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Prison Legal News: May, 1990

Issue PDF
Volume 1, Number 1

In this issue:

  1. One Day School Boycott at Monroe (p 1)
  2. Parole Board's 0.100 Abuses (p 2)
  3. The Terror (p 2)
  4. Study Finds 23% of Young Black Men Under Criminal Sanctions (p 3)
  5. New Prison Spending Jumps by 73% (p 3)
  6. Did DOC Employees Murder Michael Franke? (p 3)
  7. Ex - Con Charged in Francke Murder (p 4)
  8. Most Punished for Exercising Right to Jury Trial (p 4)
  9. Guard Charged With Aiding Escape (p 4)
  10. Only Five States Not Under Court Order, Study Says (p 4)
  11. Prisoner Gets $500 in Records Suit (p 5)
  12. Filthy Cell Violates Eighth Amendment (p 5)
  13. $241,000 Damages Upheld in Beating (p 5)
  14. Requirement of Buzz Words on Envelope of Incoming Legal Mail Killed (p 6)
  15. Walla Walla Installs Fourth Bunk (p 6)
  16. Witnesses at Disciplinary Hearings (p 6)
  17. Who Are We (p 7)
  18. SRA Offenders Get Good Time Off Term (p 7)
  19. Prison Revolt in England (p 8)
  20. Hungerstrike in Spain (p 8)
  21. Political Prisoners Beaten (p 9)
  22. "The Other Face of Europe" (p 9)
  23. Mark LaRue Gets 14 More Years (p 10)

One Day School Boycott at Monroe


The statewide practice for enforcing attendance at prison schools is simple: three unexcused absences and they drop you. Well, some prisoncrat decided that inmate attendance at the Reformatory was not up to par with those at other facilities. Rather than merely enforce the standard ...

Parole Board's 0.100 Abuses

M.H., Walla Walla

People should start giving some consideration to how the Parole Board is conducting the 0.100 paroleability hearings. The Myers, Addleman, and other cases, as well as the so-called 1400 Bill, all tell the Board to restructure our minimum terms in a manner reasonably consistent with the SRA. ...

The Terror


The still air of my prison cell, thick with smoke, swallows my brooding thoughts, spitting them back at me stinking of loneliness.

I stare at tobacco stained fingers, wondering at how I can bemoan the years taken from me, and yet steal some more.

And somewhere still, in ...

Study Finds 23% of Young Black Men Under Criminal Sanctions

Nearly one out of every four black men between the ages of 20 and 29 nationwide is in prison or jail or on probation or parole on a given day, according to a new study based on records of the Justice Department and the Bureau of the Census. The 23.0% ...

New Prison Spending Jumps by 73%


Federal and state corrections' systems will spend more than 6.7 billion on new prison construction in the period 1989-90, an increase of 73% compared to 1987-88, according to Corrections Compendium, a corrections research and information service.

The prison systems in all 50 states and ...

Did DOC Employees Murder Michael Franke?

On the evening of January 17, 1989, Oregon Department of Corrections Director Michael Francke left his office at the Dome Building in Salem. He never made it out of the parking lot. Someone had stabbed him in the heart. He died on his office building's side porch.

The initial investigation ...

Ex - Con Charged in Francke Murder

Frank E. Gable has been charged with murder in connection with the killing of Oregon DOC Director Michael Francke. The ex-con Gable said: "I don't know how I first got implicated, but I'm real scared it's going to end in me getting (convicted) for something I ain't did."

Gable came ...

Most Punished for Exercising Right to Jury Trial


In 89% of the estimated 583,000 felony convictions in state courts during 1986, the defendant pleaded guilty instead of standing trial before a judge or jury, the U.S. Justice Department's Bureau of Justice Statistics said on February 25th. The Bureau said that ...

Guard Charged With Aiding Escape


An Illinois correctional officer was arrested in mid-February for allegedly providing inmates with hacksaw blades to aid in their escape from Joliet Prison.

According to Nic Howell, the public information officer for Illinois DOC, the 13 year veteran guard, William Smith, was charged with two ...

Only Five States Not Under Court Order, Study Says


Only five states (Minnesota, Montana, New Jersey, N. Dakota and Vermont) are not currently involved in major litigation over prison conditions, says a newly released report from the ACLU's National Prison Project. Another finding of the seven page document, "Status Report: ...

Prisoner Gets $500 in Records Suit


A prisoner in Michigan State sent a letter to DOC stating he'd received a major misconduct infraction and was found guilty. He then requested copies of the misconduct report, all statements and documents submitted at the hearing, the hearing investigation report and the hearing ...

Filthy Cell Violates Eighth Amendment


A prisoner brought a civil rights action against the supervisory officers at the facility at which he was confined, claiming a violation of his rights under the Eighth Amendment to be free of cruel and unusual punishment. A federal appeals court found in favor of the prisoner.

The evidence ...

$241,000 Damages Upheld in Beating


A prisoner riot broke out when thirty prisoners forced their way into an area where they fought guards who were trying to remove a drunken prisoner. During the fight, one guard was fatally stabbed and several others wounded. When the disturbance quieted down, prison officials ...

Requirement of Buzz Words on Envelope of Incoming Legal Mail Killed

A prisoner brought a suit challenging a Bureau of Prisons policy (P.S. 5265.8) mandating that letters from law firms, the courts, or any other communication which is considered privileged, be marked with special buzz words on the outside of the envelope. If the words "Legal/Special Mail - Open Only in ...

Walla Walla Installs Fourth Bunk


by M. H.

We here at the Walls are also experiencing the governor's state of emergency. Our captors have shut down 8-Wing for remodeling. In 6-Wing they have just installed the 4th bunk on A and B tiers, and on the rest of the tiers ...

Witnesses at Disciplinary Hearings

The plaintiff prisoner was confined in a special housing unit following an alleged assault upon a guard who was attempting to break up a fight between two inmates. At his disciplinary hearing, he requested that the two inmates be called as witnesses. The hearing officer declined to call either of ...

Who Are We

Welcome to the first issue of Prisoners' Legal News. Your editors are Paul Wright and Ed Mead.

While we have no "party line," this newsletter will tend to reflect our class orientation. If you do not want to be on the mailing list, just write to our outside address and ...

SRA Offenders Get Good Time Off Term


On March 29, 1990, in the case of In re Mota (Case No. 56284-9), the Washington Supreme Court ruled that the Department of Corrections must give good time credit for pre-sentence confinement (jail time) to defendants who committed crimes after July 1, 1984, ...

Prison Revolt in England

Prisoners in the horribly overcrowded Strangeways prison in Manchester, England rose in revolt on 1 April, 1990 protesting the conditions that had 1,660 men in a prison built in 1868 for 970 men. The prison does not have plumbing in the cells and the prisoners live in squalor. They are ...

Hungerstrike in Spain

Since November 30, 1989, 42 political prisoners in Spain, mainly members of GRAPO (October 1st Revolutionary Anti-Fascist Groups) have been on hunger strikes demanding their release from isolation and control units and an end to the campaign of repression against them, which includes dispersion through the Spanish State, beatings, psychological ...

Political Prisoners Beaten

Novara, Italy On January 30, 1990, 20 political prisoners (members of the Red Brigades) held a sit-in, in the political prison to protest the continued solitary confinement of a fellow prisoner based on a guard's trumped up allegations. After 30 minutes of refusing to return to their cells, the prison ...

"The Other Face of Europe"

"The Other Face of Europe"

This is the title of a book printed by the atalan Solidarity Committee in Barcelona. The book deals with the huge number of political prisoners being held throughout Western European prisons and jails because of their political beliefs and activities. The book contains sections in ...

Mark LaRue Gets 14 More Years


After spending more than five years in Walla Walla's segregation unit as a result of his political work on the inside, Mark LaRue was subjected to an involuntary out-of-state transfer. He was then bounced from one jurisdiction to another for nearly ten more years. ...