

Board members also authorized state Corrections Director Howard Skolnik to charge about $800,000 in rent for the use of canteens and gyms in state prisons over the next year and a half to help pay for the furlough exemption in the 2010-11 fiscal year. The money would come out of canteen profits. Prisoners themselves would not pay these costs.

In addition, Skolnik can use $590,000 in federal funds to pay for the furlough exemptions. The funds are given to the state to cover costs of housing prisoners who are in the country illegally.

He also will try to rent out the now-closed Southern Nevada Correctional Center in Jean to raise $2.5 million.

If he can secure the rental funds, then Correctional Department employees will not be required to take furlough days in the fiscal year that begins July 1.

Furloughing correctional employees would not be safe for the prisons or the public, Skolnik said after the meeting.

“The staff recognizes if we take furloughs we increase the likelihood of their injury or death,” he said. “We are understaffed to start with by 15 percent.”

Furloughing employees would mean that at any one time prisons would have 20 percent fewer employees than full staffing, he added.

The Legislature earlier this year approved one-day-a-month furloughs for all state employees as a way to cut pay by 4.6 percent. Gibbons had proposed cutting salaries of all state employees by 6 percent. But legislators reasoned that it would fairer to give employees an unpaid day off a month.

Skolnik said he never was asked to testify before legislators on the effects of furloughs on public and private safety. He said furloughs would force him to close towers and end visitation at some prisons.

The Geo Group, a private prison company formerly known as Wackenhut Correctional Services, has discussed renting the Jean prison next year. The company operates 50 prisons in five countries.

“My guess is they are looking for tenants right now,” he said.

The California prison system needs to find space to house as many as 2,600 inmates and Skolnik said it might be interested in contracting with Geo to use the Jean prison.

He estimated that he would know within 30 days to 45 days whether the prison can be rented starting July 1.

Geo’s management of inmates has resulted in litigation this year.

In April, Geo was ordered by the federal appeals court in Texas to pay $42.5 million in punitive damages to the family of an inmate who was alleged to have been killed while guards looked on.

The company also was sued by the American Civil Liberties Union in June for cruel and unusual treatment of inmates in New Mexico. Guards kept seven inmates nude or semi-nude in a cold shower room in December 2008, according to the allegations.

Furlough exemptions granted, correctional officers, other prison staff excluded from mandate

Nov. 11, 2009
Copyright © Las Vegas Review-Journal

STATE SPENDING: Furlough exemptions granted
Correctional officers, other prison staff excluded from mandate

By ED VOGEL
LAS VEGAS REVIEW-JOURNAL CAPITAL BUREAU

CARSON CITY — To better ensure public safety, the state Board of Examiners voted unanimously Tuesday to exempt Department of Corrections employees from the one-day-a-month furloughs mandated for other state employees.

The board, chaired by Gov. Jim Gibbons, decided to use almost all remaining money in a $4 million furlough exemption fund to free correctional employees from a requirement to take an unpaid day off each month through June 30.

Board members also authorized state Corrections Director Howard Skolnik to charge about $800,000 in rent for the use of canteens and gyms in state prisons over the next year and a half to help pay for the furlough exemption in the 2010-11 fiscal year. The money would come out of canteen profits. Prisoners themselves would not pay these costs.

In addition, Skolnik can use $590,000 in federal funds to pay for the furlough exemptions. The funds are given to the state to cover costs of housing prisoners who are in the country illegally.

He also will try to rent out the now-closed Southern Nevada Correctional Center in Jean to raise $2.5 million.

If he can secure the rental funds, then Correctional Department employees will not be required to take furlough days in the fiscal year that begins July 1.

Furloughing correctional employees would not be safe for the prisons or the public, Skolnik said after the meeting.

“The staff recognizes if we take furloughs we increase the likelihood of their injury or death,” he said. “We are understaffed to start with by 15 percent.”

Furloughing employees would mean that at any one time prisons would have 20 percent fewer employees than full staffing, he added.

The Legislature earlier this year approved one-day-a-month furloughs for all state employees as a way to cut pay by 4.6 percent. Gibbons had proposed cutting salaries of all state employees by 6 percent. But legislators reasoned that it would fairer to give employees an unpaid day off a month.

Skolnik said he never was asked to testify before legislators on the effects of furloughs on public and private safety. He said furloughs would force him to close towers and end visitation at some prisons.

The Geo Group, a private prison company formerly known as Wackenhut Correctional Services, has discussed renting the Jean prison next year. The company operates 50 prisons in five countries.

“My guess is they are looking for tenants right now,” he said.

The California prison system needs to find space to house as many as 2,600 inmates and Skolnik said it might be interested in contracting with Geo to use the Jean prison.

He estimated that he would know within 30 days to 45 days whether the prison can be rented starting July 1.

Geo’s management of inmates has resulted in litigation this year.

In April, Geo was ordered by the federal appeals court in Texas to pay $42.5 million in punitive damages to the family of an inmate who was alleged to have been killed while guards looked on.

The company also was sued by the American Civil Liberties Union in June for cruel and unusual treatment of inmates in New Mexico. Guards kept seven inmates nude or semi-nude in a cold shower room in December 2008, according to the allegations.

Prison chief: seven staff members accused of felonies

Las Vegas Sun:

By Cy Ryan
Thursday, Nov. 12, 2009 | 3:31 p.m.

CARSON CITY – Inmates in the Nevada state prison system aren’t the only ones who have had brushes with the law.

There have been seven felony arrests of prison staff in recent months. One of the officers was charged with armed robbery and attempted assault on a law enforcement officer. That alleged offense occurred in Nye County.

Howard Skolnik, director of the state Department of Corrections, said he has a “serious problem” in Clark County where 29 correctional officers have been terminated. He said these were both probation and full-time officers.
“There’s 180,000 hours worth of training going out the window,” Skolnik told a Thursday meeting of the Advisory Commission on the Administration of Justice. “There are weaknesses in doing our background checks.”

The commission, at its first meeting since the Legislature, elected Assemblyman William Horne, D-Las Vegas, as chairman succeeding Chief Justice James Hardesty. Horne said one of the priorities of the commission this time will be victims’ rights.
The commission re-elected Attorney General Catherine Masto as chairwoman of the subcommittee on victims of crime, and Sen. David Parks, D-Las Vegas, as selected chairman of the subcommittee on Juvenile Justice.

Skolnik told the commission there was a “pattern” of inmates who are released from the prison in Susanville, Calif., ending up in Reno. He said some of those freed from prison in Los Angeles will travel to Las Vegas.

“I suspect they will have an impact on us,” he said.

But Bernard Curtis, chief of the state Division of Parole and Probation, said Nevada transports several hundred more out of state than Nevada receives from other states.
Skolnik told the commission that the prison system is about 300 inmates below what was budgeted.

He said he hopes to know within 90 days about plans to lease the closed-down Southern Nevada Correctional Center in Clark County to a firm called Geo for $2.5 million a year.

He said Geo wants to do some cosmetic and upgrades but he wants to make sure the state can take back the prison within 180 days if there is a major increase in the number of inmates.

##

Geo is a private prisons contractor. The Southern Nevada Correctional Center will be leased to a private prisons company. Is this the second private prison to open in Nevada?

Also note the 180,000 dollars to pay for training hours of 29 officers…

"Nevada Southern Detention Center: A Work in Progress"


What a waste! In this day and age, to build a 1072-person prison, in a state where water is scarce. To call it “environmentally-friendly” is utter arrogance. Private prisons earn money on keeping people locked up. This should not be something to earn money on. The accent in the whole of society should shift from locking up to correction, rehabilitation, forgiveness and education. This will create a lot of jobs, and these are much more constructive and rewarding than guarding people behind bars. This is the ´facility´ (to use a euphemism for prison) that is being built near Pahrump:

http://www.insidecca.com/inside-cca/sourthern-nevada-construction/

Although construction on Nevada Southern Detention Center is still in its early stages, the 120-acre parcel where the facility will stand is bustling with daily activity. Construction began in early May and is on schedule to be completed by the third quarter of 2010.

Chris Murphree, CCA director, Construction Management, oversees the Nevada Southern construction process. “In my role, I review the construction schedule with contractors, ensure that the scope we need is put in place and monitor the budget,” he explains.

Upon completion, Nevada Southern will be a 1,072-bed, medium-to maximum-security facility occupying 60 acres of the parcel where it’s situated.

“Nevada Southern will be outfitted with state-of-the-art security electronics and equipment, and its design will incorporate energy-saving features,” says Tim Debuse, CCA senior director, Project Development. Environmentally-friendly features include low-flow toilets, lavatories and showers, as well as energy-efficient light fixtures and reflective white roofs.

“This is a new design that we believe will enable us to manage the population more efficiently, and it will also offer great financial value to our customer, the U.S. Marshals Service,” says Bart Verhulst, CCA vice president, Federal and Local Customer Relations.

Together, the design and location of the facility are cost effective. “Instead of using multiple facilities with varying conditions, locations and proximities to the federal courts, it allows the customer to put their population in one facility where they can more effectively monitor offenders and efficiently move them to and from the courts in Las Vegas,” Verhulst explains.


More links:

Nevada Southern Detention Center Approved For CCA (04-09-2009)

CCA announces contract award for new detention center (2008)

Their press release about this mega-facility

Corrections Corporation of America in Nevada (2008)

Leap are the engineers of this ´project´.

Here a link to the critical watchers of the private prison complex:
http://www.privateci.org/nevada.htm

State Supreme Court tosses one suit following inmate’s death

Nolan Klein’s sister says fight far from over
By Geoff Dornan
(email)
Article in: Nevada Appeal

The Nevada Supreme Court has dismissed an appeal because the inmate who filed it died Sept. 20.

Nolan Klein died of a blood disorder after serving more than 20 years on a rape conviction. He maintained throughout the trial and incarceration he was innocent.

His death, however, did not end two federal court civil actions that U.S. Magistrate Robert McQuaid ordered to go forward last week. Nor did it end his appeal in the 9th Circuit Court charging ineffective assistance of counsel during his original trial.

The state court action was filed after a district court rejected Klein’s complaint the Parole Board illegally reinstated a sentence he had already been paroled from. The high court dismissed the petition as moot following Klein’s death.

The first federal court action still moving forward charges Klein’s First Amendment rights to religious exercise were violated and that he was improperly denied necessary medical treatment for the blood disorder which his sister, Tonya Brown, says caused his death.

The other federal court action still in process seeks damages charging the state failed to give him a parole hearing state law entitles him to for more than a year.

The 9th Circuit appeal is being challenged by the Nevada Attorney General’s office as moot now that Klein has died. But Brown said if they can show counsel was ineffective, it effectively clears her brother’s conviction off the books.

Finally, she said, she may ask Washoe District Court to throw out the conviction because files she received from Washoe County in June include evidence pointing to the possibility someone else was the rapist in the case. That evidence, Brown said, was withheld 21 years in violation of an order that the Washoe DA turn over all evidence in the case to the defense.

She said Tuesday that the Pardons Board has also been asked to include Klein in its November agenda for exoneration based on that evidence.

To all who care: another open letter

by Coyote

These few humble words go out to the “Local Boy 76” and to all who care to know what I have to say and to all who would like to join in these open chats. Please, try to stay as open-minded as you can, because I know that most people in society have been taught to believe that all of us behind these walls are the ”scum of the earth,” but I’m just here to try to put things into perspective, if I can.

And I know people really don’t know what goes on inside of these sunless cemeteries; they don’t know about the effects of long-term isolation; about sensory deprivation; and they don’t know about inmates assaulting officers, or about officers assaulting inmates; they don’t know about the code of honor that the convicts live by, or about the gang bang mentality of a lot of these prison guards; they don’t know about the barbaric nature of prison life; or about the racism, the stagnation, the deterioration, the gangsterism, the perversion and all of the crazy, sick and depressing things that take place in these graveyards, and how both the guards and inmates alike have to turn off their feelings and numb themselves daily just to be able to adapt and cope with the constant madness that goes on in this demented world of darkness; where there is no real love; no real hope; no incentive to try to do good; no programs; real medical care, treatment and no serious opportunities to reform; and where the quality of life is very low, causing things to only deteriorate and get worse and worse as time goes by.

So, for those who actually care, it is important to use sites like these to be able to air it all out, and hopefully to address some of these issues so that it can lead to positive results. Not only for prisoners, but for the communities that some of these prisoners will have to return to.

Well, in my previous engagement I tried to bring “Local Boy 76” (a former guard here at ESP) into the foray, to get him to really be honest and critical about things and to give him a chance to be a real hero and help us get to the root cause of why this place has the ability to turn even the guards into animals, and maybe to help inform the general public of the true nature of these prisons; and to examine the mentality of the prison guard and of the convict; but it seems like he’s more concerned with how many letters of commendation he’s received while working at the prison, which he tries to make it appear that these letters of commendation make him out to be such an outstanding prison guard!

Well, I was curious about these letters of commendation that the big shot caller, “King of Ely,” Warden McDaniel likes to pass out to his faithful followers, so I asked about seven of these officers if they’ve ever received any letters of commendation from the big-time circus leader, McDaniel and every officer that I asked, except for two of the new guards still in training, said, “Yes.”

And when I asked them what did they get these letters of commendation for, some of them just shrugged their shoulders and said, “For working overtime and stuff like that.” These letters of commendation don’t seem to be very important to them, more like a “doggie treat” and a pat on the head than anything else, I guess for sitting, fetching and rolling over for the “King of Ely,” himself.

So big deal “Local Boy 76,” you got some letters from the warden telling you how good of a suck ass you were. So what? That doesn’t make you a hero, Man, so take your cape off and sit your goofy ass down in a corner somewhere.

And so you think I’m a waste of life, huh? I’m glad you can be honest and say what you really feel about me. I think your statement gives people a glimpse into the average mentality of the prison guard. I know a lot of guards (not all) think that all of us in here are worthless “pieces of shits” and I’m glad you could help me make this point. But more so, I’m really glad that you don’t work here anymore! And I don’t tell myself lies, “L. B. 76;” I just don’t let people like you tell lies about me.

The truth is, I’ve had plenty of time to sit back and think about things, because believe it or not, I actually have a deep passion and joy for life that pushes me to really want to rise above all this degeneration, which drives me to just really sit back and reflect on my life, taking the time to slay my own personal dragons (which has been a real struggle!).

I’ve taken a good, hard look at my life, at life in general, at the system, and society, at love, relationships, family, everything, and believe me, I’m not disillusioned, by far. I don’t claim to know it all, but I’ve been able to come to know myself and come to know my own conclusions of things.

In my previous letter I told it like it was, everything I said was real. Yet you came back and tried to discredit me again, by saying that if I keep lying to myself that I’ll eventually believe the lies (even though you’ve failed to admit to lying yourself with your fictional story about my so-called assault of a female officer), but you provide no real argument to try to show how anything I said in my open letter was untrue, so you’re just blowing hot air dude, talking out the side of your neck, with your doggie treat letters, knowing damn well what I said was the truth, even though I was only just touching the surface.

You’re sitting out there in the free world, on the computer at midnight, arguing with ladies like “Little Missy” and “Six Wheels,” about a man in prison, and yet you have the self-centered audacity to call me a waste of life? Get real, Dude. Do something with your life, Man. You make these fake allegations of me being someone who caused problems all the time, failing to elaborate, trying to make me look bad. How do we know that your definition of causing problems isn’t just me putting articles on MTWT, telling it like it is?

But if you want to get real, we can sit here and discuss things, if you want? If you want to pretend that nothing is wrong here at ESP and that overall nothing of any significance is going on here in this death camp, but then if that’s true, then tell me why there have been about 60 officers in the last year who have either quit working here, or transferred to other prisons? And then tell me, in what other prisons in this country has a dropout rate of correctional officers as high, or higher than that?

And if nothing´s happening here, then why has the ACLU taken up a class-action lawsuit against ESP? Why have the Feds investigated certain doctors/medical staff that have worked here at this prison? Why did Lorraine Memory — a real hero — risk her career and more to write a 13 page declaration about the deaths, discrimination and the negligence that have all taken place here?

Why are there so many different lawsuits going against “The King of Ely” and his goons? Answer these questions, “Mr. Firm, Fair and Consistent.”

But no, I’ve never claimed to be an angel. I’ve gone through rough patches in my life, on a path of self-destruction. I’ve had my share of ups and downs, took my hits and kept moving. I still struggle to this day to keep my cool and to maintain my sanity in here. It has all been a process of self-discovery, of shedding my old skin, finding my essence and coming into my own. I can honestly say consciousness is a savior, and not to mention that I’ve had to be a fighter to even get to the point where I am now.

I see prisoners lose their minds in here, fall under, and break all the way down until they’ve lost their souls. I’ve seen the madness, I’ve lived this shit, and the cold part about it is, it takes a serious level of resistance to stay strong and persevere and to keep a shred of your humanity, but it’s that same resistance that gets us in trouble with the prison administration and that keeps us confined to a cell for 24 hours a day for months and years at a time. So it’s a Catch 22. There’s really no way to win. You either let this shit break you, or you don’t, but either way you lose. There’s no real victories.

You hear about people in the world that gamble away their whole life savings. You hear about drug addicts who throw their whole lives away trying to chase that next fix, but then you’ve got people like me who could have one bad day and say fuck it all. It’s been a struggle to overcome self-destruction, resist depression and come to grips with life all at the same time.

It’s hard to care, when no one cares about you.

And that’s the case for a lot of people in here. We had it bad before we came to prison, have it bad while in prison, and will still have it bad when we get out. Going from living in a cage, treated like dirt, and then thrown back into a world that makes no sense to you, as an ex-felon, with strikes against you, trying to learn how to live out there, it’s no wonder people are scared to leave prison. These are things that people have to understand. These are things that need to be addressed.

I get out of here in three years. I don’t want to get out and fail. I don’t ever want to come back to this shit, but nobody ever really wants to come back, but it happens, it’s a revolving door, it happens, people come back, and it‟s sad.
We’ve got to talk about all of these things. We’ve got to hear it from all sides. There’s not just one side to this story. Everybody has a side of the story to tell, the victim, the offender, the guards, society, everybody has their own side of the story, and we can’t forget that.

People who don’t know me can´t really judge me, ´cuz they haven´t been through what I’ve been through, they haven’t endured what I’ve endured, they haven’t seen how this darkness turns people into monsters. All they know is what they’ve seen on some prime time television drama, they don’t want to know the brutal realities of this horrific world called prison!

And until people start to look at things from all sides, there will never be any true understanding, and without true understanding there will never be any effective solutions to these problems, struggles and tragedies of society, poverty, crime and life.

For all those who care, I just want you to know that I’m here to help now, I’m here to raise awareness and to be a part of the solution. I’m here to pour out my soul, plant seeds of consciousness and to make a difference in my own way.
I’ve seen how this place, these prisons can turn a kind soul into a cold soul. I’ve seen what this madness does to a man. That’s one of the reasons I’m constantly trying to make more people aware of how important it is to build true, solid relationships between the people on the outside and the people in prison who actually strive to rise above these heartbreaking struggles.

We’ve been placed in prison and separated from our families, separated from meaningful relationships with the only people in the world who care about us and thrown into a zone of war, deceit, violence, negativity, sadism, corruption, gangsterism, racism, addiction and destruction, and then forced to learn how to sink or swim with the sharks and in the process of survival, become as heartless as the next man.

We’ve been thrown into these prisons, stripped of a sense of purpose, will and spirit and slowly we begin to lose a sense of connection with life beyond these walls and we become more and more tuned into this barbaric world of predation, and as we become more and more tuned into this madness called “prison life” we become less and less tuned in to ourselves as we learn to numb ourselves and brace ourselves and endure loneliness, torment and all kinds of suffering: and then released back into society and forced to learn how to live out there with the odds stacked against you. It’s sick!

And until people start caring about us, and about what goes on in these hellholes, things will only get worse. We’re not gonna be able to care enough about ourselves until people start caring about us, and that’s real!

We need people to get involved in our lives in real and meaningful ways, because we have been exiled from society and placed in an even more hopeless environment, and we start to deteriorate and become even more antisocial until we get to the point where we feel we have nothing to lose and that’s when we become reckless with our lives and we go all out, throwing it all down the toilet, and we are destroying ourselves and being destroyed while having to survive this profane existence. It’s inhumane. It’s madness.

For those who care, we need people to get involved in our struggles, in our lives, we need people to give us something meaningful to look forward to, we need love, support and guidance from our communities, our families, and from people who care. We need to have something real to connect to.

So “Local Boy 76,” you can wave around your doggie treat letters of commendation, and put your cape on and tell make-believe stories of heroic attempts to save damsels in distress all you want, if that’s what you want to do.

It doesn’t matter what you do, because it‟s really not going to stop me from doing what I do. But I‟m asking you one more time, to get involved in something meaningful here. Help us expose the injustices and the inhumanity that takes place in this graveyard called ESP. It´s up to you, Man. You can be a real hero. You can do something real. You can

start by telling people how this prison has the ability to turn even the guards into animals. It´s up to you, “Local Boy 76.”

And with that said, I‟m opening up the lines of communication for anyone who has anything significant to say or who want to get involved. Let‟s air it all out, let‟s put it all on the table, let‟s hear it from all sides. Let‟s talk about these things. If you really care, then here‟s your chance to get involved in something positive.

In truth and with sincerity,

Coyote
AKA: “Local Prisoner 77”

P.S.
For letters of encouragement you can write me at this address:
Coyote Sheff # 55671
PO Box 1989
Ely, NV 89301-1989

Article: Consultant begins review of parole ratings system

In: Nevada Appeal

By Geoff Dornan

Inmate activists put in their recommendations Tuesday for changes to the risk assessment system that ranks inmates for possible parole.

Consultant James Austin is beginning a review of the system that is designed to give parole board members some factual material to help decide who can safely be paroled in Nevada.

He said the system, designed in 2003 has allowed the state to have one of the nation’s higher parole grant rates but among the lowest rate of inmates who violate conditions or commit a new crime.

Tonya Brown charged that any inmate with a record of filing suits against the state or parole board over his incarceration is automatically denied as a threat to society. She said that happened to her brother.

She also charged that any inmate who refuses to admit guilt is denied parole. She cited her brother Nolan Klein, who spent more than 20 years in prison on a rape conviction he steadfastly maintained he never committed. He died in prison last month of liver failure.

David Smith of the Parole Board said he knows of a number of cases where parole was granted to inmates who never admitted guilt.

He said, however, taking responsibility for the crime is considered in scoring a sex offender, which he said is a completely different process than the ranking system for general inmates Austin is reviewing.

Smith said sex offenders normally have a very good score on the general rating system because they aren’t usually involved in other types of crime.

Brown asked Austin to make sure that when an inmate is put in solitary or lockup for his protection, it isn’t listed somehow as a disciplinary infraction, which could hurt his parole chances.

Flo Jones, who has two sons in the prison system, said the state should consider legislation that follows inmates who are released at the end of their sentence much like those placed on parole. She said those who expire their sentence are released with little or no support, which can land them quickly in situations where they are tempted to commit another crime.

“We don’t want to see these people come out with no parole tag and no supervision,” said fellow activist Michelle Ravell. “It concerns me that people are released with $21 and dropped at a bus station. I just don’t see how they can succeed.”

Austin said all the comments will be taken into consideration as he develops recommendations designed to improve the ranking system.

He said the goal is a better ranking system that improves guidance to the parole board on who should be paroled and who shouldn’t.

“It’s not economics,” he said rejecting the idea that reducing prison costs is the primary goal.

Austin said the risk assessment system considers a variety of factors. They include the inmate’s age at first conviction, prior probation or parole revocations, criminal history, drug and alcohol abuse, gang membership, in-prison education and employment history. It also takes into consideration the inmate’s age since older inmates are less likely to re-offend.

Overall, Austin said Nevada’s system is performing well.

“I’m tweaking it,” he said. “Refining it.”

He expects to complete his report in about three months.

URL: http://www.nevadaappeal.com/article/20091021/NEWS/910209966/1070&ParentProfile=1058

Article: Prisons chief claims abuse of sick leave

Article in Las Vegas Sun about the Prison Commissioners Meeting last 13th of October 2009:

Prisons chief claims abuse of sick leave
He says more guards call in on holiday weekends, leaving staffs short
By Cy Ryan

Friday, Oct. 16, 2009 | 2 a.m.

Carson City — The head of the state prison system is accusing correctional officers of abusing their sick leave, further complicating staffing problems at Nevada’s lockups.

State Prison System Director Howard Skolnik said guards are calling in sick in greater numbers on holiday weekends. State employees are to use sick leave only when they are ill.

Skolnik cited for the Prison Board the number of correctional officers who called in sick during recent holiday weekends:

• On the Memorial Day weekend officers took 369 hours of sick leave the day before holiday, 62 hours on Memorial Day and 800 hours the day after the holiday.

• Officers took 397 hours of sick time the day before Presidents Day, 63 sick hours on the holiday and 883 hours the day after.

• Officers took 126 hours of sick leave on July 3, 285 hours on July 4 and 424 hours on July 5.

Skolnik said the prison system is staffed at 85 percent and the extra absences make operating the prisons difficult.

“We have staff abuse and it’s not fair to all staff,” he told the board.

Skolnik said he is developing a regulation to address the absences and will present it at the next board meeting.

Some prison employees criticized the proposed regulations.

Daniel Shoup, an officer at the Northern Nevada Correctional Center, said there may be a problem with certain individuals misusing sick leave, but said they should be dealt with individually instead of the entire staff having to deal with new regulations. He called the regulation a “slap in the face” to the staff.

“You’re breaking down morale on the staff,” Shoup said. “It cannot get much lower.”

•••

Skolnik also told the Prison Board he has taken steps to cut expenses so prison correctional officers aren’t required to take monthly furloughs.

The 2009 Legislature ordered the one-day-a-month furloughs for state workers in an attempt to save money. The state Board of Examiners has given the prison an exception until November. To avoid furloughs the system must come up with another way to save $315,000 a month.

To cut costs, Skolnik said he has reduced overtime so far this fiscal year from $258,000 to $30,000. He has closed units 10 and 12 at the High Desert State Prison in Southern Nevada, and he has instituted a “rolling lockdown”— unannounced, periodic lockdowns to handle the shortage of officers — at another prison.

Skolnik said he is considering cancelling the extra 5 percent pay given to officers at prisons in Ely and Lovelock. Also being considered is charging rent to inmates for use of gyms.

Forcing officers to take a one-day furlough jeopardizes the safety of the staff and inmates, he said.

•••

Tonya Brown showed up at the meeting of the state Board of Prison Commissioners on Tuesday carrying a container with the ashes of her brother, Nolan Klein, a former state prison inmate who died Sept. 21.

Klein was convicted of a 1988 sexual assault and robbery in Sparks. But Brown has long maintained the innocence of her brother and is continuing a court battle to prove it.

She accused the prison system of denying the rights of inmates to practice their religion and she asked the prison board to release Klein’s personal property, which must be held for 40 days after death, according to Nevada law.

She joined with others who advocated creation of an oversight committee for every prison.

The board did not take any action.

URL: http://www.lasvegassun.com/news/2009/oct/16/prisons-chief-claims-abuse-sick-leave/#comments