Shit Slingers IV (The Early Years Part 5 by Polish Avenger)
Polish Avenger – A software-engineering undergraduate sentenced to 25 years because his friend was shot dead during a burglary they were committing. In Arizona, if a burglar gets killed, the accomplices can get 25-year sentences.
Magnum was massive: 6’3”, 230 pounds, all muscle. He’d been sentenced to 60 years, and had racked up numerous assaults on other units. He didn’t have a TV or other appliances that the guards could confiscate, so there really wasn’t any reason for him to behave. All they could do was give him more time.
Such a fellow with nothing to lose is quite dangerous.
My first encounter with him was that incredibly beshatted holding cell I had to sanitize on my first day at the job. But I hadn’t yet seen the guy. That happened about a month later. We had been strictly warned not to approach holding cells when they were occupied. The guys in there were being punished, and we weren’t supposed to slip them cigarettes or anything else. And sometimes they’d sling on us, too! I only got hit once – but we’ll get to that.
On the night in question, I was mopping the long hallway that separated the cells blocks when I became gradually aware of someone singing in a broken, off-key tone. It didn’t register much as we heard all manner of ungodly screeches and yells all of the time. As I got closer to the holding cells, the lyrics became distinct:
Kill a cop,
Kill a cop,
Gonna kill me a motherf*****g cop!
Hmmm! Well that’s imaginative, I thought as I peeked around the corner to see who was gleefully chanting such violent wishes.
Catch a glimpse I did! Filling the little window was an enormous shape wielding some sort of homemade torch, and actually melting the Plexiglas. Somehow Magnum had rigged a cigarette lighter (back when they sold them to us) into a mini-cutting torch and was happily singing away as he worked on melting the whole window out.
Now, had he succeeded, there was no way to get through the window. I thought he was doing it just to be a pain in the ass and cause damage. I never found out his intention as right then the guard on duty emerged from the office, saw the fireball, and yelped, “Oh shit! You better go back to your run! We’ve got a situation here!”
I got the hell out of Dodge.
Later I got briefed as to what happened. The Armored Strike Team (aka the A-Team…yes, seriously) arrived and politely requested that he stop melting the window. He refused. They responded with a blast of pepper spray, and opened the cell to do what they call a “forced cell move.” Basically, the 8 or 10 man crew just piles in and gets the fellow on the ground and handcuffed (and a few extra kicks might get slipped in).
Owing to Magnum’s physique, it took a little bit longer to subdue him, but inevitably he lost. They confiscated his blowtorch, and let him sit there handcuffed and peppery for about an hour.
The sergeant on duty eventually asked him, “OK, if I take off those cuffs are you going to behave?”
He meekly replied, “Yes, sir.”
Magnum put his hands out of the trap door. One cuff was unlocked, and he sprang into lightning-quick action. Before the surprised sergeant could react and slam the trap shut, Magnum spun around, grabbed a milk carton of liquid feces that he had previously hidden under the steel toilet, and flung it out of the trap door. He threw it so hard that when it blasted the sergeant in the chest, the resulting spatter went up his nose.
In retaliation, the A-Team went back in and beat him up pretty thoroughly. He spent the next two days hurling turds at every square inch of the cell (except, as previously mentioned, the toilet).
And of course, when it was all over, I got to go in again and clean up after him.
The hell of it was, all of that was somewhat mild compared to his later antics that you’ll be reading about.
Click here for Shit Slingers III.
New readers, click here for some of the best stories at Jon’s Jail Journal.
The Manchester Evening News ran my story today.
The Liverpool Echo ran an excerpt from Hard Time today.
Hard Time Book Review Number 3 by Nathaniel Tapley for Hackney Hive.
I'm doing a reading with the author of Try Me, Farah Damji, in London on 23 August · 18:30 - 20:00 at:
The Gallery Stoke Newington Library
Stoke Newington Church Street, London N16, 0JS
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