“Just trying to get through this bid”

Dear S—–,

How are you doing? Me, I’m good, just trying to get through this bid. First and foremost, I want to thank you for taking the time out the day to write me, not many people do it. Anyhow, you like Durham? Believe it or not, I’ve been here all my life and I still haven’t seen the whole city lol. It must have been fun to travel around the world, I hope I get a chance to one day. A little about myself: I’m 24, most people say I’m funny, but mostly I’m laid back. As you already know, I’m locked up smh. It’s all good though, because if everything go right, I’m going to be out by the end of the year. It doesn’t really matter, but I was wondering how you got my info? I would describe myself to you, but you probably already did your research on e and looked up my mugshot. I’m not use to this whole pen pal thing so I’m sorry if this kite is short or boring to you. Hopefully as time go by my conversation we get better. So you like to play the guitar, do you play other people song or do you make your own? I’m not going to front, since I’ve been in here I’ve been doing my thing with the music, hopefully I can get signed when I get out. To be real I’m praying that it keeps me out of trouble, but my words are getting short so whenever you want to talk I’m here, keep your head up and keep up the good work.

ps. If you write me, I write back.






Officers are quick to say, put in a grievance cause they know nothing will be done

Thank you all, for being one of the few words to let us know somebody really does care. Inmates sometimes may go through a lot. Then, when you have officers. That chooses to come to work here. Gives you a harder problems. With their nasty attitudes. Just, like, they didn’t tell us to come to jail. We didn’t take them tell them to get a job here.

You have some officers. Who’s attitudes are so bad, and rude. They should be happy “were here”. Cause, they probably couldn’t find Any other type of work. I have this place. Jail isn’t supposed to be fun, but it’s okay to not be disrespectful and rude. When you are asking “I mean it”, tellin us to do something. Officers are quick to say, put in a grievance cause they know nothing will be done. That’s why officers are quick to say do it.

When you first get here, and no matter how many times you come back. Before you are let into population you have to watch this video. At the end of the video the sheriff says, while you’re here you will be treated with dignity and respect. We are disrespected when he said that.

I do want to write more. But cause of my anxiety, I have to write a little at a time. But again, thanks for thinking about us.

Oh please, can you please them stop giving us milk in plastic, instead of a milk carton. The employees drink milk out of a carton.


Call-in for Shatique Skinner

On Monday, we ask folks to call the Durham County Jail (919-560-0912) to put pressure on them to provide Shatique Skinner with proper medical care. Shatique has been locked up in solitary confinement for two years now and has been consistently denied his regular medication for schizophrenia. His parents are incarcerated and his sister has been advocating on his behalf. She asks that any and all who are able call the jail on Monday and demand that Shatique be released from solitary and that the medical provider, Correct Care Solutions, administer his proper medication. Please use the script below if you would like.

Call 919-560-0912 and ask to speak to someone in medical.
Hello, I am calling to demand that you release Shatique Skinner from solitary confinement and administer the proper medication for his schizophrenia. Shatique deserves to receive appropriate care for his medical condition. Care is not locking someone in an isolated cage because they have a mental health challenge. I demand that you provide Shatique with the medication for his condition immediately.

You can also write to Shatique at the following address:
Shatique Skinner
PO Box 1353
Durham, NC 27701

‘The Business of Bail and Bonds’

I personally have never had to deal with bail or bonds. However, because of a domestic dispute that was pushed far over the edge for too long, I now know the cruelty for which this business exists. It’s like ‘trying to squeeze blood out of a turnip,’ as some old timers would put it. In this case they would be completely right, as this method targets poor and impoverished people and communities which are predominately black and latino. It’s all part of a much bigger scheme within the injustice system. Black and Latino communities are the #1 targets of the injustice system, making it ideal for law enforcement to hunt and pick their prey.

Once apprehended, the charges that are ‘the most serious,’ whether true or not, are recommended to receive high bonds by the arresting officer to the magistrate and that person is held until bonded out or further notice. This is also used to fish out possible drug dealers or those linked to them. Through we have yet to see the manufacturers of street narcotics dealing with the laws. Nonetheless, if you are not linked to someone with the kind of cash it takes to bond you out, then you are stuck in jail until your court date. In Durham County that can mean a minimum of about 1-3 months depending on your charges and judge. Bondsmen are so accustomed to this routine that they are heartless and cruel when it comes to bonding anyone out. You have to have money or they simply will not give you the time of day. And most poor people just do not have 10-15% of $20,000 – $500,000 laying around or saved up, let alone to dish out to the injustice system. The first thing they ask of you is to gather up more poor and impoverished individuals, such as family and friends to pitch their hard earned, low-income dollars to afford them a freedom that, if not for the harassment and lies of law enforcement, they would already have.

Furthermore, these bonds interrupt people’s lives and add to already existing stress. Your life comes to a complete halt and is put on hold when you are in jail and cannot get out because of an unaffordable bond. It seems as if they courts intentionally take their time with these cases just to see if friends or family can possibly come up with the money to free their loved ones. The idea of the bond being placed so that detainees/inmates show up to court is a mere illusion. It is VERY clear why bonds are placed and that is to fish out drug dealers, extort the poor, and money, and control. The court system and bondsmen are the ONLY ones benefitting from bonds, as I am 100% that there are other alternatives to assure that people accused of the most ridiculous crimes can show up to court. – Conscious Mind


Will always be

The back

The one’s that’ll

Comfort you

When you’re feeling



Are the one’s

That’ll help form

A fist

When you’re ready

To strike a


The first one’s

To help you


After a fall


Has unconditional love

Through the good, bad,

And the ugly

The emotional times

The hard times

I say that

To say this

It doesn’t matter

Who you are

Or where you’re


You all came


For a purpose

So you got

To stay strong


Love and forgives

That mean whatever

The problem is

Its time to

Brush it off

And move on

Everyone of

You has something

Special to give

Put your minds


Fight towards


They want to

See you loose

But I know

You have the

Strength to win

Come together as


We have a

War to win

When I first wrote this poem, it was to lift the spirits and try to form some sort of bond to help the IOA.  But I can say these words go to any family going through any type of problems amongst themselves.  I don’t care what race gender or if you’re even related, if you come together for any cause or just love being around each other.  Family is family and life only comes around once.

– Ghost


‘Coming together to stop bails’

How are things going your way? Fine I hope. As for me, things are going okay, but things could be better. U say that groups are coming together to stop bails? I think about how a plan in one’s mind could affect their surroundings is a good thing. I really want you to know that GOD sent you because I need your help. I feel like my lawyer is holding back from me. Her name is Ms. Ingram. I let her know about how they treated me when I came in. That was in Nov. 2016. Miss Ingram stated that I would be receiving paperwork such as the two cases they indicted and the motion on my case. She has not gotten back with me yet. I think she’s doing this deliberately. Well, I hope to hear from you soon so I can tell you about whats supposed to happen in May.

Take care!!! – A.C.

“Just another number”

Dear IOA,

Hey, I hope everyone is doing well. I used to get letters from you guys. But they stopped coming in the mail. I miss having someone to talk to, I’ve been here for almost 1 year now. Some days are better than others. I don’t understand this justice system. No one seems to care, I’m only a number on another another case load. I’m in the mental health block, it’s better in a few ways but it’s still jail. I feel forgotten and neglected. Maybe it’s just in my head. I miss my family.

I think the reason I’ve been here so long is because the D.A. thinks I’m faking mental health problems. 2 days before getting arrested I was released from a mental hospital. I beat up a cable truck with a bat and jumped in it and took off for no reason while the men were working across the street. My bond is $271,000, I really needed help and to be back on my meds like I am now. It’s crazy I don’t get it. Just another number. Sorry I needed to get all this out. I’m not trying to get out of the charges I just want some help and another chance. I hope one of you will write me back soon. It will be nice to get a letter at mail call.

Well. . . until then,

V. F.