Friday, February 12, 2016

Daily Corrections Clips

CALIFORNIA PRISONS

Bill Keller and Neil Barsky, Capitol Weekly

What if, instead of building prisons in remote locations, we put them near cities, accessible to family members and to the resources — educational, vocational, therapeutic, recreational, cultural — that are scarce in most prison towns?

What if, instead of walling out the world, we invited in volunteers by the hundreds to help prepare inmates for life outside – to put the correction in “corrections?” What if we offered public tours, during which visitors could chat with prisoners beyond the earshot of guards?

What if we allowed the inmates to publish a newspaper and produce a radio program?

What you’ve just imagined is San Quentin, California’s oldest prison, housing the state’s felonious since 1852.

CDCR NEWS

Cathy Locke, The Sacramento Bee

A state correctional officer accused of playing baseball while collecting disability leave benefits for a foot injury has pleaded guilty to workers' compensation fraud.

Todd Phillips, a correctional officer with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, was charged with intentionally making false statements regarding his physical abilities and failing to disclose participation in certain events and activities. Had his participation in those activities been known, it would have affected his workers’ compensation benefits, according to a Sacramento County District Attorney’s Office news release.

Maria Dinzeo, Courthouse News

EUREKA, Calif. (CN) - A jury cleared the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation of recklessly disregarding a female prison guard by subjecting her to longtime sexual harassment by male inmates while supervisors did nothing about it.
In its verdict Wednesday, a jury found the department not guilty of discriminating against prison guard Martha Berndt because of her gender and exposing her to a hostile work environment by disregarding her complaints about male inmate behavior.

CALIFORNIA PAROLE

Tami Hoey, Tucson News

BULLHEAD CITY, AZ (KPHO/KTVK) - A wanted California sex offender has been arrested in Bullhead City.

Joseph Townsend, 34, was wanted for Parole Violation after being in possession of child pornography.

It is alleged that Townsend cut off his GPS monitor and disappeared on or around February 5, 2016. It is believed he left the state of California to avoid prosecution.

Sara Gaiser, SF Bay

A nonprofit that provides counseling for sex offenders has withdrawn its plans to relocate to a Duboce Triangle building following an outcry from residents in the area, but says it still needs to find a new site in San Francisco.

Sharper Future, which currently operates at 1540 Market St., was planning to move into 100 Church St. at the corner of Church Street and Duboce Avenue, a site that previously housed a charity thrift store.

REALIGNMENT

Jordan Graham, OC Register

For all the fear surrounding what prison realignment might mean for Orange County and the local crime rate, a recent county report on the program’s first four years suggests that very little has changed for residents – despite nearly 8,000 former and would-be state prisoners being released to county supervision.

Nearly 1 in 4 of those felons were convicted again within a year of their release, under the new system set up under Assembly Bill 109. A little more than 1 in 3 re-offended within two years. And by year three, nearly half were convicted again.