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Articles by Alan Prendergast

Prison Sexual Abuse Survivor Speaks Out

In January 2010, Scott Howard, a 39-year-old federal prisoner, made his way briskly into a hearing room in the Robert F. Kennedy Justice Building in Washington, D.C. He was neatly dressed in blazer, slacks and tie, and quite nervous about what he was about to do. He was determined to ...

The Good, The Bad and The Mad - Westword article by Alan Prendergast

What happens to the mentally ill in the justice system is just crazy.

By Alan Prendergast
Published: May 29, 2008

On a bitter winter morning four years ago, Heather Gooch stood in her apartment on South Bannock Street and listened to the awful thumping. The noise was coming from the ...

The Poisoned Pen of Fort Lyon Prison

Bought by the state for a dollar, Fort Lyon is rich in history, asbestos, sick prisoners and trouble.

by Alan Prendergast

History Lesson #1

In 1829, William Bent headed west to join his older brother in the fur business. William was twenty years old, the son of a Missouri supreme ...

Head Games

At least one out of every five Colorado prisoners is mentally ill -- some violent, some undetected or untreated. How did the Big House become the Bug House?

By Alan Prendergast

Talk all you want about bad men and madmen. The truly scary ones are those who know rage so ...

Fortress Of Solitude: The Bureau Of Prisons Is As Good At Keeping Prisoners In As It Is At Keeping Reporters Out

A hundred miles southwest of Denver, the U.S. Penitentiary Administrative Maximum houses a killer lineup of mobsters (Salvatore "Sammy the Bull" Gravano), gang leaders (Barry "The Baron" Mills), assassins (Colombian hit man Dandenis "La Quica" Muñoz Mosquera) and guerillas (John "American Taliban" Walker Lindh). But not to worry ? despite ...

The Long Silence: Federal Prisoners' Fight to Get the Word Out Reaches Unprintable Extremes

As an aspiring 26-year-old writer with a dark past, Mark Jordan figures he has plenty to tell the world. He has stories about bank robberies, for instance, and the many episodes of violence he's seen in eight years of prison life. And how federal authorities have been trying to coerce ...