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COOPS Weekly - Life from Kansas #32

Updated: Jan 10

We are shut down again

RDAP is shutdown (we are being punished). The DTS's found some phones in the unit (actually not sure it was them who found was doesn’t matter.... phones were get it) and we are now not programing. The phones were underneath some huge metal fans (they stick with magnets.... actually, pretty clever). An announcement was made that until the person or persons claim ownership of the phones, we are shutdown.

In case you have missed some of my information about how people in prison operate (specifically Inmates) ...let me say this...NOBODY is going to say something. That is simply not going to happen. Thats not the way it works in here. People don’t claim responsivity for things that could get you in trouble and people don’t snitch. So, people are pretty upset. It is an interesting position to put people in.

At some point FSA credits will catch up with RDAP credits and people will get out the same time with or without RDAP. I have a feeling people will quit the program if it doesn’t help them get out early. For better or worse the strict rules in RDAP make it easier to get in you make it riskier for yourself by joining RDAP. I have mentioned multiple times that I don’t like to quit I can’t see myself quitting. However, If I can get out at the same time without RDAP I would need to consider it. RDAP continues after you leave (you have 4/6 months of after home care). People are not going to take that if they don’t need to...Should be interesting.

I started reading a little history about Leavenworth.

There are plenty of books about this prison (it is the oldest federal prison in the US).

Here are some excerpts from "the Hot House, Life inside Leavenworth Prison." (By Pete Earley)

"Leavenworth was the first federal prison ever built. “ “At the top level of penitentiaries/camps is the Hot House (Leavenworth...and trust me when I tell it is so friggin hot here), the true colleges of crime.”

“The Hot House is the Harvard of them all. It is the oldest, the most infamous.”

“Actual construction of Leavenworth began in 1898, and from all accounts, conditions were cruel.”

“On February 1, 1906 Leavenworth received its first inmate, John Grindstone, a native American convicted of murder.”

“From the start, the Hot House was designed to intimidate, and when you turn into the horse shoe shaped driveway that leads to the entrance, you suddenly understand what a convict meant when in the 1900's when he described the penitentiary in letter to his mother as a “giant mausoleum adrift in a sea of nothingness." The prison dominates the Kansas countryside.”

“The prison architects patterned Leavenworth after the majestic US Capitol building In Washington DC, with its two cell-houses replicating the chambers of the senate and house of representatives and its rotunda serving as a smaller version of the capitol dome. At the time the design was not meant ironically (which some people thought); it reflected the boundless optimism that even the worst criminals could be rehabilitated is so authoritative and exalted an environment. “

“The new petitionary is the first in the world to be entirely self-contained. It would have its own power plant (the power is always going out), water supply (the water is a constant problem), maintenance shop (there are so many things broken or in disrepair), hospital (closed), and first school built inside (ha yeah rt!!!). It would be a city within a city, where convicts could safely be tucked away and forgotten by the world.

A heavy steel gate protects this outside entrance, and a large wooden sign is posted next to the door bearing the Leavenworth employee motto

Leavenworth Pride

Proud of where we have been

Proud of where we are

Proud of where we are going

Pride in a job well done

"There are no nice guys in Leavenworth." (Except me) “they are all sharks, and when you put sharks together the stronger one’s feed on the rest."

Almost done with my Paralegal classes

(One last round after this one)

Updated Grades

Private corporations Part I - 95%

Private corporations Part II - 100%

Law of Partnerships - 100%

Constitutional Law Part I - 100%

Constitutional Law Part II - 85%

Constitutional Law Part III - 95%

Grade Mean is above 95%. Pretty impressed.... These tests are not easy.

Craziest thing I have seen or heard @ the LPC - The craziness continues here...Our sanitation chair (Each committee in RDAP has a chair...which is essentially the lead guy of that particular committee). Jackson is a beginning (RED) wallet and the sanitation chair. This past week a guard came into our unit and thought he was using a phone (it was not a phone was a tablet). If you recall I mentioned to everyone you can either buy a tablet or an MP3 player (most people have both. They both kind of do the same things). Anyway, the tablets are like ridiculously cheap electronic tablets (picture a tiny IPAD). They don’t do can rent movies/music or use them for very low-tech games.

Most people get sick of them after a couple weeks. They just aren’t great. Jackson was using his bunkmate’s tablet and the guard for whatever reason thought it was a phone. After much drama, including the guard searching everywhere for a phone that wasn’t there.... the guard got mad and accused Jackson of ditching the phone....and get this.... he also accused him of running in evading an officer.... WHAT??? He was called to the bubble, and received 2 shots (serious discipline demerits) and was sent to the SHU for investigation.... that’s serious. One shot for evading an officer...and (this is so petty) ...and another for "using another inmates tablet." Now...since there is no phone it is likely he will beat the shots...However he will be in the SHU for 1 to 3 months during investigation, he will be transferred, and he will need to start over in RDAP....Jackson was very popular so people are bummed. He was also punished in RDAP with a formal warning. BRUTAL!!! My stories about the LPC inmates seem to be the most popular.

I had a few friends ask for an update on a specific story I told a few of you (I haven’t told everyone) ...So let me share.... We have a Federal Prosecutor/DA (He’s not technically a Fed prosecutor but based on his location he is considered one) at the Leavenworth Camp. (Dad comment: He actually is a Nebraska County attorney and he was a prosecutor. He pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit deprivation of rights under color of law using law enforcement to harass the boyfriend.)

Prosecutors commit crimes to so it might not be a surprise for some of you. But what you didn’t think about is what it would be like for a prosecutor to come to a camp/prison. Remember...We are all inmates put in jail by a prosecutor. So, to say this man is not well liked would be the understatement of the year. This place is tough enough to navigate.... but I can’t imagine what his time is going to be like here. It will not be easy. He will find friends eventually but he won’t find many. He approached me because word in the camp is I am a legal source for many inmates and he thought we would have somethings in common. I try to get along with everyone so we had a pleasant conversation. Shortly thereafter I got word from informal but real nonetheless camp inmate leadership to not befriend him. Hard not to have empathy for him.

Weekly newsletter. week 32
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