April 15, 2013

Calif. governor fighting courts over prisons

Gov. Brown has decided it's the prisons that need less money. (really?) He's prepared to go to the wall to end federal oversight and stop money going into repairing prison conditions. Apparently, the federal courts are willing to meet him at that wall with an injunction.
April 13, 2013

Idaho to Renew CCA Despite Proof of Overbilling

After a state investigation, Corrections Corporation of America admitted that employees had overcharged Idaho for man hours. CCA operates Idaho's largest prison; CCA officials acknowledged Thursday that its employees falsified nearly 4,800 hours of staffing records over seven months last year in violation of its contract with the state.
April 12, 2013

Gov. Brown: “Deliberate Indifference” Standard

Fov. Brown stands behind legal definition of prison cruelty and inhumane conditions, saying, "the constitutional standard is deliberate indifference and as far as I know there is nobody deliberately indifferent to the health needs of the California prisoners."
April 12, 2013

Corrections Is Too a Business–Check Out CCA

Someone got hold of Corrections Corporation of America's newsletters to stockholders, and created a slide show of information/advice to the shareholders. This business is growing and expects to grow even more. In these slides, you'll see how they are paying for influence in high places, how they have stock-piled beds etc for the future expansions.
April 10, 2013

Terrific essay on visiting an inmate

"The neglect here is almost unimaginable—and it’s not just neglect from the Beckley staff but from the world itself—the world that has carried on with its daily business while keeping all these men invisibly deposited elsewhere, in a slew of the nation’s most obscure corners. On the outside, you can think about prison for a moment and then you can think about something else. Inside, it’s every moment. It’s impossible to ignore
April 10, 2013

Phone companies, prisons, make $$ on phone calls

When an inmate calls, it's a collect call. The mother/wife/father receiving it is charged for the initial set-up plus per minute. Those costs are profit for both the phone companies and the prison system. But enough is enough, says the Ohio ACLU. And the FCC is now involved.
April 6, 2013

Federal Judge Rejects Gov. Brown plea for No Oversight

Gov. Brown will appeal his latest loss before a federal judge this week, where he asked that 17 years of judicial oversight end.
April 6, 2013

Chicago Police Commander’s Technicalities Refused

The 7th Circuit has turned down an appeal by Chicago's Jon Burge, who commanded a large portion of the Chicago police force until 1993. His original case involved his knowledge (or lack of) about the torture and abuse of suspects by his police department. He was fired. But in 2007, he was caught up in a federal indictment for lying and perjury. Currently in a federal prison, Burge's requests for a new trial were dismissed by the 7th Circuit judges, who saw all his arguments as spurious technicalities. So the guy had a determined lawyer, but an unsuccessful one. Maybe police officers shouldn't put plastic bags over suspects' heads and suffocate them, or hit them with typewriters. Those aren't technicalities.
April 5, 2013

Calif: What to do with Mentally Ill?

California has a problem: in the 60's, the state had 36,853 mentally ill in state hospitals; today, the state has 33,777 inmates judged mentally ill within the state prison system. They didn't go away, did they, when the state hospitals closed down. Donald Specter, head of Prison Law Office, is attempting to get the inmates real help
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