Striving together


I’m doing well considering the circumstances. How are things progressing? Yeah, I just had a birthday. I’m — years old…Thanks for wishing me a happy birthday, it’s much appreciated and very welcomed. My (family member) speaks so highly of everyone striving together in IOA. I’m very thankful for all of you, words cannot explain but maybe through our endeavors we can encourage one another. Continue reading

Frozen by the day


To my readers: I’m writing you from my freezer. That’s right! I said, freezer. The room I’m in is just like a freezer. There’s no heat in the Durham Co. Jail. They keep you locked down 17 hours a day. In this freezer they call a room, I have to put on everything I own. Just to sleep at night. I’m 51 years old. And they will not give me two blankets just to stay warm. One day, someone will die in one of these rooms. By freezing to death. It’s part of the plea system from the courthouse. As well as how they feed you. You know they feed us syrup and dry bread for breakfast. Every Monday morning.

We need help in this jail. Or some of us are going to die here. Durham has the highest conviction rate. Because no one wants to die in jail. And it will happen. If no one tries to help us. The ADA, and public defenders office are working together. To keep you here. Look how long you have to wait to get to court. I’m 7 months in my self. I only have one charge. And it’s not so bad. The system – send help.



p.s. Can you send me some books to read? I’m having a hard time with patience. I could also use some stamps. I don’t have money to buy any. And if I put ‘No Funds’ on my letter, it may get to you. It may not. There’s a lot I need to tell you about this jail stuff. My mom was hospitalized with cancer. Had surgery. Sargent Brown would not allow me a phone call to see how she is doing. I need your help. Let the people know how we are being treated in here.

‘It’s so cold it don’t make any sense’


Hey, —,

How is it going? Good I hope. I just want to thank you and Inside-Outside Alliance for allowing me to be part of it. Everything is going pretty ok except for the cold temperature in this jail, mostly in the cell. I know it’s about the same as it do outside. And we ask and ask the officers can they turn up the heat, but it never gets done. Continue reading

‘Even the mail process is fucked up’

Hi, I want to talk about the mail situation. I have been an inmate at Durham County Jail since Nov. — 2013. It is now Oct. 3, 2014. On a murder charge. With that being said, the only things I have to look forward to during the week is mail and visits. By me receiving mail for going 11 months now, I should know how long it takes mail to be received on both ends depending on the location. So my girlfriend tells me she put a letter for me in the mailbox in the morning before she went to school. Now, like I said by me receiving mail for 11 months I know that if someone has sent me a letter from a Durham County location it will only take a day to get here. So the next day the mail lady (Ms. Walker) comes in and passes out mail but I don’t hear my name called. So I’m like I might get it tomorrow. The next day the same thing happens. So I get on the phone and call my girlfriend to make sure she sent it. She tells me she is positive she put it in the mailbox and she tells me just to wait. So like 3 more days pass and I still have not gotten my mail. I ask the mail lady what is going on and she just says it’s not her fault. So I put in a grievance and talk to the Sergeant (Bradshaw) and guess what. He went right to the mail room and picks my mail up. Now it shouldn’t take all that just to get a letter. That says a lot about this jail. Even the mail process is fucked up.
– L.A.

“This place does whatever it wants to do”

the following is from a comrade who heard about IOA from someone in another facility.



What’s up? My name is U.T.M. I heard about you through a friend. B.L. came in yesterday and today some things happened that upset me. He told me about you all and said that you support inmates that go through things like this.

So, this morning I was in the bathroom washing my face when a C.O. came in. There was two inmates in the shower doing whatever. One of the C.O.s asked me what I passed to the inmate that was in the shower. I told him nothing, she said she saw me. I told her she did not see me pass anything. She let me go. About 30 minutes later a Sergeant came in, a Sgt. R and did a search on one of the inmates that was in the shower.

After about 20 minutes I went to leave the bed area and the Sgt. told the C.O. to detain me. After Sgt. R finished her search she searched me. She took a cup that had used stamps in it that I’ve been collecting, an address book, and a letter that a friend that had gotten out about a month ago had written me.

I asked why she was taking my things. She said that she had to look at them. The address book had names and numbers of family and friends. Some of them are in prison, some are out. But either way policy doesn’t say I can’t have them. They post inmate’s names and numbers in the dorm everyday.

But anyway I went back later today to see if I could get my things. I was told that the Staff Sgt. had my things, so I went to Sgt. D which is the Staff Sgt. and asked him for my things. He told me I could get them back Friday after he checked some things out. I asked why my things were taken, but did not get an answer.

This place does whatever it wants to do. It bends policy to make us inmates miserable. Thanks for your time and hope to hear from you.



P.S. If you have a extra dictionary it would help my spelling sucks.

“Jails and Prisons are to show the government has control over the people”


Hey ____,

Unfortunately I did not catch (the) demonstration but I trust it was a good show if the cops were taking pictures. Cops are so stupid anything they feel is a threat they will investigate and during the investigation if they have to they will break the rules.

I’m glad you enjoyed my last letter. Continue reading

“They just took a whole hour from us with no explanation”

October 2013


Good to know that things are going well and okay for you out there or as well as can be. Well as for me doing as well as anyone in my situation can be which is okay and well. Thanks for the history lesson. Really needed to hear about some of those things and let me know that. I need to remain strong and focused about uplifting some of these guys and to talk and have them listen about some of these things and try to get them to change their way of thinking in a more positive than negative way. Continue reading

Surveys: “Black people and hard times…for the last 200 years or so.”

How long have you been inside? 20 months

How many court appearances have you had? 0

How many times have you talked to your lawyer? 3 or 4 times

What is the situation regarding your charge? (Awaiting sentencing, awaiting trial, awaiting appearance, etc.?) DA not satisfied with SBI lab results.

Have you been ever been ‘disciplined’ in your time at DCDC, either individually or as part of a group? Tell about it. No

What in your opinion are the biggest problems with the DCDC? The C.O.s not doing their jobs. Continue reading