30 Jul 08

From T-Bone (Letter 6)

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.


Hey Brother,

Peace to you + yours!

I want to respond to some of the comments that were made in the blog about me and Scooter.
Yes, I have run into a lot of people who associate me being large as an opportunity for them to test their fighting skills. Also, I’ve run into more of the opposite: those who think that people who are larger than them are slow of wit and/or stupid. There are also some who think that all big men are slow physically, meaning their hand or foot speed and/or hand-eye coordination.

Even though most smaller people are faster afoot than most big people, it doesn’t mean that we’re all made the same in regards to speed and hand-eye coordination. It’s a myth and it can be dangerous in some situations to think so.
I’ve put myself in some very dangerous situations and only by God’s grace am I here today, and my ability to fight has nothing to do with it.
One must understand who she or he is in the life they decide to live, and know that a higher power has helped them when they shouldn’t be here today.

In here you can either be an asshole and use your ability to stand up or be punked or allow someone who is weaker to be punked. I won’t allow myself to be punked, and I’ve been made (created) to stand up for those who can’t fight for themselves. So I’ve always had a target on my back because of my size and because I’m an African American.
Now since I’ve matured and I have a clearer understanding of life and what I want (like a good woman) I do what I do as a matter of choice and I choose to do what is right for me period.

As for the comment about education and people in here, what can one say who doesn’t know how it is in here.
There are a lot of guys who have achieved several degrees while locked up and it hasn’t made them better people. And there are those who earned degrees before they got locked up, and they made the choices to do what they did!
Forget about how a man writes, for it starts at home. Values. We all must be taught the importance of values. Having faith, I know whoever reads this understands.
But saying that, a basic education is essential. It is important for personal growth and for understanding values!

Shaun, I want to talk to you about temptations. You know, my friend, that it will sneak up on you in a second and you’ll find yourself in bed with dope once more. And no matter how good it feels, it only leads to death and/or destruction of oneself and her or his belongings!
Be careful at the local drinking hole. Getting into the habit of having one beer a week is questionable.
At least eat some good English beef or get some peanuts to eat along with that strong English beer.
I am not going to apologize for being protective because my love and respect for you is genuine, and I know you’re going to be a great writer one day!

Things are the same here. I am waiting until next year when I am out of here. There are the usual people in this place who want to do dope and think they’re slick. They play the same slick games on each other and the same racial games to take advantage of the new guys!
I’ve been offered several jobs, from personal security to a _____ man, and several jobs south of the line, Mexico!

Before I forget, I really enjoyed the pictures, the English countryside is beautiful. You have no idea how badly I want to see Hadrian’s Wall. Wow! That looks like fun!

You keep your head up, but before I go I shall answer the question about working out. When you work out, you must keep in mind why you’re doing it. For good looks? Punching power? Conditioning? Or just plain power? There is a lot more to it and I am willing to train anyone with the right frame of mind.

Peace + Love to you, Brother

Each one – Teach one

Strength & Honor


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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
27 Jul 08

Two Tonys and Warrior at Rec (by Two Tonys Part 2)

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."

So I turn to the Mexican and he says, “When did you get here?”
I say, “Hey! How you been?” acting like I recall him but I don’t.
He said, Cool, man. Good to see you again.”
So me and Skids resume our walk.
I ask Skids, “Who are those guys?”
He says, “The one you talked to is Toto. They think they’re badasses. They just hang out together and look down their noses at most of the Mexicans.”
I say, “Yeah. I picked up on that yeah-we’re-bad vibe.”

So as we’re walking laps, we pass these guys as they do their routine pushups and stuff.
I give Toto a nod and an alright as I go by the second time. He returns the nod.
Now as me and skids are walking along I hear this voice and the shuffle of feet coming up behind me fast.
And the voice is yelling, “Move! Move!”
So I spin and jump out of the way as does Skids.
These four eses jog on by at a pretty good clip.
So I regain my composure and say to Skids, “What’s up with that shit?”
He says, “Oh, that’s nothing. They’re just jogging a lap.”
So I say, “Oh, yeah. They just roll up behind us and yell, ‘Move! Move!’ like we’re a couple of retard lames. That’s no respect. I got to let them know not to run up on me like that.” So I take off walking.
They’re just finishing their lap on the other side of the track.
Skids says, “Oh, they didn’t mean nothing. They’re good guys.” He’s shitting. He’s a weak motherfucker and I knew it. But I didn’t give a shit. I wasn’t counting on him or anyone else. I’m in the zone and I’m hot. I’m brand new in this building and I’m going to get yelled at like some old punk! It ain’t happening again.

Now, I aint no fool. These are young healthy in-shape want-to-be-tough dudes. But as I said earlier about respect – standing up for yourself is a way of life. Fuck the ass-kickings. I’ve woke up in hospitals with tubes in my nose. It hurts, but it heals. Losing that respect is forever, it never heals. So I’m going to have my say and let the chips fall. Fuck the hole, the gun tower. I go, they go. I know they’ll smash me, but I won’t be yelled at.

Now I don’t go trying to recruit others. I’m solo. Skids takes off. He’s going for Shotcaller.
As I go by, I hear Shotcaller yelling for me to wait. Fuck waiting!
I go up to these four guys and say I say to Toto, “Hey, ese, understand what I’m saying here: when I’m walking laps and you guys are coming up behind me, you don’t have to start yelling, ‘Move! Move!’ like I’m a lame. All you got to do is give me a, ‘Coming through,’ or a, ‘Behind you,’ to me. I got respect. It’s a track. I’ll move over for you. Show respect, you’ll get respect. Toto, you know that.”
One of the other eses says in a real shitty tone, “Oh, we know you’ll move.”
By this time, Shot caller is there. I look and I see Warrior with him and an old pal of mine called Cowboy.
Skids didn’t come. He’s back with the water cooler. Watching.
I respond with, “Hey, ese, I don’t know you and you don’t know me, but I’ll tell you right now, I ain’t the one to be moving on demands. It will be what it will be.” Then I just walked on by. By myself.
Shotcaller stayed behind and engaged them in conversation.
As I made a lap and was getting ready to pass them again, Shotcaller was ahead on the track by the gate.
I felt a guy come up along side of me. It was Warrior. Now he’s Mexican, so I wasn’t sure what was up. So he starts talking to me about Tucson as we pass these four eses. When we’re past them, Warrior says, “Hey fuck those guys. They ain’t all that. I already got down with him. His name’s Al. He tries to be hard. He was probably the one yelling, ‘Move! Move! I’ve seen him do that with others.”
I say, “Well I’m not coming out here to be yelled at. I don’t yell. I won’t put up with it.”

So that was my first night at rec and some shit almost flew. It would have been a shame. We all go to the hole. I probably get hurt. But the big shame would be to come out to rec and walk and have those four assholes yell at me every rec period. It won’t happen. This is prison. Certain lines can’t be crossed. Certain names can’t be called. There are rules. They’re unwritten, but they’re there and have been for years. It’s a 21st Century prison, and adapting is important, but so is respect and pride.

Me and Warrior talked. I checked around about him. He had beefs with a lot of bullies who thought they could muscle him. He fooled them. Choir boy face and all. But he’s not a crazy. He just wants his respect like we all do. Me and him have become close. He’s a good friend.

They moved Shotcaller down to Building 2 along with Mekong Mike who’s a Jesus nut.
What’s funny is the four eses never yelled at me again. I even talked to Toto a few times. I never liked them. Since then, they all four got busted with dope and had to go to the hole. They seem to have trouble adapting.
Skids went to the hole for making hootch and being drunk.
Me and Warrior and a couple of other good guys hang out together. I’m the old man, but we all enjoy each other’s company. I’ll miss these guys when they get out. But there will be some new friends come along. Only the actors change. The roles remain the same.
Hey! It’s like when you and I separated. I missed your English ass. You’re a good bloke. You did your number in your own style, but you did it good. But you know me and some others always had your back, even when you didn’t know it. It was a pleasure, me lad, a real pleasure.

Take care,

Two Tonys

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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
26 Jul 08

From Shane (Letter 2)

Shane - After being denied psychiatric medication by ValueOptions, Shane turned to illegal drugs he financed with burglaries. The medication in prison caused him to suffer a period of spontaneous ejaculations.



Hey there, my bloody Brit buddy! Just a quick note to update you on the goings-on here.

Weird Al has been liberated and is now probably stalking the blogosphere for havoc to cause on certain bloggers. I was glad to see him leave. I don’t expect to see him here again. I’ll miss him.

I’m now enrolled in Pima Community College (HVAC), Smart Recovery, and Creative Writing with Dr. S. I’m trying to keep busy. As busy as I can in this stagnant lake of disparity.

Things the past two months have exhausted me emotionally. I can feel myself crawling back into my safe hole. You know, the hole with protective layers that smothers and keeps me protected from EVERYTHING and EVERYONE. I just want to be able to say that I “Don’t Care!” and mean it.

On a different front, I really enjoy Dr. S’s Creative Writing class. It’s thought- provoking and fun. My friend in Scottsdale thinks I should immediately look into being an in-house staff writer for various publications dealing with criminal justice, prisoner rights, prison reform, etc. as soon as I get out in 2012. He says I have a knack for it and am very good.

Oh yeah, have you been reading Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s recent media drama? He’s up to his old antics. He’s now made enemies out of Mayor Phil Gordon, an assistant attorney, another New Times reporter and a Phoenix Police Chief.

Also, the Arizona Republic had a front-page article about a 17 year old who was a Mesa runaway since age 15, who recently revealed he is in the Arizona Department of Corrections with adults, and has been locked up for two years. His age wasn’t discovered by Mesa P.D., M.C.S.O, Superior Court, Public Defender’s Office, County Attorney’s Office, or ADOC. After two years of being in prison the kid told a psych and started the ball rolling. Now at 17, he’s a hardcore convict!

Well, I’ll go for now.

Your friend,


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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
23 Jul 08

Two Tonys and Warrior at Rec (by Two Tonys Part 1)

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."

When I first got to this yard, I’d done 90 days in the hole in Tucson. They took me out of the hole and shipped me to Buckeye.
I’d never been to this unit before, but I know a lot of these guys from the old days and other yards. One guy I knew for 28 years, I and hadn’t seen him for 23. He was a half-ass shot-caller back in his younger days, and was very close to that dude, T, I had to snuff in Phoenix.
So I’m put in Building 2, but after 3-4 weeks they move me down to Building 1 where Shotcaller lives, and there are 4-5 friends of T I felt I should be careful around.

Now Shotcaller and I had seen each other through the rec field fence going and coming to chow.
In Building 1, Shotcaller’s cell is right above mine. He’s in my vent, so we can talk but there’s also 2 other cells in our vent, so it’s light talk. "How ya been? You seen so and so?" Yaddy yaddy ya bullshit.
We agree to talk at rec, take some laps around the track.

Now I’m old. 66. He’s 62. Gray headed. Great shape. Prison does that to a guy.
We meet. We hug. We start lapping. Just the 2 of us.
So I start it off. I tell him, “Look, I know T was your guy and you had love for him, and so did I at one time. But he got out. He got full of that fucking speed and he got real disrespectful and real ignorant. You know how he was. He was dangerous. I couldn’t wait for him to whack me. I did what I did. It’s a shame, but it’s over. It was a me or him thing. You would have acted as I acted.”
Shotcaller agreed with everything I had to say. I ain’t no fool. I’ve been to a few tea parties, but I got sense in certain situations.

I check out the yard. It’s not like the old days. This is a modern 21st Century prison. Gun towers. CO’s walking around. No cliques running things. This is a let-me-do-my-time-and-go-home yard. Or a let-me-do-what-I-can-of-my-life-sentence-and-die-in-peace yard.

Shotcaller assures me he understands. While he loved the guy T, he knew T was a whacko, and if he were in my shoes he would have probably done the same.
So I grill him a little bit about others on the yard.

One in particular had a nasty rep. He was big back in the day. Mean, crazy and tough. I knew him 25-26 years ago and stayed away from him. They called him Mekong Mike. He was a vet who had seen a lot of shit over there and did a lot of shit. He was for real, I knew that much. But he was also close to T and he was in my building. We had passed each other maybe 10 times. But no eye contact. No swagger. No good vibes. I felt the vibe Mekong Mike put on me so I asked Shotcaller about him.
He tells me, "Mekong Mike's a Jesus freak now. He's hung up all his spurs. He walks with God.
The T shit is over. No need to get paranoid. Relax. Enjoy the yard. It’s mellow. It’s our fucking retirement home.”
I tell him, “Right on. That sounds good to me.”

So we go on. He takes me over and introduces me to a few guys. Young guys. All buffed up. Tatted down. You know the type.
Now look, I don’t want to sound vain or nothing but I got a rep that precedes me also. So some of these kids heard of me and I’m picking up good vibes. A lot of respect. I’m old. Shotcaller’s old. But we got respect. We’re not rape-os. Or chomos. Or rats. We’re a couple of OG’s. Old Gangsters.

We earned our spurs back on Florence prison yard. Where white guys always had to go 2-3 deep to the showers. Always on full tilt in case the Mexicans or blacks jumped off. It was like that back then. Most of these kids were shitting yellow while guys such as me, Shotcaller, T, Mekong Mike were representing the white man.

The other races had theirs, we had ours. Respect ours, we’ll respect yours. Otherwise fuck it. Back in those days if a new arrival showed heart he was not alone. We’d stand with him. If he broke weak, then he did his time as a weakling. So that’s how it was.

The man let it go on, it made his job safer and easier. We all would do our best to keep the lid on. And most of the time we did. It would blow at times, but afterwards it would settle down.

So now here we are in the 21st Century prison. It’s the man’s system now. He’s got 30 prisons to break up gangs and tough guys. He’s got holes that are deep and dark and insane. You get scared just going to them.
I realize it’s an adapt or suffer world, so the smart ones adapt. Go to rec. Read. Watch TV. Enjoy this time drama free. You don’t have to check your balls at the warden’s office, but try to use your head.
But keep in mind there are still motherfuckers up in here whose brains are still locked into that old shit. And if you hit the button, you can get killed. But you stay away from those guys. Don’t borrow. Don’t lend. Just a “Hi!” or “Right on!” and keep your distance.
I’ve been in both time frames. This is better. Less stress. The old days were fun at times. But lots of stress.

So Shotcaller introduces me to this Warrior kid. He’s got the face of a choirboy. The build of a young Mike Tyson. And polite as hell. I pick up good vibes from him. He’s real respectful in his manner. We talk for a little while about Tucson.
Then this lame they call Skids comes up to me. “Hey, Two Tonys. You remember me back in ’84 South Unit.” Yaddy yaddy da. So he wants to lap a couple with me.
So I say, “Sure. Why not.”
Shotcaller hangs out kicking it with Warrior and some others.
So we start taking laps.

Now as we’re lapping we go by 4 young Mexican eses. I notice them. I don’t stare or make eye contact. They have an air about them that radiates, “We’re all that and a bag of M&M’s.” They got tats. Mexican war eagles. Aztec chieftain stuff. Real political stuff. They’re young. In shape. And think their shit has no odor to it.
I hear one of them call out my name.

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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
15 Sep 07

Flashback to Tucson Prison

Kat (Part 6)

Kat - A Navajo transsexual who crashed while drunk driving, killing two people. A talented artist specializing in Native American and southwestern designs.

“I take it you know Gina who cut her balls off?” I asked.
“Yeah. She’s down there on Yard 4,” Kat said. “Did Xena ever tell you about Pam?”
“Pam set the trend for castration, for in-cell self surgery.”
“Around 2000.”
“Was she hospitalised like Gina?”
“No. She did the perfect surgery. She said the doctor told her she’d done a good job on them.”
“What did she use?”
“Nail clippers.”
“She used a rubber band for a tourniquet.”
“How’s that work?”
“You know how the ballsack hangs down? She tied the sack with a rubber band, and then she used the nail clippers to cut the ball skin open.”
“Was there a lot of blood?”
“Yeah, but before she’d removed the balls, she tied the tubes that were holding them. Then she sowed the sack up and undid the rubber band. She said the pain didn’t start until thirty minutes later, and it was sooo like unbearable.”
“Did she flush her balls down the toilet?”
“Yeah. Bye-bye, boys!”
“Was she happy?”
“Besides having to deal with hot flushes, yeah. She said she’d do it again if she had to.”
“Does she want vaginoplasty?”
“No. She just wanted a good tuck.”
“How was her sex life after the orchidectomy?”
“A year later, I asked her if she was sexually gratified and she didn’t wanna comment on it. I’d assume sex is boring now.”
“’Cause there’s no sexual gratification, no release. The stimulating part of having sex – the ahh-ahh – is gone.”
“Perhaps she’s more prostate orientated.”
Kat burst into falsetto laughter, then said, “Sorry, Pam.”

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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
19 Jul 08

From Frankie (Letter 6)

Frankie - A Mexican Mafia hitman and leader of prison "booty bandits" who first proposed our gay marriage when he saw me applying antifungal ointment to the bedsores on my buttocks at the Madison Street jail, where he was held on murder charges. Now incarcerated in the super-maximum prison housing Arizona's death row.


Englandman my friend,

Why does it take you so long to answer my letters? I’m not a friend that died.
It was my older brother that died on May-26-08 from a diabetic attack. I got to talk with my older sisters. They were all crying and telling me they were sorry for not being here for me. I told them I was okay with it and that I love them no matter what.
I have 8 sisters and 1 brother left.
And I’m the baby of the family and the black sheep.

You asked me why that dumbass called me a Meat Boss. My neighborhood is called Milpas, and that’s what the dumbass was saying. I come out of the oldest gang neighborhood in Phoenix, AZ, and the biggest. It’s L.C.M. for Las Cuarto Milpas. Right in downtown Phoenix. The east side of Phoenix. But now it’s in the south side, west side, north side, and the main one is in the east side of Phoenix where I’m from.

Anything new with you? My friend, you need to get yourself a job and leave that computer alone.

I was told Friday 7-11-08 that I was clear to go to Buckeye prison where Two Tonys at. The only reason it took me so long is cuz I had two guys there that had “do not house” on me. So I had a friend talk with them and of course they took them off. You know I have one of them reach out and touch you cards. Hey now!

My friend, send me pictures…your home town, your family, your girlfriends. I thought I was already part of the family. We’re going on five years.

As for Cuban Boy, tell that queer he better write.

Give my love to your Mom, Sister & Dad.

Much love and respect,

Mr. Frankie


My trial starts August 19-2008

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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
16 Jul 08

Laying the Sword Down (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.

It was early October when I heard Doc was up for parole. I went to wish him well before he was scheduled to go. I walked up the stairs, towards his cell, and found him on his bunk. The aroma of freshly brewed coffee was in the air.
“Yo, Doc! How ya doin’?” I said.
“Hey, youngster! How the hell are ya?”
“OK. Jus’ wanted to swing by and say what’s up. Heard you up for parole.”
“Yeah, I am. Hey, I gotta bone to pick wit’ you! I’ve been hearin’ yer fuckin’ name floatin’ around the crowd too much.” As he gave me a suspicious glare I couldn’t help but look away and pretend my mind wandered out of the conversation. But he knew otherwise. “What do ya have goin’ on right now? Busy?” he said.
“I’m not doin’ anythin’, just roamin’ the yard.”
“Have a seat, kid. We need to talk. Want a cup of coffee?”
“Sure,” I replied, and sat on a cheap plastic lawn chair, like you find at a hardware store.

You could tell Doc had been in prison for quite some time. His living area was organized with military precision.
The state of a living area provides a peek into a prisoner’s mind. Chaos, discipline, obsessive compulsiveness all become apparent.
Doc knew this, and took pride in his display of discipline. On some level you couldn’t help but admire certain aspects of this man. Discipline being one of them.

Doc pulled two plastic cups from his shelf along with a jar of coffee. “One scoop or two?”
“One’s cool,” I said.
He shoveled one scoop in a cup, two in the other. He then pulled from a hiding spot an odd looking device. A cut electrical cord with two prongs on one end.
“What’s that?” I asked.
“This? It’s an old con trick. It’s a stinger. You’ll hear the name people call it always changing, so cops don’t become hip. Take a good look at it. You may have to make one one day.” He tossed it to me.
I examined the stinger. Each electrical wire was attached to a piece of metal, yet the metals didn’t touch, but were closely tied together. “How’s it work?”
“You put the heating element – the metal pieces – into a cup of water, and plug it into an outlet. The electricity heats up the water.”
“Damn, that some crazy shit.”
“Ya gotta learn to make a lotta shit like this in here. If ya ever end up in the max lockup, be careful if ya make enemies. They’ll heat up a cocktail of Bengay, Magic Shave and grease, then toss it on yer ass. It’s brutal shit, man. It’ll peel yer skin off like acid.”
I couldn’t help but imagine the horror of what that must feel like.

In prison, you pay close attention to topics on what could severely hurt you. There are creative prisoners who seem to have endless ways to cause you harm.

“Is the water bad for you?” I asked.
“Don’t know. That’s why I heat the water. Never can be too careful.” He made the coffee.
It was so strong I squinted sipping it.
He studied my face humorously.
I realized I was in a situation he’d relived over and over. He made strong coffee for others to test their resolve, and never ceased from finding humour in that.
“Don’t worry. That’ll put hair on yer ass,” he chuckled hoarsely. “So, kid, I hear you’re getting’ into shit. What’s up with that?”
“Nah. Jus’ tryin’ to earn my respect.”
He looked at his cup of coffee as he took a sip. The steam parted around his face as it climbed. He seemed to slow down, perhaps buying time to gather his response to me. “Look, kid, I can’t knock ya. I’ve been there and done the same shit. I’ve seen it all. I won’t patronize ya wit’ some self-help bullshit and how ya needs to change. But I will tell ya this: read. Pick up a book, and find out who ya are. Gather perspectives. Books afford ya that. Ya see the world through another’s eyes. Maybe what I’m tellin’ ya now might not make very much sense, but one day it will. What I’ve told ya will one day click on. Somethin’ in yer thoughts will trigger this conversation, and when it does, the right book will be there when ya need it. Whatever ya do here, be careful and don’t drift too far. If ya do, there may be no comin’ back. In the end, your journey is just that, your journey. Educate yerself in who ya are.” Doc had a southern twang, but spoke to you with confidence in his words. He’d been there and knew what he was talking about.

I tried to make sense of it all then, but my mind wasn’t ready. He was right though, one day something did trigger all he’d said, and I did pick up a book. I picked it up in the hole recovering from a severe beating. Nursing my wounds, I looked into the mirror and didn’t recognize the face staring back at me. Was it because I looked so disfigured or because of what I had become? Had I drifted too far?
The book was the only item in the cell on that day. It was The Book of Five Rings by Miyamoto Musashi.

Before Doc and I finished our conversation, I wished him the best come parole. Thanked him also for his valuable insight. Doc did make parole, never to be seen again. Rumor had it, Doc was living life successfully in Colorado. I’ll never forget that man.

I caught a movie the other day called Hero with Jet Li.
In one scene, something was said along the lines of, “A warrior’s ultimate act is to lay down his sword.”
That hit home.
Sun Tzu and Miyamoto Musashi are known for expressing the same philosophy expressed differently.
It can be hard to leave the sword behind in here, where the main language prisoners use is violence.
One day though, I will be one of those success stories like Doc.
Never to be seen by the people in here again.
That will be my ultimate act.

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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
14 Jul 08

The Whacking of Charlie (by Two Tonys Part 2)

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."
Part 1 left off with Two Tonys getting angry at Charlie after Berego (a connection Charlie had vouched for) took Two Tonys’ money to Mexico and didn’t return with the agreed upon cocaine.

And as I proceed to have a few drinks with Sal and a few grams of bullshit coke I’m getting fucked up – especially when I keep calling Louie and he tells me no show on Berego, and Charlie’s not around.

So the bars close at 1am. Me and Sal go for coffee. Then he drops me off at my rental car (it’s a comp from the lame drunk on the fourth floor). I go back to the hotel. Louie is up in his suite. He’s got some personal blow. So I ask if Charlie is back.
He says, “Yeah, he’s in his room down the hall.” He heard him come in.

Now we got guns galore. I always pack a lightweight .38 snub nose 5 shot in an inside holster in the small of my back. Real James Bond shit. It’s hard to see but easy to get too. And it’s real secure. When I went clubbing, I got up and boogied. Yeah, I was a disco duck. If you wanted broads, you couldn’t just sit around and talk out of the side of your neck, you needed to dance and the blow was always nice. A lot of coke whores around.

So I go down to Charlie’s room, knock on his door and he opens it. He’d been asleep. It showed on his face. He has on no shirt and a pair of cut-off shorts.
So I go in and tell him, “We’ve got to talk.”
He lies back on his bed.
I sit in a chair across from his bed.
The only light is in the bathroom. The door is open so it’s shining in.
So I get right to it. I say to this cowboy, “Where’s Berego?”
Now Charlie is grumpy. He’s been partying all weekend with probably my money or half of it. Plus he had just gotten to sleep and here I come waking him up at 3am with 20 questions.
So he actually replies in a shitty tone, “I don’t know.”
So I say to him, “Where’s my dope?”
Again, he says, “I don’t know. He’ll be here.”
So I jump and as I do I’m reaching for my .38 out of my back.
He’s reaching for his Bulldog in the nightstand.
I get to him. I put the .38 in his mouth and say to him, “You, motherfucker.” As I pull the trigger I feel a fine spray of like wet sand shoot up in my face. I do it again. Two in the mouth. The wet sand spray was this assholes teeth and blood. Two is good. I pull out and leave.

I figured the drunk down the hall or Louie’s aunt heard the shots. So I go out in the hall. Louie’s head is looking out of his room.
I say, “Get back inside. I’ll be back.” So I go down the stairs not the lift. Go to my car. Shoot over to Sal’s house. He was still up. Coke does that. I take a shower. Change clothes. We wear the same size. We put the bloody clothes in a bag, take it to the desert and throw it. I stash my .38 under a cactus that I can retrieve due to the milepost marker and I go to a pay phone and call Louie.
He says, “Nobody heard a thing.”
So I say, “Good. I’ll be back down.” I go back to the hotel. It’s early dawn.

I take Louie’s master key and go back in Charlie’s room, now the asshole’s death chamber. I wipe down the arms on the chair, door handles, etc. He’s sitting up lying in his bed but he’s a fucking mess. Lot’s of blood has come out of his lying mouth onto his chest. I take nothing. I leave his guns, his knives. I don’t even look for money.

This wasn’t about money or dope. This was about judging who you’re fucking with. A human life is worth more than $5000, but since then I’ve seen guys killed for $50. So it’s not about money. That coke has a way of making you think you’re all that and a roll of print toilet paper.

Bottom line, the maid finds him two days later. Cops come, investigate, and want to interview me. I refuse. My attorney’s a real fine crook himself, who finally commits suicide, but that’s another story. He tells the cops I don’t want to discuss anything with them. Arrest me or kick rocks.
Berego never comes back.
Charlie’s case goes unsolved for 17 years, because nobody gives a fuck about dope dealers.

Click here to read Part 1

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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood
12 Jul 08

Zucchini (Part 5)

This series came about because many of you requested I blog what prisoners get up to sexually. If you take offence to sexual content you may not want to read on.

Max - A car-jacking Chukchansi Indian who entered prison as a teenager and went home to Las Vegas in 2007. His sexual adventures in prison include trading semen to an old pervert for commissary items.
Part four left off with Log insisting Max receive felatio from Cindy the transsexual.

“Did you go for it with Cindy?” I asked. “Did Log break you down?”
“No, dude,” Max said. “I tell Log, ‘I’m cool for now. I’ve gotta go back to the kitchen before they call for me.’
Log says, ‘So you don’t wanna get your issue?’
I say, ‘No,’ and put the shampoo bottle on the table.
Cindy’s still distracted.
I take a step to the door, and open it a little, and Log says, ‘Hey, Max, keep point real quick.’
I say, ‘OK. That’s cool.’ So now I’m outside of the door, watchin’ for guards, standin’ in front of the window, so no one can look in. People are walkin’ by, tryin’ to talk to me, dude, and it’s obvious I’m keepin’ point for some reason or other. I look across the run, and see a CO lookin’ at me. I’m getting’ a little paranoid now. I shouldn’t even be on Yard 2. A coupla minutes later, Log opens the door and asks me to come back inside.”
“Oh no.”
“I step just inside the door. I’m thinkin’ Log’s supposed to be my buddy, but he’s tryin’ to turn me out. I’m thinkin I need to examine how I choose my friends. I need to choose ’em more wisely.
Log says, ‘Do you wanna get your issue?’
It’s like he wants me to fall into that life of sin. It’s like an initiation ritual.
I say, ‘No, dude. I ain’t got time.’ ’Cause I’m tryin’ to be polite.
There’s a knock at the door, and a CO just walks right in, and says, ‘What’s that smell?’
I look up at the CO, and think I’m gonna get busted now for havin’ a threesome that I didn’t even do. It smells like sex up in that motherfucker.
The CO says, ‘What are you guys cookin’?’
Log says, ‘Just a soup.’
So I look toward the table, and I’m wonderin’ what happened to the shampoo bottle.”
“Uh oh.”
“When a CO busts you like this, sometimes they’ll strip you all out before they let you leave. I really don’t wanna get stripped out with these guys ’cause one’ll be lookin’ at my ass while the other checks out my dick. Who knows what the fucked-up rules of engagement are when it comes to Log and Cindy! If Log would do Cindy, then what is he plannin’ on doin’ to me?
The CO says, ‘You need to get outside and take care of those trays.’
I say, ‘Yeah. Just lemme roll a cigarette real quick.’
The CO leaves.
I’m rollin’ the cigarette, and I ask Cindy, ‘What happened to the shampoo bottle?’
Cindy says, ‘Don’t worry, honey. It’s in the bat cave.’”
I laughed.
“Now, I’m thinkin’, the shampoo bottle has been out, it’s been in, it’s been out, and now it’s locked in there again. It’s gotta be sore by now. I take off. I’m light again – six trays. I’m thinkin’, it’s just another day in my life at prison.”
“So, you didn’t succumb to the peer pressure from Log?”
“No. Not then.”
“But you went back there, didn’t you?”
“Did anything interesting happen?”
“Well, there was this funny-shaped hot-sauce bottle.”
“I was hoping you’d say something like that. Tell me about the hot-sauce bottle.”

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11 Jul 08

Short Story

A short story has been added to my website: http://shaunattwood.com/home/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=28&Itemid=79

An introduction has been added to my website: http://shaunattwood.com/home/index.php?option=com_frontpage&Itemid=1

Email comments to writeinside@hotmail.com or post them below
Meet the Prisoners

Click on their names or the hyperlinks for blogs about them. Most of these prisoners feature in my book, Prison Time

Two Tonys - A Mafia mass murderer who was serving 141 years. Left the corpses of rival gangsters from Tucson to Alaska, but claimed they all "had it coming." Had his own brand of philosophy. Two Tonys died from liver cancer on September 8th, 2010.

Warrior - Serving 14 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.

Xena - A 6 1/2 foot transsexual and Wiccan priestess. The charismatic leader of Cult Of Xena (COX). Tattoos include a wasp on Xena's penis and ant trails running up "her" legs. Cut off a testicle and almost bled to death.

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

Frankie - A Mexican Mafia hitman, chess champion and leader of prison "booty bandits" who has been proposing our gay marriage ever since he saw me applying antifungal ointment to the bedsores on my buttocks at the Madison Street jail. He was there on murder charges he subsequently beat.

Wild Man - My large and fearless raving partner from my hometown. He looked out for me after we were arrested, and is one of the main characters in my jail memoir. His first day at Buckeye prison, he knocked out the head of the whites in his dorm, so the Aryan Brotherhood put him in charge.

Claudia - My girlfriend at the time of my arrest. Pic and update here.

Polish Avenger - A software-engineering undergraduate sentenced to 25 years because his friend was shot dead during a burglary they were both committing. Author of the classic "Shit Slinger" series.

Dr. O - A brilliant prison psychologist whose sessions really helped my personal development.

Renee - As a teenager, Renee received a 60-year sentence from a judge in Pima County. Fourteen years into her sentence, she's writing from Perryville prison in Goodyear, Arizona, providing a rare and unique insight into a women's prison.

Slingblade - A sumo-sized schizophrenic Vietnam vet who looks as if he could suffer a flashback and snap your neck at any moment. No guard or prisoner with a modicum of sanity would ever get between this murderer and a tray of chow.

Occult Killer - Dubbed the Occult Killer by the media, he's serving 6 to 12 years in Pennsylvania. He killed his best friend in a drunk-driving accident. Police investigators discovered Gothic paraphrenalia in his bedroom, and naturally assumed the death was a sacrificial murder for the benefit of Satan.

Andrea - A 28-year-old Scottish woman who was 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 was released in 2010.

Ogre - A burly biker from California who accidentally stabbed his wife in the knee, and seems to be a classic case of prison pharmacology gone wrong. He claims to have seduced Jenny McCarthy and got high with Pamela Anderson. An enemy of Two Tonys. 

Weird Al - The most unlikely bank robber you are ever likely to meet. His true story of suicide by cop gives new meaning to the power of unchecked depression. He was released in 2008.

Shane - After being denied psychiatric medication by ValueOptions, Shane turned to illegal drugs he financed with burglaries. The medication in prison caused him to suffer a period of spontaneous ejaculations.

Jack - A lifer in for murders who encourged and helped shape my writing. One of the brightest men I've ever met.

Repo - This giant's bald head is emblazoned with flames, skulls, and other satanic insignia. He makes the villian in The Hills Have Eyes seem as scary as Pee-wee Herman. As part of an investigation into the recent murder of a prisoner, he was sent to the hole and is facing the death penalty.

Max - A car-jacking Chukchansi Indian who went home to Las Vegas in 2007. For commissary items, he traded his semen to an old-timer. Some of his prison sexploits were posted under the "Zucchini" series.

Midnight - A car-crash sufferer whose consequent addiction to pain killers, crack, and crystal meth lost him his home and family. Regularly bleeding from the rectum, he is dying from cancer.

Slope - A hillbilly biker with militiaman tendencies who's been serving a sentence for double murder since Wham topped the charts. Born and raised in a dodgy part of Sunnyslope, a Phoenix neighbourhood.

Kat - A Navajo transsexual who crashed while drunk driving, killing two people. A talented artist specializing in Native American and southwestern designs.

Iron Man - A martial-arts expert and personal trainer whose crimes include smashing someone's door down: "I didn't hurt anyone. I just wanted my fuckin' money." His burpie-intensive workouts are brutal. "I'll have you in the best shape of your life by the time you get out," he told me - and he did. Released in 2010.

Gina - Using a razor blade, this transsexual detached "her" testes, cauterized the wound with a cigarette lighter, and ended up in hospital. Minus the testosterone, plus makeup tattooed on, soft-spoken Gina resembles a woman.

Long Island - Promising young cellmate I taught to trade the financial markets. Released on the 11th of December '05 and recently rearrested. Alleged to have committed forgery and hit an officer with a car. He is writing from Sheriff Joe Arpaio's Lower Buckeye jail.

Bones - A South Side Posse Blood serving sixteen years for leading a gang, assisting a crime syndicate, kidnapping and aggravated assault.

Royo Girl - An intelligent and attractive criminology graduate who used to visit me in prison. Whether her interest was based on love or she was writing a thesis on my criminality is an open question.

Hammy - Best friend I grew up with in my hometown. Fond of alcohol, especially Stella Artois.

Las Cucarachas - Kept me company throughout many a lonely night.
Click here for questions that I answered about my Locked Up/Banged Up Abroad episode for National Geographic

The books my Locked Up/Banged Up Abroad episode was based on are all available here - Party TimeHard Time and Prison Time - and on Amazon here.  

In this video, I describe in much more hard-hitting detail the jail conditions:
If you have any questions, please Tweet me here, or post them to my Facebook here 

Shaun Attwood
09 Jul 08

Women in Prison: From Lifer Renee (Letter 2)

As a teenager, Renee received a sixty-year sentence from a judge in Pima County. Fourteen years into her sentence, she is writing from Perryville prison in Goodyear, Arizona.

June 21, 2008

Dear Shaun,

Hello. How are you doing? I hope all is well with you.

It was surreal reading the copy of the blog I wrote.

You asked me how supportive are my friends and family. I have not talked to my family since I was 16 years old. I was born in Florida. I was raised there although we were always moving around. I was pretty much raised by my grandparents – my grandmother and step-grandfather.

My father was in and out of prison/jail my whole life. I never knew my mother. I have tried to find her a few times, but my attempts have been futile. I was molested by my step-grandfather from the time I can remember. When I was little he always used to tell me if I loved him I would do it. As I got older it caused problems. I acted out. Smoking pot, drinking. I lived with my father two times that I can remember. Both times the beatings were almost unbearable. I was always told I was worthless and would never amount to anything. I tried to commit suicide at 15. Long story short, I ran away from home at 16 because I did not believe I would make it to 18. My family did not report me as a missing person nor a runaway. All the while I was hitchhiking across country.

So no I have no family support or contact. I have not since I left. I have two friends that I have kept in touch with over the years. One I knew before I came to prison. One I met in here. Other than that it is just me. I do respond to mail but it always seems to fade for one reason or the other. I’ve learned if you do not expect anything there is little to be disappointed in.

To answer your question, “If two woman want to fight each other what is the procedure? Do they go to a cell or a shower room like in the men’s prison?”
There is no procedure. Women are usually very verbal before a fight. “F#@! you, bitch! I’ll beat your f#@!ing ass,” usually is in there somewhere.
They fight everywhere. Usually where it can draw the most attention because 9 times out of 10 they don’t want to fight. They fight on the yard, in the kitchen, on the runs. Those who really are not trying to get caught but feel they need to handle an issue will take it in a cell and not make a scene. So many fights do happen without being caught.
Who would want to be caught to be maced or tackled by officers who missed their calling for the NFL. Most fight’s here are because someone disrespected someone’s girlfriend.
Summers here are when the most fights break out. When it is 110+ outside and there is little to do to beat the heat, attitudes flair.
A couple of days ago, I was sitting at the benches. I just got off work. I was looking toward the track and I noticed the 2nd shift officers running.
A couple of girls came through the gate yelling to their friends in D pod, “Honey, they’re fucking boxing right there on the field.”
I saw the people migrating towards the gate.
A friend walked through the gate. I asked her, “Friend, what’s going on?”
She said, “Two girls are throwing it down, friend. It was a good one. No hair pulling. No scratching. They stopped fighting when the officer said to stop, but they sprayed them right in their faces anyways. It was crazy, yes.”
I asked who it was but she didn’t know.
Then I heard some black girls by the kitchen screaming, “I’ll whoop your ass till I can’t whoop your ass no more!”
Me and three other girls looked at each other and started laughing.
“Yeah, it’s summertime,” I said.

Yes, Om Nama Shivaya is a wonderful mantra to calm the mind and just be at peace. But some days this does prove to be a challenge. My practice now is in Hatha Yoga. I find serenity in asanas. I find liberation in the more challenging asanas. The book I am practicing from is the Swananda Companion to Yoga. Some of the asanas are pretty intense.

Well, Shaun, I have to cut this short. I have to go to work. I work a regular day, then I’m on call for the rest of it and unfortunately they broke something on 30 Yard. I’ll write more next time.



To read Letter 1 from Renee click here.

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07 Jul 08

The Whacking of Charlie (by Two Tonys Part 1)

Two Tonys - A whacker of men and Mafia associate serving multiple life sentences for murders and violent crimes. Claims all his victims "had it coming."

This whack is on the record and I’m doing time for it as I write. When it went to court, I was my own barrister, as you Englishmen of the Old Bailey put it. If a motherfucker ever asked for it, this asshole did. I even told the jury in my closing argument this guy should have made a sign and pasted it to his forehead reading: KILL ME. I wish we had the transcripts of that trial. It was not only fun, it was funny. I didn’t give a flying fuck if they voted guilty or not guilty, I was already serving too much time to outlive, so I just played and had fun and ran up the bill for the taxpayers.

I come down from Alaska back in the day. Me and my Tucson partner Louie had lost our coke connection, a Mexican guy named Carlos, who got busted by the Feds and had to go to the joint. So I had a lot of heat on me up in Alaska at the time. Not so much from the cops as from a rival clique up there from Nevada who had lost one of their heavy hitters – but that’s another chapter for the book.

So I get to Tucson. Louie’s Mom and Dad are as senile as hell. They own a couple of big hotels in Tucson. Louie runs one. They run the other. So the one Louie runs is a mix of Hotel California and the Bates Motel. It’s got dope cliques out of the ass, living in it and doing deals out of it. Not the actual transfers, but the business end of it. So I’m staying there. I’m carte blanche – no bill. This Louie only rents out the first three floors. The fourth floor is for just a few of the regulars. There’s about twenty rooms on the fourth floor. Louie’s got his aunt who works in the dining room and coffee shop on the other end of the floor. He’s got a lush named Bobby who runs a car leasing company in a room.

Charlie’s staying on the fourth floor. He’s a dope dealer and a half-ass pilot for a drug operation in and out of Mexico. He worked for a Mexican national from Culiacan named Berego, who was staying at the hotel on the ground floor. Berego didn’t rate fourth floor with his buddy Charlie.

Anyway, I’m lying out by the pool one morning taking the sun, when Louie pages me to the lobby, so I go up. He meets me and we go up to the poker room where we run a few games a week. There sits this asshole Charlie with Berego who he says doesn’t speak any English (which I still think was bullshit).
So Louie opens up with, “Hey, Two Tonys, this is Charlie’s guy, Berego. He claims he can go south and be back in three days with as much high quality coke as we want, but we got to pay up-front.”
Now, I’m the bull with the horns (short for I got the cash). In fact, I had just lent Louie $10,000 to make his payroll. But I ain’t no lame. My rule was: no front – dollars and dope on the table.

So Charlie starts this sales pitch about how big Berego is in Sinaloa. How he’s connected to the big cartel. Then Louie jumps in trying to put the close on me because he wants coke. So I decide I’ll test this asshole out. We come to an agreement with Charlie as interpreter. I give Berego $5000. He leaves tonight, which was Thursday, and Sunday he’s back with ½ LB of blow. If it’s good and all goes well, we’ll place a bigger order next time. It’s a test run to see how everybody acts.
Now, I look at Charlie and say in the most serious tone I can, “Charlie, let me understand you are standing good for this guy if I do de bizznezz.”
He replied, “I have no doubts. He’s good. I’ve known him for years.”
I say, “OK. Let’s roll on it.” I give the asshole $5000 from my stash in Louie’s safe, expecting to see him back Sunday night with ½ LB of coke. Not a lot of dollars for me in those days, plus we needed a good connect to restart our Alaska thing. Of course I had a little heat in Alaska, as I said. I had just put a tough guy to sleep up there.
So Berego leaves for Mexico. 60 miles to the border, then around a 1000 to Culiacan.

Now Friday, Saturday, Sunday, the hotel is jumping. Broads galore. Weed deals being worked out by the pool. It was wild. Tucson was wild. It’s 1977. Coke and weed are kings.
So I’m staying in Room 417. Charlie is in 415, but we don’t chum together. I was way too slick to hang with him. Anyway, him and his little clique have a watermelon and vodka party by the pool on Sunday. I stop by.
He says to me, “Hey, I got a little blow. Let’s go up to my room and have a toot.”
So me and him and a couple of his pals go up to Room 415.
Well, when we go in, I notice a shotgun in the corner and a pistol on the nightstand.
I say, “What you got there?” So he shows me his arsenal. He’s got a machete along with a sleeping bag, a canteen of water, a .44 Bulldog pistol next to his bed and an AR-15 fully auto.

He’s doing blow and his tongue is wagging trying to impress me in front of his weedhead crew. So I give him a few ooh’s and ahh’s and no-shits as he explains that if they have to land and run from the D.E.A. they can survive in the desert. Real fucking cowboy shit. I keep waiting for John Wayne to come in wearing leather chaps for a line of blow.
So I ask this Charlie to step out in the hall with me, away from his lames. We do.
I whisper to him, “Hey, your guy will be in tonight. Have you heard from him yet?”

Now I know we have all been in a situation, whether buying a car or even a washing machine, where the seller was saying things like “Oh this is great. Don’t worry. Just call me,” but immediately after the sale, you pick up a tone in the guy’s voice or his actions, and a little voice inside you tells you that you fucked up. Well that’s what I picked up from Charlie. But I tried my best to shake it off.

So Sunday night comes. I stay at the hotel bar hanging out with Louie. No Berego. No Charlie, he’s out somewhere.
So on Monday morning I get up and find no Charlie in his room. I go down to Berego’s room (he paid by the month). No Berego. About noon, Charlie shows up. I’m by the pool as he walks by. I stop him.
“Where’s our guy?”
He says, “No sweat. He’ll show. No problem”
So I hang out all day. But I still got that gut feeling. On Monday night I call my buddy, Sal, and we arrange to meet at a club. I tell Louie I’ll be checking in to see when Berego shows up. And as I proceed to have a few drinks with Sal and a few grams of bullshit coke I’m getting fucked up – especially when I keep calling Louie and he tells me no show on Berego.

Click here for Part 2

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04 Jul 08

Postcards from Long Island (1)

Long Island - Promising young cellmate I taught to trade the financial markets. Released on the 11th of December '05 and recently rearrested. Alleged to have committed forgery and hit an officer with a car. He is writing from Sheriff Joe Arpaio’s Towers jail.



What’s up, bro! Please tell your readers that Long Island is far from dead! I want people to know and understand the truth, but I can’t speak about my case just yet.

I don’t know where to begin about the conditions at Towers. It’s Hotel Arpaio at its finest. Do you remember the cells at the Madison Street jail? The ones at Towers are slightly smaller and they’ve managed to weld a third bunk into every cell. The bottom bunk is about 8 inches off the floor, the middle is about 5 ft above the bottom and the top is about 2 ft from the ceiling. Sleeping on the top feels like laying in a coffin.

They’ve taken away all the diets and created a menu that accommodates everyone. They still serve the rancid sack breakfast in the morning called a Ladmo bag. There’s no lunch. Dinner is about 7pm. It’s now the same every day. Cabbage and potatoes covered in some type of gravy AKA slop of a different color a couple of times a week. Do you miss red death? It’s truly a new low for Arpaio and appalling that he gets away with it.

I don’t know why it surprises me though. I thought I saw it all when they stopped allowing letters to be written and received. I wish the Postal Inspectors would stop sweating me for a minute and figure out if not allowing us to receive letters is legal or not.

The only times we are allowed to make legal calls are between 3pm and 5pm. You know as well as I do no lawyer is still in his office that late in the afternoon. That subject is something that really angers me. Both times I got sentenced to prison I had to use a public defender and I got railroaded and didn’t even know it. I was fortunate enough to be able to retain private counsel this time and it’s a whole different ball game. It angers me so much when I see these guys getting pressured into signing plea bargains by their own attorneys. Sometimes for years of their lives. I did the same thing in the past.

I’ll write more later. I’m in here fighting for my life. The truth about the conditions in jail needs to be known, but that’s only part of the corruption I’ve seen.

Let me know how freedom is treating you, brother. No one deserves success more than you. You’ve always had my deepest respect.

Your friend,

Long Island

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2 Jul 08

From T-Bone (Letter 5)

T-Bone - A deeply-spiritual massively-built African American. A prison gladiator with more stab wounds than Julius Caesar. A good man to have on your side.


Hey Shaun,

What’s happening over there in the land of tea and biscuits?

Reading your blog, I see Gemma was picking your brain. Be careful, brother!

When are you going to send me some pics of the Northern England countryside?

Peace, my friend. Be of good cheer.

Your friend, T-Bone

Strength + Honor

Each one – Teach one

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Copyright © 2007-2008 Shaun P. Attwood