“this for the Durham Association of Educators”

Dear g______ ________

I’m doing alright thanks for asking, yes we are doing a creative writing class where we get to express ourselves in different kinds of ways.  Rap, poem, drawings, speeches, & a lot more.  Curtis Barnette [another detainee] started the class & we sign up for it.  We start at 12 or when the multi-purpose room ain’t at use & any action book or drawing book is good & a dictionary, too.  I like making great drawings so I’m like more tattoo drawings.

this for the Durham Association of Educators, & the union of public school teacher: thank you for focusing on our Education.  I’m still enrolled in my base school.  I was 17 when I got here, now I’m 18.  I’m up in here for a couple a months now.  The government should focus on building schools & jobs instead of making money for the jail, b/c this jail system is so crooked.  I’m here with no proof of me committing any crime of what they blaming me for – no weapon found, no evidence of any stolen goods, no witnesses.  I’ve been just waiting for my court dates & they cancel my court date every time its been scheduled.  My lawyer just once he came and see be.  I haven’t been to court at all.  The DAs lying on everything, the court appointed lawyers ain’t helping, to be honest.  Fuck Durham County Jail, they want me to feel down & plead guilty so they can make money off me.  You know what they chose the wrong person, b/c I’m staying strong.  I got into the word of God & he helps me to stay strong & for my family & loved ones who support me they can’t even come to visit me.  I only saw my mom 3 times & now they ain’t allowing her to come.  I’m against the video visitation.  So many young teens like my age die in this cells & they just say they committed suicide or natural cause.  It ain’t true.  The COs allow it to happen & if they ain’t do nothing about it that’s how they move up to new positions.  The canteen be ripping us off of our money, they don’t return our money when we order canteen & they don’t bring our canteen, & they act like they don’t know nothing.  Man shyt crazy.  I can’t even trust the law & I never did & never will.  I speak for all my latinos up in here.  I got a friend here & they don’t let him have any visit.  His family want to see him but they don’t allow him to have any visit, & when they feel they loosing our case they put a deportation order on my people with out having proof of anything.  We get crazy rash on our body b/c of the sope & our clothes are being washed with only water & we get rash from it & we get back pain from the bed they give us.  They treat us like a bunch of animals.  They hold us over years & trying to make us commit suicide & if you don’t have money you can’t get no medical attention or get the medication you need to live.  Shyt crazy man.  They block the phone sometimes so we can’t call anyone.  People are still here fighting o live & some lost their life fighting the system.  Thank you IOA for working on protest to help us students & anyone up in jail.  Thank you and god bless y’all.

 

Sincerely,

ghost z:.

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“a male CO was picking on and messing with Niecey”

Dear G___,

First off I would like to thank you and many others from Inside-Outside Alliance for love and support, a lot of people on the outside as well as some of us in here are blind to how we are being treated in this jail so once again thanks.  I read the newsletter that you provided and loved every page of it.  I can relate to all the topics and I agree that the jail in some areas are getting worse.  Canteen is at an all time high and the website to set up visitation is not working at all right now so some of us can’t even see our love ones.  As far as the situation with Niecey committing suicide, I feel that it could have been avoided.  As you may know, we inmates talk to each other male and female through many different ways, one being jail house mail and what I discovered is that a male CO was picking on and messing with Niecey, this situation made Niecey committ suicide.  Its sad and prayers go out to her family, as an inmate and a person who has been coming and and out of this jail for 12 years I can only hope for the best but I know it won’t happen.  Thanks for the letter and I will be looking forward to the next one but until then I’m out.

Sincerely,

C

PS: In my next letter I will be sending y’all a poem entitled DCJ

‘You need to see what goes on behind closed doors’

What’s up IOA?

First off, thanks for reaching out to me. I’m just now getting your letter…7 DAYS LATER!!

I can’t stand how this system treats us, it’s like they couldn’t care less about what goes on with us because they wear a badge and can go home at the end of the day. Some of these officers think they can say and do what they want because we wear orange. But we humans, too and we got rights as well. Continue reading

Visitation blues

In the lobby, Sunday morning visitation

Person 1, seated and waiting: What happened to all the rest of the benches in here?

Person 2, who sat down next to him: I don’t know.

P1: There used to be two or three more long benches.

P2: Now there’s no place for more people to sit down. You got to stand.Any more people come in here and they got to stand.

P1: And they want you here early (the sign says to arrive 30 minutes before a scheduled visit, which lasts only 20 minutes).

P2: Yeah, so people be standing longer.

P1: And then they got this mess going on outside, and no explanation for it. (Orange fencing extends around the front of the jail. There is a contractor’s name on it, but no explanation of the project)

P2: Oh, this fence? Yeah, what’s that all about?

P1: Beats me. And the officer at the desk didn’t know, either. And he didn’t know how long it would be up.

P2: (Shakes head)

Continue reading

‘The judicial branch of government is made to recycle us’

3.7.16

I’m glad you put me in the newsfeed. I was shocked when I was going through the feedback and ran across my letter, but I was mad when I got to the end and saw the initials –. I don’t know what they stand for, but let me tell you something bro, I’m far from afraid of any sheriff, police officer, deputy or c.o. They bleed like I do so don’t ever hide my name in the feeds, bro, Thomas Clayton (TomTom) should be the first and last thing you see when you read a feedback from me. I want them to know I’m who coming for them. Continue reading

Windows to the World

during a friday protest

during a friday protest

the following was written by someone outside the jail.

by J.S.

On any given day, at almost any given time, you might see someone outside of the Durham County jail waving, signaling or otherwise communicating with a person inside the jail. If they happen to be lucky enough to be on their ‘walk,’ the person might be in the large full window at the end of their pod. For the rest of the 20 hours of the day, the person is confined to their room, and the window of communication is a thin, rectangular one that is at the high up in the room. Communication by the people outside is full of love, sadness, information, sometimes anger or regret, but it is almost always spirited and emotional.

And to think, if it were entirely up to the sheriff’s department, the county, and others, this communication wouldn’t happen at all. Yes, deputies do occasionally try to tell people they cannot wave or signal to people inside the jail. But if they tried to entirely stop it, they would spend their time doing nothing else. Continue reading

‘Nothing we can do about it’

From Michael:

I have missed a few visitations because of some officers saying I can’t use my student ID (as valid identification), where the website clearly says you can. These are when I have visitations scheduled, I come in, and they just say, ‘No, you can’t use that.’ It’s been the same two people that won’t let me use it, one of them is a lady named Cater. Continue reading