Although we don’t have all the details about what happened, we have no doubt that the kind of slightly preferential treatment described here does happen. In order to keep their populations from rebelling, jail and prison authorities need to try to exploit any divisions they can, including, and perhaps especially, racial ones.
My name is K.Y. I am currently detained in the Durham County jail and I am currently on lockback for 25 days and I fished a pencil out of the air vent to write this. If I get caught writing this I will get 25 days more lockback. I have been here since August 29. I saw two young Black inmates get into a fight. Both separated after the fight and they both kept trying to fight, pulling away from the c.o.s Both were put on lockback until the next morning one gets to come out. The one who didn’t throw the first punch and the other one sent to the hole. Well, I and another inmate got into an argument. He was mad because a 17-year-old gave me some seasoning he had left over from his noodles and he started cursing about it, spitting food across the table. So I told him to chill, ‘he’s only 17 and you are spitting food across the table and it’s getting in my food, so chill,’ and he said, ‘So what you gonna do something about it?’ and I said I would if we wouldn’t get 30-60 days lockback and I walked away. Well, he follows me, trying to hit me, so I defending myself pick up the tray lid and hit him with it. Well the fight was broke up and the c.o. was taking me to my room as I was telling the boy he hit like a bitch. The sergeant said I was trying to break away from the c.o. and keep fighting. It is all on tape, I never tried to keep fighting. I went back to my room. Well, they gave me 25 days lockback with a broken thumb on my right hand that I’m writing with. They gave me 800 mg motrin one time since and I’m trying my best to bear the pain. I asked for my meds and they said it would be later. It is now 9:00 pm. I got into that fight 5:30 pm yesterday. I’m cold, hungry and I’m in lockback to where I can’t call and tell my 4-month pregnant wife the mother of my one-year old son what’s going on and why I haven’t called. I’m only allowed out of my cell every other day for one hour…The other boy who is black and I am white—he gets to come out every day for an hour and 30 minutes and a phone call every day and order canteen. I can only call home every 7 days and I can’t order no canteen. So it’s not only the young blacks it is all inmates who are mistreated and we need help in this place. My fucking thumb hurts like hell and my future wife don’t even know why I haven’t called. Oh, yeah, when I was arrested they took my shorts I was using for boxers (underwear) and didn’t give me no more and my girlfriend has put over $200 on Paytel and we probably got about 10 calls out of 32 days. We are dehumanized here.
It was all I could to write this with my thumb broke so please acknowledge let me be heard please.