2810, 2020

PATTERN- The First Step backwards!

October 28th, 2020|Categories: Criminal Justice and Prison Reform|Tags: , , , , |

I only blog when something inspires me to go on a rant for a Federal justice related issue. I have a pulse on the Federal prison system and like to document my thoughts for an  “I told you so moment” when these inspirations occur. So here we go….. Several of my previous rants were focused on the numerous deficiencies of the First Step Act (FSA) as it relates to the so-called reforms regarding the “back end” or prison related aspects. Aside from the discriminatory aspects of the law which reward people, yes people, differently  and the unattainable and disingenuous incentives for programming, I am focusing today on the PATTERN risk assessment which purportedly determines the potential for recidivism as either minimum, low medium or high. PATTERN is a risk assessment tool developed by the DOJ in accordance with the FSA. It  includes both static and dynamic factors not very different [...]

2107, 2020

Violence, Politics & The NGO Mafia

July 21st, 2020|Categories: Criminal Justice and Prison Reform, Governments|Tags: |

As I launched my new website last week, I wanted to write a new blog which is a bit controversial but fashionable none the less. This month marks nine years that I’ve been retired from the Federal Bureau of Prisons and thirty three years working with incarcerated people. Yes people! I’ve written about the topic of violence before this more nuanced perspective was inspired by a recent prison reform meeting within the swamp. Most of my adult life I’ve been an advocate for the incarcerated but was prohibited from going too far while working within the prison system. I was able to help many people during my career, simply because it was my job. Helping people within ones capacity is almost non-existent within the system today due to the leadership void at the agency. People who work within the current dysfunctional culture are under subtle pressure to avoid being labeled [...]

2304, 2020

Covid-19 Mini-prison rant

April 23rd, 2020|Categories: Criminal Justice and Prison Reform, Uncategorized|Tags: , , , , , |

With the decision in the Northern District of Ohio yesterday, it appears the BOP is in freefall. I’ve written about the root causes of inferior BOP leadership for many years as well as the agency’s lack of transparency and accountability. While the BOP needs to own their “shoot, ready, aim” shenanigans, let us not forget it’s politicians and the “tough on crime” era which should take most of the blame for the crisis we find ourselves in. Let’s face it, the BOP doesn’t determine the amount of people, yes people, who are packed into the prisons.  I can write a book about how we got into this mess but let’s hope this crisis is finally going to wake up our country and realize there are no boogiemen. This narrative of “violent/non-violent” is simply false and does nothing to change the collective conscious of the nation.   People violate laws for a [...]

704, 2020

If I were King! (Covid-19)

April 7th, 2020|Categories: Uncategorized|

With the CARES act being implemented on Friday, I want to make a few observations which I am not hearing about in the advocacy world. I’m also going to re-circulate several recommendations I made over a week ago which can simultaneously be done to alleviate crowding and allow for better social distancing in our federal prisons. First, I want to make an observation about the BOP statistics on their website.   https://www.bop.gov/coronavirus/ You know what they say about stats! While underreporting the amount of actual exposures to Covid-19 for the inmate population, the BOP is over inflating the amount of people who have transferred to the community during the past few weeks. Both stats are more of a misrepresentation of the data than outright inaccurate numbers.  If the BOP gets positive test results of several people in a dormitory setting, they stop testing that unit even though others exhibit symptoms. [...]

2511, 2019

It’s the Leadership, Stupid!

November 25th, 2019|Categories: Uncategorized|

As the Federal Bureau of Prison’s Director testified to Congress last Tuesday, reports started to circulate about the indictments of two correctional officers regarding the falsification of records regarding the Jeffrey Epstein suicide. On November 4, the BOP Director warned staff that falsifying documents is “very serious misconduct” that could expose staff to criminal prosecution. Off of the radar was a press release from the District of New Jersey US Attorney from a few days earlier about a Fort Dix Correction Officer who pleaded guilty to accepting thousands of dollars of cash bribes to deliver contraband to inmates over a period of several years. While I have no issue with staff accountability or tolerance for misconduct; I think the director’s office must be missing a mirror. Before the politicians, academics and pop culture icons plot their next step in federal justice reform; they first need to address the fundamental aspects [...]

2307, 2019

First Step Act-Only for the correctional cerebral!

July 23rd, 2019|Categories: Criminal Justice and Prison Reform|Tags: , , , , |

It’s been far too long since I wrote a blog so giddy up! The catalyst for my rants is usually media driven so the DOJ presser about the First Step Act (FSA) from last Friday did the trick! Actually; that, in combination with many stories from various outlets simply led me to a blog long overdue. When writing about my displeasure with the FSA, I always point out my negativity is related only to the “back end” prison related aspects of the law. Reading the various stories from over the week end, one was led to believe hundreds of people were lining up to release at the doors of our federal prisons around the country which was far from reality. First, the good conduct time release adjustments (7 days) had little impact on people in prison as the majority affected where either already in the community halfway house, home detention, [...]

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