Thursday, June 23, 2016

Daily Corrections Clips

CALIFORNIA PRISONS

Tiffany Camhi, KQED

Professional musician and classical guitar teacher Gen Young recently bought a new pale-yellow guitar. It’s worth several thousand dollars and Young had to sell some instruments from his own collection just to afford it. It’s his third spanish-style guitar made by guitar maker – or “luthier” – Robert Vincent. Young says each one he owns has a different personality. “It has this beautiful, elegant sound where all the notes are separated beautifully,” Young says. “A lot of times hearing those voices separately is a really prized part of an instrument.”

Vincent had been making guitars by hand for close to 20 years. But unlike most luthiers, Vincent learned his craft while in prison, as part of the state’s Arts-In-Corrections program, a world-renowned initiative which brought arts programming to prisons for decades until it was cut due to budget shortfalls a few years ago. “The guitars that were coming out of that program were world-class,” says Vincent. “They were concert guitars.”

CALIFORNIA INMATES

CBS
RANCH CUCAMONGA (CBSLA.com) — A man convicted of killing his wife 23 years ago was released from prison Tuesday after the California Supreme Court overturned his conviction.

William Richards walked out of the West Valley Detention Center in Rancho Cucamonga with his arms raised, expressing a sense of triumph and joy.

When asked how he felt, William Richards said: “No words could ever express it. I mean the emotions, the feelings. It’s been a lot, yeah.”

Colin Atagi, The Desert Sun

A Desert Hot Springs man was in state prison for committing a series of crimes while police spent most of the past year positively identifying him as a suspect in a 2015 homicide.

Jesus Garza, 23, is accused of killing Maria Duarte, who died on April 12, 2015, according to the Desert Hot Springs Police Department. He was arrested June 14 at California State Prison Corcoran and then entered a not-guilty plea during his arraignment on June 15.

His arrest capped off an extensive investigation into the Coachella Valley's 14th homicide of 2015 and Desert Hot Springs' fifth of that year.

CALIFORNIA PAROLE

Adam Randall, The Daily Journal

Another state prison inmate from Mendocino County has been found eligible for parole, and is among a list of others who will go before the Board of Parole this summer.

On June 10, a California Department of Corrections Board of Parole panel granted Steven Craig Crump’s parole suitability request.

At the end of May, Robert James McNutt, formerly of Laytonville and serving a 23 years-to-life sentence at Solano State Prison for second-degree murder, was also found suitable for parole.

CORRECTIONS RELATED

Chris Roberts, SF Weekly

Tall and lean in a waist-length buttoned sweater, Michelle-Lael Norsworthy takes large steps in her thigh-high booted feet. But as the sun cracks through the morning fog at the Palace of Fine Arts, she breaks her stride — straight and narrow as if she were walking a line — and suddenly halts.

"Look at these big — what are these? Swans?" she asks, as two of the giant white birds — swans, indeed — preen near the Palace's pond.

She smiles. After being in prison for more than 30 years, swans are a new phenomenon for her. Google, smartphones, those are new, too — all newer to her than being a woman.

When Norsworthy was sentenced to life in prison in 1984 after killing a man in a drunken bar fight, she was Jeff, a 21-year-old macho ex-military man who loved to drink and get in fights, so aggro that he went to bars dressed in military fatigues and kept a loaded rifle in his car. It took 14 years inside and a chance encounter with a priest — who led him to a revelation just by asking him to look up the word "transsexual" — for Jeff to realize who she was.

Bill aims to fix sex-offender reporting requirement
Don Thompson, KCRA 3 News

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) —California lawmakers moved Tuesday to fix a flawed voter-approved initiative that required registered sex offenders to disclose their email addresses, screen names and other electronic information to authorities.

Proposition 35 was approved by an overwhelming 81 percent of the vote in 2012, making it the most popular initiative in California's history.

But the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled in 2014 that the measure violated the free speech rights of about 73,000 sex offenders who have served their prison terms.

Gabrielle Canon, Medium

Just before 2:30am Daniel Treglia jostled awake at the sounds of the mechanical iron doors slowly screeching open. The jangling keys and the heavy footsteps that followed were all part of the normal soundscape inside the Security Housing Unit (SHU) at Pelican Bay State Prison, where guards patrol hourly each night.

But on that early morning in March, these sounds signified something new — after nearly nine years, Treglia’s time in solitary confinement had finally come to an end.

There was time for one last look at the peeling white paint covering the barren concrete walls of his 8 by 10 foot cell, the small metal sink he had filled with soapy water each morning to clean himself and mask the smell that wafted from his neighbor’s toilet, and the slot in the perforated metal doors through which his meals were delivered twice daily. He had only been allowed a reprieve from this cell for about an hour and a half each day, when he was entitled to exercise in a small concrete room with a skylight, or during the three showers he could take each week.