Saturday, May 23, 2020

First hand stories of COVID in WI prisons: April 16-May 13

A PDF version of this archive is available here:

ANON (transcribed paper letter sent out April 16, 2020)

Re: They don’t care, I mean really
I have to be careful how I word this, because I don’t want to get this person in trouble and lose a inside look at how these racist SOBs operate. But I learned this info this week. I can’t be more specific or they’ll review the cameras and determine where I went this week, and can clearly see me conversing with this high ranking person.
    1) Since this Covid-19 thing broke out there has been 7 officers confirmed to have it at CCI. I say this because this person treated all 7 of them!
    2) Once these 7 officers were confirmed to have it, they video sur these officers came in contact with for 14 days. Including: supervisors, nurses, teachers, doctors, cooks, food service workers, etc. But not inmates! Inmates they have come in contact with are never told; they have come in contact with infected staff. While the above staff are closely monitored, given a mask, and tested for the virus.
    3) They also keep undercounting the number of staff who have been infected here. This must be exposed.
    4) There are currently dozens of nurses, officers, and teachers wearing masks.

    5) Now check it this high ranking medical official says they suggested the same protocol for the staff be followed for the inmates. But was shouted down because it would open the DOC to lawsuits, and violate Hippa.
    6) Now check this, I told the medical staff, that for 3 weeks that I had a wicked case of diarrhea. Soon as I said it, their eyes got bigger than saucers! They started asking me all these other questions about a cough I had for 2 days in the beginning. I asked why and they said: “The 3 confirmed cases we had, and the 11 under quarantine have those same symptoms.” I asked for a Covid 19 test.
    7) I was told they needed to further investigate, and even then the only way to get it would be they would have to send me out. Bureaucracy and Bullshit.
    8) This has to be exposed...They are needlessly putting our health at stake. Putting our lies at risk. And please don’t use my name, because it’s all true and they can easily find who told me by tracing my movements. And I don’t want any harm to come to this individual.
Finally, some of you know I’ve done time in some of the bloodiest prisons in this country. I knew who the jailhouse killers were, prison enforcers, sexual predators, bullies, shot callers, gang leaders, nazis...I feared none of them individually or what they represented. Because I could always see them, and I could always watch their hands. If they wanted war I could go get my choice of weapon (always 2 knives) and they could go get theirs, to settle any disputes...I liked my chances.
But this virus, I can’t see it, I have no way of knowing when it’s close, nor can I determine when it may attack me. And for sure it won’t discriminate. I guess what I’m trying to say is, I'm kinda fearful for my life. I’m not in the best of health and these people keep proving they don’t give a shit about convicts. You have 400 infected in Cook County in chicago. And 700 that they know of in the BOP where I did 19 years straight. 14 months before that. So it ain’t a matter of if, it’s a matter of when. They won’t even give me a test to see if I have it, after they told me I have the symptoms...What more else do you all need to know.
And that prison escape today was a joke. One of them is a harcore white supremacists, who I tried to make defend his ideals (they call him TD) but of course he wouldn’t. I feel sorry for Texas (Newman, he’s a follower, and he keeps running his number up. He’ll die in prison for nothing. I’m surprised; No let me take that back, I had to check him for defending Donald Trump. So TD is his type of people.)
Well allow me to close this letter for now to get it out to y’all tonight. (And they say the virus dies in 72 hours, so if I have it you all will be safe by the time you read this!)
Revolutionary Love,

ANON 4/22/2020 2:33:31 PM To whom this may concern

 I am aware that there was a conference 04/21/2020 for a Prisoner Clemency Request Press Conference. The description and purpose of that meeting was extremely vague. I would like to know if prisoners that are in prison for revocation with no crime would be eligible for that if it takes place. I have 14 months left in prison, but my extended supervision was revoked because of a failure to report a internet identifier for a company I was starting. Also, for having an intimate relationship with my girlfriend without first asking permission. Aside from that I committed no crime and am only here for revocation. I was working 12 hour shifts for a masonry company and taking care of my children. I have nothing violent. I was convicted of a third degree sexual assault in 2012. I have no further convictions. The third degree sexual assault was with a young woman that was my girlfriend, who was 14 at the time and I was 18.
Thank you for your time and attention to this matter.

PRECIOUS WARD (280069) 4/22/2020 2:35:31 PM RE: Introduction

Hello Ben,
My name is Precious Ward by  way of  introduction,  I  came across  your name and Information in a recent FairShake newsletter , and hope against all hope it was appropriate for me to contact you directly to share with you the struggles that I too have faced as a result of being subjected to being locked down during this Covid19 pandemic.  My situation isn't any different from the many men and women grappling with these unprecedented times.  Lord, knows that I could use a compassionate person such as yourself to advocate and or assist  inmates such as myself , whom have been incarcerated for long periods of time for "violent offenses". But who is no longer poses  any danger to society . I grapple with what  seems to be tantamount to a  never ending fight. I know that there was a recent lawsuit filed against Gov. Tony Evers and his administration requesting the immediate release of certain inmates. Is there any real chance that any inmate(s) would actually be granted Clemency of some sort given the circumstances?
I take umbrage with that because it sends the wrong message; that perhaps there are a group of convicted felons who are deemed more valuable than others. I think that the lawsuit should have had a uni dimensional argument whereby it demonstrated that all inmates are inclusive and or are entitled to the exact same liberties.
Are you at all familiar with The Second Look Act of 2019, which is pending
before Council of the District of Columbia, it is a bill that was drafted under the (IRAA) Reduction Incarceration Amendment Act. On March 26, 2019 , Councilmember Charles Allen, Chairperson of the Committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety, held a public hearing to consider Bill 23-0127, the 'Second Look Amendment Act of 2019." If passed, the proposed legislation will expand eligibility to adult offenders who committed violent offenses between the ages of 18 to 24-years-old.
The proposal legislation will also allow a defendant to be released after serving 15 years in prison, regardless of the original sentence imposed, if the court determines that the defendant is not a danger to the community or to any person.
More than 70 defendants have filed motions for sentence reductions or are in the process of doing so. To date , approximately 17 motions have been ruled and only one (1) petition has been denied. Of the 16 motions granted, 12 cases involved murders, two cases of rape, one case of armed robbery, and one case involved armed kidnapping.
Ben, I guess my question to you is, what are the chances that this Bill could be adopted by Wisconsin. I am of the opinion that it gives guys some sort of an incentive to  become better versions of themselves while having a reason and or a purpose for applying for an early release. I've never seen anyone rehabilitated by mere punishment. I myself happen to be a good person who wound up in a bad place. Each of us are better than the worst thing that we've ever done. I've been incarcerated for the past 13½ years for a crime which I did not committ and I have the proof.
Justice really is blind. Alas!
If you are interested in learning more about this Bill , you could contact Councilmember Charles Allen at (202) 724-8072 or I look forward to hearing back from you. I thank you so much for your time and consideration to this urgent matter. Be well and be safe.
Precious Ward #280069
Mon. @6:46 pm

ANON 4/22/2020 5:47:30 PM Covid 19

I don't if you received my paper explaining my situation nor if my situation qualified.
I've down since 2007 for armed robbery I was given 2 consecutive 8 year sentences when I was 19 yes of age then in 2016 I plead no contest to a battery by prisoner from 2014.
I am a prisoner with asthma an use a emergency inhaler and a maintenance inhaler with history personal and familia of bronchial issues. I have 3½ years left to serve is this something that could be used to place the last 3 years as papers or is it to long left?
Please respond let me know any information I need to send you via email and I'll make sure you get that so we may be able to move forward.



ANON 4/23/2020 12:27:31 PM Timeline volunteer

April 23,2020/Thur/9:34am
          SCI is not giving test for coronvirus. I wrote HSU 4-20-20 and said, " I would like to have a coronavirus test done please. I would like to know if I have been exposed to coronavirus. Thank You!" Their respond was 4-21-20, " Testing does not just get completed. Are you having any symptoms or just wanting testing?" So otherwords if I'm not showing any symptoms then they are not providing anyone a test.  This is crazy because if someone (mainly officials) is asymptomatic they won't show any symptoms and could still be spreading the coronavirus. Being in this environment is like playing Russian roulette with our lives because there is no way of knowing if coronavirus is in here without any test being given.  With the carelessness and deficient  measures that's taking place, if coronavirus isn't already in here, I predict it will probably be soon, and when it does, a lot of people are going to be exposed and probably lose their life.( Allah forbid!) SHAKIR!

HARLAN RICHARDS (37975) 4/23/2020 12:57:31 PM Harold Kuntz
Thursday morning
Hi Ben,
I wrote you a few days ago and told you I heard a rumor that Harold Kuntz received a compassionate release parole.  I spoke with Harold this morning and he told me he was denied compassionate release.
Stay safe, stay well.

HARLAN RICHARDS (37975) 4/23/2020 2:29:45 PM Disposable masks
Noon Thursday
About an hour after I sent you my previous message all prisoners in Stanley were issued 4 disposable masks. No reason was given. There are no diagnosed cases of COVID-19 in the prison. I would have thought that these masks would be needed by first responders or health care professionals.
After examining them closely, they are just like the cloth masks we were given except they are made out of disposable material.
I tried on a cloth mask and it doesn't have any way to seal around the top of my nose so every breath I take goes out over the top edge of my mask and fogs up my glasses. I don't see what good they are.

ANON 4/23/2020 11:37:31 PM FFUP

I'm writing you to find out about the release of inmates? My mandatory release date is 8-06-2021 ive only gotten 2 minor tickets since i came to prison in 2017. Ive been in Green bay Max the entire time. I have been waiting since October to be sent to a medium prison. So since then ive been It medium custody. I have many accomplishments while here. I'm certified in masonry, certified tutor, tutor for the Mason shop, certainteed certified shingle applicator, college trades math, college communications course, I finished a 6 month DV/T4C group. My original cases that I got sent to prison or revoked from is non-violent. I'm eligible for E.R.P which is the early release program. The email I got said that a number of releases were going to be sent to the government? Can I go on this list?. Please I would appreciate it if you could help with some info or form to fill out.
Please and thank you.

ANON 4/24/2020 10:01:31 PM From me to you!

Hello, brother Ben! I just wanted to open up a dialogue with you in hopes of getting your assistance on trying to get my story out there regarding me being convicted due to police altering evidence in my case and the prosecutor knowingly using false testimony in order to convict me. Of course I can now prove what I'm alleging. I have surveillance footage that was suppressed during my trial that proves the prosecution's key witness lied during her testimony regarding my alleged actions, which constituted me being party to the crime, which the jury believed.
I need help proving my innocence. I'm not reaching out to you to waste your time! Everything I'm alleging I can now PROVE!!! But unfortunately I'm currently being shutout by the courts and being denied my opportunity to prove my innocence based on procedural technicalities. Not because of what I'm claiming is false, but because I made filing errors with motions I filed to the court on my own (because I didn't understand the requirements of the motion I submitted). Nothing more.
Therefore, as of now I'm stuck with this surveillance footage that will prove my innocence. No one has had the guts to challenge the court or the prosecutor and demand that I be given an evidentiary hearing to prove my claims. The court is helping the prosecutor suppress the truth by refusing to grant me an evidentiary hearing. If there's nothing to hide, then why won't the court grant me an evidentiary hearing that I've requested several times?

Mr. Turk, you have a very powerful and influential voice. You have the necessary platform needed for me to expose the truth of my wrongful conviction. I've been in prison for 14 years! I was sentenced to 25 years of confinement and 10 years of extended supervision. All for an armed robbery that I wasn't involved in. I've become a grandfather since I've been incarcerated. My daughter has been raped twice since my incarceration. I've lost family members and friends over these past 14 long years. I've broken my neck while incarcerated. I've developed kidney disease as well. It's time for me to go home and be with my loved ones. So I'm begging you to please help me. I have no other options.
Thank you.
Stanley Correctional Institution

ANON 4/25/2020 1:35:31 AM Serious phone Zaps please

Now Prairie du Chien Correctional Institution got even more vindictive and they took away the only extra spray bottle we had, so now they have reduced us to only one spray bottle during this dangerous pandemic and you have to turn in your I.D. for it other wise you can't and won't get it. So before there was one disinfectant bottle in the bathrooms and one out by the cleaning cart for the janitors to clean hourly, now we have one bottle for everything, so if I'm cleaning the day room or back stairwells railings as I was told to every hour by a captain,  this becomes an impossible task when a spray disinfectant bottle is needed in the bathroom. The other bottle is to clean our rooms, day rooms, wipe down chairs and phones, microwaves, sink, walls, railings and much more. I don't understand why Sgt. Monty Ames here at Prairie du Chien engages in taking things away from us on his shift in which he is responsible for, we have no proper cleaning supplies or enough cleaning supplies during these dangerous times. Another thing is, we still have no mask, none at all, secretary Carr puts out this fancy memo about us getting 4 mask through canteen vendor, as of yet it's been nothing, we still have no mask,  none at all and I have no way of protecting myself against these Asymptomatic people that are more likely than not walking around.
Today I was called to Health Services to pick up medication, I had been looking forward all day to going outside for fresh air and a change of scenery, its what helps mentally during these trying times, but we have a Sergeant [Monty Ames] that name should sound familiar to you guys by now, who loves playing mental games,  he refused to allow me to go outside, he locked the door on me and said no its too late, well this was a lie on his part as the other side was called 5 minutes later. I advise him that my support system would be calling up her to report this.
I came in from medication, guys were still waiting for the call to go outside. I sign in, use the facilities, dropped my medications off in my room, and tells me no its too late, this was a lie on his part, I went to try and reason with him and he still just refuse and became more vindictive refusing me my time to go outside, I told him that the other side had not yet been called and even though I was right he got his little petty retaliation win. I'm asking that people please call because I'm tired of this man lying and retaliating, I've written to the Deputy Warden to no avail, and here's another thing, shifts are not communicating with each other because when we are told one thing by one shift his excuse is, well nobody told me anything, I didn't get the email so that's how it's going to be. We barely get to go outside.

JEFFERY POLAR (375899) 4/25/2020 10:43:44 PM No showers

General population can't shower due to a staff member having COVID-19  but kitchen workers and other inmate workers get showers.         
   Not only are we locked down now we don't get basic hygienic opportunities like a shower.
   As it is they were only letting us get a 5 minute shower twice a week and now we don't even get that. We are being punished for staff's actions. It's not like we can bring COVID-19 into the institution but yet we're the ones suffering.
   Oh and yeah I think the Governor is a coward and doesn't plan on cutting the prison population in half like he campaigned.
   He has a prime opportunity to release some of us under the guise of the pandemic but yet he does nothing.

JEFFERY POLAR (375899) 4/26/2020 2:53:34 AM COVID-19

Staff went cell to cell today April 24 and told us that we are on lockdown due to a staff member testing positive for the coronavirus.
    We were each issued 4 masks and said that every time we leave our cells we are required to wear the masks.
    We were told that until further notice we aren't allowed to leave our cells, no phones, showers, recreation, nothing. We were already on a modified lockdown but now they are being more restrictive.
    Just wanted to let someone know what's going on around here. Oh yeah quarterback first round, running back second round, are you for real? Come on Packers get it together!

ANON 4/26/2020 3:29:31 AM Covid-19

Coronavirus has made it into the institution (Greenbay). They've stopped all movement correctional officer's have to do everything, as they have us all locked in (everyone). Phones have currently been discontinued so I don't know when I'll be able to communicate. I'm sending this email to multiple person's that is why I'm speaking generally.
Please stay updated by communicating with the institution and please keep us in your prayer's.
Thank you,

ANON 4/26/2020 9:39:31 PM good afternoon

im currently a inmate at columbia correctional institution (cci)
im informing you about how cci staff is highly disrespecting inmates....also cci is short staff there no vocational programs prerelease groups / no rehabilitation programs  we only getting shower 2 time a week phone 1 times a day 20 minutes 4 times a week also they got inmates here sleeping on the floor and force feeding inmates doc need to provide us inmates with rehabilitation programs that will help not reoffinding
if you have any questions or concerns email me back here or write me at the address below

LYRON WILSON (361406) 4/26/2020 11:21:32 PM Someone you should talk to

Mr. Turk. I hope that this email finds you in the best of health and the highest of spirits. In these days of covid-19 I pray that you are shaft. Which leads me to the reason why I am writing you. My name is Lyron Wilson I am one of the co founders of #stuffthebox. The response to the covid-19 pandemic in the institution of Stanley has been poor. Some good steps that was done s the giving of every person in here mask, the providing of people in custody with 2 free phone calls, and even giving up free stamps(1 a week) and 5 free emails .50 a week. But this is still not solving the problem of mass incarceration or even to save lives of people. God forbids that the covid comes inside this institution. My question for you is what can I have my family do to turn up the heat on the powers that be. I had my family email the  governor and he had sent a stock letter not answering what was said.

ANON 4/26/2020 11:47:31 PM Memo

The DAI  administrator Makda Fessahaye, issued a memo dated 4-26-20, notifying us that she has suspended administrative code 302.41 (Extraordinary health conditions). "This will allow for processing without requiring PRC approval" the memo reads. Though we can still petition for release under this policy, the administration can consider us for release without the normal process if we fit a certain criteria. I guess if I has the authority to suspend DOC policy under these conditions, what other policies can the department suspend? Sun. 8:27p

ANON  4/27/2020 9:41:31 PM Hello

Hey, Ben.  I just received my first ever parole plan documents today, in preparation for my first parole hearing in June.  In talking with my social worker, she has no clue about Tate, the "memo" that he said would be forthcoming, etc.  It's as if the DOC doesn't know how to communicate within its own walls.  Crazy.
Anyway, I'm writing to glean any new information from you.  Covid has been the focus, and frankly, if this health emergency isn't enough for Evers to do something, I really don't see him doing anything for prison reform.
So, any word on the "memo" from Tate yet?  I need to take a program, and PRC won't send me until parole endorses me for it, therefore, I am eligible to be paroled time wise, but ineligible program wise.  Catch 22.
I have had no conduct reports, and I've been employed the entirety of my incarceration, and I've been at Badger State Industries for 4.5 years.
Also, I am going to be stuck with LaCost, unless she retires soon.  Do I have any hope on that front?  Will she be leaving?  If not, is Tate reviewing the parole decisions?  Since it's my first time seeing parole, I am hoping for a program endorsement with a 12 month defer.  I see PRC in July and I'm hoping that with an endorsement, I can be expedited for my program.
Thank you for your time.

[NOTE: the memo referred to here (and elsewhere) is the draft memo John Tate read from, but did not release to us at the February meeting of the parole commission, when we organized for almost 30 members of the public to attend and pressure the commission into action. Find notes here-
In the memo, Tate outlines his expectations for how various parts of the DOC, the Commissioners, will assist in moving people toward release. We have heard nothing about this draft memo being completed or distributed. When I called to ask about it, the admin at the commission did not seem to know what memo I was talking about, even though he was at the Feb 5 meeting. Tate has not returned my call. We also haven’t seen evidence of the kinds of changes Tate outlined in this memo taking place.
I do not know if Tate read the memo with good intentions that haven’t been realized, or if it was theatre to appease the attendees at the meeting. The parole commission has canceled their public meetings do to the pandemic, so we do not have opportunity to exert that kind of pressure again right now.]

JEFFERY POLAR (375899) 4/27/2020 11:47:37 PM Lockdown

We are being told today that we are no longer on lockdown. We were never given a memo stating that we ever were on lockdown and now we are all wondering if Madison really did issue a lockdown for GBCI on Friday or was it a lie by the institution to deny us movement, showers, and phones. Is it possible you could inquire about this. I feel like GBCI needs to be held accountable for their actions and not be allowed to give false information if in fact that is what happened. If they did lie about the lockdown what's stopping them from doing it in the future.

ANON 4/28/2020 12:57:31 AM Questions..

First off, in support to what you do I congratulate you & hope you are well always... Especially in times like this, I hope you plus those you Love, are taking care & living life as healthy as possible... Seriously...
I had got your information from a resources prison email informer, & in it they spoke of you as someone who understand the struggles of those like myself who are incarcerated & that you try your best to help incarcerated individuals through your foundation to motion against those who stand on keeping Us lock up, find ways back to Our Love ones... Thanks for all that you do...
I'm writing because I have been incarcerated since I was 17 years old, I was sentenced to 11 years in prison with 10 years of extended supervision, for a Home Invasion, I committed back then... I was not giving any programs such as ERP, or Boot Camp, to give me any hope of coming home early, so I have been doing straight prison time... I'm now on my last year, being 28 years old now, with only about 7 months til I hopefully make it back home to my Love ones, that I been away from since I been incarcerated... I have struggle in prison since I been doing time, ( behavior wise ), because I felt why bother, but I have a strong supportive Family support that has been standing strong by me, & I have been selfish in my ways... I'm a man now, I can admit my actions...
I explained all this to you because I Love my Family, just as the next man or person should, & now that I'm older wiser & believed to be a better individual, I want to be home with them so I can take care of them now & be there through these real struggling times...
Is there any information or supportive motions you might have that can help me try to get back to those who matter?!. Any information you are able to share I will gladly utilized because I can only now do is try my best to make ways when I'm already in a situation where I'm being told "no"... Understand?!.
Thanks, for any & everything you could probably do, & even if you can't, thanks for taking your time in reading this... Take care, remained well you as well as those you Love...

ANON 4/28/2020 1:15:31 AM Hey Ben…

Are judges being more lenient to people going for sentence modifications under post conviction motions due to the covid 19 pandemic?? I have a post conviction sentence modification due to new factors in my case, but I was just wondering since being non- violent and minimum custody with good conduct...will this covid 19  stuff help out???I've never had any violent crimes, no violent history and I'm low risk....
I talk to my lawyer on the 29th...but I'm not sure he has my best interests... Guess we'll what happen with the Evers press conference??? Wouldn't I be perfect candidate for release???I got rail roaded at court for petty crimes...
Let me know...thanx Ben... Tyyl ..

DAMANI NANTAMBU (594586) 4/28/2020 5:17:41 PM Covid-19 ????

I have a severe cough,if you don't hear from me I'm in quarantine, or worse...I have been telling them something wasn't right for weeks, this ain't good. I assumed my regular cough came back but this cough is 5x worse. My worse fears realized...

HARLAN RICHARDS (37975) 4/28/2020 8:01:40 PM COVID-19 Update

Tuesday morning
Hi Ben,
The good news is that there is no news. We remain COVID-19-free and things are still running the same way with somewhat limited movement and social distancing outside of our housing units.
Did I tell you that in addition to the two cloth masks we were also given 4 disposable masks? Still no need to wear them although some guys are wearing them (it's mandatory for servery workers and kitchen workers while at work).
The latest accommodation is that we are now being given one free stamped envelope every other week and 50¢ is being put on our kiosk accounts every week for sending emails - nice small gestures.
There is a rumor that the DOC is planning on switching from Keefe to Jpay for it's tablet/email provider. Here is a blog I wrote this week about it:

     H A R L A N    R I C H A R D S
    April 27, 2020
Jpay?  No Way!
The Stanley maintenance department is currently stringing wires in all the housing units. When I asked a worker what they were for, he said,  "Jpay." He meant that the DOC is getting ready to switch email/tablet providers from Keefe to Jpay. In the recent newsletter from The Community, DAI Administrator Makda Fessahaye was quoted as saying no decision has been made yet.
Which is it? Were the cables being laid intended for the switch to Jpay based on a new contract, or was the worker joking about what the new cables were for?
Jpay is notorious as one of the worst, most exploitive Prison Industrial Complex email/tablet providers currently doing business. Only the most repressive state prison systems contract with them.
Florida's DOC had a Keefe contract similar to the one Wisconsin DOC has. They switched to Jpay and forced all the prisoners to dispose of their Keefe tablets and accept a "free" Jpay tablet. We currently purchase our own tablets and purchase content (songs, games). We own it all. We never have to spend another penny to keep what we have. We pay 10¢ for emails. For some prisoners it's difficult to make the one-time purchase but once it's made, no further outlay is required. Additionally, our families can purchase tablets for us (many prisoners have 50% of their money confiscated for court cost; to purchase a tablet for $135 requires having over $270 placed into a prisoner's account).
Jpay charges a monthly fee for services on it's tablets (songs, games). That's how they recoup the cost of those "free" tablets. They get a guaranteed revenue stream with much higher profit by bleeding prisoners month after month. They also charge 35¢ per email. We can now send 10 emails for a dollar. Soon, it will be 3 for a dollar.
In the eyes of a DOC bureaucrat, it's a win-win. Everybody gets a tablet (never mind that they won't be able to use it) and they get a bigger kickback from the company. What could be better than that?
The only prisoners who will be able to do anything on a Jpay tablet are those few who have unlimited resources, i.e. family or friends willing to send them hundreds of dollars per month. The rest of us who have to scrape by on prison wages are screwed.
If the DOC is planning on changing vendors and forcing us to dispose of our tablets you'd think that they would let us know ahead of time so prisoners could stop buying music. But that wouldn't be fair to Keefe. Their revenues would fall off drastically because nobody is going buy songs to put on a tablet that will soon be confiscated.
I previously wrote about the hardships prisoners face with low wages and high canteen prices (see blog dated May 1, 2019). To recap, 75% of prisoners earn from zero to $20 every two weeks, not enough money to live on even with the DOC providing for most of our needs. Many prisoners have 50% of their money taken to pay court costs which means that anything they buy requires having twice the purchase price placed into their account.
If the price of a monthly subscription to Jpay music is $20 (which is the current rumor which I will try to verify) it will require $40 to listen to music for a month. At the end of the month there will be nothing to show for that expenditure. Under Keefe, paying $2 for a song may cost that same prisoner the equivalent of $4 but he will own that song and be able to listen to it from now on.
Emails cost 10¢ now, soon to go up to 35¢ but if 50% of your money is confiscated that new email will have an effective price of 70¢. How many poor prisoners living on prison wages will be able to afford that?
The DOC could do so much with the current system and refuse to do so. They could put open source word and spreadsheet programs on the tablets, make open source college textbooks available on the tablets and put the Fair Shake app (a reentry resource) on the tablets. None of that would cost anything. Instead, they are planning on putting a legal research program on the tablets - something very few prisoners would ever use.
For those who are unaware of the current state of prisoner-filed litigation, let me clue you in: it is virtually impossible for a prisoner to win anything in court these days regardless of the merits of his/her claims. The state courts are packed with conservative judges who will not rule in a prisoner's favor. Our conservative state supreme court has redefined our rights so narrowly that we have no chance of prevailing on the merits. Form has been elevated over substance where every prisoner gets his day in court and no prisoner is ever allowed to win. I have been a jailhouse lawyer for decades and have filed hundreds of legal actions. But I stopped a couple of years ago because it became obvious that judges will not interfere with prison official's discretion regardless of how arbitrary and inane their actions are. But I digress.
Getting back to the point of this blog, switching to Jpay for tablets is one of the worst things the DOC could do (even if the rumor that Jpay will provide us with 10 inch tablets is true).
Stay safe, stay well.

LYRON WILSON (361406) 4/28/2020 8:03:31 PM #Stuff the box
Lyron Wilson #361406
Stanley Correctional Institution
100 corrections Drive
Stanley, WI 54768-6500
James Foote #196400
100 Corrections Drive
Stanley, WI 54768-65000
Re: #Stuffthebox/ Potential Partnership of Mutual Benefit
To whom it may concern,
We the founders of #STUFFTHEBOX are writing you because of the need for prison reform and change in the state of Wisconsin. Our movement(which is included with this email)is geared towards shedding a light on Wisconsin's archaic justice system, thereby achieving change through the public pressuring Wisconsin's governing body.
Working in Wisconsin is a host of prison reform groups trying to bring about reform through specific causes. Some want change to come in the form of juvenile justice and others want respite for those who are parole eligible ect., but there is a fatal flaw in all of those. They include SOME but exclude OTHER.  #STUFFTHEBOX would like to propose 1 VOICE, 1 MISSION PRISON REFORM for ALL. Let's not stifle, dilute, or mute our common goal. We all understand that their is a need for fundamental change in the criminal justice system let's all fight for the same thing instead of fighting for different things.
#STUFFTHEBOX propose a potential partnership with anyone who is willing to subscribe to the 1 VOICE, 1 MISSION model. Through the host at a radio station called "WORT 89.9FM" community radio out of Madison Wisconsin, the DJ's there, one:"LADY L, G-MAN, and JOE JAMM", host a show called "Soulsessions"8:00-10:00am Saturdays and they are pushing our mission through constant dialogue over the air and have provided us with a website: We ask that we can share ideas and brain storm for future, also include us in any local and national endeavor.
If you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact any of the founder at the above address or you can contact the host of Soulsessions at the radio station @ or G Man @
Inclusion, our prayers are that you would work with us to speak for the voiceless. Thank you for your time in this matter.
#STUFFTHEBOX is a letter writing campaign/movement about prison reform and he much needed changes still needed for the stat of Wisconsin; our mission is as follows:
1.) To present a unified front of prisoner, family and friends of prisoners, and community activist to obtain prison reform and change.
2.) To remind elected officials that WE (Incarcerated people) are loved and that WE matter.
3.) To get publicly through media, print, family, friends, and word of mouth.
4.) On the 8th and 24th of every month, we'll send letter out to Politicians, public figures, etc with our concerns. On the 11th and 27th, our loved one will conduct "CALL-INS" of said person asking:
A) As a tax paying citizen I would like to know your views and opinion on prison reform and change.
B) In receiving letters from myself and other concerned citizens about prison reform and Change I'd like to know if you would support the following prison incentive based ideas for prisoners to earn release through:
*Good time
*Work Study
*Program Participation
*Prisoners who has been incarcerated for 15 years or longer with good conduct to be granted early release (demonstrated by way of conduct)
Please have everyone you know go to CHANGE.ORG and sign the on line petition to repeal and/or replace truth in sentencing in Wisconsin
L. Wilson

ANON 4/29/2020 12:45:36 AM Mixed Messaging
On 4/27/2020 in a electronic request to the Warden's office I wrote. 8:44 AM
Who do we submit Petitions for release due to Extra Ordinary Health Conditions to now since the hearing process has been bypassed?
The Warden's office responded: 4/272020 10:53AM
The process to petition for geriatric/extraordinary health conditions as outlined in DAI Policy 302.00.13 TIS Petition to Modify Bifurcated Sentences for Geriatric/Extraordinary Health Condition is still intact. Per memo from DAI Administrator Makda Fessahaye dated 4/23/20 suspension affects the hearing portion of these petitions only. The suspension of hearings does not impact the ability of a person to pursue a petition. Based on this, the rest of the process outlined in this policy still applies.
L. Parouille, Warden's Secretary
This makes no sense at all and is desiged to be a roadblock to the process, here's why. What she states mean suspension is piecemeal. Remove the hearing requirement but leave the exclusions and criteria. How does that register for the parties affected by the COVID-19 emergency that have a Class B felony that are now considered a low risk to the community or with a low risk of recidivism and diabetes and hypertension?
Additionally, it is counter intuitive to proceed as if hurdles exist when the plain language of the memo clearly state the code is suspended completely and not portions.
I simply wanted to know who we submit the petitions to other than PRC because the only purpose they would serve at this time is an impediment. Personally I sense a dissention in the rank and file as these people at Stanley are loyalist and are proud to let you know as much. Social Workers saying, "Oh you to", to a man that has diabetes, hypertension and service-connected diseases that places him at a high risk of contraction the COVID-19 virus. I truly believe it shows a complete and utter disconnect to cultural assessments of at risk individuals and perhaps glaringly obvious indifference to those affected.
From the plain language of the code we all got extremely excited.
I was grounded when the Unit Manager ask me if I, " Had Hope" and laughed that I thought suspension of the code meant people the Center for Disease Control outlined precipitous conditions of COVID-19 as hypertension and diabetes. She said it was not a medical emergency and lots of people have diabetes and hypertension. She was insensitive, cold  and disconnected.

HARLAN RICHARDS (37975) 4/30/2020 12:57:31 PM Classification

Thursday morning
Hi Ben,
I saw PRC today. They turned me down for transfer to reduced security. I asked them to continue my hearing until Tate's memo is issued in May and they refused. I'm pretty sure they won't give me an early hearing when his memo is issued so I'm stuck until after my October parole hearing which in turn means another year after that to get to reduced security - unless Tate reads my letter and reduces my current defer. Unless something changes, I'm still years away from possible release even though I'm 66 years old and have been in prison over 35 years.
Thus far, Tate has done nothing meaningful except parole prisoners from community custody and minimum.
Stay safe, stay well.

ANON 4/30/2020 11:11:37 PM 04-30-2020# URGENT

The Warden, Deputy Warden, and the Security Director of Columbia Correctional Institution were all fired today.
An email was sent out to all staff letting them know it happened this morning. The inmate population is majority on lockdown, but I found out from an inmate worker just a little while ago. I confirmed it by asking an inmate on another unit. He asked staff over there.
Sure enough, he said staff over there got the email too.

NICK BROSZ (267041) 4/30/2020 11:35:32 PM Parole 4/30/20

Heard from a friend of mine in Oakhill yesterday. He said drankawicz is doing parole at Oakhill now. When Tate was there he was releasing people. Tate made release screech to a halt. Lacoste is doing parole at centers. That means nobody will be paroled. The commissioner doesn't see any parole decisions under a 12 month defer. Or if one of them recommends a grant. That means dranawicz and lacoste can give 11 month defers until guys near there discharge dates. And since tate isn't confirmed, there isn't nothing he can do about it. Which is why the Republicans won't confirm him.
So in their words old law continues to be stuck in prisons. All the releases that some high risk inmates are receiving are all truth in sentencing. But because some guy has 12 years in but he is 60 with a history of pneumonia he gets released? Meanwhile, I've got 25 years in. Not had a conduct report in nearly 21 years. But because I'm fairly healthy and not yet 60 I'm screwed? How does that work?
Come on corona!

DAMANI NANTAMBU (594586) 5/1/2020 7:17:31 PM What i say ?

I told you all,on the 16th,that after the two white supremacist went over the fence That they would frog March the top brass,right on out of here...then at 3:04pm someone down stairs, had my neighbor kick on my wall,to wake me up to tell me The top brass had been walked out of here.I told him,I'll believe it when my activist family in Madison and Milwaukee confirms it and went back to sleep. Then 45- minutes later,WPR radio confirmed it!!!!!!
Sue Novak(warden)Lucus Weber(deputy warden)and Guske(security Director) and several supervising officer's, white shirt and a Sgt. (A Puerto Rican sister with Kids)all gone,for falling down on the job.those who will replace them I told you will be some heavy handed hillbillies, they won't come in here,bearing gifts,that's Not how this works. We're already locked down 23/7 before the lock down,what Else can they take you ask? Plenty, like music, in the music room,once a week,hobby in the hobby room, meditation classes, from outside folk teaching mindfulness, UW-Madison sponsored Forgiveness groups ect. So it ain't over,you All will need to be just as vigilant, as you were when you were protesting out front, Or in front of Kevin Clark's house for more humane covid-19 preparations (just so You know I received 2-washable face mask today, and I'm certain its because of You all's selfless advocacy on our behalf, I will pay it forward for the rest of my life I promise).
You know they say it's the devil you don't know who is most dangerous, because The one you know, you know what to expect, and you can plan for the assault on Sensibilities you know are coming...
In an uneasy anticipation for the next cast of Devil's,
Damani Muata Nantambu
(3-deaths, that were all preventable in one month wasn't enough to get them removed, but an escape, where no one lost their life was, tells you with out equivocation what our life is worth to those in Madison....)

ANON 5/1/2020 11:55:31 PM Call PDCI & Better Business Bureau

       Ben Turk
       The Community
XXX, sweetheart once again I only get to speak to you on the phone maybe two or 3 times a day because of the dumb ideas developed by Prairie du Chien. No hanging around waiting for them to fix the problem, the problem is that they need to update or upgrade the phone system, hat was the point of this new phone contract? Ever since this new phone contract came into play here , every person has been having problem with the phone, you and I were on the phone for about 3 minutes and then it hangs up. PDCI Captain Hassel is in charge of the phone matter, we complain to no avail. Now I have to wait until after 9pm to call you again that's BS!!!!!! So I'm asking for a series of phone zaps to Captain Hassel to take place including but not limited to the Better Business Bureau and this new phone company letting them know what's going on because this happens every time, some days the phone goes out all over and the other day a few of us were ordering canteen on the phone and it wiped out our entire order, we did it again and it still screwed our entire order up. So instead of waiting for something to happen I'm asking/begging that people start calling so they can finally fix the problem once and for all. I mean hell we are in Wisconsin and PDCI won't even adjust their antenna for us to get actual Wisconsin channels, instead we are force to watch Iowa news instead of Wisconsin so we know what's actually happening in our state. So please call and complain to both Captain Hassel and BBB. Ask Captain Hassel why isn't this problem yet fixed and why isn't there an updated system to help stop and avoid these issues.

ANON 5/2/2020 4:35:33 AM CCI lockdown

See news on CCI lockdown (news ABC) once again the institution is under a group punishment lockdown . we have already been on lockdown now there is absolutely 0 movement look we that are prisoners have little to no say any longer about if we do are time peacefully or stressfully. I understand the issues with the virus and no one wants to catch that at the same time obviously by what is happening in other states keeping someone locked in the cell24 hours a day causes more harm. This place is crazy you damned if you do and damned if you don't.
The wardens were switched out but the policies that she put into place and all the things she took were not replaced to the institution so we do not have day room intramurals we still have to choose between haircuts and recreation when one has nothing to do with the other. We are locked in our cells in CCI more then wspf   see the problem with this is 70% of prisoners in CCI have been denied wspf or have a contraindication either mentally or medically not to be sent to the old supermax so the powers that be counter that by making CCI more restrictive because the lawsuit was about boscobel it wasn't about CCI so they feel it doesn't apply to us in CCI but suit was actually what brought a lot of individuals to CCI.
For instance I was allegedly involved in a group incident while in wci 2 days latter I was sent to wspf I was denied wspf 2 times in the past because of mental health screening and on this occasion I was never screened just stripped,cuffed and sent out when I arrived there after talking to litigator Mr d. Jones-el I was notified the doc had broken agreement with courts by not screening me and once I filed ice I was emergency transferred to CCI. 
So the reason for telling this long story is if Madison say I am not fit for a stay is wspf how can you u make another prison more restrictive then wspf and place me there (CCI) . this was a peaceful place till these unit managers got a warden they control and started taking everything now its haywire. I will just keep repeating myself every time I get on this blog there wasn't that many problems here before they took everything not many fights ,assaults,Houdini's, suicides,homicides crazy times in the corrupt.c.I
I remain concrete boss

WILLIAM LEDFORD (80495) 5/2/2020 10:13:36 PM Some Success

Good Morning,
As most of you are likely already aware, Warden Susan Novak is now gone, and e Deputy Warden Lucas Weber and Brian Gustky, Security Director are apparently "on leave" for now - but neither of them, especially Weber, should ever be allowed back into corrections under any circumstances.  It would be productive of the ICRS core could be replaced, but he problem with that is the whole system operates in a culture of institutional dishonesty, bias, and corruption.  As long as the DOC/employees are allowed to control and be involved in the ICRS it will never change, unfortunately.  The DOC is inherently incapable of policing itself in any aspect or level; and it needs to be policed more than any other government agency or entity.
Hope ya'll are staying safe and well. Have a good day!
Bill Ledford

ANON 5/3/2020 6:15:31 PM 5-3-20 @ 9:04AM

My name is XXX and am currently incarcerated at Oshkosh Correctional Institution. I was informed by a professional contact of mine that Ben Turk had an article in the news paper about Covid-19 and about the releases that might or may happen. I had asked my professional contact to copy and mail me the article. Upon me receiving her letter the article was not in the envelope. I had asked to see the envelope (as they take the envelope and give you the contents) and it was not in there.
So I proceeded to ask numerous staff members and they had said: maybe it had fell out of the envelope.!
My belief as well as my professional contact think that maybe the staff or security does not want us to know about FFUP or what it has information about. I have been here at this institution for about 5½ years and know how things work here at the institution. Items do not mysteriously fall out of envelopes and if they did take the article of the envelope the staff member who took it out is supposed to deliver a "Notice of non-delivery" and then it would give their reason.
I have also found out that the DOC has an Internal Affairs Dept.
The contact name is Chrissy Preston.
Thank you for listening and hopefully someone can correct the department

[NOTE: The DOC has been talking about the creation of an Internal Affairs Division since our first meetings with the new administration. Prisoners’ complaints about staff are routinely dismissed, obstructed and ignored, because the people doing the reviews work alongside and are friendly with the staff who have complaints filed against them. The Division of Internal Affairs has been offered as a solution to this problem.
FFUP’s position is that no one within the DOC will hold DOC staff to account honestly or adequately. We prefer the restoration of an ombudsman, who is appointed by the governor and more independent of DOC influence.
The Division of Internal Affairs is not on the DOC website, and we haven’t seen any public announcement of it’s existence, but Christine Preston has been the head of the DOC’s Prison Rape Elimination Act (PREA) Department, which often fails to address instances of staff sexually assaulting their captives. We have observed an increasing trend of staff doing violent body cavity searches as a form of punishment and torture. The PREA office has done nothing about it.]

JEFFERY POLAR (375899) 5/4/2020 1:35:31 AM Face masks and social distancing

GBCI is a time bomb waiting to happen. Today I had a property pass and to my horror only about 5% of people I saw were wearing face masks or social distancing.
   There were staff, guards and other institution staff, working with inmates or talking to them and none of them were wearing masks. Green Bay is a hot spot right now and people are a symptomatic so it's a good probability that GBCI is about to become infested with COVID-19.

MELVIN BOONE (89173) 5/4/2020 3:57:31 AM #WeAreOne

While states rolled back draconian sentencing guidelines, curtailed prison populations, and ended construction of multimillion dollar prisons, Wisconsin continued its march forward.  Wisconsin now incarcerates  22,000+  prisoners and we are now facing a crisis of biblical proportion as COVID-19 dangles  menacingly over prisons across the country. It's also poised to bankrupt our state leaving citizens unemployed, homeless and desperate for food. Meanwhile, Wisconsin taxpayers will foot the bill for housing, feeding, clothing and paying the medical expenses of thousands of prisoners who--if not for politicians waging their election on maintaining a fearful citizenry--would not be wards of the state.
The writing is on the wall as  States announce the release of "nonviolent"prisoners. But this nonviolent caveat is itself symptomatic of a tough-on-crime era that got us where we are today--fearful of releasing ANYONE, regardless of their crime, who earned a second chance lest they encounter public backlash. While it may be politically palatable to announce the release of nonviolent prisoners, they may not be any less violent than those convicted of violent crimes decades ago. In the end, the era of COVID-19 may force disinclined politicians  to undo the prison industrial complex they created, regardless of the consequences.
By Melvin Boone

DEWITT FAULKNER (398508) 5/4/2020 9:23:37 AM Vengeance is the Lords!
You see how in time everything catches up to a man. All of the violence, evil, and "I'm going to do what I want to," leads a man down the wrong road. I'm so glad that these top prison official are gone as of now. This prison has suffered a lot under the authority of D.W. He has come down on us whether we were dead in the right, we still got punished. I hope this new Warden have a new frame of mind that's open on both sides so we can get somethings done around here. Like programs which works, schooling higher learning. If they're going to continue to keep us housed here at lease allow us to complete some programs which will help us towards are preparation once we're released.
I told you I wrote up a program, big brother sort of program that help, motivate, and inspire young prisoners with behavior problems. Instead of allowing them an opportunity to join a gang. I'm trying to get this prison pod cast started, so we can show the community we can work alongside of them with out problems. Maybe we can get the guards off bs and view us as human being also. There's so much rebuilding  got to do and number 1 is to rebuild the respect between staff and prisoners so we can all get along inside this Gated Community. Without structure, communication, and a respectful foundation, CCI will not stand. And soon we're going to have to trust each other because all is lost, due to this last staff top supervisors.
Well get back to this coming up meeting my sister said she will participate on my behalf she says but keep in mind she do work and she may not be able to attend every time. My daughters do want to help. Thank y'all for having my back and standing with me again whatever y'all think I need to do I'll do it. I plan to get as tight as I can and work with this new Warden Larry Fusch. So again be safe for if they come for you today they come for me tomorrow. Your beloved lil brother King DoC

DAMANI NANTAMBU (594586) 5/4/2020 8:25:31 PM Covid-19
I just seen on national news,that Tenn. DOC,is testing every inmate in their custody... Why can't that??? They said prison activist forced their hand...and only do we not get testing, Carr sends 150 cop's in here,from a half dozen prisons,to expose us to the virus.)-: today! 5/4/20 Time: 11:59 am
Struggle on,

DAMANI NANTAMBU (594586) 5/4/2020 8:29:36 PM Massive search and destroy mission
Fam its all bad, may be 150 cops, and police dogs up in our cells!!!! Looking for I don't know what.

JEFFERY POLAR (375899) 5/6/2020 3:59:31 AM Covid-19 testing

Does anybody know why the doc isn't doing mass testing in the doc? We have confirmed covid-19 here at GBCI but still no testing!

ANON 5/6/2020 12:35:32 PM Good morning Ben!!!!
Hey Ben I'm not sure if Peg told you about me but my name is XXX. I'm going to be working with FFUP upon my release next year in april of 2021. I only have about 11 months left to go!! I want to thank you for what you are doing for FFUP and for Peg!! She's a very hard and dedicated worker and cannot wait to be working with her. I am excited to be working with you as well!! I'm not sure if you'll get this email because of the staff here. But when or if you do I'll be looking forward to hearing from you. I'm excited to finally be able to make a difference in doing something positive for once. I've experienced first hand the mistreatment of inmates. And the conditions of these prisons are a nightmare!! Well tell Peg i say hi and that i tried to call her when i was finally able to get access to the phone but i think she was busy. I know she's been swamped and i know she's been upset and probably stressed about this new lame Ever's administration. I personally believe Evers is a coward. He has a great opportunity to release prisoners during the pandemic. Shoot Minnesota's governor has the same Republican blocks as evers from the "Lame Duck" sessions and that Governor released non-violent inmates and inmates with less than 3 months to serve. Theres a lot Evers and the D.O.C can do without passing new legislation. Well i hope and pray you are doing good and are in good health. I look forward to hearing from you soon. God Bless!!!!

Sincerely XXX

ANON 5/6/2020 4:37:31 PMThis is some bull-crap!

They searched our cells with some K-9s from the Columbia county sheriff's department on Monday and now today they're shaking us down looking for drugs and contraband even though they came up with nothing on Monday. These lockdowns and strip searches are oppressive and psychologically draining.
If they come for you tonight, they will come for me in the morning. Stay focused, All power to the people. Shindano Jendelea!

DEWITT FAULKNER (398508)5/6/2020 4:37:31 PMHigh Risk(Covid-19)

May 5, 2020
  For the last two days we have been on lock down, cells searched and dogs brought in to sniff out the unknown. Some of us have not been able to use the phone, kiosks and we still have not been allowed outside our cells to at lease have time away from the guys we share cells with. On May 4th we were told we were on lockdown then informed later by an officer, that we shouldn't have even been on lockdown. I guess this was a way for officers again to mistreat us because 3 high ranking prison official was placed on administrative leave following the prison escape of two prisoners. See NBC news...
  I found out yesterday a friend of mine lost his daughter and her mother in a car crash in L.A. He's going through so much right now and these childish and psychological mind games continues by staff. There's no more social distancing by staff, most of them aren't wearing face mask nor encouraged to do so, and the inmate workers aren't being allowed to clean tiers, wipe down cell doors, and just the other day he inmate janitor was written up for giving a inmate cleaning supplies to clean his cell after his toilet overflowed with who knows what (xyz). We are being treated as if We are responsible for two prisoners breaking the rules, prison officials being on administrative leave, or this covid-19 quarantine which was ordered by the DOC, DHS, DAI and Governor Tony Evers. That continue to pour salt in our wombs. We still have not seen our people, love one's, wife, kids etc.
We still haven't been allowed fresh air while other institutions are allowing prisoners at their facilities to have recreation. We have been patient, respectful, and have abide by the rules and regulations despite being mistreated.
  We are still fearful for our safety and have health concerns surrounding this CoronaVirus. I fear that people are forgetting about how this is affecting prisoners physically and psychologically. What do we supposed to do when staff continue with this malarkey? I've written the new active Warden Larry Fuchs, the units manager who's in charged of this unit and also DAI Fessehaye, about my concerns here at CCI; she still has time to respond.
Prisoners are starting to become angry, kicking on doors trying to get answers but no one wants to be truthful. Its like they have wage war on us when we haven't done anything to provoke this behavior.
Why are We being treated like animals, inhuman, or like we spreaded this virus when we know its them who aren't following government safety guide lines ordered by Secretary Kevin Carr.
Can you please look into this matter, and I don't know if you will receive this email that's why I wrote you this same information just in case they reject this message and not allow you to receive this. I'll send the copy to Madison to show them proof of what we go through with CCIs staff. Only if they don't let you receive it and allow you to respond. I might just be paranoid because they denied two of my emails for know reason that violated any rule, and lately I've not gotten emails in a few days when I'm use to receiving emails back to back. Thank you very much, as I await your reply. Sincerely your beloved brother, King DoC

WILLIAM LEDFORD (80495) 5/6/2020 10:19:31 PMRetaliation

Hey Folks,
Just a heads up that I will be "off line" for a few days.  The reason being is that the guard that I recently wrote up for harassment for misusing my name, making fun of my disability, and intentionally slam the trap doors and got investigated (and protected, of course) just wrote a conduct report against me for lying about an employee, disruptive conduct, and disrespect, alleging (and lying) that while at med pass I was talking to other prisoners in a "loud" voice about staff not having to wear masks, but that we are expected to, that these comments were supposedly directed towards him specifically (which they weren't - and I was talking to one prisoner standing directly behind me, XXX), and that he told me that if I had any concerns I  should write a complaint.  To which I allegedly replied that I had been writing complaints longer than he had been alive.  Even if accurate  (but isn't) they do not constitute a violation of any of the offenses charged.  But that doesn't matter because the practice and history here is that they always find you guilty of something in order do back up the guard - the supervisor who makes the decision on the conduct report is not only a colleague but is also in the guard's chain-of-command.
They "offered" a "plea bargain" that if I pled guilty I would get 7 days cell confinement with loss of electronics.  I said not a chance, I am not validating the lies and retaliation of is guy who also is well-known for his practice of lying and writing bogus conduct reports.  But, they will find me "guilty" no matter what and, at the least, give me the 7-days cell confinement with loss of electronics - though it will usually be more because they generally retaliate for refusing to accept their supposedly generous offer!
Anyway that is what is happening.   Take care, be well and stay well!

ANON 5/6/2020 11:21:31 PM Update  C.C.I. confiscating legal material

The D.O.C. and C.C.I. staff are stripping inmates of there Legal Material. Obstruction of Justice and blatantly stealing the inmates active case files and research. On May 4 2020 and ongoing as of today C.C.I. is retaliating against inmates because of the administration's involvement in assisting inmates to escape. Several staff members that were indirectly or directly involved are on leave. Every inmates property is being searched and if the unit manager feels you can't have your legal material they take it away from you. They decide what you may or may not have to legally challenge your active case. I was told that's all you get and if you don't like it file a complaint. Where the legal material goes to is unknown and there is no way of tracking what happens to it. Some have court deadlines and they don't care. This behavior is against the law, the wis.stat. and DAI procedures and policys and most definitely criminal.

RON SCHILLING (32219) 5/9/2020 3:37:31 PM Open communiqué.
050720 (excerpt)

Secretary Carr recently made comments to my WISDOM friend about the future of prison reform after the COVID-19 crises subsides.  I believe he could and needs to do LOT more; it's really not that difficult -- nor should he be the least bit apprehensive about going forward with Evers' campaign agenda to reduce the prison population by 50%.  I say he needn't be so apprehensive because it's really not on him.  He shouldn't have any apprehension whatsoever about following Evers' campaign promises and doing the right thing for the right reasons; that's what he was hired for.  And what if the pandemic crisis doesn't end for another couple of years?  The COVID-19 spread is nowhere near over; the second wave will be on its way with a vengeance now that people are carelessly mingling again.  Christ, they're still discovering 23,000 new cases a day in the USA.
My WISDOM friend has been checking the COVID-19 statistics on the DOC website, keeping tabs on the purported numbers.  But I'm afraid it's not the most accurate place to assess the level of infection throughout the system, especially because they're not even testing for it.  The laser temperature test is worthless because of the asymptomatic nature of this particular Coronavirus.  At many other institutions, county jails and lockup facilities -- like the House of Correction, or Kenosha Detention Center, MSDF, OSCI, CCI, WCI, and the Department of Community Corrections, et al. -- guards and civilians came in for weeks without showing symptoms, spreading it around to everyone they touched and came near.  And there are numerous cases in every county surrounding this joint, and many more were being transferred around from county jails and detention centers before they actually halted transfers.  It is grossly irresponsible for them not to do real blood tests on everyone incarcerated before trying to convince the public only a few have been positive.  In prisons in other States across the nation where they are actually blood testing, there are many thousands of positive cases, and also thousands of deaths associated with COVID-19.  WDOC's disingenuous junk statistics are baseless.
I've learned long ago about holding my breath, after turning every possible shade of blue, but it taught me a lot about the power of hope and prayer, or the focus of energy, rather.  And sometimes there is no other viable option but to keep kicking the can up in their faces.
We need to have civilians submit Open Records requests, pursuant to §19., Wis.Stats., to determine how many and when transfers were made from various county jails to Dodge, and then how many of those were transferred out to other DOC facilities before the transfer restrictions were implemented.  Those should be public records.
Something lighter, I was awestruck earlier this evening while watching a PBS astronomy documentary.  It instantly took me back to some marvelous experiences in the jungles of numerous countries throughout SE Asia.  And every time it was the same awesome experience; being immersed in total darkness, and seeing so many thousands of stars that are not usually visible.  Much later, while at Black River Falls Minimum -- out in the middle of nowhere -- the same phenomenon occurred when the security lights would malfunction.  I actually had a sore kink in my neck from looking up at the sky for so long, identifying various constellations and reminiscing about doing that with my ex.  Amazing where my mind goes sometimes.  It's the little things which seem to save my somewhat spluttering sanity.. .  .
Be well.  Be safe.  Ooo, and share this hug with Peg when you see her.  (::)

[NOTE: Ron Schilling’s story was told as part of our May 5, COVID Compassion Campaign press conference. View it here:]

ANON 5/10/2020 9:17:31 AM Cci
We at cci have been on a cold diet since the 16th. We receive the same thing everyday a pb&j milk, and small package of cereal for breakfast, either a cold hamburger chips and a apple for lunch or some casserole which sit out in the day room 30 to 40 minutes before they serve it and dinner coldcuts carrots a milk and fruit this is it we are not being treated well. Earlier today on may 5th for lunch they tried to give us a apple milk and a burger NBS then provocateur made a comment which people started holding their traps & kicking the door then 20 minutes later he comes by with chips.
Unit manager walker and captain juelson directed the Sgt to not do medical showers today or regular showers. They stopped showers in the middle of showers earlier this morning for no apparent reason. This is a regular shower day prisoners have not showered since Saturday. We have been denied access to the phone for the last 2days no phone no kiosk no showers since Saturday. The unit manager cannot not justify letting workers out to work but not letting people out one by one who have medical daily showers. And letting guys out one by one who have no showered since Saturday.  At this fine these are the conditions of our confinement on unit five in the Columbia's corruption institutions its 4:29 pm and we had coldcuts carrots orange and popcorn for dinner

ANON 5/10/2020 6:37:42 PM Legal Material Taken
C.C.I. unit managers are confiscating inmates legal material. The week of 05/04 in what appears to be retaliation against the inmates for the escape from weeks earlier every inmates property was packed up and searched. Unit manager McMartin searched, read and confiscated inmates Legal Material. It does not matter if you have an Active case with court deadlines or not, your legal material was taken. I don't even know where my legal material is or if the unit manager has thrown it away. The rules allow inmates to have legal material, DOC 309.155(5) and DOC 309.20(3)(f). Inmates have to follow these rules but unit manager McMartin does not and she decides what legal material if any we can have. Take this to the Secretary and Governor for answers.

ANON 5/11/2020 5:39:31 PM Clemency form
(Peace be unto you)
                                         3P.M. Monday-  11, 2020 May
My name is XXX. and first I would like to thank you for the great work you are doing for those of us imprisoned through out the state of Wisconsin. I share your post with those around me. Please continue to keep up the fight. If there is any contributions I can make toward your efforts, please advise.
In the email I received from you today you mentioned, "Clemency wavier" request forms or template. To contact you for one, if one did not have one.
Can you forward it to me, or something on how one should look? That way one can complete it and, God willing, get it to where it needs to go.
I leave you as I greeted you, in peace, AsSalaamAlaikum.

ANON 5/11/2020 7:45:31 PM "kirby" update
apparently the Kirby case which was addressing act 355 and the money scam was dismissed because Kirby went home. we don't know much but we learned this from another newsletter which was scarce on details. your newsletter makes no mention of this or  the state continues to take our money arbitrarily. this is the single most important thing to many of us. we need to come together and figure out a solution. the lesson were learning here from the state is to "do unto others however you please." when you're in power, take advantage. corrections my a$$.

[NOTE: “Kirby” refers to a lawsuit against the DOC over their practice of taking 50% or more from every deposit into some people’s canteen accounts under Act 355. Act 355 allows the DOC to determine how much to steal from people, so this a practice that supposedly progressive members of the new administration like Makda Fessahaye or Kevin Carr can change in a matter of minutes. They just have to say “we would like to steal less from people”. We’ve demanded they do so repeatedly, especially in the face of the pandemic, where the funds they’re stealing could be used to purchase healthy food, soap, etc. They have made no moves toward doing the right thing on this issue, and so, people are left with suing them more.]

ADAM RANEY (322770) 5/11/2020 7:47:30 PM racial politics, not cool - please post w/name
I can't stand tony evers, I stop short of saying I hate tony evers,  but to claim he's a racist because you don't like what he does or says is just inflammatory and irresponsible. you only add to our problems here and in the world by perpetuating this white against black dialog. and there's no "connection to racist politics" for the two men who escaped. I know them both personally and neither of them have ever been described as racist. I know them to be both very fair minded and stand up individuals. or are they merely guilty of being white? do you fact check? do you care if you hurt inmates by the things you say? do you realize that we all, white and black, are targeted during these shakedowns and I got no favor shown to me or my property because I'm white and neither does anyone else, everyone gets there stuff trashed and thrown out. why not drop the racial dialog and throwing gas on the racial bonfire which is the news media and focus on the real problems which are rich vs. poor or powerful vs. powerless instead of furthering the anti-white agenda.  you need to check your facts because there's no shortage of people who will feed you false, deliberately inflammatory information. now we will see if you're willing to publish\repost everything or if you're going to be selective to friendly responses that confirm and affirm your message.

[NOTE: this message is responding to part of my last mass message. I respectfully disagree with Mr Raney’s views. It is my practice to believe people when they tell me that they witness or experience racist behavior, which is what I was told about the escapees. The prison system harms everyone it touches, and concentrates that harm on low income and working class communities, but also especially focuses it’s violence against communities of color. It is shot through with racial disparities and biases, and if the Governor was not racist, he would have put a higher priority on testing, releasing and otherwise mitigating the harm covid19 presents to incarcerated people.  Mr Raney and other white people caught up in the DOC experience greater harm because racists are happy to use prison to hurt Black and Brown people.]

ANON 5/12/2020 1:55:32 AM How Is This Fair?
I have a practical question? How is it fair that A and B Class felons are always excluded from any considerable change. Consider this scenario, Class C felons face 40 years (20 yrs in 20 yrs out). I am a  B class felon  sentenced to 18 yrs in 2009 and after having served 11 yrs and 4 months of that eighteen year sentenced at the age of 54. I was told you are ineligible to be considered for release based solely on the class of the felony. As opposed to the C class felon with 15 years left after serving only  5 years of the bifurcated sentence you are told you are eligible for release? Mind you he is still high risk, but still being considered for release. How is that fair? I am currently low risk with a low program need, by being overlooked for people with lower class felonies, but with more time remaining than me. Where is the efficacy in this ongoing slight?

ANON 5/12/2020 12:51:31 PM 5/11/20,1:Pm
I Recently Got Ur Info From a Legal News Letter Unsure Of Exactly What
It's that U Do,But I'm Currently In the Process Of Trying to Resolve Several
Legal Issue's that Include Helping Obtain the Release Of A Old Man Who
Has Been In Max Prison For Almost (40)Years,And Has Never Been to
Camp Even doe he Isn't A Serious Treat to Anyone, And Has Had A Couple Of Heart Attacks, Along  With trying to Expose Some Of the Financial Corruption Currently Going on here @ Wspf that Include Falsifying Records In Order to Literally Steal Inmates Money,As Well as
Adding on Court Obligations that don't Really Exist In order to cover up
There theft/In vessel meant Crime's Which Have Been going on Since my
Arrival Here back in August 2017,And Only Continues to get Worst!
If U Could Get back to me Addressing this Issue's or Explaining to me Exactly What it's that U Do I Would Really Appreciated!
Thank u!

PRECIOUS WARD (280069) 5/12/2020 12:57:41 PM Publish "PLEASE PUBLISH" (May 12, 2020)
Precious Ward#
RGCI/P.O. Box #925
Redgranite, WI 54970
There is a new Bill called the Second Look Act of 2019, which is pending
before the Council of the District of Colombia, it will give those deemed
to be "violent criminals" an opportunity to reduce their sentences after
serving 15 years in prison for some of the most violent offenses. On March 26, 2019 , Councilmember Charles Allen at,  Chairperson of the committee on the Judiciary and Public Safety , held a public hearing to consider Bill 23-0127, the "Second Look Amendment Act of 2019."  This proposed legislation will allow a defendant to be released after serving 15 years in prison, regardless of their original sentence imposed, if  an assigned Judge determines that the defendant is no longer a threat and or a danger to the community or to any person (s) ,  despite the nature of the offense.
More than 70 defendants have filed motions for sentence reductions or  are in the process of doing so. To date, approximately 17 motions have been ruled on and only one petition has been denied. Of the 16 motions granted , 12 cases involved murders , two cases involved rapes , one case involved armed robbery. Studies show that only one in three will reoffend within three years of release.
Amid  COVID-19 pandemic the state of Wisconsin should seriously look into adopting this Bill for its 22,000 plus inmates many of which who are great risk for contracting the virus and  have been convicted of violent offenses. The conversation of prison reform of any real success cannot possibly be had without including violent offenders if the true objective is to embrace prison reform and shave the astronomical numbers of the inmates that are being housed throughout the state of Wisconsin.
I believe that states like Wisconsin should stop excluding violent offenses
from criminal justice reform policies. Categorically excluding people convicted of violent offense seriously undermines the impact of
otherwise laudable... reforms. Troubling , these carve-outs also further disenfranchise and  demonstrate policymakers reluctance to make better choices , based on current evidence , than their "tough on crime" era predecessors. In order to dramatically reduce the prison population as Gov. Tony Evers promoted during his run to become Governor of Wisconsin and make our communities safer, our federal and state legislators must roll back counterproductive, draconian penalties for both violent and nonviolent offenders alike, and invest in alternatives to incarceration and violence prevention strategies that can effect real change. The "Second Look Act" adaptation would serve as an incentive
based form of early release  and it would give offenders something
to work hard for.
Governor Tony Evers was quoted as saying "We have to think about the
moral obligation we have to make sure that people that have struggled and made bad decisions get back in our society as quickly as possible",
in an interview with CBS 58's affiliate in Madison, WISC-TV News 3 Now.
What happened to his positive outlook on making changes to  a broken prison system operating at more than 130 percent of its capacity. Adopting The Second Look Act or a Bill similar in scope. It's about time
for Wisconsin to take its real first step in the direction of combating
our prisons overcrowding and giving the men and women who deserve
to have a second chance, a Second Look! #ADOPTTHESECONDLOOKACTFORWISCONSIN.lish

PRECIOUS WARD (280069) 5/12/2020 9:39:31 PM RE: FULL LOCKDOWN

So,  as of 3:30 pm today May 12, RGCI was placed on a full lockdown
as a result of an staff member  testing positive for the coronavirus. It was only a matter of time that it made its way into this institution. As you could imagine the revelation of this deadly virus has the inmates here at  RGCI in mass  hysteria not knowing which staff member has tested positive for the virus and whether or not  they've been in that person's  presence. Now everyone is panic mode and scrambling to wear their masks. There will be no showers, phone calls or movement of any kind until further notice per the Warden. We were also given a Communicable Disease Notice stating that the COVID-19 could be transmitted by airborne, contact or, droplet.
As of 4:54 pm they wrapped up checking the inmates temps for any sign
of a fever housing unit H-East.  Stay tuned as these sort of situations always come with a beginning, a middle, and of course an end.
We were all issued a copy of a memo from the Warden that read:
DATE:    May 12, 2020
TO:         RGCI Staff and Persons in Our Care
FROM:   Michael Meisner, Warden
RE:          Suspension of Administrative Rules
Effective immediately, I am suspending administrative rules pursuant to
DOC Administrative Code DOC Section 306.22.
The purpose of this suspension of administrative rules is strictly precautionary. Maintaining the saftey health, and well-being of staff and persons in our care is our priority. We will be evaluating this suspension on a regular basis in an effort to restore normal operations as soon as allowable.
cc:     Makda Fassahaye, DAI Administrator
          Douglas Percy, DAI Assistant Administrator
          Stephanie Hove, DAI Assistant Administrator
          Angela  Thompson, Health Service Staff

DEWITT FAULKNER (398508) 5/12/2020 10:37:35 PM Covid -19/ Program development.

Hello my beloved brother you're doing a great job and like I said many times you keep me inspired and with hope times will get better. Anyways, here at CCI everything seems to be back on track after the new Warden communicated to the prisoners, he's in the building. The shake down was his way of yes making a statement and of course a response to what took place a few weeks ago with those two inmates. All I was saying due to this covid-19 sht and non safety precautions by staff, you should understand why some prisoners take the survival of  their lives, in their own hands. The Governor is not keeping prisoners safe, calm and with hope, so some prisoners do the most. People are still afraid of this virus and theirs no certainty that the virus won't reach us and infect us of worst. I'm just glad We have patriotic men like you who we can count on. My sister says she's involved and standing with others like her who fear for the safety of her love one.
OK, I'm doing what you advised my family to tell me of do, so I extended my hands to this new Warden who have already written me back about the conditions of this prison. I'm adding a little more things to the program I developed to help young problematic inmates get on a righteous path. Its called F.A.M.I.L.Y. which stands for, Finally A Manual In Leading our Youth.
Its different from your normal Peer Specialist Group but real genuine people who only motive is to ¹give back ²rebuild the minds of our future leaders³teach them how to succeed in life and its challenges. Its inspired by All life Matters, fighting for the mentally challenged, ending sex trafficking and and cruel and unjust treatment towards prisoners. Its lessons I've picked up in my 15 years of incarceration learning from past history trying to end the cycle racist treatment towards people of color. Its about changing your mind can change your life and circumstances. Love my brother and can you please published this or post it any and everywhere. Use my real name alongside my character name King DoC. I'll continue to keep you posted send my love to Ms (Mother) Peggy Swan tell her Happy Mother's day to her and all the mother's. Love

ANON 5/13/2020 1:27:31 AM D.O.C. prisoners face masks
All masks are only temporary, until we are off full state wide governor lockdown and all masks will be picked back up. And possibly redistributed randomly again if another outbreak.

ANON 5/13/2020 1:39:31 PM Medical and retaliation issues

I wrote previously regarding the MASSIVE problems I am having with staff here with regard to reprisals.
I have noted that I have about 30 medical issues that have gone untreated for years...I have previously worked with XXX on the outside...she is a good attorney.  The biggest problem is that I had to report my current "provider" to the various licensing boards.  He retaliated by instructing that my meds be pulled, making them unavailable, with no cause.  When the HSU manager was told she returned them, however, she refuses to change me to another provider.  This has the effect of forcing me to deal with the provided that has an abusive history, and active complaints against him, to drive my care.  She knows that he will continue to undermine my care, so it is reprisal for filing the complaints.
I recently sent Peg directions for the newsletter on how to PROPERLY write up providers and nursing staff, along with addresses.  I have received no response to any of my contacts, so I am trying the email.  I believe I will need a protective order from this provider....he has discontinued my meds on several occasions (I have no thyroid due to cancer and he stopped the replacement med to cause discomfort).  Please help ASAP


RYAN LONG (659120) 5/13/2020 5:55:31 PM  PLEASE PUBLISH

This is Ryan Long#659120 making a report from WCI on 5-13-2020, the current time is 3:26pm CST. Today i ran into Dr. Jeffrey Manlove who is the doctor whom exposed inmates to covid-19. He was seen by me in the North Cell Hall wearing no protective gear. If the doctor has covid-19 why is he still here working without any protective gear. Documentation from the Health Services Unit (HSU) was sent to Peggy Swan today which shows that i was scheduled to see Dr. Manlove soon. So there are currently staff who tested positive for COVID-19 walking around the facility and able to work without protective gear. Today an ICI (inmate complaint) was properly filed in accordance with DOC/DAI policy and procedure. Whether the ICE ( Institution Complaint Examiner) who is T.MOON will follow her procedures is not a guarantee. All the complaints I've filed so far while being incarcerated at WCI has been dismissed or rejected for absurd reasons. The ICRS department never takes their jobs seriously. Staff have refused to wear protective gear and are not at all practicing social distancing. This facility is disgusting and is most definitely falling apart. I'm not even sure if this facility is up to code. There are several health code violations as it is. The ventilation systems are dusty and are plain nasty. There is rust building up on the steel metal doors and on the desks and bunks in the cells which have sharp edges that cause lacerations on the skin. The OCCUPATIONAL SAFETY AND HEALTH ADMINISTRATION or OSHA was contacted in Chicago. A response from the regional administrator stated the Wisconsin Department Of Corrections was in charge of maintaining a safe environment for staff and inmates. And that they only cover Federal Departments. I wish people could understand the pain and suffering that is caused by poor management on the Administrations end. I am asking whoever is reading this message to please take time to pray for us inmates. We are people who have made mistakes. We are already paying for what we have done we shouldn't have to suffer more. We are humans not animals. God bless.
Sincerely---Ryan Long#659120/WCI

ANON 5/13/2020 9:13:37 PM Covid update 5/13/20 OSCI
Here's what i learned today at OSCI.
Red Granite had a COVID outbreak tract back to a C/O. The administration there told the inmates they were locked down. One unit refused to lock down saying that it was there fault. OSCI'S emergency response unit was called to help quash the rebellion. This happened yesterday 5/11.
Then I heard the warden was telling inmates that she is tightening back up the freedoms we currently have. She wants to test everyone of us. Now I didn't hear her say this. Nor did I speak to her. But nothing surprises me when it comes t the DOC.
In struggle

ANON 5/13/2020 7:37:00 PM LOCK DOWN!

"So they finally got us. A few people tested positive for covid-19 and they placed us on a complete lockdown. (No phones, no day rooms, no recreation, nothing!) Everyone is acting a damn fool right now. Nobody is locking in, officers don't know what to do because nobody is listening to them, and they're threatening a revolt. Dudes are on the phone, no one is going to work, sergeants are losing control. I've never seen anything as uncontrolled as this! It can only get more volatile as the minutes tick by. I don't know if you will even get this message because they might go to "operation blackout" where no information is coming in or going out to protect themselves from scrutiny. So let Everyone know what's going on up here and I will try to keep everyone up-to-date as information comes in. Hopefully you will get this message tonight sometime and be made aware of what's going on in here. I will try to contact you all whenever I get the opportunity to do so. Hopefully you can email me back soon to let me know that you've received my message. Love you all, talk to you soon. "

ANON 5/13/2020 9:17:40 PM Hello

Its been a while since I emailed because I was on loss of electronics due to a conduct report I had received bit now I got my electronics back so i can now correspond and get some things handled... So I really want your help in this whole process of seeing exactly what's going on with this Pardon for Commutation of Sentence- on grounds of a compassionate release... I had sent it to the pardon board in Madison Wisconsin about a little over month ago now and still have heard nothing back at all... Has anybody that filed one of the pardons that you had previously emailed me about heard anything back thus far? And if not than how long do you think it will be before we do hear something back? Thank you for the contributions You and Peggy put forth towards the cause on mine and fellow inmates behalf! Its greatly appreciated and please do get back to me on this matter as soon as possible…

ANON  5/14/2020 12:39:36 PM RE:May 11 organizing update.

Im in Red Granite. So yesterday the institution was shut down due to a main kitchen staffer having covid 19. The guards are still treating us horrible. Treating this covid 19 virus as a punishment to inmates. They talkin to us crazy, they making bogus rules up daily to stress us n try to get us to retaliate. Its not right. The teachers are cooking the food n don't know what they're doing n serving it to us. People depend on this food cuz they do not income from any others n they jus serve us slop its horrible. Locked us down as a emergency count to finally start taking temps. They also jus gave us man made task masks but j.l. Marcus delivered disposable masks and envelopes. The guards gather together in Sgt stations 10+ deep congregating and laughing and coughing, some refusing to even wear masks n coming on the units like they cannot get the virus when if anything, they're the carriers. Not the inmates. When inmate try to communicate wit the guards they step back like we have horrible or worst contagious diseases. Pls help us asap.
Thank u

From: JEFFERY POLAR (375899) Date: 5/15/2020 7:07:31 AM Subject: Please publish covid-19 testing

Brown county is now testing anyone who wants a test regardless of if they are showing symptoms or not. Green Bay Correctional Institution is located in brown county so why can't we all be tested? They aren't testing anyone in here, however they continue to quarantine inmates.

Why all these quarantines if nobody has covid-19? The doc is hiding covid-19 in the prison system. Another thing, I read in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinal that Evers release everyone on crimeless revocation for misdemeanors, but what about the felony crimeless revocation?

From: Date:  5/15/2020 11:57:31 AM Subject: Publish (mental health issue)

I came to WCI to obtain a bachelors degree from Trinity International University. Coming from a medium institution I gave up a lot of freedoms to make this move. I didn't fully understand the extent of this. I was in special education all throughout my years in school. I was diagnosed with A.D.H.D. when I was in the 4th grade and was put on Ritalin. It was a game changer for me and gave me the ability to focus and make it through class.  I came to prison for the first time at 18 years of age. The doctors here never requested my records from when I was a minor. By the time I requested them they had been destroyed per HIPA guidelines. So I'm missing a big piece of the evidence that the state wants to have before approving my meds. My case has been tied up in Madison for multiple months. I'm behind on my work and I'm constantly playing catch up. I've never had to do this much reading and writing. My mental health condition is real and they won't help me.  I don't know what else to do. I haven't had a dirty UA in all my years in prison. I haven't had a ticket in 5 years (this entire incarceration). There's no reason for Madison to be denying me mental health care.  If anyone can help I'd really appreciate it. This is ridiculous how Madison just sits on the request of the Psychiatrist while I struggle. I'm supposed to get health care in here and I'm not. My situation checks all the boxes necessary for approval and yet here I sit without my medication. I guess that's how mental health is treated here in WCI and the D.O.C.

From: Date: 5/15/202012:29:35 PM Subject: Update on books at W.C.I.

I ordered 3 books from Barnes n Noble. 2 of the books came together and they were sent back n my girl received a refund. I wasn't notified about this by staff. I believe its against policy to just send our books back. Here's the kicker though. I received the 3rd book. So that shows me there was no valid reason to deny the first two books. Staff here is playing games with our books and pictures. They also tried to take a book from me when I got here. It was a loaner book from college so it didn't have my name it. I proved I was enrolled in school that the book belonged to but property still wouldn't give it back. I had to ICE it n it took  over a month to get my book back. My school work was late because of it. Why do staff here at W.C.I. not want us to learn? Why can't I have a sexy picture of my fiancée? I'd say it's because the staff here gets off on messing with us.  I've been to quite a few prisons and this is the worst. Staff doesn't respond to request when we try petition for info or have a question(this is all prisons though). None of our clothes fit us. I'd like to know why the staff in property still have jobs. They are not abiding by the rules and I'm sure they've been doing these things for a long time.

From: HERMAN HIGHSHAW (469913)  - Waupun Date: 5/18/2020 11:53:31 PM Subject: Please publish

As I sit here in my cell at 9:13 p.m., on May 18th, 2020, I'm puzzled by the current events around me. Last Wednesday or Thursday, correctional officers conducted cell searches on the housing unit I'm held in. During those searches, only one correctional officer had on a face mask, now as I rethink the whole ordeal, it had to be over 10 officers going in and out of inmates cells without wearing face masks. Now on April 9th, 2020, Emily Hamer of the Wisconsin State Journal, wrote an article, about DOC Secretary Kevin Carr. In a statement, in March of 2020, the Wisconsin department of Corrections announced it is permitting and encouraging "STAFF" to wear cloth face masks. Secretary Carr stated "our agency is taking this situation very seriously, and we continue to seek appropriate and timely actions to mitigate the potential exposure to others and in order to keep those in our care safe". As I reread that statement, I catch myself laughing, in a moment there's nothing to really be laughing about.
Now it was confirmed to me today, a close friend of mine, someone 8 cells down from me has the coranavirus. Now I'm not the smartest guy in the world, but I'm far from the dumbest. We as inmates are not allowed contact visits with our family and friends, but yet, inmates are catching the coranavirus. As I sit here, I'm thinking, will I ever see or hug my family again, will my friend get to hug his family again. At this point, there's no answer to that question, because some of us inmates might not make it home, and it won't be because of our prison sentence, it will be due to catching the coranavirus. The unit I'm on is filled with more black men, than any race. I'm 100% sure the judge didn't sentence us to death. But after the reckless actions of the cell searches (not wearing masks) and the cooks in the kitchen, who control the inmate food, not wearing face masks, but they're around plenty of inmate workers, again is reckless. Now today, I see every staff member wearing face masks, two months later, but this is a teachable moment for me, I learned today, the relationships I build with some of these guys, I might not continue to build them, because some of us gone end up dying from this virus, I hate to even write those words, but I speak "TRUTH". If I don't make it home to my kids, my grandson's, my brother, my sister, my nieces, my nephews, my family and friends, it's not because I gave up, it's because the Wisconsin department of Corrections, gave up on us inmates. There's only one way inmates can catch the coranavirus, do you know the answer to that? 5-18-2020= 9:47 p.m.

From: Date: 5/18/2020 5:27:38 PM Subject: Cov-19 update  (Waupun)

OK family,
They just shut the south cell hall down and supposedly had a case or cases of the Cov-19 over there. I'm in the southwest cell hall. So I'll have to keep you posted. But this just goes to show you from these people coming in and out of this institution not taking proper precautions such as wearing masks and such. I knew it was only a matter of time. Love yall stay woke and stay safe.

From:  - StanleyDate: 5/18/2020 1:37:31 AM Subject: Lend A Hand!

If a person is over 50 and served over 10 years and have underlying health conditions ie. Hypertension, diabetes, severe respiratory issue, etc. This could represent a threshold set of criteria for release. If the individual has achieved a low risk of reoffending release under any mechanism should comport with DOC's interest. What purpose is being served by keeping a individual in prison that has reached a finish line in every aspect except the sentence. Men I know are being wheeled back and forth to HSU to take meds they need. Unable to make it on their own , ( Bro. Givens ). People here need immediate help, not a look into it, not a wait and see, but a right now help.
I have been low risk since 2017 and now I am a political prisoner because I dare challenge the status quo. The health care professionals know dam well we have hypertension, diabetes, cancers, morbidly obese and taking dozens of meds on a daily dam bases. The shitty part is we know it is affecting us negatively because we are not having regular blood test to check the affects of the meds. Liver Panel. They know exactly how many of us are over 50. Hell the teleprompter is encouraging us over 50 to come and make end of life preparations. This was posted long before COVID-19 was an issue, shit had me spooked thinking something was bound to people over 50.
If the public, staff, an government just cared about us a little they would find out we would contribute mightily if given a chance beyond these walls. We are some very good men that at some point in life made a bad choice.! That does not mean a administrative death should ensue. If the over 50 and sick are removed from the prisons there would still be a population of prisoners of 20k or more. I speak for the over 50 population if we can provide verification we have strong community support or familial support and this time could be served in house or through some other mechanism. I welcome the State Public Defenders office to consider this demographic of inmate and how we would ease the expenditures associated with keeping our old asses in the taxpayers pockets. Its called smart corrections.

Hoping You Can Lend  A Hand ?  Just by demanding action in and on behalf of the over 50's.

Below are some letters from people who cannot use Corrlinks (either because they can’t afford it, or because they’re in restrictive housing). The conditions experienced by people who can’t use corrlinks are often far worse. Many are handwritten, and we don’t have capacity to transcribe.

Pinedo, Jerry R 617272 bd NLCI ( bd 1979

Mia White  651187 Robert Ellis Correction Center

Patrick Langreck  409270 OSCI

Patrick Moran 150807 OSCI

Phil Keller 395959 GBCI

Steven Kaizen 264835 OSCI

Steven Osterman 457108. RGCI

Tommie Carter 389297 GBCI


Ryan Long 659120 WCI

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