Friday, January 15, 2016

Daily Corrections Clips

CALIFORNIA PRISONS

Times of San Diego‎

James Fox teaches yoga weekly to students in the Bay Area. It’s a typical class where students do a flow of postures, meditate and walk away receiving the same benefits any student would. The only difference is his students are inmates.

Fox is the founder of the Prison Yoga Project, a nonprofit organization that trains certified yoga instructors to work with populations behind bars. The Prison Yoga Project will train its next class of instructors in San Diego next week.

The Prison Yoga Project is about 14 years old and began when Fox was asked to teach at San Quentin State Prison.

CALIFORNIA INMATES

Palo Verde Valley Times

BLYTHE - The inmates at Ironwood State Prison conducted their Third Annual Cancer Walk to support the local Blythe Cancer Resource Center.

The inmates provided their own funds and organized the walk. The total donated was well over $2,000, a new record, with some money still being processed.

The inmates on all four facilities were enthusiastic to walk and be able to donate to the local charity. Warden Neil McDowell and Correctional Counselor III Gale

Bakersfield Now

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) — Kern County released audio Thursday of the 911 call made after former NFL running back Lawrence Phillips was found unresponsive in his cell at Kern Valley State Prison in Delano.

Phillips, 40, was taken to an outside hospital, where he was declared dead Wednesday morning.

KVSP officials said the death is suspected to be a suicide.

Jess Sullivan, Daily Republic

FAIRFIELD — A prisoner who faces a murder charge for the death of his cellmate at California State Prison, Solano was in court briefly Thursday morning.

Jesus Perez, 46, was flanked by a trio of prison guards, a Spanish language interpreter and his court appointed attorney, Barry Newman, who agreed to wait until at least March before scheduling a probable cause hearing.

Cathy Locke, The Sacramento Bee

Q: I was on the jury of a murder trial a few years ago. A Ukrainian pastor was killed outside the Blockbuster on Watt Avenue. I was on the jury for a youth called “Battle.” I never found out what the sentence was and where he is now.

Mark, Sacramento

A: Arthur James Battle was one of four young men sentenced to life in prison for their roles in the fatal shooting of 45-year-old Norik Abramyan in the parking lot of Hollywood Video on Watt Avenue on July 30, 2006.

DEATH PENALTY

Howard Mintz, San Jose Mercury News

Opposition to capital punishment continues to rise in California, a new Field Poll released Friday shows, with state voters now equally divided between scrapping the death penalty altogether and speeding up the path to executing inmates on the nation's largest death row.

The poll found that 47 percent of voters favor replacing the death penalty with life in prison without the possibility of parole in California, up from 40 percent in 2014. But at the same time, the poll shows that 48 percent of registered voters would support proposals to accelerate the state's notoriously slow system of resolving death penalty appeals to pick up the pace of executions.

CORRECTIONS RELATED

The Academy Award-winning actor discusses his new aid-worker movie, along with his ongoing efforts teaching acting in California prisons.
David Zax, Fast Company

In A Perfect Day, which opens today, Tim Robbins plays "B," one of a team of aid workers navigating the Balkan conflict in 1995. When we first meet B, a veteran logistics expert, he is giving a ride to Sophie (Mélanie Thierry), an aid-work rookie. The two are stopped in their tracks by a cow carcass, which B hypothesizes was dragged there to lure drivers into a roadside mine. But is the mine to the left or the right? B solves the problem by speeding recklessly over the carcass itself.

This mixture of toughness, wildness, and sympathy characterizes both B and the film, from the Spanish director Fernando León de Aranoa, as a whole. (Partly derived from a novel by a real aid worker, the film is "a drama inside a comedy, inside a road movie, inside a war movie," says the director.) All those qualities have also animated Robbins’s long and acclaimed acting career, as well as his noted political activism.

OPINION

Lompoc Record

When I was hired as a correctional officer at San Quentin State Prison, we were able to rent a small house approximately three blocks from the east gate of the prison.

There was a two-room elementary school for children of the correctional officers who resided in the so-called “reservation” housing adjacent to the confinement area on prison grounds.

Because of our proximity to the prison our older elementary-aged children walked the approximately six blocks through the east gate to that school. The two women — one for each classroom, grades 1-3 in one room and 4, 5 and 6 in the other room, were excellent teachers who provided a great educational start for our kids.