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New from Solitary Watch: “Solitary 101″ PowerPoint Presentation

Our “Solitary 101″ PowerPoint, developed for the recent Midwest Coalition for Human Rights conference on Solitary Confinement and Human Rights, is now available online. The 60-slide PowerPoint includes sections on the history of solitary confinement, solitary as it is practiced in the United States today, and the growing movement against solitary confinement.

We encourage educators and advocates to use, share, and customize the presentation according to their needs (for non-commercial purposes only, with proper attribution to Solitary Watch). No advance permission is necessary, although we will appreciate hearing about how you are using the presentation, as well as any suggestions for improvement.

Solitary Watch’s ‘Solitary 101′ Powerpoint Presentation

Bonnie Kerness: Pioneer in the Struggle Against Solitary Confinement

November 8, 2012  by Solitary Watch Guest Author Lance Tapley

In 1986 Ojore Lutalo, a black revolutionary in the Trenton State Prison — now the New Jersey State Prison — wrote to Bonnie Kerness’s American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) office in Newark. His letter described the extreme isolation and other brutalities in the prison’s Management Control Unit, which he called a “prison within a prison.”

“I could not believe what he was telling me” about the MCU, she says. She reacted by becoming “this lunatic white lady” calling New Jersey corrections officials about Lutalo.

Kerness immediately went to work trying to stop MCU guards from harassing prisoners by waking them at 1 a.m. to make them strip in front of snarling dogs leaping for their genitals — to arbitrarily have them switch cells. She got this practice stopped.

Lutalo’s letter also began to open her eyes to the torture of solitary confinement, which in the mid-1980s was just starting to spread across the country as a mass penological practice. Coordinator of the AFSC’s national Prison Watch Project, Kerness had worked on prison issues since the mid-1970s. Now she became an anti-solitary-confinement activist. In 2012, she has been one longer and more consistently than, possibly, anyone else.

STOLEN LIVES: Killed By Law Enforcement (with downloadable pdf lists and photos)

submit a case of someone killed by law enforcement  HERE

 photos from 1990's

 Stolen Lives LIST (updated Oct 2012)

1999 Stolen Lives Project book (Part 1 and Part 2): descriptions, killed by law enforcement

Photos and descriptions added in 2006


People Killed by Law Enforcement

in U.S. 1990's to 2012 [incomplete list including many unidentified people killed by law enforcement]


ALABAMA
King Casby
Clever Craig
Bobby Dancy
Lorenzo Ingram, Sr.
Calvin Moore
Donald Nabors
Johnie Kamahi Warren
Carlos Williams
Walter Williams, Jr.


ALASKA
Randall Clevenger
Terrence L. Cloyd
Conn Wayne Duncan
Joseph Gannon
Jay Allen Johnson
Frederick Jones
Joseph Marchetti
Adrian Spindler
Shane Tasi
Cassel Williams


ARIZONA
Ernest “Marty” Atencio
Abdiel Burgueno, Jr.
Robert Clermont
Nicholas Contreraz
Lawrence Davies
Troy Edward Davis
Michael Federici
Keith Graff
Glen Alton Haring
Michael Johnson
J.R. Kvernes
Donald Lininger
John Loxas
Amber Maderos
Lilly Maderos
Lisa Maderos
Mario Albert Madrigal
Tashia Patton
Antonio Renteria
Jose Benito Saenz
Ernie Salas
Milton Salazar
William Sershon
Harold Shover, Jr.
Richard Snow
Janet Zuelzke

ARKANSAS
Angelo Clark
Billy Charles Hyde
Marvin Glenn Johnson
Jerry Kane
Joe Kane
Marcus Lovell
Othel June Striplin


CALIFORNIA
Derrick Abernathy
Joel Mathew Acevedo
Alberto Acosta Jr
Alexander Acosta
Deshawn Adams
Anthony Aguilar
Armando Aguilar
John Aguilera
Phillip Daniel Aguilar
Jihad Alim Akbar
Frank Filomeno Alejo
Julian Alexander
Jerriel Da'Shawn Allen
Eddie R. Alvarado
Valeria Alvarado
Edgar Alvarez
Emmanuel Alvarez
Isaias Alvarez
Emiliano Amaya
Susanne Antuna
Carlos Arevalo
Abdul Arian
Manuel Armenta
Gerardo Arvallo
Andres Avila
Marco Ernesto Avila
Julio Ayala
Ricardo Badillo
Ronald Ball
Evaristo Barajas
Leroy Barnes Jr
Anton Barrett Sr
Edgar Battad
Victor Becerril
Roderick Lee Bertolette
Benjamin Bittner
Jason Bitz
Antonio Bland
Alan Blueford Jr
Zaim Bojcic
Glen Boldware
Bryan Bombela
Ronald Boone
Aaron Borden
Stephen Bours
Cammerin Boyd
Ronald Brazier
Charles Breed
Tyler Brehm
Dyron Brewer
Kelvin Brooks
Andre Brown
Luther Brown Jr
Raheim Brown
Robert Brown
Deandre Brunston
Vinh Bui
Stephen Bullock
Karapet Bulmadzhyan
Christopher Arrion Burgess
Mark William Burke
Donnie Butler
Michael Byoune
Marcella Byrd
Arturo Cabrales
Richard Cabrales
Pedro Calderon
Homero Campos
Katrina Campos
Andrew Caprio
Alonso Cardenas
Rodolfo Cardenas
Rudy Cardenas
Daniel Carlon
James Louis Carrel
Jesse Carrizales
Jerome Carter
Fernando Casares
Carlos Casillas Fernandez
Ernesto Castaneda
Juan Castellanos
Carlos Castillo
Julian Celaya
Jeremiah Chass
Mohammad Usman Chaudhry
Javier Chavez
Yi Tzu Chen
Michael Cho
Christian Cobian
Avery Cody, Jr
Darrick Collins
Christopher Coronel
Zachary Champommier
Elaine Coleman
Peter Contreras
Zachary Cooke
Khiel Coppin
Joe Casto Corrales
Fernando Cortez
Martin F. Cotton II
Maurice Leroy Cox
David Cross
Caesar Cruz
Pedro Santa Cruz
Gabriel Cuevas-Muldenado
Jonathan Cuevas
Richard Dale
James Davis
Anita Delgado
Richard DeSantis
Antonio Diaz
Manuel Angel Diaz
Qazi Tiensinh Do
Tony Dominquez
Atilano Doporto
Reginald Doucert Jr
Oran Eugene Douglas III
Ernest Duenez, Jr
Kathleen Eklund
Jazmyne Eng
Alejandro Erazo
Noe Escobar Reyes
Rick Escobedo
Alfred Farrar
Durrell Feaster
Carlos Fernandez
Pedro Fernandez
Josh Ferreira
Joaquin Figuerora
Rod Fiorini
Jaime Flores
Jose Flores
Detrick Ford
Justin Ford
Eric Daniel Foster
Victoria Fox
Dnary Fowler
Eddie Franco
Mallard Frazier
John Fulchiero
Derrick Gaines
Annette Garcia
Daniel Garcia
Erik Garcia
Ezequiel Garcia
Israel Garcia
Julio Garcia
Mark Garcia
Nahun Garcia
Omar Garcia
Victor Garcia
Marvin Gardner
Dale Garrett
Robert Garth
Ralph Peter Gawor
Ryan George
Glennel Givens
Christopher Glass
Kenneth Gomez
Marco Gomez
Edgar Gonzalez
Jaime Gonzales
Julien Gonzalez
Xavier Gonzalez-Torres
Carol Anne Gotbaum
John Goudeaux
Lonnie Graham
Shurron Grant
Oscar Grant
Ilda Grasso
Mark Gregg
Cary James Grimé
Terry Grinner Jr
Lejoy Grissom
Howard Gross
Delfino Guerrero
Efrain Lara Gutierrez
Luis Guttierez
Troy Guido
Arturo Guzman
Demetre Omar Hall
Jess Hamilton
Donald Handy
Kenneth Harding Jr
Richey Harvey
Walter Heller
Vong Yang Her
Carlos Heredia Jr
Angel Farias Hernandez
Hector Hernandez
Steven Hernandez
Ramel Henderson
Robert Henning
Jesus Juan Hernandez-Cazares
Anastasio Hernandez Rojas
Justin Hertl
Charles Blair Hill
Stephen Clancy Hill
Stephen Paul Hirschfield
Craig Holden
Joshua Alva Hollander
Jonni Kiyoshi Honda
Jared Huey
Dale Hughes
Richard Hughes
Tyrone Hughes
Leopoldo Huizar
Wilford Hunton
Eloy Infante-Toscano
Christopher Jackson
Ezequiel Jacobo
Mario Jaramillo
Lee Jefferson
Dashonnon Jennings
Jorge Jimenez
Jose Jimenez
Frank Johnson
Derrick Jones
Eric Jones
David Jordan
Joseph Frank Kennedy
Allen Kephart
Douglas Kim
Susie Young Kim
Garland King
Gary King
Kenneth King
Garmik Kirakosian
Barry Martin Koeningsberg
Chyraphon Komvongsa
Rene LaCentra
Kamal Lal
Khalid Lanier
Robert LaRue
Jennifer LeBlanc
Albert Mike Leday Jr
Daniel Leon
Kwang Lee
Michael Lee
Oliver Lefiti
Samual Liaw
Eric Lewis Liebowitz
Reginald Andre Linthicum
Darrell Logan
Manuel Loggins
Roberto Lombana
Jessie Long
Ismael Lopez
Mariano Lopez Fernandez
Johnny Lozoya
Dexter Luckett
William Lusk
Andrew MacEarchern
Brian Macias
Pete Carlos Madrid
Carl Maggiorini, Jr.
Michael Maguire
Eric Mahoney
Eric Mandell
Dyron Mandell Brewer
Joshua Maravilla
Mitchell Marien
Frank Martinez
Gabriel Martinez
Gonzalo Martinez
Reynaldo Quintero Martinez
Samuel Martinez
Leonel Mateos
Clifford Paul Maxwell
Cedric May
Kendraey McCall
Shawn McCoy
Kendrec McDade
Ashley McDonald
Moses McDowell
Brent McKinney
David McMahon
Terrance Mearis
Daniel Mendoza
Cecil Menifield
Douglas Merjil
Peter Mestler
Mark Miles
Jose Millan
Philip Miller
Maurice Milligan
Lovelle Mixon
Francisco Mondragon-Saucedo
Jose Monteon Jr
Bryan Moore
Cheri Lyn Moore
Jesse Moore
Andrew Moppin
Fred Moraga
Oscar Morales
Christopher Moreno
Donovan Morris
Roketi Mosesue
Lazaro Muniz
Johnnie Nakao
Terry Wayne Nash
Tom Neville
Jacob Newmaker
Michael Nida
Julian Nolasco
Hai Nguyen
Juan Nunez
Jorge Ocon
Samuel Om
Carlos Ornelas
Isaac Ornelas
Arturo Ortega
Jesucita Ortega
Ruben Walton Ortega
Victor Ortega
Javier Ortiz
Martin Osuna-Aguilar
Albert Ray Owens
Roberto Padilla
Joel Perales
Jose Carlos Perez-Hernandez
Roman Gallius Pierson
Woodrow Player III
Richard Poccia
Albert Polencia
Brownie Polk
Christian Portillo
Alfred Pouliot
Mathew Powell
Pralith Pralourng
Alex Roman Quintanilla
William Quiros Jr
Arthur Jarvis Raleigh
Cesar Ramirez
James Ramirez
Manuel Ramirez
Ignacio Rangel Gonzalez
Gordon Rauch
DeOnte Rawlings
Andres Raya
Raul Castillo Razo
Pedro Renteria
Randy Reeves
Francisco Reyes
Jamie Reyes
Luciano Reyes
Earl Rhodes
Trevion Richard
Sammie Richardson
John Rico
Fermin Rincon
Carlos Rivera
Edwin Rivera
James Earl Rivera, Jr.
Lejon Robins
Lydia Rodriguez
Peter Rodriguez
Roberto Rodriguez
Steve Rodriguez
Victoria Roger-Vasselin
Hannah Rogers-Grippi
Sergio Rojas
Michael Robert Rosa
Mario Romero
Glenn Rose
Hernan Rubalcaba
Javier Joseph Rueda
Gustavus Rugley
Joshua Russell
Maria Ruvalcaba
Kim Saelio
Ventura Saenz
Sergio Salazar
Charles Salinas
Luis Salinas
Noel Salinas
Abraham Sanchez
Albert Sanchez
Arthur Sanchez
Luis Sanchez
Miguel Sanchez Jr
Rodney Sandberg
Michael Lewis Sanders
Julio Sandoval
Byron San Jose
Bradford Sarten
Guillermo Saucedo
Greg Saulsbury
Jack Schlesinger
Sergio Sedillo
David Sequioa
Oscar Sermeno
Juan Serna
Richard Sharp
Mohammed Shah
Maurice Shephard
Christopher Shull
Socrates Siqueros
Derrick Sites
Cesar Silva
Jose Soloro
Lawrence Smith
Marcus Smith
Ernesto Donald Smith
Naser Solis
Frank Soliz
Sinn Sor
Martin Soriano
Saul Soriano
Jaden Edward Soto
Idriss Stelley
OC Deputy Terry Stepp
Joshua Stephenson
Kami Stevens
Peter Stewart

SAT Nov 10th: Bay Area Families March Against Police Brutality & Racial Profiling

http://justice4alanblueford.org/

Alan Blueford, an 18-year-old African American student from Skyline High School, was  shot and  killed by Oakland Police Officer Miguel Masso on May 6, 2012. The Blueford family and JAB coalition strongly condemn the DA’s report and reject all attempts to cover up their son's murder.  We demand Masso be fired and prosecuted, and all racial profiling practices, including stop and frisk, be stopped immediately!

END RACIAL PROFILING! 

Justice 4 Alan Blueford Coalition       www.justice4alanblueford.org

The Blueford Family and the Justice 4 Alan Blueford Coalition wish to extend a special invitation to all families who have been victimized or lost a loved one to police brutality.  Please march together with the Bluefords and our communities to show our resistance and to say NO to this illegal and reprehensible violence from law enforcement. 

This march will occur on Saturday, November 10, at Noon, starting at 14th & Broadway, Oscar Grant Plaza,  in downtown Oakland (12th/14th St BART).   We will rally and march including a brief stop at the Oakland Police Department Headquarters, returning back to  Oscar Grant Plaza for a gathering (~ 1.5 mi).

Dept of Justice Sues State of Mississippi over "School to Prison" Pipeline


Alleges African-American and disabled students systematically targeted, rights violated

The U.S. Department of Justice on Thursday sued the state of Mississippi, the city of Meridien, the county and several state agencies, alleging they "help[ed] to operate a school to prison pipeline" that routinely violated the rights of African-American children and children with disabilities in the city of Meridien.

"As a result," the court filing states, "children in Meridien have been systematically incarcerated for allegedly committing minor offenses, including school disciplinary infractions, and are punished disproportionately without due process of law. The students most affected by this system are African-American children and children with disabilities."

In this September photo, Ella Townsend of Meridian, Miss., said she worries that if her son, Lionel, 13, gets in trouble at school again, he could be sent to prison and do time with dangerous adults. (Photo: Maggie Lee / Juvenile Justice Information Exchange)

Specific allegations include handcuffing, arresting and "incarcerat(ing) for days at a time without a probable cause hearing, regardless of the severity—or lack thereof— of the alleged offense or probation violation; not providing "meaningful representation" to the juveniles during the justice process; making the children "regularly wait more than 48 hours" for a probable cause hearing; and not advising children of their Miranda rights before the children admit to formal charges.

Students can be incarcerated for “dress code infractions such as wearing the wrong color socks or undershirt, or for having shirts untucked; tardies; flatulence in class; using vulgar language; yelling at teachers; and going to the bathroom or leaving the classroom without permission," the Associated Press reports.

Mentally Ill Man Dies, Injured and Alone, in a Tulsa Jail Cell

November 5, 2012 by  

photo of Elliot Earl Williams

In a horrific story out of Oklahoma, lawyers representing the estate of a prisoner who was found dead in the Tulsa Jail have sued the local sheriff’s office and the jail’s private health care provider. In a motion just filed in federal court, attorneys have asked a judge to release a video made of the man’s final two days, during which he allegedly languished in an isolation cell without food, water, or medical attention.

As reported by the Tulsa World:

Elliott Earl Williams, 37, was pronounced dead in his cell at 11:21 a.m. Oct. 27, 2011, after allegedly going days without food and water…

According to the motion seeking release of the video and related documents, Williams–who had exhibited signs of mental illness–tried to hurt himself and ran into a steel door head-first after being placed in a booking cell upon arrival at the jail Oct. 22.

When detention officers and medical personnel refused to treat him, claiming he was faking paralysis, he was left on the floor of the booking cell for 10 hours and soiled himself, the motion states.

He was then transferred by gurney to the jail’s medical unit, where he was dumped in a shower and left for two hours. He was then moved to a medical unit cell, where he was left naked on a steel bunk with only a blanket, the motion states.

Williams remained in the cell, naked, immobile and with only a blanket, for the next three days, according to the motion.

He last ate on the morning of Oct. 23 and last drank any water–”other than a few drops he managed to lick off his fingers”–on the morning of Oct. 24, according to documents cited in the motion.

The next morning, on Oct. 25, Williams was dragged on his blanket to a video-monitored cell, according to the motion. The remaining 51 hours of Williams’ life were videotaped.

 Included on that tape, according to the motion, are numerous instances in which detention officers opened Williams’ cell door and threw Styrofoam food containers onto the floor of the cell.

On Oct. 26, the day before his death, no one entered his cell, according to the motion.

“On one occasion, he attempted to open one of the food containers that had been thrown into his cell the previous day, but his efforts to do so failed,” the motion states. “In the process of trying to open the food container, he spilled the cup of water. The empty cup was still in the cell when Mr. Williams died.”

Vote YES on Prop 36: Amend the Three Strikes Law

America's prison problem (Great VIDEO)

Why does the US put so many people behind bars and what lies behind California's new push for leniency?

last Modified: 01 Nov 2012 14:40

By filmmakers Michael Montgomery and Monica Lam

The US locks up more people than any other country in the world, spending over $80billion each year to keep some two million prisoners behind bars. Over the past three decades, tough sentencing laws have contributed to a doubling of the country's prison population, with laws commonly known as 'three strikes and you're out' mandating life sentences for a wide range of crimes.

But a clear sign that Americans are rethinking crime and punishment is a voter's initiative on California's November ballot called Proposition 36 that seeks to reform the state's three-strikes law. Some 27 states have three-strikes laws patterned after California's version, which was one of the first to be enacted in the country.

Since it was passed in 1994, nearly 9,000 felons have been convicted in California under the law.

One of them is Norman Williams, a 49-year-old African-American man who was a crack addict living on the streets. He was convicted of burglarising an empty home and later stealing an armload of tools from an art studio. His third strike: filching a jack from a tow truck in Long Beach. His fate sealed under California's three-strikes law, Williams was sent to a maximum security prison [for a life sentence] alongside murderers, rapists and other violent criminals.

"I never wanted to do my whole life in prison. Nobody wants to be caged like that," Williams says.

Williams was lucky. After 13 years behind bars, his case was reviewed by a judge and he was released. He is one of about two dozen 'three strikers' who have won sentence reductions through the work of a Stanford University law clinic founded by Michael Romano. In Williams' case, the prosecutor actually agreed that the original sentence was too harsh. An idea emerged from Romano's work: Why not draft a ballot initiative to ensure that sentences like Williams' will not be repeated?

"When people originally passed the three-strikes law in 1994 the campaigns were about keeping serious and violent murderers, child molesters in prison for the rest of their lives," Romano says. "I think that's what people want and are kind of shocked to hear that people have been sentenced to life for petty theft."

Solitary in Iran Nearly Broke Me. Then I Went Inside America's Prisons

We throw thousands of men in the hole for the books they read, the company they keep, the beliefs they hold. Here's why.

 

IT'S BEEN SEVEN MONTHS since I've been inside a prison cell. Now I'm back, sort of. The experience is eerily like my dreams, where I am a prisoner in another man's cell. Like the cell I go back to in my sleep, this one is built for solitary confinement. I'm taking intermittent, heaving breaths, like I can't get enough air. This still happens to me from time to time, especially in tight spaces. At a little over 11 by 7 feet, this cell is smaller than any I've ever inhabited. You can't pace in it.

Like in my dreams, I case the space for the means of staying sane. Is there a TV to watch, a book to read, a round object to toss? The pathetic artifacts of this inmate's life remind me of objects that were once everything to me: a stack of books, a handmade chessboard, a few scattered pieces of artwork taped to the concrete, a family photo, large manila envelopes full of letters. I know that these things are his world.

"So when you're in Iran and in solitary confinement," asks my guide, Lieutenant Chris Acosta, "was it different?" His tone makes clear that he believes an Iranian prison to be a bad place.

He's right about that. After being apprehended on the Iran-Iraq border, Sarah Shourd, Josh Fattal, and I were held in Evin Prison's isolation ward for political prisoners. Sarah remained there for 13 months, Josh and I for 26 months. We were held incommunicado. We never knew when, or if, we would get out. We didn't go to trial for two years. When we did we had no way to speak to a lawyer and no means of contesting the charges against us, which included espionage. The alleged evidence the court held was "confidential."

What I want to tell Acosta is that no part of my experience—not the uncertainty of when I would be free again, not the tortured screams of other prisoners—was worse than the four months I spent in solitary confinement. What would he say if I told him I needed human contact so badly that I woke every morning hoping to be interrogated? Would he believe that I once yearned to be sat down in a padded, soundproof room, blindfolded, and questioned, just so I could talk to somebody?

I want to answer his question—of course my experience was different from those of the men at California's Pelican Bay State Prison—but I'm not sure how to do it. How do you compare, when the difference between one person's stability and another's insanity is found in tiny details? Do I point out that I had a mattress, and they have thin pieces of foam; that the concrete open-air cell I exercised in was twice the size of the "dog run" at Pelican Bay, which is about 16 by 25 feet; that I got 15 minutes of phone calls in 26 months, and they get none; that I couldn't write letters, but they can; that we could only talk to nearby prisoners in secret, but they can shout to each other without being punished; that unlike where I was imprisoned, whoever lives here has to shit at the front of his cell, in view of the guards?

"There was a window," I say. I don't quite know how to tell him what I mean by that answer. "Just having that light come in, seeing the light move across the cell, seeing what time of day it was—" Without those windows, I wouldn't have had the sound of ravens, the rare breezes, or the drops of rain that I let wash over my face some nights. My world would have been utterly restricted to my concrete box, to watching the miniature ocean waves I made by sloshing water back and forth in a bottle; to marveling at ants; to calculating the mean, median, and mode of the tick marks on the wall; to talking to myself without realizing it. For hours, days, I fixated on the patch of sunlight cast against my wall through those barred and grated windows. When, after five weeks, my knees buckled and I fell to the ground utterly broken, sobbing and rocking to the beat of my heart, it was the patch of sunlight that brought me back. Its slow creeping against the wall reminded me that the world did in fact turn and that time was something other than the stagnant pool my life was draining into.

When, after five weeks, my knees buckled and I fell to the ground utterly broken, sobbing and rocking to the beat of my heart, it was the patch of sunlight that brought me back.

Here, there are no windows.

 

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