Rocky has just under a year left to serve at Safford, Arizona. He was sentenced for two separate cases: burglary and aggravated assault.
Last September we were out on a 4 yard for our 2 hours rec. The yard had been live for days because there was a lot of black [heroin] and almost everyone had been high for three days or so. 4 yards are dangerous anyway because they house the next highest classification inmates below 5. But it seemed to be really on edge that day.
Pokey, Taz and I were just sitting around shooting the shit. We were commenting on the thickness of the air on the yard. The dope debts were heavy at the time, which caused a lot of tension between the races.
Taz spotted a Native American walking into the gym with the straight end of a shovel sticking out by his boot and the handle rising up the pants’ leg. We knew it was about to get real live. We were working our way to the entrance of the gym, about 10 foot from the door, when three guys came out, all natives. They walked by us like they were on their way out of a burning building.
Taz pushed the door open and stepped into the gym as the door closed behind him. We stayed outside the door to keep point.
No sooner did the door close behind him, I heard “Motherfucker! Motherfucker!” at the top of the lungs.
I pushed the door open to see Taz flipping and flopping, sliding around, trying to get to his feet in the biggest pool of blood I have ever seen to date. Next to him was the headless body of a Mexican in the middle of the pool of blood with his head about 10 feet away, eyes open, mouth open, and staring straight at me with an expression on his face of terror.
The three Native Americans had held this guy down and chopped off his head with the shovel. You could see the hack marks on the chest and what was left of the neck.
I turned to help Taz get up, and got pulled down into the bloody mess.
Just then a C.O. busted through the door, and said, “Spread-fuckin’-eagle on the floor now!”
I couldn’t have ran if I wanted to. It was like being in baby oil on hard wood.
They cuffed us up, and took us to SMU1 where we sat under investigation for murder for 7 months. They saw the whole thing on camera, but tried for 7 months to tie us into it. We were finally cleared.
Now if a guy gets stabbed to death in front of me in the chow line, I know to just step over the body and go eat real fast because there will be lockdown coming for sure. Now I don’t see anything, hear anything, or say anything. These are words to live by in prison.
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Shaun P. Attwood