1 Feb 09

The Dangers Involved with a Gay Cellmate (Part 1 by Warrior)

Warrior - Serving fourteen years for kidnapping and aggravated assault. Half Hispanic and Scottish-Irish with family still in Mexico. Brought up by a family steeped in drug commerce. He writes some of the best prison-fight stories on the Internet.

One officer handcuffed me to the bellychain around my waist. The other had a firm grip on the lead attached to the bellychain. If I had turned rowdy, a yank of the lead would have swept me off my feet, as I was wearing leg shackles so closely linked they only permitted slight foot shuffles as opposed to a walking stride.

You can tell which prisoners have done a lot of lockdown time by the way they walk in shackles. They’re the ones who’ve mastered what we call the “penguin shuffle,” and they know how to land when yanked by a cynical guard.

I did my penguin shuffle – once again in an orange jumpsuit two sizes too large – until the escorting officers placed me in an office. Then in stepped a tall blond-haired sergeant in his late Forties. His flat top told me he was probably a military man or used to be or wished he was. This was confirmed when I noticed his spit-shined shoes and a Marine bulldog tattooed on his forearm.
“Semper fi, eh?” I said, which is Latin for “always faithful.” It’s the motto of the U.S. Marine Corps.
The sergeant tried to hold back an enthusiastic grin.
Still a proud Marine, I thought. Cool, I just scored some points.
“Look here,” he said with a firm tone. “Let’s cut the bullshit. Yer maxed out and none of the yards want ya, so we both know where yer next stop is. I’m the supervising sergeant of this motherfucker. This is limbo till ya get where yer going. Ya can do this shit one of two ways: cool or a pain in my ass. Either way I don’t give a fuck. This here is just to let you know.”
I figured this was the speech he dished out to all the new arrivals as a deterrent to further misbehavior. So I gave him the same answer he’d probably heard almost as many times as he’d given his speech. “I’m just passing through and trying to be cool until I get where I’m going.”
“I’m glad we understand each other. Do you care who you cell with?”
“My own kind [race] is all.”
The sergeant called in the two escorting officers, and directed them to which cell to put me in.

I shuffled my way through two sliding security doors, guards in tow. I caught my refection on the Plexiglas window shielding the control-tower entrance. I looked like a dog being walked. I reached cell 3, and was happy it was particularly close. The leg shackles were on so tight for so long that when I walked I felt them rubbing the skin on my ankles raw. By this time, I knew they’d be a little bruised.
“Step to the side by the door and face the wall! On your knees so I can remove your shackles!” said one officer.
The other was in front of the cell door, unlocking the feeding trap located dead center.

The feeding trap in lock-up was the safest way for the officers to give us what we had coming with the least amount of contact possible. As long as what we were getting was no bigger than 6 by 12 inches. It also allowed access to an inmate’s wrists in order to be cuffed and uncuffed. Any time we were out of our cells for any reason we were always belly-chained and cuffed.
“Sanchez! Come cuff up!” the officer who had unlocked the feeding trap, instructed my new cellmate.
As my cellmate was being cuffed, I paid close attention to his hands, attempting to gauge his size. In here, where cellmates sometimes kill their new cellmates, you have to notice such things, in case the compatibility to live with one another is not there. I noticed small hands, more feminine than a man’s. I also noticed lengthy fingernails, which meant my new cellmate was a homosexual. Then it dawned what the sergeant had meant by asking if I’d cell with anyone.

Click here to read Part 2.

Click here to read Warrior’s previous story.

Why might having a gay cellmate lead to trouble in prison?

Our friends inside appreciate your comments.

Email comments and questions for Warrior to
writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
Sheriff Joe Arpaio's Jails Lose Healthcare Accreditation

Maricopa County jails have lost their accreditation from a national health-care agency.

The action could affect future health-care related lawsuits by inmates and their families and could expose the county to more liability.

The county received a letter Thursday from the National Commission on Correctional Health Care, saying the jails were not "in compliance with the nationally accepted Standards for Health Services in jails." The letter didn't detail problems that could be fixed, and county officials say more information is needed.

An attorney for the ACLU says the accreditation decision underscores the need for county officials to bring the jails up to constitutional standards.

A federal judge in October ruled that Maricopa County's jails didn't meet minimum standards for care.

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Shaun P. Attwood
27 Jan 09

Dawn of a New Adventure

Sunday 25th Jan 09 1:10pm

I believe in making success happen. I have a plan. I intend to work hard implementing my plan, and I am shortly relocating to the city I can best put my plan into effect. That’s why I am presently on a train to London, the centre of literature in England.

First stop: a two-bedroom house in Guildford. I am viewing this house for the first time. It is owned and lived in by my friend Mike Hotwheelz. If the house is satisfactory, and that includes a distinct absence of cockroaches, I am going to move there on the 8th of February.
I’ve had a splendid year of being mollycoddled by my parents – daily home-cooked meals, mum’s laundry service, dad's apple-carrot smoothies – but now it’s time for me to make my way in the world alone.

Tomorrow’s agenda: I have to be up at 6am to meet my new boss, Tony, in London. Tony is training me to speak to audiences of hundreds of youths about my life, prison and the consequences of drugs. It was Tony’s suggestion that I move to London to be where the bulk of his work is, and I’m happy to be finally making some progress on that front.

I’ll continue this letter on my return train journey tomorrow.

Monday 26th Jan 09 6:45pm

I am thrilled about today’s accomplishments and the house I viewed in Guildford.

Jockeying for room among a gazillion London-bound commuters on the train and then the tube was how my day started. I met Tony – tall, soft-spoken, grey-haired, radiating good vibes – at his Harley Street practice. Formerly an alcoholic who trashed his life, Tony pulled himself together and has counselled for decades.

Tony drove us to a local school. He did a forty-five minute presentation on alcohol for three-hundred sixteen-year olds. Although he confessed to still getting nervous before presentations, he proved to be a dab hand – excellent use of body language, voice inflection and audience engagement. Sitting at the front of the large school hall, I felt the energy emanating from the audience.
When his speech ended to much applause, it was heartbreaking to see a sobbing girl emerge from the crowd. She told Tony and a senior staff member that she is suffering abuse at the hands of her alcoholic parents. Tony pledged to do some follow-up counselling for her. He said I need to be aware that my presentations – which he’s titling Green Bologna and Pink Boxers – will bring things to the surface of those members of my audience with a parent in prison.
Tony is presently designing a flyer for my presentations, to send to schools. He wants me to draw up a list of topics pertaining to my jail experience and to aim to speak about those for forty minutes. I’ll be taking questions for the remaining twenty minutes of the presentation. He doesn’t want me to practice a script as such, but rather to just get on the stage and develop my own style. He said everyone is nervous at first, but I’ll get used to it, and I’ll love it. I concur.

The house in Guildford is ideal. Guildford is a picturesque town with its own university, castle and cathedral – the cathedral filmed in the horror movie The Omen. The house is in the town centre, where I experienced a young cosmopolitan population, bustling with students and bohemian-looking types. Everything I need – grocery store, gym, library, government buildings – is within walking distance. The house was quiet at night. Mike is a mover for a food cash and carry, and his work schedule dictates he sleeps from 10pm till 6am. And most importantly, there’s plenty of space in the bedroom for me to set up my writing operation and go at it like a mad monk.

So how can I afford all of this? Actually, I can not. I am moving with no money at all. I am still technically unemployed – I haven’t made a paycheque yet – so I qualify for Housing Benefit, which means the government will pay my rent until I am pulling in enough income to fend for myself. For living expenses, I’ll continue to get Income Support. I am taking a risk on success, but I am confident of achieving my goals. In the near months, I’ll be happy if I can make enough to get by, while still having time to write and to help our friends inside by posting their stories to the Internet.
The last time I embarked on an adventure like this was when I immigrated to America with only student credit cards to survive on. In anticipation of this move, my excitement level is rising and my mind is steeling itself to deal with whatever challenges may arise.

Email comments or questions to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
25 Jan 09

From Slope (Letter 2)

Slope - A hillbilly biker with militiaman tendencies who's been serving a sentence for double murder since Boy George topped the charts. Born and raised in Sunnyslope - a neighbourhood putting as much energy into becoming the crack and crystal meth hub of Phoenix as if it were vying to host the Olympic Games.


Hello Shaun,

I hope this finds you well and all is good for you and your family! I also hope you had a beautiful Christmas with your dreary English weather!

You’re probably wondering why I haven’t been writing to you. Well, back in June a prison dentist almost killed me! I spent 3 days in a medical ward. He broke my skull in 5 places. They had to take me to an emergency oral surgeon. I was falling out. They had to pull like 4 pieces of bone out of my skull, collapsed my sinus cavity cracked all the way to the orbital socket, had a hole in the roof of my mouth all the way into my sinus cavity. They had me strung out on morphine sulphate for 4 months. My people got me a badass malpractice lawyer.

I made the parole board on the 25 to life! God is good to me! It has been a crazy 6 months! I have some action coming on my 9 year sentence.

I need to see some pictures of some pretty women. 25 years of no women, I’m a virgin again! Tell the English women I’m a dyed in the wool American booger eater! Covered in tattoos and scars. Got some in prison and others in bars. The only place I don’t have tattoos is my ass.

Well, my take on America’s new prez. It’s about time for a change. I figured it would be a woman long before a man from a culturally diverse background, and not of direct English descent. Hey, let’s see what he does. The color of skin does not dictate smarts or stupid. It’s about time for a change in America. Let’s see if he is up to it. He would be hard pressed to do worse than his predecessor!

So to recap, I made the board on the 25 to life, still have 9 years left, yet I have a chance to have that “modified.” A prison dentist damn near killed me!

Hope you had a good Christmas, enjoying your family and not all that material shit.

Write back soon! It was good to hear from you!

With respect,

Slope Diggidy Dawg

To read Letter 1 from Slope click here.

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Email comments or questions for Slope to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
My First Xmas and New Year in a Women’s Prison (by Andrea)

Andrea - A 28-year-old Scottish woman writing from a maximum-security prison in England. She suffered years of domestic violence, and was arrested for the attempted murder of her most recent boyfriend after he punched her in the face. She pled guilty to wounding, and is scheduled for release in 2010.

Christmas morning arrived. Up for work as usual for four others and myself. Everyone’s emotions were undecided or so it seemed. Had Santa Claus left his sack full of women suffering from PMT?
The morning passed with no problems. In fact, it was a wing full of yawns and wishes of “Merry Christmas.” Too good to be true it was.

Lunchtime arrived. Moods soon changed. There were many complaints about the overcooked turkey and half-raw sprouts. What did they expect really?
After an hour or so, arguments began between inmates. Threats were made. It got out of control. Officers stood watching every move, monitoring the trouble brewing. Soon there were women face to face, then fist-to-fist conflicts. A few of us watched the fighting from the top landing.
Officers locked up some of the women to calm things down. But the calm only lasted a short while. The afternoon continued in the same way.

It was sad listening to and watching all of this. Thoughts entered my mind of being at home with my children. It was just all too much for me to take in.

Boxing Day came. I was a completely different person. Not knowing that it was the start of an emotional breakdown. The officers noticed the change in me quite quickly. A decision was made to move me to another wing – “the quiet wing” – just before the New Year arrived.

Settling in, I felt more relaxed, but still unwell. I was put on medication by the doctor, which calmed me down a little.

New Year was so different to Christmas. Peaceful. Happy. No fights or arguments. A wing full of women in high spirits.
The countdown started. Roars of delight. Singing and cheering. Blasts and bangs from over the wired walls. The most beautiful view of colour lighting up the midnight sky as fireworks in their hundreds flew through the open air.
Soon after, silence was all you could hear behind these concrete walls. It was all over. The New Year was here. We were back to reality.
It’s an experience to be repeated one last time for me!

Click here for Andrea’s previous blog.

Our friends inside appreciate your comments.

Email comments or questions for Andrea to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
Guest Writer: Brandon the Occult Killer

Sue-O is a regular commenter at Jon’s Jail Journal. Her son, Brandon, is in prison. I recently asked Sue to see if Brandon would like to write some pieces for Jon’s Jail Journal. Here’s Brandon’s first piece.

Little mental picture here. I’m typing this sitting on the toilet with my wordsmith 250 perched on top of two stacked cardboard records’ boxes, aided by a cup of Nescafe freeze-dried coffee and a midnight-special cigarette with the desk dominated by my cellie. This is the only work station left. Gives a whole new meaning to “multi-tasking.”

Where should I begin? I was asked by my mother, Susan, (or Mumsy as us kids affectionately call her) to participate in JJJ. Specifically, she asked me for my perspective as a “first timer” in state prison. I’ll relate to you all as best I can, censor as much criminally opportunistic thought and poor grammar as possible, but be aware that prolonged exposure to jail has warped my fragile, little mind.

I could never stand written introductions, it feels too much like an AA meeting over Instant Messenger or watching someone write my memoirs for me. Picture those tags that say “HELLO my name is…” with a big space for your Sharpie-scrawled signature. Let’s give it a try. “HELLO my name is…Brandon, and I am an inmate! YAY! Awesome. Now we know each other, but this isn’t about you, it’s about me. Honest mistake, try not to make it again. Also, don’t be afraid of my odd humor. It’s like a Saltine, dry as hell, but great with wine and cheese. Tasty! Moving on, I am currently being held prisoner by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Department of Corrections, a.k.a PennDOC, serving a sentence of no less than 6, no more than 12 years. We go min/max in PA, no straight tickets here. Very deceiving. PennDOC is not to be confused with PennDOT, our Dept. of Transportation. The main difference being, if we’re ever sent out to fix a road, we’d actually have to DO it. Picture that scene from “Cool Hand Luke”.

My home jail is a little slice of Heaven’s Red Light District called SCI Somerset, located high atop the Allegheny Mountains in a town of the same name. It comes from an Old English word meaning “Land of Summer.” As you would expect, it’s every bit a misnomer as “Greenland.” In Greenland’s defense, their name doesn’t actually suggest a warm climate, just greenness. Anyhow, seasons in Somerset play out more like Atomic Doomsday in London rather than actual seasons. It’s grey, foggy, and raining, then there’s a sudden blast of hot, fiery death, followed by a century long nuclear winter rivaling the cold vacuum of space. A little extreme, a little exaggerated, but only the part about the vacuum.

When I was first taken into custody, I was 19. Before this, I had a single juvenile case at age 17, in penal terms I’m an infant, a neophyte. You don’t get much fresher than that. I didn’t know what to expect, all I knew was from movies and TV, guys raped in the showers, beaten to death in broom closets, chain gangs, forced labor, CO brutality, all that crap. And I was scared. Adding to my concern, the county jail separates its populations by severity of crime, and as they say in prison argot, I “had a body.” Very simply put, I was D.U.I., I crashed, somebody died. An incredibly tragic accident. Due to an ongoing negative personal and professional relationship with the local police, they spared no unpleasantness. I would be placed in isolation for an indeterminate amount of time (for my own protection, of course), then moved to maximum security with the worst of the worst.

My isolation block consisted of 6 individual cells, a shower stall, and a tinted shatter-proof lexan observation window. Below the window was a slot, somewhat like the old drive-through bank teller window with the drawer. This is where a CO would drop soap when you came out for a shower. My blockmates on the whole were, by definition, raving mad. All hours of the day and night they screamed and pitched fits until they fell asleep from sheer exhaustion or were forcibly medicated. I just stared blankly out the window of my new home, which had gone translucent with grime, naked except for the blue, body-length anti-suicide gown, rigid as a flak jacket, pondering possible turns of my predicament. This form of torture lasted only a day or so, but in that time I met a religious fanatic who was convinced I was an extra-terrestrial demon sent to kill him, a man who painted his cell with feces and was deathly afraid of his own reflection, and a transvestite from San Francisco, or “Frisco” as he put it, who was too interested in me for my comfort. I attract older women and trannies. Nice. I was moved from isolation to low-security observation, a dedicated cell on a regular block with petty criminals. Here I was free to be gawked at through the open bars as the latest life-taker in my community. I even had a cellie. These were small-timers doing county bids, I was exotic fare and became instantly infamous. The abuse was mostly verbal, otherwise it was anything that could be thrown through the bars (thankfully, no excretory material involved). Some of the more demented ones held out pens, cut-outs of my picture in the paper, and requested my autograph. I thought to myself that this was only the beginning, that every day would be a fight for my life. There was no way out of here without a few good scars. Every moment was a mental preparation for the possibility of taking a life or lives in order to save my own. [Note from Susan: the “body” was Brandon’s best friend, Steve.]

The petty crooks demanded to know why I did what I did and quoted wild “occult killer” tabloid rumors, gleaned by police from me and my victim’s extensive collection of strange reading materials and personal effects. Personally, I think everyone should own a copy of Aleister Crowley’s Black Mass on tape. “Look out! He’s got a copy of Charles Manson’s ‘Lies’ on CD! ‘Requiem’ comics! Norwegian Black Metal! An English translation of ‘Faust’! (GASP!) It’s the Devil himself!!!!!!!” My legal firearms collection spawned a short-lived school shooter/right-wing separatist rumor that mercifully went unprinted. They also claimed they found a “used” sacrificial dagger which turned out to be a letter opener from an art catalogue modeled after one found in Tutankhamen’s tomb. And the award for “Most Unexpectedly Controversial Christmas Present” goes to…Mumsy! It should be noted that the blade was made from gold-painted pewter and would bend in a strong gust of wind. Seriously, I’ve seen tongue depressors more lethal.

When interest finally began to die and the real, boring story was out, other inmates began to empathize with my situation. They reassured me that jail had softened in Pennsylvania over the years, as a first-timer I would be sent to a “college campus” joint, and that max in the county was quiet, where the occupants kept to themselves. I was told to keep my head straight, my wits about me, and I should be fine. I looked over my shoulder at my cellie, who was busy pacing up and back, murmuring his name to himself and attempting to urinate, painfully it sounded, every 5 to 7 seconds. He did this nearly every hour of every day. Day in and day out. He was making it difficult. I won’t write it here due to what could be legal constraints, but I’ll never forget the guy’s name.

After three weeks of this, I was finally sent to the maximum-security wing on the roof, block 5-A (still in the county jail). They gave me a uniform (green scrubs), some spare clothes in a plastic bin (including a Bob Barker jean jacket, stylish!), showed me to an elevator, and keyed my floor. I was left alone inside. At the top the doors opened to a hallway completely devoid of sound and human presence. I was greeted instead by a wall-mounted intercom that instructed me to walk down the hall to the door on the right, labeled 5-A. Pointless, considering it was the only block on the floor. As I progressed, the voice moved from speaker to speaker, making sure I wouldn’t wander off course. Really, the hall wasn’t that long or riddled with doors, they just didn’t want me to blunder onto the fire escape or the guard booth, which was probably unlocked. I would have caught them doing what every C.O. does: not his job. The door to the block buzzed open remotely and yet another speaker informed me I live in 13 cell (which once housed escaped convict Hugo Selinski-worth googling just to see the bed sheet rope hanging 5 stories down). I scanned the tiny block to find exactly where that was when my ol’ buddy the intercom said “top of the stairs” and a door pops open automatically. It was amazing how eerie and deserted the place felt, what with the disembodied doors opening themselves. The block being locked in for count completed the illusion. This is where I began slipping into the lifestyle. Everyone there was either being extradited or looking at hefty state time, so mostly we just tried to amuse ourselves and forget the trouble ahead. If you could afford a TV, the cable was free. We’d hold boxing matches in the cell, or run in on guys we knew, stuff all the toilet paper in the bowl, and flood the place. We had games of Sorry that ended in violence, we made chi-chi’s, and we threw our weight around. When one of your roadies is facing the death penalty, you can get away with things. We lived about as well as we could.

From the tales of experience that I gathered, your first state bid now is like a test. Especially if you have no county record to speak of. They intentionally send you on a cake-walk-like Somerset or Albion. Hell, one of our joints is called Retreat. Sounds fun. They want to know if you’ll come out cocky, thinking you could do this on your head. Not me. I’ve got news: even easy jails suck unless you’re homeless, they’re still jails, and I hate the idea of giving up big chunks of my life to them. I can’t wait to leave ASAP. I get my first chance at parole in about 3 years, but I won’t max for another 9. I’m just not down with that “life on the installment plan” repeat offender thing. I’m done. After that 9 months in county I was done. I’ve got a job now, working in a PCI (PA Correctional Industries) Laundromat sorting a line of soiled clothing and linen from here to eternity. The work keeps me busy, the money keeps me self-reliant, and the smell keeps cops out of my department. I’m under suspension now because of a petty spat with the cops that landed me in the hole. Yeah, I’m a regular bad boy, refusing a cell move order. Stupid shit. No matter, I’ll be back in January.

Well I think that’s enough for now. I know I didn’t say much about myself personally, but I’ll leave questions up to y’all. Leaning about me is like joining the Freemasons, to get in you have to ask. The weirder, the better, I’ll answer just about anything. Whether or not I like puppies, how my idea of a romantic evening is a tracer-lit night on the firing line at Knob Creek’s biannual machine gun shoot-out, how to run a flamethrower rental business, or my plan to get myself sworn in as President based on a technicality (Obaza ’08: Sweeping Changes MUHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHHA!!!!) It’s all good. Until next time…

Email comments for Brandon to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
Podcast Of Monday's Radio Interview

I was on the Duncan Barkes Show last Monday morning. We discussed how the first year of my release has unfolded, what Sheriff Joe Arpaio has been up to lately, and I read some excerpts from the book I’m shaping up with the help of my mentor, Sally Hinchcliffe, tentatively titled Green Bologna and Pink Boxers: Surviving Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Jail.

You can listen to the broadcast here: http://www.whatson.com/goto/?type=radio&station=citytalk&show=a_shaun_attwood__1_year_on

Email comments to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
25 Dec 08

Xmas Holidays in a Women’s Prison (by Lifer Renee)

Renee - She was only a teenager when she received a sixty-year sentence from a judge in Pima County. Fourteen years into her sentence, Renee is writing from Perryville prison in Goodyear, Arizona, providing a rare and unique insight into a women's prison.

I thought the day before Christmas Eve was going to be a regular day in prison. I was wrong.
I was sitting at work listening to chitchat, waiting for our meeting to start, when a sergeant walked in, looked at our supervisor and yelled, “Do you have a radio?”
As she turned to retrieve the radio from her desk, he told the whole call center, “Lock it down now!”
Everyone stood to leave.
“What’s going on?”
“Why are we locking down?”
“It is one-hundred-percent lockdown!” the sergeant boomed.
“Look, the cops are running to 24 Yard.”
The nosiest of the group sprinted down the sidewalk to see if they could catch a glimpse of what was going on.
Pacing by an officer, I asked, “Hey, what’s going on?”
“Someone is down.”
Then the chat behind me began. “I heard there is someone down and there is a lot of blood.”
I turned to face my coworkers.
“Really, that is not what I just heard. Do you need to start rumours already?”
Walking with Kay who is still walking with a cane, the women behind us were walking right on our heels.
“I can’t walk any faster,” Kay said.
“Hey, can you just go around us?” I asked.
“Oh, we’re not in a hurry to get back to the yard.”
“I don’t care about that!” I said. “Just get out from behind us! How about that?”
They proceeded around us.
Two seconds later came a procession of officers speed-walking down the sidewalk, screaming at us, “Get up against the fence! Don’t turn around!”
People being people, the airheads were the first to turn.
“I said face the fence!”
I caught a glimpse of a body being carried in one of those basket-type stretchers. When the officers carrying the body passed us, we were rushed to our rooms. “Let’s get a move on! Lockdown! Take it inside now!”
Still I walked with Kay no matter how much they screamed.

We returned to the yard, and turned at the corner of the control room, running right into two girls screaming at each other.
“I don’t give a fuck what you say about me, bitch! We can do this now!”
People jumped into the middle of it before they started to box.
“Now is not the time, homes.”
The officers caught wind of it, and ran toward the mob scene.
“Lock it down, now! In you rooms!”
I finally got Kay to her room and returned to my cell. One of the girls who was ready to fight was in the smoking section, smoking. “I don’t give a damn what she said about me.” On and on she went.
Of course you don’t, I thought. You will fight and go and tell. That is what you are known for doing.

Finally, we were let off lockdown later in the afternoon. I went to dump my trash, and ran into a friend of mine. “What the hell is going on?”
“Friend, she sliced her throat.”
“What! Who?”
“Crystal cut her fucking throat!”
I didn’t want to know any more, and went back inside.

On Christmas Eve, I awoke to the sound of an officer screaming in the loud speaker. “If you have not shopped, report to the store! If you have not shopped, report to the store! Whoever has the broom from the control room, return it now before I have to call in the search team.”
It was 6:30am. So much for sleeping in. I got up to start my day. The next sounds I heard as I stood at the sink with my shankproof toothbrush were a truck pulling onto the yard, the beep-beep-beep of a forklift, and the maintenance truck with the welder in tow. They were adding 30 more beds. 10 to each side room of Building 23 and 10 more to Building 23. They barely have room to walk through now. No wonder there are fights every day. There are a total of 322 women on a yard that is maybe the size of a high school football field, buildings included.

So I decided to go see how Kay was doing. I finished her Christmas card the night before, and I figured I would put all of my craft stuff away later because I still had two cards to make.
While we were talking in her cell, an officer stopped at the door. My mind raced. Cell visiting is not allowed and I thought I’d be sent to the hole.
He opened the door. “Get in compliance, and step outside. You need to line up on the fence.”
“I need to get sweats on,” Kay said.
I stepped out onto the run, waiting for Kay. I looked over to my right and saw four K-9 trucks. “Come on, Kay, we have to go get our butts sniffed.”
She got dressed, and we lined up against the fence. The whole yard was out there. They were even extracting girls from the showers.
“Line up, ladies! Up against the fence! Do not touch the fence with your ass or your hands or you will get bit! If you have a hat on, take it off, and place it in your left hand! Hands out of your sleeves! Palms facing the fence!”
There were so many women that the officers broke us up into two groups. The dogs ran by, sniffing our backsides.
“Now squat! Do not touch the fence or you will get bit!”
Kay attempted to squat. “I don’t know how long I can do this.”
“If you fall, I’ll catch you.”
The dog ran by. Negative results.
“Stand up! Turn to your left! Walk through D pod to C pod” Second group, line up against the fence!”
I live in C pod, but I walked Kay back to A pod. “Are you OK?” I asked.
“Yeah, it’s just cold, and I hurt.”
“Oh crap!” I said.
“What’s wrong?”
“I left the razor blade out that I was using to cut my cards with.”
“You’d better go get it.”
“I don’t think I can get into my room. See ya later!” I took off, walking toward C pod my heart and thoughts raced. It was an A class ticket, and with yesterday’s throat slashing stupid. I decided to chance it even thought he cops were everywhere. I bolted up the stairs, ran into my room, grabbed the blade, threw it in the toilet and flushed. I opened the door, looked to my right and there was an officer and a dog entering the room four rooms down. I went in the opposite direction, down the stairs toward B pod. I ran into an officer. My heart was in my throat.
“Where do you live?”
“C pod. Why?”
“You need to get up against the fence.”
“Oh, I didn’t know that.”
I turned around and walked to the fence. I waited, watching the officers and dogs go through our rooms.
“C pod, you can return to your rooms now. B pod, remain against the fence.”
I laughed to myself as half of B pod already went in. I was thankful I dodged two tickets by the grace of something.

Christmas Day. We tried to make a day of it. We exchanged our gifts. Just store items really. Friends’ favorites: yogurt pretzels, lemonheads, rice crispy treats. We were rained out of card game and went indoors. I had to stand in the rain to get Christmas dinner. Green-tinted roast beef. Potato paste. Frozen pie.
I remember ten years ago, we smiled more. A group of us would get together, cook, eat, play softball and volleyball. These days there is more drama, more stealing, more fights, and it is only getting worse. It can only get worse with more women being incarcerated and fewer released.

I hope you all had a bright holiday season! Take care until next time.


Email comments for Renee to
writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
Mentored (Part 2)

Thanks to the Koestler Trust, I am now being mentored by Sally Hinchcliffe, a published author with an MA in Creative Writing from the University of London, taught by Julia Bell and Russell Celyn Jones.

The second session started with Sally helping me restructure the draft of a short synopsis of my book. The short synopsis is just for my own use, and states the basic structure of my memoir.
She also wants me to consider writing a long synopsis, breaking down each chapter to give the full arc of the story. The long synopsis will be a marketing tool. It needs to state why somebody would want to read my memoir, and what my book says about a larger world – I think exposing what goes on in Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s jail system is a larger theme, and Sally pointed out so is being an Englishman in an American jail system.
“You'll probably end up with two different versions of your long synopses,” Sally said. “One which is very much for your own use – the writing tool – for planning out the structure and what episodes go where, the other is the marketing tool, which you might send out to agents and publishers. At the moment we've only been looking at the structural one, until you get the structure of the book right, then when you're ready to be sending it out, we can work on the more polished version.”
Sally has suggested I get rid of the numerous anecdotes that do not move the story ahead. She wants me to list all of the anecdotes I have written, with a view to culling only the ones that are important. There’s so much material to be removed.
Sally pointed out my tendency to continue writing – “dribbling on” – after a particular episode and the chapter should have ended.

For homework, Sally set me the task of critical reading. She wants me to look at some books, to find some good prose and some poor prose, and to explain what works and what doesn’t. I am also to study how authors transition back in time. We both agreed John Updike is a master of such transitions.
She hopes this exercise will help me critique myself more.

Here’s my homework:

Good Prose, Poor Prose, Transitions

I’ve extracted these quotes from four books: Forget You Had a Daughter by Sandra Gregory, The Wolf of Wall Street by Jordan Belfort, Lucky by Alice Sebold, and Shantaram by Gregory David Roberts. (Shantaram contains the highest standard of prose I've ever seen from an ex prisoner. I couldn't put it down, reading all 933 pages in two weeks. It's about a heroin-addict bank robber on the run in the slums of India.)

Good Prose

Shantaram: I was a revolutionary who lost his ideals in heroin, a philosopher who lost his integrity in crime, and a poet who lost his soul in a maximum-security prison.

So much about the author is packed into this one sentence. The juxtapositions are strong.

Lucky: Betty had a face full of deep Main Line wrinkles. She looked like an exotic breed of dog, sort of a cultivated shar-pei, and she spoke with an aristocratic accent…

This description is compact, vivid and original.

Shantaram: Every time we turn the key we twist the knife of fate, because every time we cage a man we close him in with hate.

Good use of aphorism and poetry. It’s this style of writing that makes Shantaram such a wonderful book. Roberts constantly probes the big questions in philosophy, giving Shantaram universal relevance.

Shantaram: His love song echoed and rang a bell in every heart that heard him.

Poetic use of metaphor and personification.

Poor Prose

The Wolf of Wall Street: …some very obnoxious yuppies, seventy of them in all.

Belfort has a great story to tell, but his prose is weak. The word “very” appears on the first page and is used too much throughout the book. Instead of using very this or very that, one better word would do. Sheer laziness.

The Wolf of Wall Street: Thankfully, I was able to follow him just fine tonight, because I was sober as a judge…

The Wolf of Wall Street: In the past, I had stuck drugs up my ass too – going through this country or that – and it wasn’t a barrel of laughs.

The Wolf of Wall Street: …there was no denying that he was smart as a whip, cunning as a fox, ruthless as a Hun, and, above all else, loyal as a dog.

Belfort’s prose lacks originality. The above three quotes demonstrate his love of clichés. The third quote should be nominated for a clichés-per-sentence award. Prose like this makes me yawn.


Shantaram: Listening to the band, watching the children, and thinking of Tariq – missing the boy already – I remembered an incident from the prison. In that other world-within-a-world, back then, I moved into a new prison cell and discovered a tiny mouse there.

Forget You Had a Daughter: No one ever knows it at the time but there are always signs or incidents in your life that try to point out the rocky path. Most of the time we fail to heed them. When I was 17 I went to Amsterdam…

Lucky: That May, after my rape, I arrived back to a congregation that was traumatized, no more so than Father Breuninger himself.

Forget You Had a Daughter
: I close my eyes. We are together, my brother and I, riding on bicycles next to our house and there is a cartoon sticker on the red frame of mine. It is warm and breezy, the summer of 1971 and I am happy for sure.

Those are four examples of smooth and original transitions.

And here’s what happened to the opening of the book after incorporating Sally’s input – click here to read Sally’s input in Mentored Part 1.

“Tempe Police Department! We have a warrant! Open the door!”
The stock quotes flickering on the computer screen lost all importance as I rushed to the peephole – it was blacked out. Boots thudded up the outdoor stairs to our Scottsdale apartment.
Bang, bang, bang, bang!
Wearing only boxer shorts, I dashed to the bedroom. “Claudia Wake up! It’s the cops!”
“Tempe Police Department! Open the door!”
Claudia scrambled from the California king, her long blond hair tousled. “What should we do?” she asked, anxiously fixing her pink pyjamas.
Bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang, bang!
“Open the door!”
We searched each other’s faces.
“Let’s open it,” I said, figuring not letting them in would make matters worse. With Claudia clinging to my arm, I was hastening to let them in when – boom! – the door leaped off its hinges.
A small army of SWAT – all black fatigues and ballistic armour – blitzed through the doorframe, pointing submachine guns. Moving with speed and unity, every other man entering our living room took an opposite direction, lining up in front of two perpendicular walls. Bracing to be shot at any moment, I froze – terror-struck.
“Tempe Police Department! Get on the fucking ground now!”
“Police! Police! On your bellies now!”
“Hands above your heads!”
“Don’t fucking move!”
As I dropped to the floor, they fell upon me. Crushed by hands, elbows, knees and boots, I could barely breathe. Cold steel snapped around my wrists. I was hoisted like a puppet onto my feet. As they yanked Claudia up by the cuffs, she pinched her eyes shut; when she opened them, tears spilled out.
“I’m Detective Reid,” said a tall burly man with long scraggy hair, and an intimidating presence. “English Shaun, you’re a big name from the rave scene. I’m sure this raid will vindicate the charges.” There was a self-satisfied edge in his tone of voice, as if he were savouring a moment of great triumph.
Dazed by shock, I fumbled around for an appropriate response. “There’s nothing illegal in here.”
He smirked knowingly, then read my Miranda and consular rights.
I wanted to put my arms around Claudia to stop her trembling. “Don’t worry, love. Everything’s going to be alright,” I said, concealing my fear.
“Don’t fucking talk to her! You’re going outside!” Detective Reid took a dirty T-shirt from the hamper and slapped it on my shoulder. “Take this with you!”
“I’m exercising my right to remain silent, love!” I yelled repeatedly as they pushed me out of the apartment.
“I told you not to fucking talk to her!”
Yelling over each other, they shoved me down the stairs. They briefly removed my cuffs, so I could slip the T-shirt on.
“Stand by the stairs and keep fucking quiet!” Detective Reid left me guarded by a policeman.
The heat of the sun rising over the Sonoran Desert soon engulfed me.
They locked Claudia into the back of a Crown Victoria, which sped off. Police in state uniforms, federal uniforms, and plain clothes swarmed our place. Every so often, Detective Reid and a short bespectacled lady conferred.
Neighbours assembled, fascinated.
Sweat streamed from my armpits, trickled from my crotch. I thought about Claudia. What will they do to her? Will she be charged?
Detective Reid bounded down the stairs, his air of triumph gone. “What’s in the safe, Attwood?”
“A coin collection and documents like my birth certificate.”
“You’re full of shit! Where’s the key?” he asked, intensifying the hostility in his voice. “You might as well just give the drugs up at this point.”
“The key’s on my key chain, but it needs a combination as well as a key.”
“What drugs are in it?”
“Don’t play games with us, Attwood. Don’t force me to call a locksmith.”
“I’m not playing games.”
“We’ll soon see about that.” He sounded desperate.
I was about to volunteer the combination, but he whipped out a cell phone, and dialled a locksmith.
“Get in the back of that car over there,” said a policeman in his late forties with a rugged face. He looked the type not averse to taking a detour on the way to the police station to teach certain criminals a lesson. New to manoeuvring in handcuffs, I fell sideways on to the back seat. I straightened myself up, and he threw a pair of jeans on my lap. In the driver’s seat, he donned Electra Glide in Blue motorcycle-cop sunglasses, mouthed a stick of gum, and blasted a hard-rock radio station. Tapping the wheel, he bobbed his head slightly as he drove.
The sense of being on the road to losing my liberty increased my dread.
“Looks like we’re gonna be waiting outside,” he said, parking near Tempe police station.
Sealed in the Crown Victoria for what seemed like an eternity, I mulled over my predicament. Cuffed. Cramped. Sweaty.
“Bring him in,” someone radioed.
He parked by a mobile police unit. He uncuffed me, told me to put my jeans on, and escorted me to a man sat at a desk.
“Fill this out.”
“I’m exercising my right to remain silent,” I said.
“You must fill this out, or else we’ll book you in as a John Doe, and you don’t want that.”

Click here for Mentored Part 1.

Click here for Mentored Part 3.

Email comments to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
Radio Interview On Monday Morning

I'm on the Duncan Barkes Show this Monday morning to discuss how the first year of my release has unfolded. I’ll be reading some excerpts from the book I’m shaping up with the help of my mentor, Sally Hinchcliffe, tentatively titled Green Bologna and Pink Boxers: Surviving Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Jail.
The station is City Talk 105.9 out of Liverpool. I expect to be on for approximately 30 to 40 minutes between 9am and 10am in England (between 2am to 3am Arizona time).

Here's the link for anyone who wants to listen to it online: http://www.whatson.com/citytalk/

Here’s a small excerpt from the book:

Entering Joe Arpaio’s Madison Street Jail

In a corridor, guards patted us down, and confiscated our shoelaces.
“Step through there,” a female guard said, pointing at a walk-through metal detector.
On both sides of the corridor, inmates in cells were banging on the Plexiglas and yelling at the guards. Outside of the cells, the guards were yelling names, slamming doors and cursing the inmates.
“Attwood! This way!”
I walked by a Mexican woman in a black restraint chair. Limbs shackled. Chest strapped. The thick string of drool dangling from her chin swung like a pendulum as she wriggled in the tilted-back seat. When a guard hid her head in a hood, she howled like a cat on fire.
“I’m Attwood.”
“Get in there!”
My heart pistoned as I entered a cell containing dozens of prisoners, most of them huddled on the floor in a variety of uncomfortable positions. On each side of the room men were sat upright and shoulder-to-shoulder on steel double bunks – forming shelves of humans. Swastikas and gang graffiti – Aryan Brotherhood, South Side Posse Bloods, Barrio 19th Ave – loomed down from the walls. I gagged on the plague-like fug. “Excuse me,” I said, pushing through the men clustered around the door yelling at the guards. Manoeuvring carefully over the patchwork of limbs and bodies, I found a space with a urinous odour near the toilet. Resting against the filthy back wall, I slid down. I was congratulating myself on finding a place to sit away from the yellers, screamers and Plexiglas bangers, when I noticed insects shaped like almonds darting on the floor. Cockroaches. I flicked one off my shoe and rose fast. I brushed the surrounding ranks of them away with my feet. Watching them scale the ankles of a hobo snoring under the nearest bunk, and disappear into his trousers, I shuddered.

On the show, I'll also be reading a longer excerpt about a suspected childmolester getting smashed and left for dead by skinheads at Towers jail.

Next month, I am moving to London to seek career success. The man who has hired me to speak to audiences of youths is based down there. London is also the centre of literature.

Email your comments to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
07 Jan 09

Six Months to Live – Two Tonys

Two Tonys - A whacker of men and Mafia associate serving multiple life sentences for murders and violent crimes. Left bodies from Tucson to Alaska, but claims all his victims "had it coming."


Hey friend,

Greetings and salutations from across the big pond.

I guess I owe you an explanation as to why I’ve been slow in getting back to you. The big one is that I’m going through a little bend in the river right now. Without going Dr. Sanjay Gupta on you, here’s what’s up. I’ve been sick. It’s a funny kind of sick. A few weeks ago I’m called to Medical for a blood test. 5 vials. Then a week or two later they did it again, but it was a retest. Then a few days later the Dr. calls me up there and tells me I’m scheduled for a serious test at St. Mary’s, and the reason is my tests are off the chart with negative results for the big C. So I’m waiting to go.
Now it ain’t no big fuckin’ deal. But I just want a yea or nay so I can settle down. As soon as I can get some answers, you’ll hear from me, and one way or another I’ll settle in and get down to writing you more. I know you understand where my head is at, plus I’m not feeling real good.

Anyway, how’s your life going? I know it’s good and I’m happy for you and proud of you. Give Mom-Dad my love and respects and you be a good son and brother (I know you are).

Hey! Sorry I haven’t written you more. But I’ll make it up to you big time. We’ll go where no man or woman has dared to go before. If God, Buddha, Mohammed, Fate or Mother Nature fucks with me, then it’s on big time. In the words of that great sage “W” “Bring it on.”

Thanks for the mail!

Stay strong,

Your pal,

Two Tonys

A few weeks after receiving this letter I received an email from Two Tonys’ daughter stating a doctor had told him he has cancer of the liver, has six months to live, and was about to begin treating him with chemotherapy.


Hi Friend,

What can I say? I’ll start by saying happy holiday to you and yours. Then I want to apologize for taking so long to tell you what’s going on. I’ve been procrastinating. You know how that goes, and I know you’ll understand.

Allow me to thank you very much for your letters, pictures and the book you sent me, Shantaram. I just started it, and I know I’ll enjoy it because you don’t send no Tom Clancy shit or James Patterson and John Grisham junk.
It’s funny but I like to think that I am responsible for taking you from the cheeseburger to beef Wellington of the literary world, even though I know I didn’t. So indulge an old scoundrel such as I am.
The book Maux was off the hook. I really enjoyed it and got the message in my own mind, which was survival. I read it in 2 days.

Hey, I’m taking that morphine plus anti-nausea, along with my high blood pressure, and then the chemo meds twice a day. So please forgive my sloppy writing and spelling.
Look, this thing I’m going through ain’t no thing.

Yeah, Barack socked it to that senile bastard McCain and that stupid woman he chose for his V.P.. The two of them were pathetic. Now if Obama can do what he says he’ll do and not become another corrupt S.O.B. and get all full of himself, I’ll pull for him.

So I’m really happy for you and that your foundation is building. Man, I believe in you. Your skills amaze me.
I wish I could be out there with you. We’d go eat a meat pie or two, and then do London. That would be fun.
So tell me, what’s the progress in your goals and adventures? Your name comes up from time to time and it's all good of course. Two Tonys would not have it any other way. But I’m a good judge of sincerity and it’s sincere. Your legacy lives on, and of course this is just one part. Now with your second chance, you can get busy. Don’t blow it! I believe in you and so do many others. I might not be around to see it blossom, but you will blossom. All I ask is every now and then have a nice thought of our conversations and laughs.

Richard K. sent me some books, including Whom the Bell Tolls. He seems really nice. Give him a shout out for me.

Hey bro, revisiting my situation even though I closed it earlier, I just want to say I like to think that I’ve lived my life as a tough old bastard, a non sniveler.
I watched an hour show on St Jude Hospital for sick kids. They all had cancer. They had their heads shaved, and all of them had a smile and a good attitude. Even in pain they smiled and were just sweet little bald kids. I loved them all. So for me to act any other way would be a disgrace not only to those little kids but to myself. They gave me strength.
Plus look at what I did to others even if I try to justify it and say they asked for it and had it coming or they were in de bizzness. They only had 2 seconds to get their affairs in order, at least I’ve got a few months maybe longer to get my affairs in order. But I can’t dwell in past days. It’s all about here and now.
My energy level is low. I’ve lost a lot of weight. I was 179 lbs a few days ago, and going lower. No appetite. Nothing. Food is bland, but I get a resource 3 times a day. I like those a lot.

Will you readers want me to continue on with Two Tonys blogs? I can give it a try. I always like to answer their questions.

Stay strong and do the right thing. I’ll write more soon, I promise.


Two Tonys

If you wish to send letters, cards or books to Two Tonys to show our love for him as he fights to hold onto what’s left of his life then please email me with your full name and contact address, and I will provide you his information.

You can also send him your well wishes by posting a comment.

Our friends inside appreciate your comments.

Email comments for Two Tonys to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
04 Jan 09

T-Bone Stands Up For Don (by T-Bone)

T-Bone - Radiating power and strength, this deeply-spiritual massively-built African American towers over most inmates. He is a prison gladiator with more stab wounds than Julius Caesar. A good man to have on your side.

I want to tell you about when I cut loose from the prison gang and went independent here in the joint.

After I smashed Monkey, I had a big target on my back. I was jumped once, and fought one-on-one several times. After a while the word went to the streets, and all of the new guys decided they’d better go find someone else to fight because fighting me was dangerous.
You know how the cons who have been locked up the longest always get the new guys to do their bidding. In plainer terms, the Aryan Brotherhood, the Mexican Mafia and the Mau-Maus use the new guys to do their dirty work.

I had changed and it was a good change. I helped guys who needed help.
There are a lot of things that go on in prison that the cops know about but don’t see it or pretend not to see it. They just don’t care to stop a lot of things that are going on, and I had decided to step up and make a difference in the lives of many.

I went to this old man – a little guy who was always minding his own business – and asked him, “What would you do if you don’t like seeing people hurt by being raped and extorted?”
He looked at me and said, “You’ve already made up your mind, so don’t worry about anything besides the cops getting involved.”
“The cops?” I said.
“”You don’t want people calling you a cop.” He was telling me to be careful, and I knew better than to allow anyone to call me a rat!

Things were going as they usually do in places like these, the same old same old, and it was nasty.
I was on the pile showing the wannabees (drug users and racists) how to workout for strength and conditioning. They were sporting prison ink and stupid looks because all they do is workout to intimidate and take. I heard some whimpering from the rec shed. I kept working out, and I was a little scared because no one had my back.
I left the pile and asked this guy to pitch me a few balls. I took out my frustration with the bat. When 7 out of 12 went over the fence, the guys who played all of the time asked me to join a team, so I did.

That evening we played a team from South Yard, and while we were in the fourth inning, this fish (new guy) was being punked by the Aryan Brotherhood on the phones, about 60 yards away from the back stop. I was playing 3rd base, and got behind because I was watching them.
Three days went by and finally I had a chance to talk to the fish. Don was six-foot-three tall and about 180 pounds. He didn’t understand a lot about prison and asked me, “What should I do?”
“Stand up and fight for yourself, I said. “Don’t allow yourself to become like them.”
He didn’t. He was giving those guys blowjobs in the showers and whatever else when they forced him to.
There are a lot of guys in prison who are gay and that’s their business, but rape and intimidating someone into sex are appalling.
They then had the guy send $100 a month to one of their books or else they were going to kill him. That’s how cheap life is in here. That went on for five months.

One day I get a letter from a middle-aged lady asking me to look out for her son. It was Don’s mom.
I spoke to Don, and he told the wannabees, “Leave me alone or else T-Bone will get you.”
It was on! I had a visit that night from two guys who weren’t smart enough to wipe their own noses. They’d come to chow with looks that gave them away that evening. Then they had this redneck C.O. put their cell doors on access, and mine on entry. They were pushing and pulling my sliding door with looks on them that made me ready, for exactly what I didn’t know.
I had no celly because of the target on my back, but like I said before there is a God.
I heard them whispering outside of the cell door at 1:17AM. I slid to the floor on my belly and rolled left to the toilet. I got in between the toilet and the cell door in the dark. They pushed and pulled that damn door open and rushed in on me. In my boxers, I managed to bam-bam-bam-bam! one of them and give a serious chop to the other who was bleeding from his mouth and nose but managed to stab my leg. I grabbed his face and arm, put the back of his head into the wall, which stunned him, and put my right thumb into his right eye, and body-slammed him.
The other guy was still on his butt trying to clear his head, so I helped him up and kneed him between the legs.
I went to the door, and looked outside of the pod. Nothing. I opened the door and the good Lord saved my life period. This wannabe named Boo-Boo had a river rock in his laundry bag, which missed my head and hit the door slightly above my head.
Everyone was up now, and Boo-Boo ran to his cell and locked-down. There wasn’t a cop in the tower when I dragged those two out. The cops had gone elsewhere, turning a blind eye because I was the one supposed to be getting smashed or killed that night. I am still amazed by how easy it is to manipulate the people who work in this place.

Anyways, that situation was hairy to say the least, and I know I am here by the grace of God.

Our friends inside appreciate your comments.

Email comments for T-Bone to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood
03 Jan 09

From Shane (Letter 3)

Shane - After being denied psychiatric medication by ValueOptions, Shane turned to illegal drugs financed by burglaries. For stealing a few hundred dollars worth of goods, he was sentenced by Judge Ron Reinstein to eleven years. The medication in prison caused him to suffer a period of spontaneous ejaculations. Shane is the author of the blog Persevering Prison Pages.



I’ve really enjoyed your readers' comments on my writings. I’ve tried to continue the work you began all those years ago in Arpaio’s roach motel on Madison Street. Adding my own style and a bit more in-your-face attitude. I believe it’s important to keep this blog open for us prisoners and it gives me a voice outside. I’ll continue to write and share on jonsjailjournal and my own blogs, as long as there are readers welcoming my stories and letters.

I’d also like to thank you, Jose in San Diego, big Jason, and everybody else who has been down [in prison] and comments. You give credence to what’s being written and stand up for a cause that you’ve personally seen and/or experienced. For many readers it’s just sad, scary and disgusting, and sometimes funny as our stories show. For those who’ve been down and survived it, it’s flashbacks from your own past. Thanks and much L&R!

Here’s my response to Jessica's skinhead-story comment on Ms. G: Nobility is best judged by a person's actions rather than their ideologies. The skins acted with nobility. Three things that impress me: integrity, chivalry, and NOBILITY.

I want to write and warn you not to let any women you date lure you back into the scene that got you your illustrious stay here at the Tucson Hilton! It’s easy to get distracted and find yourself in a bad place.

I talked to Slingblade. He said he got your letters and never wrote back. I told him I’d mail a letter to you from him and he just mumbled and walked away. His mind seems to have deteriorated so much I don't think he even understands you're trying to help him get out. The staff here won't help him, and without outside help he has no hope.

In closing this short note, I’d like to add to Sue O’s comment to “What Comes Around”. I am always looking for people to write. You can email Shaun your address if you’d like to write to me, or you can find mine at my blog.

Well, I’ll go for the time being. Take care and watch that edge!

I’m out!



Our friends inside appreciate your comments.

Email comments for Shane to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below. To post a comment if you do not have a Google/Blogger account, just select
anonymous for your identity.

Shaun P. Attwood