Friday, October 9, 2015

Daily Corrections Clips

CALIFORNIA PRISONS

Keri Blakinger, New York Daily News

California prison inmates can now get free condoms — but corrections officers claim it makes no one safe.

“We absolutely support efforts to reduce the spread of disease in prison,” California Correctional Peace Officer Association President Chuck Alexander said Wednesday in a release.

Eduardo Santiago, KYMA

CALIPATRIA, Calif. – An inmate was sent to the hospital and three others were injured during a riot at Calipatria State Prison.

Officials say the incident happened Thursday morning in a maximum-security area of the prison, involving about 60-inmates.

The Desert Independent

BLYTHE, Calif – On Tuesday, October 6, Judge Lewis of California Superior Court issued a cease and desist order to immediately stop work on the Ironwood State Prison both to the California Department of Corrections and the contractor on site, Hansel Phelps Construction Company. This follows a finding on September 11, 2015 that a $88 million State construction contract to contractor Hensel Phelps Construction Co., Inc., was improper and that the contract was to be set aside (see Ironwood State Prison $88 Million Construction Contract Improperly Awarded).

Since the order of September 11, the California Department of Corrections and Hensel Phelps Construction have been proceeding as if nothing happened. They are now under a court order to stop work. At the hearing today, Judge Lewis reminded the Department of Corrections and Phelps that they could have avoided the current predicament by waiting for the court to rule on West Coast Air’s application for a writ of mandate before starting work.

CALIFORNIA INMATES

Josh Peter, USA TODAY

The former cellmate Lawrence Phillips is accused of killing hid razor blades in a Bible, soap and in his pubic hair and once attacked an inmate with a razor-edged weapon, according to custody records.

The razor blades were discovered during three incidents between 2004 and '06 and the attack took place in '08 when Damion Soward was in San Bernardino (Calif.) County Jail, the records show. Prison guards also recovered a six-inch knife in Soward’s shoe in 2014 when he was going through a metal detector at Calipatria State Prison, according to records.

Rosalio Ahumada, The Modesto Bee

A judge on Thursday sentenced a 24-year-old man to 15 years in prison for a 2010 deadly shooting in west Modesto. The defendant had already been sentenced to 80 years to life in prison for his role in a fatal home-invasion robbery in Modesto’s airport neighborhood.

Angel Del Villar pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter for the death of 30-year-old Enrique Garcia Jr. He was gunned down May 18, 2010. Two months earlier, Del Villar was part of a group of gang members who botched the home-invasion robbery, resulting in the death of a man who tried to get away from the armed robbers.

Liz Gonzalez, KMPH

NOTE: Inmates and staff at Central California Women’s Facility are helping raise money for the playground equipment.

Efforts to raise money for a new playground are now in overdrive at one Madera Ranchos school.

Parents are even offering  big incentives to the biggest donor.

"It's kind of sad. The kids make the best of it,” says Tara Pires, as she watches her kids play just yards away on the playground equipment at Sierra View Elementary School.

CALIFORNIA PAROLE

Three prisons were ordered to provide transgender health care. Three prisoners were suddenly set free.
Beth Schwartzapfel, The Marhall Project

Michelle-Lael Norsworthy was well on her way to becoming a pioneer this year—the first U.S. inmate to receive gender reassignment surgery—when she was unexpectedly freed from Mule Creek State Prison in California.

In a ruling this week, two federal judges suggested the timing of her Aug. 12 release on parole wasn’t coincidental. Norsworthy had been denied parole at least five times since she entered prison on a second-degree murder charge in 1987. She wasn’t scheduled for another hearing until next year.

The Modesto Bee

A state board this summer denied parole for a former Modesto man convicted of murder, the Stanislaus County District Attorney’s Office announced Wednesday.

Andres Santana, 42, is serving a sentence of 19 years to life for the July 12, 1992, shooting death of Florentino Garcia, 14. Garcia was leaving a party on Las Vegas Street a few blocks away from his south Modesto home when he was shot. He died a day​​ later.

CORRECTIONS RELATED

Aaron Morrison, International Business Times

When Dorsey Nunn walked out of San Quentin State Prison in California nearly 35 years ago, the native San Franciscan set out to find a job and finish his education. But only one person was willing to hire the 31-year-old African-American after 11 years behind bars on a felony conviction, and that person worked about 100 yards away from the prison gates.

It was the attorney that helped shave several years off of a life sentence who offered Nunn a clerical position in the prison law fffice at San Quentin. The job, which Nunn held for six and half years, would eventually inspire his participation in a national movement to end institutional discrimination against people who are formerly incarcerated.

OPINION

The San Francisco Chronicle

For a nation that locks up more than a million prisoners, the release of 6,000 sounds like a tiny slice. But the inmates to be freed this month represent a worthy bipartisan change in national policy that will roll onward, emptying more cells in the future.

It’s a remarkable change from a too-long era of excessive incarceration, one that’s matched by other legislative changes to federal sentencing rules and similar shifts that have emptied California prisons.