Greetings “free” society and my fellow captives.
Anthony McInnis here, sounding an alarm loud enough to reach all tax paying citizens of Durham and remaining counties. In 2013, I was booked into Durham County Detention Center on a case that should have been a misdemeanor. Due to my consistent stance to refuse plea offers for active time and an inability to post bond, I remained in jail for eleven months. In N. Carolina, the accumulation of a criminal background basically guarantees you a prison term, partly because you’re sick of having to endure such a dehumanizing experience, but mainly because we usually can’t afford a paid lawyer
The whole community needs to know that: Durham County inmates spend almost eighteen hours a day in cells that remain cold year round. Two inmates often share a cell designed for only one man. Meals by Aramark are almost inhumane with no fruit and processed meat patties. Dinner consists of two sandwiches (thin) and an excuse for dessert. It is served at four pm and breakfast does not arrive until six am (13 hours!). Meals are served on trays and lids that are completely outdated and contain dishwater from weeks earlier. Inmates load these trays each day assembly-line style and carry out all the duties of the food service process. They do not earn money nor does any other man on jail work detail.
Now let us consider the following points:
- N. Carolina acquires over 85% of its court convictions from those who accept plea offers.
- Today, significant numbers of young Black males are populating the jail, particularly 16, 17, and 18 year olds.
- No other group has been affected by American criminal justice like the Black community.
- At least 80% of the incarcerated in the state are Black males.
It is simply impossible to justify the mass incarceration of over 2.1 million people in America, the vast majority of them Blacks who represent only 12% of the total population.
– Chapel Hill Resident,
P.O. Box 839
Vanceboro, NC 28586