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Saturday, November 15, 2014

A God Sent

A God Sent
   Man, I am so blessed. After 4 years of a brutal parole I have finally found something that will actually help me find permanent housing. This Home First program I am involved in is exactly what "290's" need in this state. I have gotten my ID after years of not having it and have gotten a Social Security card. Been staying here at Little Orchard Homeless Shelter ( It's called Home First now ) for 2 weeks now. It is so much better than the streets is where I was before this. Home First is also giving me a 3 month bus pass for free. I only have 10 more weeks of parole, but better late than never. Take care my friends. More later.

Don't forget to check out my new blog, Forced Homeless in San Jose, CA by Jessica's Law at:

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Monday, July 7, 2014

Consequences of CA's Realignment Initiative

From: Prison Legal News at:

Consequences of California’s Realignment Initiative
Consequences of California’s Realignment Initiative
by Christopher Petrella and Alex Friedmann
David Harvey, Distinguished Professor of Anthropology and Geography at the City University of New York, writes that “capitalism never resolves its problems; it simply rearranges them geographically.” The same can be said of California’s almost three-year-old Public Safety Realignment initiative – legislation designed to reduce the Golden State’s prison population, in part, by transferring thousands of prisoners from state facilities to county jails.
Sadly, Realignment has merely shifted the very forms of human suffering it was originally intended to relieve. This – the paradox of modern penal reform – adds a crucial dimension to discussions about who, why and how we punish offenders. Clearly, shifting a criminal justice crisis isn’t the same as solving one.
The Realignment Initiative
Since at least 2011, the State of California has been the epicenter of contemporary prison reform in the United States. The U.S. Bureau of Justice Statistics has noted that 70% of the total decrease in state prison populations from 2010 to 2011 was a direct result of California’s Public Safety Realignment initiative.
On May 23, 2011, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld an order by a three-judge federal court requiring the state to reduce its prison population to 137.5% of design capacity within two years to alleviate overcrowding that resulted in unconstitutional medical and mental health care. [See: PLN, June 2011, p.1]. California Governor Jerry Brown had called the court’s order “a blunt instrument that does not recognize the imperatives of public safety, nor the challenges of incarcerating criminals, many of whom are deeply disturbed.”
At the time, California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) facilities were operating around 180% of capacity. In response to the Supreme Court’s ruling, the state legislature and Governor Brown enacted two laws – AB 109 and AB 117 – designed to reduce the number of prisoners housed in state facilities. The initiative was implemented on October 1, 2011.
Realignment, as it’s commonly called, was intended to decrease California’s prison population by shifting “new non-violent, non-serious, and non-sexual offenders” from state prisons to county jails, while concurrently reforming the state’s parole system. Under the initiative, such prisoners released from local jails are placed on county-directed post-release community supervision instead of state parole. For their part, counties receive funding from the state to help with expanded jail and probation populations under Realignment.
The Public Policy Institute of California has estimated that Realignment was directly responsible for an 11,116-prisoner drop in the CDCR’s population during the first three months the initiative was in effect. To date the state’s prison system has shed around 25,000 prisoners; however, this has failed to satisfy the federal courts, falling roughly 9,600 prisoners short of the target population cap. [See: PLN, Aug. 2013, p.20].
In February 2014, following several postponements, the three-judge court over the Plata v. Brown litigation – the longstanding class-action suit that led to the Supreme Court ruling and ultimately to Realignment – gave California two more years to lower the CDCR’s population to 137.5% of design capacity. [See: PLN, June 2013, p.36].
While the overall downward trend in California’s prison population appears auspicious at first blush, it’s impossible to fully evaluate the Realignment initiative without considering the impact it has had on local jails.
As a result of Realignment, county jails now house prisoners sentenced to more than a year of incarceration – offenders who previously would have been sent to state prisons. Since the Realignment initiative was first implemented, California’s jail population has predictably grown; the average daily population in local jails has increased by at least 12% – roughly equivalent to 9,000 prisoners – following Realignment.
That is, around one-third of the total state prison population reduction effectively has been shifted to county facilities. Three of the 10 largest jail systems in California have experienced increases of more than 15% in their average daily populations: Fresno (29.6%), Los Angeles (17.5%) and Riverside (18.6%). Further, as a result of Realignment, hundreds of offenders are serving lengthy sentences in jails instead of state prisons.
A February 2013 survey conducted by the California State Sheriffs’ Association found that not only were 1,109 prisoners in county jails serving 5- to 10-year sentences, but 44 were serving terms of more than 10 years. San Diego County reported it had 145 prisoners serving between 5 and 10 years, while San Bernardino County said it had 105. The longest sentence reported was 43 years.
California’s jail population is likely to continue to expand as prisoners with longer sentences accumulate in county jails due to Realignment. Longer sentences translate to lengthier stays, which in turn result in larger jail populations; in the short term this has generated a number of early releases due to lack of available bed space.
California has spent billions of dollars and decades in federal court due to poor conditions in its state prisons, but the problems it has been desperately trying to ameliorate are now trickling down to local governments as county jails are forced to deal with thousands of additional prisoners.
Counties Face Lawsuits
Recently, California-based law firms advocating for prisoners’ rights have sued or threatened lawsuits against a number of counties due to Realignment. The suits allege that the egregious conditions that first led to legal intervention against the state’s prison system – overcrowding, poor medical and dental care, and inadequate mental health treatment – are now being repeated at the county level.
Jails that were originally designed for short-term stays are now being flooded with thousands of new prisoners, many of whom are serving longer sentences and need robust rehabilitative services that counties currently do not have the capacity to provide. Fresno, Riverside, Alameda and Monterey counties have already been sued.
In September 2013, the California State Auditor issued a warning about Realignment: “The State does not currently have access to reliable and meaningful data concerning the realignment. As a result, the impact of realignment cannot be fully evaluated at this time. Even so, initial data indicate that local jails may not have adequate capacity and services to handle the influx of inmates caused by realignment. Until enough time has passed to allow the effectiveness and efficiency of realignment to be evaluated, we will consider it a statewide high-risk issue.”
Monterey County Sheriff Scott Miller described Realignment as “a masterful stroke by Governor Brown to shift all the state’s prison problems to county jails.” The Monterey County jail has become so crowded that he considered buying triple-stack bunk beds to handle the deluge of prisoners. Then a nearby state prison donated extra triple bunks it had used when prison overcrowding was at its peak.
Ironically, filling CDCR facilities with such bunk beds, including in gyms and other areas not intended for housing prisoners, was one of the conditions that persuaded the three-judge federal court to order a reduction in the state’s prison population.
Nick Warner, legislative director of the California State Sheriffs’ Association, said counties are concerned they will be exposed to the same liabilities under Realignment that the state has spent billions of dollars trying to resolve.
“They had problems before, but realignment makes it worse because people are spending more time in jail,” said Don Specter, director of the Berkeley-based Prison Law Office, which represents state prisoners in the Plata litigation.
According to the Associated Press, a lawsuit filed by the Prison Law Office against Riverside County in March 2013 claims that “medical care is so poor in its jails that some of its 4,000 inmates go months without seeing a doctor. When they do, the lawsuit contends they receive only cursory medical exams, inadequate follow-up and are rarely referred to specialists even when outside care is clearly needed.”
For example, the class-action suit describes the case of a female prisoner held at the Riverside County Jail who had Stage IV colon cancer. “Nobody paid attention to her complaints that the cancer had returned,” said Prison Law Office attorney Sara Norman. The lawsuit also notes that prisoners at the county’s five jails “face cruel and inhumane deficits in medical and mental health care.”
The suit asks the U.S. District Court to order the county “to make a laundry list of fixes, such as increased staffing, timely access to care, reliable screening and emergency-response procedures, and timely and adequate medication, supplies and mental health treatment,” the Press-Enterprise reported.
The county responded by moving to dismiss the case, claiming that the prisoners who complained about inadequate health care had refused to take their medication and did not attend medical appointments. Further, the county argued that the plaintiffs “also provided inaccurate and incomplete information about their medical history and conditions” when they first arrived at the jail and during subsequent meetings with medical staff. The suit, which does not seek monetary damages, remains pending. See: Gray v. County of Riverside, U.S.D.C. (C.D. Cal.), Case No. 5:13-cv-00444-VAP-OP.
The Prison Law Office has also filed a lawsuit against Fresno County, alleging that prisoners at the county jail are routinely denied treatment for physical or mental illnesses and dental problems, and are vulnerable to attacks from other prisoners as a result of the jail’s poor design and inadequate staffing. According to CBS-Sacramento, Fresno County Sheriff Margaret Mims said she could not discuss the suit due to settlement discussions. See: Hall v. County of Fresno, U.S.D.C. (C.D. Cal.), Case No. 1:11-cv-02047-LJO-BAM.
“Since Fresno has radically cut back outpatient mental health services, the jail has become a costly dumping ground for people with mental illness who need care but cannot find it elsewhere,” noted Rachel Scherer, an attorney with Disability Rights California.
In November 2012, Legal Services for Prisoners with Children sued Alameda County Sheriff Gregory J. Ahern over his jail’s treatment of prisoners with disabilities, with both sides blaming the increase in disabled prisoners entering the jail since Realignment. “Unfortunately, you can’t just knock down a wall and make handicapped-accessible cells. It takes time,” said sheriff’s spokesman Sgt. J.D. Nelson. See: Legal Services for Prisoners with Children v. Ahern, Superior Court for the County of Alameda (CA), Case No. RG12656266.
The Monterey County Public Defender’s Office filed a lawsuit in May 2013 to remedy substandard healthcare at the county jail that it claimed was “broken in every way.” Calling the jail’s medical and mental health care “woefully inadequate,” the 72-page complaint includes a litany of allegations that, it says, combine with severe overcrowding to put the lives of both staff and prisoners at risk. The class-action suit alleges delays in medical treatment, deficient mental health care, inadequate suicide prevention measures, failure to provide reasonable accommodations for prisoners with disabilities and failure to protect prisoners from violence.
“It seems that our in-custody medical cases have been exacerbated due to realignment,” said Monterey County Sheriff Scott Miller. “We haven’t quantified it yet, but that seems to be the trend. It used to be when you were in county jail for six or eight months, you didn’t need the full range of medical services.”
“Monterey County has inadequate facilities and programs for inmates who use wheelchairs, are blind or have other disabilities, or are mentally ill,” stated attorney Michael Bien with the San Francisco law firm of Rosen, Bien, Galvan and Grunfeld, which also represents the plaintiffs in the lawsuit. The defendants include Monterey County, the sheriff’s office and California Forensic Medical Group, a company that provides medical and mental health services at the county jail. See: Hernandez v. County of Monterey, U.S.D.C. (N.D. Cal.), Case No. 5:13-cv-02354-PSG.
Although Los Angeles County – the most populous county in the state – has not yet been sued, local officials are worried that federal authorities could “soon intervene in the operation of Los Angeles County’s outdated and [overcrowded] jail system.” Consequently, the county is in the process of replacing its aging Men’s Central Jail with a new facility.
Violence Increases in Local Jails
The Associated Press reported in November 2013 that several counties had experienced a rise in prisoner violence due to increased jail populations under Realignment, based on data obtained from the ten largest county jail systems. “Some jails have seen violence dip, but the trend is toward more assaults since the law took effect on Oct. 1, 2011,” the AP stated.
The number of prisoner-on-prisoner assaults increased by 32% in the first year after Realignment compared with the previous year. Assaults on staff increased by 27%. The rise in violence outpaced the rate of growing jail populations, which rose 14% in 2012.
“You’re seeing a little more gang influence inside the jails and a little more violence,” stated San Bernardino County Sheriff John McMahon. “Certainly, the sophistication level of these inmates is different.”
This is despite the fact that more serious offenders, including those convicted of violent and sexual felony offenses, are sent to state prisons.
“The violence is just being transferred to the local facilities from the state system,” said Fresno County Assistant Sheriff Tom Gattie, whose jail experienced a 48% increase in prisoner-on-prisoner assaults in the year after Realignment went into effect.
Comparably, the CDCR reported a 15% drop in prisoner-on-prisoner assaults and a 24% reduction in prisoner-on-staff assaults following Realignment, as the overcrowded state prison population declined.
Sacramento County’s jail system had the greatest increase in assaults on staff, which rose 164% in spite of a fairly stable jail population.
In some cases, jails are unprepared for experienced prisoners serving longer sentences, including gang members. “We now have a hierarchy of inmates who have a prison culture,” stated Shasta County Sheriff Tom Bosenko.
“Jails were for 30-day stints, and the most you could do was a year. They weren’t built for people to exercise. They don’t have law libraries. They don’t have jobs,” said Don Specter with the Prison Law Office. “A lot of guys would rather go to prison just to have something to do.”
In June 2013, acknowledging that certain prisoners serving lengthy sentences did not belong in county jails, Governor Brown offered to return such offenders to the state prison system if counties would agree to take other state prisoners instead. The deal failed to go through, though, in part due to concerns that counties would send their worst, most expensive prisoners to CDCR facilities.
California Assemblyman Ken Cooley introduced legislation in February 2013 (AB 222) that would require prisoners who commit serious drug offenses – including those convicted of selling or transporting more than a kilo of cocaine, heroin or meth – to be sent to state prisons rather than local jails under Realignment.
“These county jail facilities were not set up for long-term incarceration,” he said. The bill died in January 2014.
Impact on Crime Rates
The Public Policy Institute of California (PPIC) reported in December 2013 that in addition to reducing the state’s prison population, Realignment may also be having an impact on crime rates.
From 2011 to 2012 – the first year after Realignment was implemented – the state’s violent crime rate increased by 3.4% while property crime rose by 7.6%. However, the report found “no evidence that realignment has had an effect on the most serious offenses, murder and rape.” Although “California’s overall increases in violent crime between 2011 and 2012 appear to be part of a broader upward trend also experienced in other states,” the study noted there was “robust evidence that realignment is related to increased property crime.”
In the latter regard, an analysis by the PPIC indicated that further reductions in the state’s prison population under Realignment could cause property crime – which includes burglary, larceny and auto theft – to increase by an additional 7 to 12%. The most significant impact was with respect to auto theft; the study estimated that due to more prisoners being released, Realignment was responsible for an additional 24,000 stolen vehicles per year.
“As realignment continues to unfold, California should consider safer, smarter, and more cost-effective approaches to corrections and crime prevention,” the report concluded.
“This is really interesting work by the PPIC,” said Matt Cate, director of the California State Association of Counties. “We’ve known for a long time that incarceration is very expensive, and for a lot of offenders it doesn’t effectively prevent criminal behavior in the long run. Under [Realignment], counties are using evidence-based programs that help individual offenders with basic housing needs, drug or alcohol treatment, and employment services. We know these programs help offenders, but often the individuals’ needs are great – especially with respect to behavioral health issues – and it takes time to develop local service capacity.”
Some critics have suggested using part of the money saved through Realignment to hire additional police officers to address increased crime rates. Of course, that would likely result in more arrests and thus more offenders returning to prison – offsetting the impact of the Realignment initiative vis-à-vis reducing the state’s prison population.
According to a December 23, 2013 press release from the CDCR, a study of all prisoners who served their full sentences and were released during the 12-month period after Realignment went into effect found slightly lower re-arrest rates and static re-conviction rates. The rate of prisoners returning to prison was significantly lower post-Realignment due to new policies for offenders who violate the conditions of their supervised release.
The CDCR noted that “prior to Realignment, more than 60,000 felon parole violators returned to state prison annually, with an average length of stay of 90 days. Beginning on October 1, 2011, most parole violations are now served in county jails. Also, offenders newly convicted of certain low-level offenses serve their time in county jail.”
A report by the Center on Juvenile and Criminal Justice, released in January 2014, concluded there was no clear connection between the state’s Realignment initiative and crime rates, as some counties experienced an increase in crime and others reported a decrease.
More Prison and Jail Beds
While Realignment has reduced California’s prison population, it has not led to the closure of state prisons. Although initially slated for closure in 2012, the California Rehabilitation Center in Norco, which houses over 2,800 prisoners, remained open under a proposal announced by Governor Brown in August 2013. The proposal also involved sending more prisoners to out-of-state privately-operated facilities, as well as housing them in in-state private prisons.
“[W]orking with all the other stakeholders, I’ve come up with a plan that, in the short term, meets the capacity – not by letting thousands of people out but by finding additional places for incarceration, both in-state and out-of-state,” Governor Brown stated.
However, Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg said the proposal was “a plan with no promise and no hope.” Indeed, instead of closing prisons as other states have done in recent years, the CDCR is opening new facilities – including a 1,722-bed prison hospital in Stockton. [See: PLN, March 2013, p.56]. Further, in early January 2014, the state indicated it planned to build three medium-security housing units to hold more than 2,300 prisoners.
California officials have also contracted with Corrections Corporation of America to lease the company’s 2,304-bed California City Correctional Center. Under the three-year, $28.5 million-a-year lease agreement announced in October 2013, the facility will be operated by former CCA staff who have become state employees after an abbreviated six-week training course.
“Upon completion of their training, they will have the same knowledge and skills as all newly hired CDCR correctional officers,” said CDCR spokeswoman Deborah Hoffman.
The hiring arrangement was acceptable to the state’s powerful prison guards’ union, the California Correctional Peace Officers Association (CCPOA), because the former CCA employees will join the union, which has been losing members in recent years. The CDCR has also contracted with private prison firm GEO Group to house prisoners in-state, including at the company’s McFarland Female Community Reentry Facility, Central Valley MCCF, Golden State MCCF and Desert View MCCF.
The extra bed space is needed because the state’s prison population continues to grow, stated Prison Law Office director Don Specter.
“It’s continuing to increase, so any building would be spending billions of dollars for only a temporary fix,” he said. “It also shows that realignment was only a temporary fix, as well.”
Additionally, the CDCR currently houses around 8,500 prisoners in out-of-state CCA-operated facilities in Arizona, Oklahoma and Mississippi. It was the governor’s threat to move up to 4,000 more prisoners to private prisons in other states that contributed to the federal court overseeing the Plata litigation to give the CDCR two more years to meet the court-ordered prison population reduction.
“You really can’t build your way out of the problem,” Specter observed.
Meanwhile, counties are seeking to expand their jails to accommodate the influx of prisoners under Realignment. Since 2012, state officials have given $1.2 billion to California counties for jail construction plus $500 million to renovate or expand existing facilities, which is expected to add almost 15,000 new jail beds statewide. The Realignment initiative provides funding to counties through vehicle license fees and a portion of the state’s sales tax.
“People commit crimes in the local community and they are now, to a greater degree, being supervised, being rehabilitated or being incarcerated locally. We’re transferring billions of dollars to achieve that goal,” Governor Brown stated. “We want the community that spawns the crime to handle the crime.”
A November 2013 Realignment Report Card by Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB) examined the Realignment plans of 13 “key” counties, with respect to “the balance between community-based programs that reduce imprisonment and plans to expand jail capacity or build new jail beds.”
The CURB report noted that “Shifting people from State prison to County jail is not a solution to our prison and budget crises. Realignment can most safely and effectively be implemented by using alternative sentencing and community-based services instead of expanding imprisonment and policing, both of which [are] socially and economically costly.”
However, only two of the 13 states examined in the report received a passing grade: Alameda and Santa Clara, which “have focused their resources on innovative strategies to reduce their jail population and providing programming and alternatives to incarceration.” All of the other counties intend to expand their jail capacity, including five – Kern, Riverside, San Mateo, Los Angeles and San Bernardino – that each plan to build two new jail facilities.
Those plans are not always successful, though. In December 2013, requests by Riverside and San Bernardino counties for $80 million in grants for new jail construction were denied by state officials. Riverside County already has almost 4,000 jail beds and is in the process of adding a 1,250-bed, $267 million expansion at one of its facilities, while San Bernardino County has around 6,000 jail beds.
On May 6, 2014, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors voted to proceed with plans to demolish the Men’s Central Jail and renovate a facility for female detainees at a cost of approximately $1.8 billion. The Men’s Central Jail currently holds around 19,000 prisoners; it will be replaced with a treatment facility for offenders with substance abuse and mental health problems. The Board authorized initial architectural plans for the new jail and an environmental impact report.
The $1.8 billion proposal to replace the Men’s Central Jail was the least costly of five plans submitted by a consultant hired by the county, Vanir Construction Management.
Still, according to Board Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, replacing the jail is the “most expensive infrastructure project in the history of the county, without a doubt, not even close.” He objected to the proposal, stating, “I don’t believe there was a serious effort made at considering alternatives” to building a new detention facility.
The ACLU lambasted the proposal because replacing the jail would leave bed space capacity unchanged – though overcrowding would be decreased while access to care for the mentally ill and prisoners with drug or alcohol addictions would increase. Esther Lim of the ACLU criticized the Board of Supervisors for hiring Vanir, which specializes in construction projects, including jail construction, as a consultant.
“It was not surprising that a construction company in its report proposed five options, all involving construction of new buildings,” she said.
Early Releases Criticized
Technically, prisoners are not released early under Realignment; rather, those that are eligible serve their sentences in county jails rather than state prisons. Governor Brown emphasized that no prisoners would be released early, and the CDCR states on its website there will be no early releases for state prisoners.
While it may be correct that offenders are not released early from state prisons, that isn’t true when it comes to former prisoners who violate the terms of their supervised release and are subsequently jailed.
As part of Realignment, most prisoners are no longer released on parole under state supervision but instead are placed on community supervision under county probation officials. When they violate their supervision they can be sent to jail for up to six months. However, due to overcrowding caused by Realignment, community supervision violators typically serve only a small amount of their jail sanction – sometimes just a few days.
According to a survey of county jails by the Board of State and Community Corrections, releases due to lack of bed space increased by 21% over the first nine months of Realignment. The most recent quarterly jail survey, from July to September 2013, reported 6,189 early releases statewide.
In February 2013, Assembly members Ken Cooley and Susan Eggman introduced a bill, AB 601, that would have required offenders who violate their community supervision to be sent to prison for up to a year. The legislation failed to pass, in part because it would have led to an increase in the number of state prisoners at a time when California is trying to further reduce its prison population to comply with the court order in the Plata litigation.
“Any attempts to change Realignment that would send more offenders to state prison must be reconciled with the federal court order to reduce prison crowding,” stated CDCR spokesperson Jeffrey Callison.
High-profile crimes committed by some released prisoners have led to public outrage. For example, in June 2013, a few months after Dustin James Kinnear, 26, was released from prison and placed on community supervision under the Realignment initiative, he stabbed to death a 23-year-old woman on the Hollywood Walk of Fame because she refused to give him a dollar. Critics argued that Kinnear, who has mental health problems, would have been incarcerated at the time were it not for Realignment.
Previously, on December 2, 2012, former prisoner Ka Pasasouk, who was on community supervision under Realignment, shot and killed four people in Los Angeles. Prosecutors are seeking the death penalty while relatives of the victims have filed suit against the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office and Probation Department, claiming county officials had failed to properly supervise Pasasouk after he was released from prison.
“This is an experiment with people’s lives,” stated Michael Rushford, president of the Criminal Justice Legal Foundation, referring to Realignment.
Recent Developments
The Associated Press reported in March 2014 that some counties were undermining the Realignment initiative by increasing the number of offenders sent to state prisons due to charging decisions by local prosecutors. In fiscal year 2013-2014, 5,500 prisoners charged with and convicted of second felonies were sent to the state prison system – a 33% increase compared with the previous fiscal year.
“We’re not quite sure what’s behind the trend,” said Aaron Edwards, with California’s Legislative Analyst’s Office. “When you see such a drastic increase year-over-year ... that kind of suggests that there’s been some kind of behavior change at the county level, in terms of how they are charging, whether they are choosing to charge individuals as second-strikers or not.”
Apparently, local prosecutors are exercising their discretion to file more serious charges against defendants, such as felonies rather than misdemeanors, in order to secure convictions that will send them to prison rather than jail under Realignment – thereby reducing the burden on county jails.
The California District Attorneys Association denied that prosecutors had altered their charging practices, but San Joaquin Public Defender Peter Fox contended there has been “some attitudinal backlash against realignment” by district attorneys and judges.
As of April 30, 2014, California’s prison population was around 134,800 – 2,243 more than a year earlier. This poses a problem in terms of meeting the federal court-ordered prison population cap by February 2016.
Counties continue to seek additional money from the state for their own increasing jail populations, including funds for jail construction and expansion as well as for rehabilitative and treatment programs.
Stanislaus County Sheriff Adam Christianson noted that “if you want to see success in realignment, then the counties and local governments need help with the resources to do that.”
Lobbyists representing Los Angeles County have asked state officials for assistance in funding the county’s $1.8 billion overhaul of its jail system.
“We have received approximately thirty percent of the realigned population – 6,000 county jail inmates that have been sentenced under realignment,” stated lobbyist Alan Fernandes. “But we’ve received about five percent of the available funding for jail construction.”
Some lawmakers, however, have criticized the practice of pouring more money into building more jails. For example, state Senator Loni Hancock observed that the solution to California’s prison overcrowding problem is not to “replicate our prison system county jail-by-county jail.”
In May 2014, a state Senate budget subcommittee opposed a proposal to grant an additional $500 million to counties for jail construction and expansion, instead voting to provide such funds for construction projects and programs “designed to provide rehabilitative services and housing for individuals convicted of crimes.” This would potentially include treatment programs, transitional housing, and substance abuse and mental health care facilities.
“[The] vote was a small but important step in using realignment as an opportunity to find and fund real alternatives to the current disaster of mass incarceration,” said Diana Zuñiga, with Californians United for a Responsible Budget.
Meanwhile, counties will likely continue to face lawsuits and other difficulties as they grapple with the fallout of the state’s Realignment initiative and attempt to cope with their overcrowded jails – which they will have to bring into compliance with standards for holding long-term prisoners that such facilities were never designed to accommodate. Realignment and its attendant impact on local jails further corroborate the notion that correctional overcrowding is a consequence – not a cause – of California’s ongoing practice of using incarceration as a catchall solution for complex socio-economic, political and cultural challenges facing the state and its citizens.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Monday, June 30, 2014

CA to Purge Sex Offender Registry

    CA is finally going to do something about how many Californians are on this state's sex offender registry. Check out Sex Offenders Issues to learn more

Friday, June 27, 2014

Freed Once Again !

    I was just released on yet another parole violation. Served 2 months. Good to be back. The State of California is still forcing me to be homeless. The nightmare never ends. More later. I got to figure out where I'm going to sleep tonight. Take care my friends !!!

Monday, February 10, 2014

Interment Camps Again ?

Supreme Court justice predicts internment camps in America’s future

"You are kidding yourself if you think the same thing will not happen again," said Justice Scalia.

Americans exit train cars and are "evacuated" into the fenced compounds that would be their new homes.  (Source: Dorthea Lange, 1944)
Americans exit train cars and are “evacuated” into the fenced compounds that would be their new homes. (Source: Dorthea Lange, 1944)
A distinguished member of the U.S. Supreme Court gave a sobering reminder of how history can and likely will repeat itself when the conditions are right.  Justice Antonin Scalia said that he would not be surprised if Americans were once again imprisoned in concentration camps by the federal government.
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (Source: H. Darr Beiser / USA Today)
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia (Source: H. Darr Beiser / USA Today)
The 77-year-old justice was answering questions after giving a classroom lecture to a group of law students in Honolulu.  One student asked about the deplorable 1944 Korematsu v. United States decision, in which the U.S. Supreme Court verified the constitutionality of the president ordering the mass-imprisonment of Americans in the name of national security.
Scalia cited the wartime “panic” as a reason Americans accepted President Franklin Roosevelt’s hostile treatment of citizens of his own country.
As the Associated Press reported:
“Well of course Korematsu was wrong. And I think we have repudiated in a later case. But you are kidding yourself if you think the same thing will not happen again,” Scalia told students and faculty during a lunchtime Q-and-A session.
Scalia cited a Latin expression meaning, “In times of war, the laws fall silent.”
“That’s what was going on — the panic about the war and the invasion of the Pacific and whatnot. That’s what happens. It was wrong, but I would not be surprised to see it happen again, in time of war. It’s no justification, but it is the reality,” he said.
The Korematsu case stemmed from President Roosevelt’s Executive Order 9066, which divided the country into “Military Areas” and in a real sense instituted martial law in the United States.  Control of civilian territory was granted to to military commanders and the Secretary of War, who were authorized to take any freedom-restricting actions they deemed necessary to secure the homeland.
A U.S. Soldier stands ready to shoot any who would try to escape FDR's concentration camps.  (Tule Lake, California)
A U.S. Soldier stands ready to shoot any who would try to escape FDR’s concentration camps. (Tule Lake, California)
In enactment of the order, several segments of the U.S. population were labeled as “enemies” or “enemy aliens.”  They were:  (1) people suspected of “subversive activities” (which included speaking against the war); (2) Japanese aliens; (3) American-born Japanese; (4) German aliens; and (5) Italian aliens.
These so-called enemy groups were ordered to report to military prison camps for an indefinite sentence — a process that was dubiously referred to as “relocation” or “evacuation.”  The reality was that the targeted individuals were stripped from their homes, their lives, their jobs, their families, and their freedom and placed into cages surrounded by barbed wire and U.S. soldiers who were prepared to shoot them.
Fred Korematsu was born in the United States, and as such was considered a naturally-born U.S. citizen who had two parents who were from Japan.  Even though his loyalty to the USA was not questioned, the President had labeled him (and 120,000 others) as an enemy.  Korematsu, who resided in Military Area No. 1 (California), was one of the few who did not report to the prison camp to which he was assigned.  The government’s response was to have Korematsu hunted down, arrested and convicted of disobeying military authorities.
“It was wrong… But you are kidding yourself if you think the same thing will not happen again.”- Justice Scalia
The Supreme Court upheld his conviction, ruling that the 5th Amendment guarantee of “due process” did not apply, and that his conviction was allowed to stand.  The needs of homeland security were considered to be preeminent over individual rights.  To date, the decision has never been explicitly overturned.
Scalia’s statements would suggest that its legal precedence matters less than many would think.  The Latin phrase he quoted, Inter arma enim silent leges, dates back over 2,000 years and has been proven true in every culture since.   During times of crisis — especially during great wars — people are naturally prone to embrace government efforts to empower itself in the name of security and order.  Americans have proven this maxim to be true many times over, notably with the mass roundup of political prisoners during the American Civil War, World War 1, and World War 2.
“The reality,” as Scalia pointed out, is that the next time Americans feel great fear of a foreign threat or a terrorist, they will not only accept the destruction of civil rights — they will demand it.

Thursday, February 6, 2014

SNY Gangs Parts 1

   California calls It's Protective Custody Yards, Sensitive Needs Yards (SNY). I went P.C. in 2008 after spending about 15 years on The Main Line (General Population). What shocked me was the presence of PC Gangs. Only in California. What kind of an idiot goes PC and then joins a gang? Here's a video on PC Gangs in the California prison system:

Monday, February 3, 2014

Free at Last !

   Free at Last ! Well, not exactly free, but at least I'm out of jail again. This makes it my 10th parole violation in the last 22 months. For RSO's on parole in California it's a revolving door. At $116 a day to incarcerate someone in Santa Clara Co. the burden to taxpayers is staggering. I've probably have spent 450 days in co. jail due to parole violations since April of 2012. That comes out to over $50,000 of totally wasted taxpayer monies. Due to Jessica's Law here in CA successful parole is impossible. It still amazes me that no one in the media is reporting on the absolute waste of Jessica's Law and how many millions are spent implicating this insane law. I'm forced to be homeless due to bullshit residential restrictions. Got to run and figure out where I'm going to sleep tonight. Take care my friends. I'm back in the fight !

Friday, December 13, 2013

How to Survive in Prison as an Innocent Man Convicted of a Sex Offense (Revised 2013)

From: Issues in Child Abuse Accusations 1997

I wrote the following way back in the 1997 while I was doing time in Oregon. A rather easy prison system to do time in. I was young, tough, and adamant about my innocence. When I did time in the notorious California prison system starting in 2001 I received a huge wake up call. These are real prisons here. I had never seen so much violence in my life. Every time a riot kicked off I was somehow right in the middle of it. I still walked the mainline, but was always concerned about my safety. If my status as a "convicted sex offender" would of came out I could of been killed. Would not have mattered to "my bros" I was innocent. They would of tried to kill me. In 2006, Jessica's Law was passed by CA voters and I went on the run again. I've lived "underground" off and on for the past 25 years trying to escape The Sex Crime Witch Hunters. I always knew I would be recaptured. I always am. Only this time I decided that when I was arrested I was going to put myself In Protective Custody (PC). That's exactly what I did in 2008. Should of done it years ago! What the hell did I have to prove. If your convicted of a sex crime, even if your innocent - go PC ! It could save your life. Another view of mine that has changed is my attitude on taking Psych. Meds in prison. If you're going nuts in there get on medication. The following is an old article of mine, but still has some useful information.

Psychology Editor's Note: This article includes some strong views that may be surprising and challenging.  We have chosen to publish it because we believe prisoners have a right to seek interaction with those outside the prison walls.  We also believe there are many innocent men and women in prison who are wrongly convicted of sex offenses.  They too, have a right to stand up for their innocence.  One of the more poignant episodes in our lives was in June, 1985, when Lois Bentz, accused with her husband, Robert, of sexually abusing children in Jordan, Minnesota, was told by her attorney about a very attractive plea bargain.  With tears running down her face, Lois said to us, "I did not do it and I will not say I did something I didn't do."  The Bentzes rejected the plea bargain and went to trial.  The Bentzes were acquitted and the Jordan case is often regarded as the beginning of the "backlash" that has led to increased awareness of false accusations and the reversals of several highly publicized convictions in recent years.
Still there are many many lesser known cases where Large numbers of innocent people remain behind bars.  We receive letters every week from men and women in prison who assert their innocence.  For years we have agonized about what we can do in response.  The most we have been able to do is to try to stay in contact and provide information to assist those working on appeals.  Based upon our experience with Ms. Bentz, we have also tried to say what Mr. Anderson repeats several times in this article — maintain your own personal integrity.  Mr. Anderson tells us how he has done this for himself.  It may not be a way that works for everyone, but this is what he tells us works for him.  We believe Mr. Anderson is very likely to walk out of prison when his time is served and be standing up straight and tall.

Your only exposure to what prison is like has been through movies that sensationalize the violence, drug use, and sex in the big house.  The prison bus you're on rounds a lonely highway corner and you get your first glimpse of what is to be your home for the next 10-odd years — a steel, razor wire, and concrete house of pain.  You wonder how you'll ever make it out of this hate factory alive.  You imagine your first day being gang-raped by six huge, tattooed lifers, by the end of the week you're being sold up and down the tier for cigarettes, and within a month, you're found dead in your cell with a twelve-inch "shank" protruding from your chest.  Not only are you the new fish in the cell block, but you have been convicted of a sex crime, and you've heard how convicted sex criminals are abused in the joint.

You're one of the thousands of innocent men wrongly convicted of sex crimes in the U.S. every year.  Won't it matter to your fellow prisoners that you are not a sex criminal and are completely innocent?  Not in the least.  It is possible, though, to make it through prison even though you were convicted of a skin beef.  You can not only live through the prison experience, you can claim some degree of victory at the end of your unjust prison term.  Life will be neither easy nor fun for the innocent man convicted of a sex crime and sent to prison.  But, surviving prison is not impossible.

I have spent over seven years in maximum-, medium-, and minimum security prisons after being wrongly convicted of first degree rape — the result of my having been falsely accused of date rape by a mentally deranged woman with a history of falsely accusing men of sex crimes.  I am writing this from the Oregon State Correctional Institution.  Although life has not been easy for me in prison, I have managed to keep my self-respect, my dignity, and my integrity.  I have spent months in solitary confinement for defending myself when necessary. I have allowed no prisoner, no prison guard, and no member of the parole board to disrespect me due to my wrongful conviction.  I have consistently maintained my innocence, even when doing so has added years to my prison term.

I earned a college degree behind bars, and have even escaped from prison once.  To help other innocent prisoners, I founded the Society Against False Accusations of Rape (SAFAR), and for five years have published the underground prison publication, The SAFAR Newsletter.  Currently, I'm working on my book, Falling on the Deaf Ear: False Accusations of Rape, Child Abuse Hoaxes, Innocent People in Prison and How to End the Sex Crime Witchhunt.  I know first-hand what it is to be an innocent man in prison, wrongly convicted of a sex crime, and I know how to survive the prison experience.

Now that you have been falsely accused of rape or child abuse, been convicted in record time, lost all your assets along with your reputation, and been sentenced to 10 years in prison by a judge who couldn't care less that you are innocent, you would think your troubles are over.  Think again.  You not only have to make it out of the prison with your life and sanity, but with your self-respect, honor, and integrity intact.  Let's face it.  After being wrongly convicted of a sex crime, your sanity, self-respect, honor, and integrity is all you have left.  Prison will not break you if you are a man — or learn to become a man, even though the main goal of prison officials is to sap the soul from men, and spit out castrated, submissive males.  With all the odds against you, it is even possible to walk out of prison a better man with your head held high.  Again, it will be neither fun nor easy, but what battle ever is easy?  You can either walk out of prison with your manhood intact knowing you beat the corrupt prison industry or you can crawl out on your belly as a hated sex offender.

Outside Contacts
Don't fool yourself that the community will be outraged that you were convicted and sent to prison for a crime you didn't commit or that may have never even occurred.  You are now a convicted sex offender and your innocence means nothing.  You're the lowest of the low, in and out of prison.  There will be no mass protests at the prison gates demanding your release.

Most people believe the propaganda of the sex crime witch hunters and probably feel you should die in prison.  Most of your friends will abandon you and even some members of your family will turn their backs on you.  Only your very best friends and your immediate family will stick by your side at first and most of them will fall by the wayside in the coming years as you rot in prison.

One of the most important things for the innocent man in prison is to maintain contact with at least one person on the outside.  This person can help you try to prove your innocence and keep you current on what's happening outside the prison walls.  If you can maintain contact with at least one free worlder to help you, you'll be doing a lot better than some prisoners.  Many prisoners lose their friends and their own families and are isolated in prison with no contact with the outside world.  You are going to be walking into prison alone and will be alone while you do your time.  You need at least one ally in the outside to help free yourself from the nightmare of being thrown in a cage and given the scarlet letter of a convicted sex offender for a crime you did not commit.

Prison violence
For the most part, prisons and correctional institutions are not the hell holes of years past.  The "get tough on crime" craze has mutated into "get tough on prisoners."  Although prisons are not for continued and endless punishment, politicians don't want to educate or rehabilitate prisoners.  Prisoners are to be warehoused like the commodities they've become.  College courses and vocational training in prison are a thing of the past.  With all the new prisons being built in the U.S., doing time has become quite sterile — even safe — because all the new prisons are so controlled and high-tech that prisoners now spend most of their time in their cells.

The idea that prisoners really run the joint is a myth.  Some of the older prisons are still dangerous, but these are slowly being phased out.  It used to be that only the worst, most dangerous, and most hardened criminal was sent to prison.  It was no wonder that penitentiaries were dangerous.  But these days, with so many first-time offenders doing mandatory prison terms and so many people being sent to prison, the nation's lock-ups have become diluted with nonviolent prisoners.  Today most prisons can even be considered safe.

In all my years behind bars, I've never seen a murder, a stabbing, or a rape.  I believe some prisoners try to brag how tough prison is to make themselves look tough.  They romanticize their prison experience by telling their friends and family how brutal prison was and how they had to fight for their lives every day.  Prison, however, may be harder for the innocent man convicted of a sex crime because of the scorn.  In the old days, a convicted sex offender — innocent or guilty — was sure to get physically attacked.  Today, that is not the case.  A man wrongly convicted of a sex crime can make it out of prison unharmed if he stays on his toes and keeps alert.

What about all the violence you read about what goes on in prison?  Of course, violence does happen in U.S. penitentiaries, but with over 1.6 million Americans locked up these days, the chance of being one of the few hundred inmates who are killed or seriously injured is slim.

Standing Up for Yourself
Because you were convicted of a sex crime, you will not be winning any popularity contests with your fellow prisoners.  At first, the other prisoners may mark you to be victimized and harassed.  If you don't stand tall and fight back, you'll be victimized your entire prison term.  You must stand up for yourself when you are tested by some idiot who thinks you're a rape-o, "Chester," "tree jumper," or "freak."  In 1989, I was compelled to beat a man who attacked me with a folding chair.  Besides a little blood, neither one of us was hurt badly.  I did accidentally break a guard's hand in the melee and I've also had to fight a couple of other morons who disrespected me, but I haven't had any trouble in years.  It is well worth it to spend a few months in solitary confinement for defending yourself when the option is being harassed continually in general population.  Another option is hiding for years in Protective Custody (PC), totally separated from the rest of the prison, and locked in a cell for 24-hours a day.  But only the weakest prisoners go PC, and I don't recommend it.

For the most part, even for the wrongly convicted sex offender, if you don't owe debts from gambling or drugs, and if you stay away from the homosexuals, keep your head down, don't bother anyone, and don't act like a wimp and whine about your wrongful conviction, you won't have to worry about prison violence.  There is very little chance that you will be killed or even stabbed.  But, if something does happen and you need to defend your good name, be a man and do it.  In prison, your good name is all you have.  If trouble comes your way in prison, you have to deal with it on the spot.  Where are you going to run?  You're in a cage.

Inmates and Convicts
During my years in prison I have found that there are two types of prisoners — inmates and convicts.  Inmates will not fight if their lives depend on it and they will kiss any ass that comes their way.  Inmates are the type of prisoners who go on national TV to praise prison officials and prison programs for straightening out their miserable lives.  The inmate has no loyalty to anything or anyone except himself.  Inmates will do anything to please their captors and cheerfully inform and rat on other prisoners for breaking prison rules.  Inmates are not men.

Be aware that you can't always tell an inmate worm by his cover.  The biggest, baddest killer on the tier can be the biggest, snitch rat in the joint.  On the other hand, convicts used to be very common in U.S. prisons, but are now a dying breed.  A true convict would never rat on anyone, would take no disrespect, would fight when necessary and would be loyal and live by a code of honor.  Unlike an inmate, a convict is a man.

A convicted sex offender will never be considered a true convict by other prisoners, but you can live by your own code of honor in prison.  Never whine or complain about your wrongful conviction; sniveling will only make you appear weak and make you a target.  Other prisoners don't care about your innocence.  The prison hierarchy has you at the bottom of the prison barrel.  Your jacket is that of a sex offender but it's up to you if you wear this degrading jacket.  You will find that the only prisoners who hang around the sex offender are other wide-eyed, scared, spineless sex offenders.  Even though prison is going to be very lonely for the innocent man convicted of a sex crime, you don't want to befriend confessed sex offenders.  Also, stay away from the prison chapel.  For some strange reason, confessed sex offenders always find God in prison and carry their Bibles for all to see to show how repentant they are.  In short, even though no one convicted of a sex beef can be a true convict, you must strive to be one.

Talking About Your Conviction
You may think that if you don't tell any of your fellow prisoners you were convicted of a sexual offense that no one will be the wiser and you won't be harassed.  You may think that you can tell people you're a bank robber and even be a hero in prison.  Nice try, but lying about what you were convicted of will not work.  There are no secrets in prison, especially on why you are there.  You're in prison now, and any possibility of privacy or keeping secrets is long gone.  Be honest when talking about your wrongful conviction and get ready to defend yourself if it becomes necessary.

All of the convicted sex offenders (innocent or guilty) whom I've heard tell other prisoners that they were burglars or robbers in an effort to hide their convictions were eventually exposed.  If you lie about your conviction, you will be exposed.  Then, any attempts to claim innocence will not be believed and your prison time may get very tough.  Don't advertise your wrongful conviction, or the facts of your supposed crime, but when asked why you're in prison, be honest.

Although a convicted sex offender can never gain full respect in prison, I've managed to gain some measure of respect by being truthful about why I am in prison, and fighting when necessary.  Sure, some punk may call me a "rape-o" behind my back, but no prisoner ever disrespects me face to face.  With so many innocent men being sent to prison these days on false accusations of rape and child abuse, the general prison population is starting to understand how widespread the sex crime witch hunt has become, and how many innocent men are now in prison due to false allegations.  False reports of rape and other sex crimes are so common that an innocent man wrongfully convicted of a sex crime will not be alone.

Prison Guards
The men and women who hold the key to your freedom (the prison guards) should be considered your enemy.  There is a reason that surveys on job status and job satisfaction often rate being a prison guard as the lowest job a person can hold.  No one respects prison guards, and they know it.  What kind of man or woman would want to examine body openings for contraband, turn keys, and stand around and do nothing for a living?  Prison guards hate their jobs and blame prisoners for their unhappy and unfulfilled lives.  It takes no ambition, no talent, no drive, or any creativity to be a corrections officer.  Even police officers know this, and look down on the lowly prison guard.  Think about it.  Does any kid have dreams of being a corrections officer when he or she grows up?

The Golden Rule to remember not only about prison guards, but about anyone that works inside the prison in which you are held captive, is to stay as far away from them as possible and avoid even talking to them unnecessarily.  Even if you happen to run across a prison guard who appears to be halfway human, don't befriend him.  Every inmate whom I've seen develop any type of friendship with any prison employee was, in the end, betrayed and shunned by other prisoners.  Don't collaborate with anyone other than fellow prisoners while in prison.  Every prison official or staff member is your enemy.  Never forget that.  They will gladly shoot you in the back if they feel the need.  Don't make eye contact with the people who work at the prison because if you avoid eye contact they will leave you alone.  The less contact you have with prison employees, the better off you will be.

In all my years in prison, I've observed hundreds of prison guards and only a couple could be considered normal.  The typical male guard I have encountered is not someone you would consider a winner.  He is usually a skinny geek (or is extremely overweight), is undereducated, has no ambition and is sadistic.  His idea of success is a monthly state paycheck, a trailer home, a 12-pack of beer, and nightly TV.  The typical female prison guard is homosexual, physically unattractive, overweight, and more masculine than most male prison guards.  She's mad at the world for not being born a man and she takes her penis envy out on prisoners.

I fully admit my dislike for prison guards because I am convinced that every prison guard in the U.S. has witnessed, encouraged, and/or participated in the torture or murder of prisoners.  Prison guards are cowards with a badge who are protected by the state and prison guard unions.  Your only allies in prison are other prisoners.  Never forget it.

Keeping Fit
One of the most important things to do while doing your prison time is to keep in the very best physical shape possible.  Every prison has a weight room, and I strongly suggest pumping iron.  Being in top shape not only feels good, but it's good for your head and will help you think more clearly.  By working out, running, exercising, and eating as well as possible, you will be physically able to defend yourself in case of any violent situations.  You will also be able to think straight to combat your unjust conviction.  All the guys whom I've seen go insane in prison did not care about their health.  They rotted in front of a TV for years until they were just a shell of a man.  At age thirty-five, I am now in the best shape of my life and feel great.

Another reason to stay healthy in prison is that medical services are notoriously horrid.  One of my worst prison experiences was when our prison doctor told me that blood tests indicated that I had liver cancer.  He smiled gleefully as he told me I had only a year to live.  I tried to learn more, but he refused to answer my questions and ordered me out of his office.  For months I thought I was going to leave this mad house on a slab.  I learned later that my blood test indicated only that I had been exposed to hepatitis in the past.  The good prison doctor told me I was dying for his own sick amusement.

Dental services are just as bad in prison.  I'm currently waiting to have a back molar filled.  I cracked my tooth on a rock in some chili in the chow hall.  I've been on the waiting list to see the dentist for over six months now, and will probably lose the tooth due to neglect.  There is nothing I can do about it.

While in prison, stay in shape, work out, run, and try to eat well — even though that's nearly impossible with the garbage that passes for food in prison.  But, although you may get depressed, lonely, and frustrated in prison, never go to the prison psychologist.  Prison shrinks only want to drug prisoners into submission.  One of the newest fads in corrections is tranquilizers that are given out like candy to pacify and control inmates.  What better way to turn prisoners into submissive zombies than by medicating them for depression and anxiety.  Don't fall into the medication trap in prison.  You need to be clear-headed while doing time, not in a drugged-out haze.

When you go to prison, settle down and find a positive routine.  After the shock of prison wears off, and the other prisoners figure out you will defend yourself, you'll be left alone to do your time.  Don't sit around vegetating in front of a TV, playing cards or reading westerns.  Don't waste your time complaining about your wrongful conviction and what a poor victim you are.  Don't turn into what I call a "prison zombie" who does his time like he's waiting to die.  Your main mission in prison will be trying to get your unjust conviction overturned.  Learn as much about the law and the corrupt legal system as you can.  Get to know the prisoner law clerks in the law library, and spend as much time in the library as possible.  Study every aspect of your case, and stay on top of your attorney.  Your lawyer is not the one in prison, you are.  The appeals process takes years.  Prisoners rarely win a new trial because the criminal justice system is not about truth and justice, but you can't win if you don't try.  Fighting the legal system will be frustrating and depressing, but try not to give up hope.
Not only do we prisoners have to stick together, but we men must also join forces in our fight against feminism.  Become a soldier in the Men's Rights Fight.  Contact the anti feminist, pro-family men's groups in your area, as well as some of the national groups.

Sex Offender Treatment
One of the most profitable scams in the prison behavioral modification business is the sex-offender treatment industry.  Because you were convicted of a sex offense, you are now fuel for the sex-offender treatment profiteers.  You will be expected to confess to your crime, end all appeals for a fair trial, dismiss all delusions of innocence, and participate in sex-offender treatment along with admitted child molesters and serial rapists.  Confession is the main tenet of sex-offender treatment.  It does not matter to prison officials that you have always maintained your innocence and are in the process of appeal.

Thousands of people work in the sex-offender treatment industry and to justify their high-paying state jobs you must confess to your offense.  You are the meal ticket not only of prison guards but also sex-offender treatment providers.  As a wrongly convicted prisoner, you should have nothing to do with sex-offender treatment.  Be a man, and stand up for what is right.  There will be repercussions for you for not confessing and becoming another admitted sex offender.  You will be denied any good-time off your prison term and early parole will be out of the question.  I have always refused to even speak to sex-offender treatment counselors.  Not only have I been denied any time off my sentence for good behavior, but the Oregon Parole Board has labeled me mentally unfit and dangerous to society because I refuse to confess, show remorse, and beg for forgiveness.
Not only should you avoid sex-offender treatment, but I suggest you refuse to participate in any behavior modification programs in prison.  Don't admit anything to prison officials or prison counselors.  Those who work in the behavior modification industry behind prison walls will use anything you tell them against you.  Tell them nothing about your past.  Prison counselors are not your friends.

Never talk to any prison psychologist. There is no faster way to be labeled mentally and emotionally unfit than to trust a prison psychologist.  As a convicted sex offender, innocent or not, you are the bread and butter of the sex-offender treatment industry, prison counselors/psychologists, and prison guards.  The only way they can justify their jobs is to keep you in their prison programs as long as possible.  Be aware of their true motives, don't trust them, tell them nothing, and never doubt yourself.  You owe them nothing.

You are an innocent man in prison.  Act like one, and good luck my friend.

Forced Homeless in San Jose

    I feel like a Leper. A man without a country. This is all so surreal. Being forced to live on the streets by The State? I still can not get over it and I've been dealing with this nightmare for over 25 years now. How in God's name can The State force someone to live outdoors like an animal? I have family I can live with! Due to Jessica's Law in CA and It's residential restrictions I'm homeless. I have never harmed a child in my life. The woman, Donna Jean Rowland, of Albany, Oregon who falsely accused me in 1985 was 24 years old at the time. She was a serial false accuser who made her false allegation against me for a million dollar lawsuit and I was not the first man this wacko had sent to prison. See The J.A. Story at: . The homeless shelter I am forced to live in has a "lottery" every day at 3:30 pm where only 50 people get in and I hope I make it every night or I am forced to sleep outside in the freezing cold. Recently it was so cold here 4 homeless men died in one night due to exposure. Thank God I had a bed that night. Tonight? Who knows? I could be sleeping outside tonight. Why? When will this nightmare end? The Sex Crime Witch Hunt snared me in It's ever expanding web over 25 year ago. When will this madness stop? I wake up at 4am to charge my GPS Tracking Shackle that is locked onto my ankle because I do not know when I will have the opportunity to charge up again. I have to charge up twice a day for an hour each. It's all I do anymore. Try and figure out where the hell will I find an outlet to use, so The State will not send me back to jail for failure to charge. It is all so unreal. I've got about 10 more months on parole and can finally leave this Police State. Back to Alaska in 2014 !!!

The Ticking Sex Offender Bomb

War on … the Fallout of Declaring War on Social Issues: Symposium Article: The Ticking Sex-Offender Bomb

Corey Rayburn Yung

University of Kansas School of Law

December 12, 2013

Journal of Gender, Race and Justice, Vol. 15, 2012

Much like the ticking-time-bomb scenario in the public debate about torture, the belief that sex offenders generally, and child molesters specifically, will inevitably commit new offenses has come to effectively frame societal understanding. The concept of the sex offender who is a ticking time bomb waiting to molest more children has served as the basis for sex-offender registration, residency restrictions, community notification, and civil commitment. Relying on strongly held myths about stranger danger, sex-offender recidivism, and sex-offender homogeneity, the criminal war against sex offenders shows little sign of abating. This Symposium Article explores the rhetoric and reality of the War on Sex Offenders and how the ticking-time-bomb metaphor reshaped the debates and policies surrounding sexual violence.

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

CA RSOL Meeting on Jan. 11, 2014

From: CA Reform Sex Offender Laws

CA RSOL Meeting – January 11 in San Diego

The first regular CA RSOL meeting of 2014 will be held in San Diego on January 11 at 10 am.
As always, the meeting will be open and free of charge to registrants, friends & family and supporters. Media and government officials are not invited in order to ensure all attendee’s privacy. The meeting will cover general topics of interest, as well as specific issues pertinent at meeting time, in addition to offering invaluable opportunities to network with others affected by this issue, as well as activists and professionals.
Meeting location is at the California Western Law School on 350 Cedar Street, Room LH2. There is free parking on Second Avenue, one block away from the school, in addition to some free spots on Third Ave. above Elm. Plenty of metered parking is also available.
Thanks to all who make these events possible.

CA RSOL Meeting
January 11, 10 am
California Western Law School, Room LH2
350 Cedar Street, San Diego, CA 92101

Children on Sex Offender Registries

From: Center of Public Integrity

Report details lives ruined for children put on sex-offender registries

Nudity, streaking, petting, not just rape, have led to youths put on sex-offender registries

Put on a sex registry for the offense of public nudity as a minor. Harassed by neighbors out of a home and banned from a homeless shelter because of an offense committed at age 15.
The New York-based research group Human Rights Watch issued an extensive report today on the life-shattering consequences of putting minors on sex registries for offenses — sometimes shockingly mild offenses — for the rest of their lives.
Filled with devastating stories of teens and young adults unable to put offenses behind them, the rights group's report is called “Raised on the Register: The Irreparable Harm of Placing Children on Sex Offender Registries in the U.S.”
The report is the product of a 16-month investigation into 581 cases and interviews with 281 sex offenders — median age 15 — in 20 states.  Prosecutors, defense attorneys, child sexuality experts and victims of “child on child” sexual assault were also interviewed.  The investigation explores how a burgeoning national web of laws in various states requiring constant registration and public disclosure of offenders’ identities has affected the lives of young offenders long after time served or rehabilitation. Some on registries have killed themselves, even before reaching adulthood.
The report begins with Jacob C., who was 11 years old when convicted of one count of sexual misconduct in Michigan for touching, not penetrating, his sister’s genitals. He was not allowed to live in a home with other children, was eventually put into foster care and was placed on a sex registry that was made public when he turned 18.  He struggled to graduate from high school, and was shunned because of his registration status. And when he enrolled in college, he said, campus police followed him everywhere. He dropped out.
Now 26, the report says, Jacob’s life continues to be defined and limited by a conviction at age 11.
Another case in the report: “In 2004, in Western Pennsylvania, a 15-year-old girl was charged with manufacturing and disseminating child pornography for having taken nude photos of herself and (posting) them on the internet. She was charged as an adult, and as of 2012 was facing registration for life.”
Sex offender laws, the report says, “that trigger registration requirements for children began proliferating in the United States during the late 1980s and early 1990s. They subject youth offenders to registration for crimes ranging from public nudity and touching another child’s genitalia over clothing to very serious violent crimes like rape.”
Registries can also include “people who have committed offenses like public urination, indecent exposure (such as streaking across a college campus), and other more relatively innocuous offenses.”
The Human Rights Watch report acknowledged that registration laws were designed to protect the public from offenders, and that they are based on assumptions that offenders are likely to violate again.
“But including youth sex offenders on registries assumes that they are highly likely to reoffend, which is not the case,” the report says. “Numerous studies estimate the recidivism rate among children who commit sexual offenses to between 4 and 10 percent, compared with a 13 percent rate for adult sex offenders and a national rate of 45 percent for all crimes.”
The report was prepared by Nicole Pittman, a national expert on the application of sex offender registration laws who was an attorney at the Defender Association of Philadelphia. She specialized in child sexual assault cases and registries, and has provided testimony to Congress and state legislatures on the subject.
The report calls current registry laws “an overbroad policy of questionable effectiveness” that leaves the public often unable to discern who on a registry is actually dangerous.

Police Overkill

From: Salon

Police overkill has become the default American policy

The term "police state" used to be brushed off as paranoid hyperbole. Not anymore

Police overkill has become the default American policy (Credit: Reuters/Anthony Bolante)
This piece originally appeared on TomDispatch.
If all you’ve got is a hammer, then everything starts to look like a nail. And if police and prosecutors are your only tool, sooner or later everything and everyone will be treated as criminal. This is increasingly the American way of life, a path that involves “solving” social problems (and even some non-problems) by throwing cops at them, with generally disastrous results. Wall-to-wall criminal law encroaches ever more on everyday life as police power is applied in ways that would have been unthinkable just a generation ago.
By now, the militarization of the police has advanced to the point where “the War on Crime” and “the War on Drugs” are no longer metaphors but bland understatements.  There is the proliferation of heavily armed SWAT teams, even in small towns; the use of shock-and-awe tactics to bust small-time bookies; the no-knock raids to recover trace amounts of drugs that often result in the killing of family dogs, if not family members; and in communities where drug treatment programs once were key, the waging of a drug version of counterinsurgency war.  (All of this is ably reported on journalist Radley Balko’s blog and in his book, The Rise of the Warrior Cop.) But American over-policing involves far more than the widely reported up-armoring of your local precinct.  It’s also the way police power has entered the DNA of social policy, turning just about every sphere of American life into a police matter.

The School-to-Prison Pipeline

It starts in our schools, where discipline is increasingly outsourced to police personnel. What not long ago would have been seen as normal childhood misbehavior – doodling on a desk, farting in class, a kindergartener’s tantrum – can leave a kid in handcuffs, removed from school, or even booked at the local precinct.  Such “criminals” can be as young as seven-year-old Wilson Reyes, a New Yorker who was handcuffed and interrogated under suspicion of stealing five dollars from a classmate. (Turned out he didn’t do it.)
Though it’s a national phenomenon, Mississippi currently leads the way in turning school behavior into a police issue.  The Hospitality State has imposed felony charges on schoolchildren for “crimes” like throwing peanuts on a bus.  Wearing the wrong color belt to school got one child handcuffed to a railing for several hours.  All of this goes under the rubric of “zero-tolerance” discipline, which turns out to be just another form of violence legally imported into schools.
Despite a long-term drop in youth crime, the carceral style of education remains in style.  Metal detectors — a horrible way for any child to start the day — areinstalled in ever more schools, even those with sterling disciplinary records, despite the demonstrable fact that such scanners provide no guarantee against shootingsand stabbings.
Every school shooting, whether in Sandy Hook, Connecticut, or Littleton, Colorado, only leads to more police in schools and more arms as well.  It’s the one thing the National Rifle Association and Democratic senators can agree on. There are plenty of successful ways to run an orderly school without criminalizing the classroom, but politicians and much of the media don’t seem to want to know about them. The “school-to-prison pipeline,” a jargon term coined by activists, isentering the vernacular.
Go to Jail, Do Not Pass Go
Even as simple a matter as getting yourself from point A to point B can quickly become a law enforcement matter as travel and public space are ever more aggressively policed.  Waiting for a bus?  Such loitering just got three Rochester youths arrested.  Driving without a seat belt can easily escalate into an arrest, even if the driver is a state judge.  (Notably, all four of these men were black.) If the police think you might be carrying drugs, warrantless body cavity searches at the nearest hospital may be in the offing — you will be sent the bill later.
Air travel entails increasingly intimate pat-downs and arbitrary rules that many experts see as nothing more than “security theater.” As for staying at home, it carries its own risks as Harvard professor Henry Louis Gates found out when a Cambridge police officer mistook him for a burglar and hauled him away — a case that is hardly unique.
Overcriminalization at Work
Office and retail work might seem like an unpromising growth area for police and prosecutors, but criminal law has found its way into the white-collar workplace, too.  Just ask Georgia Thompson, a Wisconsin state employee targetedby a federal prosecutor for the “crime” of incorrectly processing a travel agency’s bid for state business.  She spent four months in a federal prison before being sprung by a federal court.  Or Judy Wilkinson, hauled away in handcuffs by an undercover cop for serving mimosas without a license to the customers in her bridal shop.  Or George Norris, sentenced to 17 months in prison for selling orchids without the proper paperwork to an undercover federal agent.
Increasingly, basic economic transactions are being policed under the purview of criminal law.  In Arkansas, for instance, Human Rights Watch reports that a new law funnels delinquent (or allegedly delinquent) rental tenants directly to the criminal courts, where failure to pay up can result in quick arrest and incarceration, even though debtor’s prison as an institution was supposed to have ended in the nineteenth century.
And the mood is spreading.  Take the asset bubble collapse of 2008 and the rising cries of progressives for the criminal prosecution of Wall Street perpetrators, as if a fundamentally sound financial system had been abused by a small number of criminals who were running free after the debacle.  Instead of pushing a debate about how to restructure our predatory financial system, liberals in their focus on individual prosecution are aping the punitive zeal of the authoritarians.  A few high-profile prosecutions for insider trading (which had nothing to do with the last crash) have, of course, not changed Wall Street one bit.
Criminalizing Immigration
The past decade has also seen immigration policy ingested by criminal law. According to another Human Rights Watch report — their U.S. division is increasingly busy — federal criminal prosecutions of immigrants for illegal entry havesurged from 3,000 in 2002 to 48,000 last year.  This novel application of police and prosecutors has broken up families and fueled the expansion of for-profit detention centers, even as it has failed to show any stronger deterrent effect on immigration than the civil law system that preceded it.  Thanks to Arizona’s SB 1070 bill, police in that state are now licensed to stop and check the papers of anyone suspected of being undocumented — that is, who looks Latino.
Meanwhile, significant parts of the US-Mexico border are now militarized (as increasingly is the Canadian border), including what seem to resemble free-fire zones.  And if anyone were to leave bottled water for migrants illegally crossing the desert and in danger of death from dehydration, that good Samaritan should expectto face criminal charges, too. Intensified policing with aggressive targets for arrests and deportations are guaranteed to be a part of any future bipartisan deal on immigration reform.
Digital Over-Policing
As for the Internet, for a time it was terra nova and so relatively free of a steroidal law enforcement presence.  Not anymore.  The late Aaron Swartz, a young Internet genius and activist affiliated with Harvard University, was caught downloading masses of scholarly articles (all publicly subsidized) from an open network on the MIT campus.  Swartz was federally prosecuted under the capacious Computer Fraud and Abuse Act for violating a “terms and services agreement” — a transgression that anyone who has ever disabled a cookie on his or her laptop has also, technically, committed.  Swartz committed suicide earlier this year while facing a possible 50-year sentence and up to a million dollars in fines.
Since the summer, thanks to whistleblowing contractor Edward Snowden, we have learned a great deal about the way the NSA stops and frisks our (and apparentlyeveryone else’s) digital communications, both email and telephonic. The security benefits of such indiscriminate policing are far from clear, despite the government’s emphatic but inconsistent assurances otherwise. What comes into sharper focus with every volley of new revelations is the emerging digital infrastructure of what can only be called a police state.
Sex Police
Sex is another zone of police overkill in our post-Puritan land. Getting put on a sex offender registry is alarmingly easy — as has been done to children as young as 11 for “playing doctor” with a relative, again according to Human Rights Watch.  But getting taken off the registry later is extraordinarily difficult.  Across the nation, sex offender registries have expanded massively, especially in California, where one in every 380 adults is now a registered sex offender, creating a new pariah class with severe obstacles to employment, housing, or any kind of community life.  The proper penalty for, say, an 18-year-old who has sex with a 14-year-old can be debated, but should that 18-year-old’s life really be ruined forever?
Equality Before the Cops?
It will surprise no one that Americans are not all treated equally by the police.  Law enforcement picks on kids more than adults, the queer more than straight, Muslims more than Methodists – Muslims a lot more than Methodists — antiwar activists more than the apolitical. Above all, our punitive state targets the poor more than the wealthy and Blacks and Latinos more than white people.
A case in point: after the 1999 massacre at Columbine High School, a police presence, including surveillance cameras and metal detectors, was ratcheted up at schools around the country, particularly in urban areas with largely working-class black and Latino student bodies.  It was all to “protect” the kids, of course.  At Columbine itself, however, no metal detector was installed and no heavy police presence intruded.  The reason was simple.  At that school in the Colorado suburb of Littleton, the mostly well-heeled white families did not want their kids treated like potential felons, and they had the status and political power to get their way. But communities without such clout are less able to push back against the encroachments of police power.
Even Our Prisons Are Over-Policed
The over-criminalization of American life empties out into our vast, overcrowded prison system, which is itself over-policed.  The ultimate form of punitive control (and torture) is long-term solitary confinement, in which 80,000 to 100,000 prisoners are encased at any given moment.  Is this really necessary?  Solitary is no longer reserved for the worst or the worst or most dangerous prisoners but can beinflicted on ones who wear Rastafari dreadlocks, have a copy of Sun Tzu’s Art of War in their cell, or are in any way suspected, no matter how tenuous the grounds, of gang affiliations.
Not every developed nation does things this way. Some 30 years ago, Great Britain shifted from isolating prisoners to, whenever possible, giving them greater responsibility and autonomy — with less violent results.  But don’t even bring the subject up here.  It will fall on deaf ears.
Extreme policing is exacerbated by extreme sentencing.  For instance, more than 3,000 Americans have been sentenced to life terms without chance of parole for nonviolent offenses.  These are mostly but not exclusively drug offenses, including life for a pound of cocaine that a boyfriend stashed in the attic; selling LSD at a Grateful Dead concert; and shoplifting three belts from a department store.
Our incarceration rate is the highest in the world, triple that of the now-defunct East Germany. The incarceration rate for African American men is about five times higher than that of the Soviet Union at the peak of the gulag.
The Destruction of Families
Prison may seem the logical finale for this litany of over-criminalization, but the story doesn’t actually end with those inmates.  As prisons warehouse ever more Americans, often hundreds of miles from their local communities, family bonds weaken and disintegrate. In addition, once a parent goes into the criminal justice system, his or her family tends to end up on the radar screens of state agencies.  “Being under surveillance by law enforcement makes a family much more vulnerable to Child Protective Services,” says Professor Dorothy Roberts of the University of Pennsylvania Law school.  An incarcerated parent, especially an incarcerated mother, means a much stronger likelihood that children will be sent into foster care, where, according to one recent study, they will be twice as likely as war veterans to suffer from PTSD.
In New York State, the Administration for Child Services and the juvenile justice system recently merged, effectively putting thousands of children in a heavily policed, penalty-based environment until they age out. “Being in foster care makes you much more vulnerable to being picked up by the juvenile justice system,” says Roberts.  If you’re in a group home and you get in a fight, that could easily become a police matter.” In every respect, the creeping over-criminalization of everyday life exerts a corrosive effect on American families.
Do We Live in a Police State?
The term “police state” was once brushed off by mainstream intellectuals as the hyperbole of paranoids.  Not so much anymore.  Even in the tweediest precincts of the legal system, the over-criminalization of American life is remarked upon with greater frequency and intensity. “You’re probably a (federal) criminal” is the accusatory title of a widely read essay co-authored by Judge Alex Kozinski of the 9th Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals.  A Republican appointee, Kozinski surveys the morass of criminal laws that make virtually every American an easy target for law enforcement.  Veteran defense lawyer Harvey Silverglate has written an entire book about how an average American professional could easily committhree felonies in a single day without knowing it.
The daily overkill of police power in the U.S. goes a long way toward explaining why more Americans aren’t outraged by the “excesses” of the war on terror, which, as one law professor has argued, are just our everyday domestic penal habits exported to more exotic venues.  It is no less true that the growth of domestic police power is, in this positive feedback loop, the partial result of our distant foreign wars seeping back into the homeland (the “imperial boomerang” that Hannah Arendt warned against).
Many who have long railed against our country’s everyday police overkill have reacted to the revelations of NSA surveillance with detectable exasperation: of course we are over-policed!  Some have even responded with peevish resentment: Why so much sympathy for this Snowden kid when the daily grind of our justice system destroys so many lives without comment or scandal?  After all, in New York, the police department’s “stop and frisk” tactic, which targets African American and Latino working-class youth for routinized street searches, was until recently uncontroversial among the political and opinion-making class. If “the gloves came off” after September 11, 2001, many Americans were surprised tolearn they had ever been on to begin with.
A hammer is necessary to any toolkit.  But you don’t use a hammer to turn a screw, chop a tomato, or brush your teeth. And yet the hammer remains our instrument of choice, both in the conduct of our foreign policy and in our domestic order.  The result is not peace, justice, or prosperity but rather a state that harasses and imprisons its own people while shouting ever less intelligibly about freedom.