Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Darren Morris, a story of transformation


Darren Morris (#236425)
Columbia Correctional Institution
P.O. Box 900,
Portage, WI 53901

Below is Darren's letter to an official a few years ago and then his first letter to me. see his Art work (at darrenmorrisartist.blogspot.com) and Guide for Urban Youth(at guidebydarrenmorris.blogspot.com.)

Janis Mueller
Legislative Audit Bureau
22 E. Mifflin Suite 500,
Madison, WI 53703

Re.: Mental Illness Testimony

Date: October 28, 2008



Peace and Love

Ms Mueller,

Recently Peggy Swan has informed that you are conducting some sort of audit on the Mental Health treatment of inmates, I will share with you my experiences and hopefully it will help you to help us, and help people like Peg. I truly believe that Peg saved my life, had she not gotten involved and let the prison know that someone was watching they would have killed me, because I was in a place in my mind that I would act without regard for my own well being or fore thought what they would do to me.

I am not sure what all you need to know so I will give you a short history of how I got here. My mental health problems seem to have plagued me from the beginning. When I was about 3, I was playing with my father´s pistol, and when my mother seen me, she went to take the gun from me; as she snatched it, it went off, hitting my mother. From that point on I was not very well liked among family members. My mother lived, and gave the story to the officials that when she set the gun down on the dresser, it went off accidentally, this was to keep the State from taking her children. My brothers and others would often do things to me to punish me. I will not go into specifics, most of it was physical, and restraints (home made), different types of isolation, there was some sexual from both older males and females.
I accepted what ever they did without complaint, I felt that I deserved it for shooting my mother.

Until I was about 11, one of my mother´s boyfriends done something to me that was a wake up call, I do not remember how I understood it but I knew that if I did not do something, they were going to kill me in that house. I began to retaliate whenever and however I could. This sudden violence shocked many people that were not in the home and did not know the situation, because I was a very silent person, I read a lot and tried as best as I could to not be seen or heard. This change in them, or rather in me, brought a change in that they became even more violent, if that was possible.

I went through a very long depression by the time I was thirteen, I was hearing voices and it would be like I would see somebody on the side of me out of the corner of my eye, but when I would look, they would be gone. I would be fine for a while, and things would just change, I did not understand what was going on and what was happening to me. I was sent to a special school after seeing the school shrink who sent me to another doctor, who diagnosed me with Schizophrenia, and they put me on medication

In 1993 I was released from boys school (Lincoln Hills), they sent me to a group home before sending me home. When my medication ran out I stopped taking it. I never told my mother. She noticed that I began to change and thought that I was on drugs. She felt that “we” were in need of a fresh start. She moved me to Green Bay, where a family friend had moved to and told her that they had more resources to help me up there than they did in the inner city.

Within a few months, I was convinced that people were trying to kill me, I even lost weight because I was certain that my mother was poisoning my food, so I would only eat can goods, but I went through great lengths to ensure that I picked my own cans from the store. My weight went from about 220 to about 185, maybe 190 pounds, I worked out and ate a lot of beans, I had to be ready for when they came.

I eventually hit a breaking point. First I tore up my mother´s apartment, trying to figure out where these voices were coming from. I was taken to Brown County Mental Health Center, I was there for a day or so and they let me go, I was convinced that I had been drugged, so I told them that I was drugged and that is what they went with.

Two weeks later I felt I was being followed in school and the voices were telling me that they were going to kill me, I kept trying to get away. I got trapped in a hallway that had only one way out and these two guys that I thought were about to get me had just entered the hallway. I didn’t know who they were, but I knew what they came to do and I started to fight for my life, several teachers attempted to restrain me, I hate to be grabbed! They were unable to restrain me. They let me leave rather than attempt to try and fight with me. I was picked up by the police, I fought with them, with additional officers; they were able to restrain me.

I was taken to the hospital, which referred me to the psych. hospital. They took a urine sample, because they were sure I had to be on drugs I was not. They told my mother I was dangerous, something needed to be done. My mother asked me how I felt, I said I was fine as long as she did not let them tie me down again. The first night I was in there they strapped me down to a bed and left me in there alone. I told my mother that, she refused to sign the commitment papers.

I was taken to court and they sought to get an order from the court, but because I was 17, the judge did not want to place me in an institution without trying everything else first. I was released on a 90 day consent settlement. I was put on medication called Haldol. I was sent to counselling. I got better.

By 1994 I was so good that I thought I was cured and I stopped taking the medication. March 22 I had fallen back into the same pattern, but I had not peaked yet, I was at an apartment with my then girlfriend and either because it was true or these people thought it was funny to mess with the crazy guy, the people in this apartment started talking about gang members with guns outside wanting to kill us, people were running this way and that way, screaming, they would go to the window and say stuff like there they go and run away from the window. I use to be in a gang and many of my childhood friends in the Kenosha and Northern Illinois area were shot and stabbed by members of a gang called Latin Kings and these were the same people they said were outside. This went on for 1 maybe 3 hours, I was convinced I could not get out.

Eventually, I was backed into such a place mentally that I began to hear stuff, and I became fearful that it was true that they were going to kill me. I could not stay in that apartment any more, I had to get out, armed with a knife I went out. There was a man in a red truck. This man lost his life there in some dispute about what actually happened. Witnesses told police that I stabbed the victim 3 times. The next day I was arrested and I could not remember stabbing the victim. I remembered going outside with the knife and then waking up.

Over the next few months I began remembering things, each memory about that night, and each one was as real as any memory I ever had, if not more real. The county jail had me see a psych. doctor and put me back on medication (Haldol). My attorney was told about this, I pled a special plea, of Not guilty by reason of mental disease or defect. The Judge signed an order to have me evaluated for mental responsibility, but they never did the evaluation.

The day of trial my attorney told the court that he had written a letter and I signed it wanting to withdraw the plea. The court asked me one question, if that was true, to which I said yeah.
I was convicted and I was sent to prison. In Dodge they put me back on medication. I had stopped taking it before trial, because I could not think on it. I went into a long depression. I was sent to Green Bay Correctional. I was okay for a while, then I was sent to Waupun Correctional Institution and they had a very different way of doing things. I was placed in segregation.

They locked me in this room, and before long I had attempted suicide, I could not take it anymore, and the only way to escape that I know was to hang myself, but fortunately for me, I did not brake my neck or crush anything, I was choked unconscious. But that was only the beginning. I would fight with them, they would fight back, they would gas me, and as punishment, they would leave the stuff on burning, and they would tell me to remember that feeling. But sometimes they would attack me when I had not done anything.

Once I was placed in observation, after I told the psych doctor that I was hearing voices. They took all my clothes and placed me in a cell with big windows and a camera, naked, I did not have a blanket or a mattress. They gave me this rubber mat that looks like the mat that they put on the back of them trucks to keep from scratching it up. I was up for 2 days. It is extremely cold in there even in the summer time, which is not normal. I had fallen asleep finally, when the psych doctor came to see me. I told him to go away, I did not want to talk to him anymore, I refused to talk with him, so they gassed me, they then shocked me with a taser, they came in with the gorilla suits on, they beat me up and then tied me down to a bed, and every few hours, the nurse would ask if I had to go, and when I did have to go, the nurse would come in while 2 blue shirts and a white shirt stood watch, the nurse would take my penis and place it into this thing that looked like a big clear plastic coffee mug, or if I needed a bed pan, they would leave me strapped to that bed and just slide it under me without letting me up to clean myself, or give me the privacy to go.

This would be a revolving cycle, at times I would be blessed to get out of seg, but it would
not last long. I would be written up for some sort of rule violation, some times it was legit, I had done something wrong, and sometimes, the officers would bet on a pool on how long a “Seg. rat”, which is a name they use to call inmates that spend a lot of time in the hole. The pool would be based on how long it would take before they could make me snap or act out. In population there is no one to talk with who can help you through the rough times. Every 3 months I would be seen by a head shrink to see how I was, but he would have 4 or 5 guys scheduled for one hour, and he would push you back out of the door as quick as you came in.

There were times, I wanted to learn what was wrong with (me) and have some one to talk with and help me do that. I eventually learned from some very special people and funny enough I met them all about the time, Peg, a lady named Jamyi Witch, who was a chaplain at Waupun Correctional, and George Kammer, a crisis intervention worker at Waupun. These people really cared for me, and no matter how long it took in some cases that meant hours, they would talk with me, explain things to me, and the helped me reconnect with something that was lost. These type of people are not well liked in here. The guards make life very hard for them, and the women who want to help and actually care, usually get accused of having some kind of inappropriate relationship with one or so inmates.

Peg helped me reconnect with painting and drawing, as a way to distract and soothe. No one had ever taken time to explain simple things like that. Those seg units are not right. I understand that if I do something wrong, I should be held to answer for that.

The place usually smells of urine, and I do not mean the gas station bathroom kind, this is the kind that when I first smelled it, I got sick, partly because it is usually fused with other smells, body odor from guys that have not washed in a while, and at times fecal matter. There is an endless attack of noise, banging and yelling, but if I take out my hearing aides to escape the noise, then I do not get fed. There are no real programs to deal with the needs of the mentally ill, the staff do not know how to deal with us and often times they do things to intentionally make it worse and sometimes it seems unintentional.

They cannot make an accurate diagnosis of what is really wrong, because they see so many people they just give you pills and send you on your way, and they will change that diagnosis to suit their needs. I had been in a single cell for nearly 14 years. When I got here as a way to get even with me and punish me, they took my single cell status and doubled me up.

I have a very real fear about contact with an adult male, if I think he is peeking at me, with any hint of funny ideals, I can not handle that. But I have to remind myself to think first. I was fortunate, I was blessed to meet people that helped me brake the cycle. I have been stable for about 3 years on medication. It helps when there is a real check and balance, when Peg let them know that someone was watching out for me and willing to go to bat for me, it made them back off me long enough for others who want to help, to help.

I have many medical records and will do whatever I need to do, to help you help us. Most of the time I am fine, from time to time I need a little extra help, as I have gotten older, I am now being treated for Bi-Polar, manic-depressive type.

Be at Peace, Be Blessed

First letter to me:
August 17th 2006

Darren Morris #236425
Waupun Correctional Institution
Post Office Box 351
Waupun, Wisconsin, 53963


My name is Darren Morris, and I am an inmate here in Waupun Correctional Institution, where I am currently being held in a Segregation Cell. At the age of 17, I began to have "more"severe psychotic episodes, in which I had to be hospitalized for more than once. I was put on the medication called Haldol. I would hallucinations and delusional thinking that would lead to violent acts. I was arrested for PTAC of first-degree intentional homicide, and once in prison I continued to have these psychotic episodes. I would go through periods with no episodes, and then it was like someone snatched the rug from under me. I had numerous disciplinary actions taken against me, more so since being in Waupun Correctional. I have been shocked with some kind of electrical device It was around 1999 some time. I'm sorry my memory can't come with exact dates.. I thought I was in danger, that my medication had been switched and laced with poison, so I stopped taking them. Soon I had a psychotic break and I was put into segregation, though I cannot remember the charge and my delusions continued. They put me into the "Naked Man Cell", (observation). they chained me to the cell door, cut my clothes off, they put me in the cell naked. I don't remember much, though I do remember I was cold and crying. I was given two squares of tissue to clean myself with after using the toilet. I could not sleep because I was naked, it was cold and there was no mattress. Instead of a mattress there was a hard rubber mat, and the lack of sleep only made things worse. I started to pound on the door, at which I was given a direct order to stop, and I did not. In turn they gassed me and came in with these black suits and helmets, and when they attacked me I fought back. I was choked until I blacked out. When I woke up I was handcuffed to a concrete slab by both wrists and my feet. I began banging my head on this slab. They came in and put a strap on me to hold my head down. About a day later i was let out of restraints, I was still naked, I began pounding on the door, and told them if they gave me a blanket I'd stop. They gassed me again, they came in with the suits on and when they had me pinned down to the floor some electroshocked me. i went to Wisconsin resource Center- twice. I had many situations where my illness caused me to get a ticket and put in the hole. I'm also hard of hearing, I'm supposed to have a hearing and for both ears. I came here from the outside with two- they lost them, and claimed not to be responsible. They gave me only one hearing aid and told me to make due as best I could with that. i got two tickets once for sleeping during count, I never heard the buzzer and they put me ion the hole for, I think, 90 days that time. Now I am stable on my medication and had been doing okay, but I got a ticket again for disobeying an order. They gave me 60 days in the hole. Since I been here I tell them I can't hear the buzzer for meals or medication or other things. Here, when the tone sounds you must stand at your cell door to get that meal, medication, showers or whatever if you are not at that door, I don't get to eat or my medication for the schizo effective bipolar type. I keep telling them, I can't hear the buzzer, They have 2, one in the hall, which is the one I can't hear. Then there is one in the cell which they use sometimes- that one I can hear just fine. They should not be able to pass me for meds and especially medication- if I can't hear the sound then I can't react to it. I have about a 7th or 8th grade reading level and I'm trying to figure out the law because I'm knowing what they do is wrong. I want to teach them that it is not okay to let a person go hungry, and to discriminate against people. I want to change the rules and the way they do things here(..her he asks for help) .. They never ask how to help me, they leave the lights on all the time, my brain don't get a chance to rest, the people argue, and pound all day long and the COs pick on them when they get quiet to make them argue again. Every time I hear keys I get worried they coming with them suits again and shock me and cuff me up or gas me up. I tell them I hear voices and they give me no counseling or help with my issues, and I try to tell me self it's in my head, nothing to fear, but when I hear them keys I get ready to fight cause I think they coming to get me.
If you cannot help. will you please find someone who can. Thank you for your consideration.

Sincerely, Darren

Monday, January 25, 2016

Tyrone Munson tells his story

Tyrone Munson #356816


W.C.I
P.O. Box 351
Waupun, WI 53963

Dear Reader,

My name is Tyrone Munson, and I am currently serving my first adult prison sentence of 290 years. I have only a juvenile record of disorderly conduct. I am now incarcerated for Sexual assault, kidnapping, and robbery.

After 15 years I have finally gathered the courage to put down on paper my raw thoughts and emotions. If you are moved in any direction please feel free to respond in honesty. I would like for you to be open as possible. In advance I would like to thank you.

also see: Tyrone Munson blog post one
Tyrone Munson blog post two

_______________
Dear Reader,

At this point in time of my life, out of sheer apathy I lacked the mental and emotional capacity to fully grasp the magnitude of just how much damage I've caused. The heartless boy described by my victims, Ms. Kate Bungi, Ms. Ruby Silvestrini, and Ms. Concette Clemente. Along with others (men not included) to paint a graphic picture of my terrorizing "only" women. When unfortunately my wrath was directed toward everyone outside of me, including my family.

I will not down play, minimize, or make any excuses for my actions. I accept the fullness of responsibility, and because of this I have become a greater man. Please bare with me as I unmask the events that lead up to this point in my life. I recall Ms. Clemente stating in the court room that I still would not admit that I committed these vicious acts against them. She was right, I could not admit it. It was also something else, I couldn't believe it either. The details were brutal, that at my hands these girls had to endure what possibly has been the worst day of their lives. I sexually assaulted, robbed, and kidnapped them.. How could I admit to myself let alone society that I stabbed a woman, beat another one? What person had I become to brutally beat a man, and fight others, all for the fun of it?

No one should ever have to endure the pain I inflicted on these human beings. No one should ever have to live in the terror I caused so many. I now see, in many ways I did commit murder. I killed their innocence, I took away their identity. I robbed them of their security, I humiliated them degraded them, disrespected them, without any remorse. In my conscious mind I now think to myself: What if this happened to my Mother? Or my Niece? Or my Daughter? How would I feel if someone did this to me? I would loath the very sight of them, I would feel less than a man. I would have a hard time trusting people. I would be very apprehensive, and cautious. I would hate them , I would cry and in deep confusion question God. In my response to this I would want whoever did this to me or my family to burn in hell. I to would want them to die in prison. It is my fault that they are struggling to cope. I have to live with what I've done. The manifestation of my actions no doubt has left a grave impact on not only my victims. But my family, and the community as a whole. I am now aware of the ripple effects that I've caused.

This startling revelation has challenged me in every facet of my life. Stripped, as I lay bare the emotions once covered up by the abuse I had to endure. Brought upon the callousness necessary to carry out these ungodly acts.

In the past I blamed drugs and alcohol. These however were not the primary culprits in my demise. Although it lowered my inhibitions, it also enhanced the already negative self-image I entertained. Drugs and alcohol set blaze the inferno I had burning on the inside of me. I was filled with rage from the constant blows of my self-esteem. I did not just wake up with this self destructive attitude. I did however have to face what I thought was facts. God did not make a man to act in the lowest form of human existence. But it happened,it happens even more than ever. So I questioned myself, why did these girls (at the time) have to suffer from my mental and emotional anguish? Then the revelation became clear to me, everybody suffered because I didn't know how to love myself. They suffered because I suffered, I affected society because I was infected. I didn't care about myself, so there was no way that I could care about anyone outside of me.

I remember wanting to die when I was 5 or 6 years old. Normal kids are having fun at this age. But I wanted to die, I was hiding in the closet of our upstairs room. Overcome with fear from my mother and my Brother's father fighting I wished that night that I could die. Little did I know a part of me did die. Little did I know this would jump start the anger I felt towards men. I love my Mother dearly, and although she tried desperately to instill morals and values in me. Her actions spoke louder than her words. She also tried to convey love that was taught to her, but this love would prove faulty in trying to raise 4 boys.

Don't get me wrong we had good times but the good times would soon be over-shadowed by the trauma of my Mother's drug use. I remember getting hit and was told to stop crying before I give you something to cry about. This in turn would stifle my emotions. This along with having to fend for myself in the ghetto pumped my undeveloped mind with venom. At any time in my childhood if I had the mental strength to deal with my emotions the course of my life would be drastically different. Do I blame my Mother? NO! I blame the vicious cycle perpetuated by the lies that plagued my community. Violence was the norm not only in my household but in the infested streets. It would be next to impossible to escape the malady surrounding me. The residue of my poor self-image began to saturate my feeble mind. The nightmares would become a reality. The voices of kids my age in my class telling me that I was an ugly missing tooth, black boy ripped my self confi¬dence into pieces. My three brothers (who all had the same father) would also validate my poor self-image.

I felt rejected, I felt alone, yet I stuffed it. All the mental and emotional abuse I stuffed it. Family members not wanting to take in my brother and I stuffed it. When my Mother would get into fights and I would call the police and they would not come, or they would come too late, I learned not to trust them. Getting bullied in school, I stuffed it. I stuffed the affects of my father dying, moving from place to place. Living in shelters, being judged by society’s standards of what is good enough, I stuffed it. I took every single blow, punch after punch, after punch. The last punch would no doubt make me fight back. When I obtain knowledge of my Mother's drug use. The only person who helplessly tried to keep it together couldn't any longer. Drugs took the one person I loved in my life away from me. I lost it, I lost every sense of control I had. I went from being at the top of my class to dropping out of school. How can you expect for me to be a child when circumstance forces me to grow up quick. All bets were off, the one thread (My Mother) trying to hold everything together snapped, so I snapped! At the age of 11, (although this was not my first time drinking alcohol) I consumed large amounts. Now I am no expert but the quantities of alcohol I was consuming surely outweighed the tolerance of an 11 year old. I gave into the darkness, playing rushing roulette with my already withering life. The overwhelming affects of drugs and alcohol begin to break down the defenses of my morale. I would have unprotected sex with countless women. I would have fights with three or four men at the same time. I would jump out of full speed moving cars. I even had one of my friends Mother come from the bar one night I was asleep, but this did not stop her from trying to unzip my pants. I told her to stop but she didn't, she told me to be quiet. My body would deceive me; I too was intoxicated and tried again to move her. She was much bigger than I was so it wasn't that easy. Because my body had deceived me I gave in. She was 33, and I was 16 years old.

I felt empty inside, the only thing I held on to was the anger and rage I had on the inside of me. Soon the powerful force of self-hatred would give birth to this vicious person displayed in my actions. I wanted out, I didn't want to feel the way I was feeling. I wanted help because I was tired, I was weak, powerless to overcome my demons. In the days of me robbing one woman, raping and brutally beating another, I released every¬thing. Everything I internalized, everything I held inside, from the age I felt betrayed up until it came all out. As tragic as it is, as vicious as it is, these girls were not suppose to be the target. No one was. How do you live with yourself? Sticking bottles in a woman's vagina, hitting her all while laughing. You would have to be sick individual to constantly beat her to the point of her saying "just kill me!" A juvenile would have to be far gone to express these types of behaviors. A person is not in their right mind to go throw with this. I shiver at the very thought of it. Once you become conscious there is no escaping this you don't just get over this. Because I have to face my Mother, I have to face my Daughter and the female friends I have. I have to face myself, I have to live with it.. and it hurts. I wish that I could take it back; I wish that I was strong enough to deal with my issues. I donut want them to hurt, I hate that I am the cause of someone else affliction. For as long as I live this will never sit right with me. I will never feel comfortable knowing that because of me people are suffering.

It has been my sincerest prayer that God help those who I have hurt. So that they don't be infected with the negative energy I generated. I pray that they don't become the hatred I gave to them, the anger I had, the low self-esteem. I plead with God that He restore the beauty I took from them. I struggle with the thought of ever getting out of prison. Do I deserve to get out for what I have done? And the answer is no, I don't deserve to get out of prison. This would be my thoughts hadn't I not taken the necessary steps that I have in becoming a better human being. If I still had a selfish disposition and a total disregard for human life. I wouldn't deserve to get out of prison, yet it still isn't that simple. Because there is an entertaining thought of, if I was to get out of prison what type of person would I be in society? The truth of the matter is that I wouldn't know until I get that opportunity. All I know is the man I am today, being in prison didn't make me bitter it actually made me better. It has given me a chance to confront myself. Iwas able to get the prison out by repetition. Challenging old thoughts and behaviors and replacing them with new ones. A constant theme plays on in my head. "Hurt people," "Hurt People!" Any pain not transformed is transferred The Bible teaches that Godly sorrow produces repentance (turning away) leading to salvation (freedom).

I repent, I was wrong, I was insensitive, young and impulsive. The boy that I was could not accept responsibility however the man that I am can. My words are not based on a hollow surface. I have really put in the work necessary. I have went into the depths of my heart, allowing God to soften every spot. I have taken every treatment offered to me. I attend any event that gives back to the victims, my motto is simply, "NO MORE VICTIMS!" I stand on this principle and I haven't displayed any anger violently in 15 years. I could not have come to this conclusion without being set free first. I was in a prison on the streets just like many are in today. I can’t change the past and if could have dealt with my issues differently than I did, I would have. My heart goes out to all the people that I hurt, and it is my sincerest prayer that at some point they are able to live a life of normalcy. I would like to be physically free one day and I know that my freedom would come at a high price. Just as I am today I have become an active member of help breaking the vicious cycle. By confronting lies, distortions, and toxic emotions. I counsel victims of abuse, I speak to young men, and children who are trapped with the same identity crisis I was once faced with.

I have studied Psychology for 2 years, I have finished school and will further my education. I am a motivational speaker. I have studied/applied Biblical principles to my everyday living. With all I've done the least that I can do is not stay the same. I think that will be the worst thing that I could do is not change. It is possible, I could stay the same. I could self medicate. I could make excuses; I could even drink self made alcohol. There is a way to escape, But God forbid how dare I run from a part of me. I had to embrace the good, the bad, and the ugly. I have put in the work but if it wasn't for my belief in God, and the revelations He gave me then yes I think I should stay in prison. The things I did to get me here didn't make me happy. I hurt people, just as I was hurting, I hurt others. The difference between you and I is that at the lowest period of your life you didn't lash out. Or maybe you did but these destructive behaviors did not start when I was an adult. It started when I was at the Impressionable stages of my life. When my brain chemistry was not yet solids I will not take from what happened 15 years ago. But what now? From the age of 10 to 17 years old I had to endure what I thought to be pure hell.

The way I was living was not living at all. So truth be told I never really had a chance to live outside of my oppression. What's the use for punishment when there is no real chance for rehabilitation? Should I stay in prison for the rest of my life? For what? For what I've done? If you believe so why? Why should I stay in physical prison when I am no longer in a mental prison? Or emotional prison, when substance abuse is no longer a factor. I don't want to get out just to be in the way. I want to put in hard work, I want to prove my worth. When you are conscious you come to understand that life is not about you. I messed up big time and society knows this. Should I get a chance to be a major contribution for awareness? Everyone deserves a second chance don't you think? When you become conscious it's about retribution, giving back. I want to serve, I want to be on the front lines advocating against sexual abuse, and violence. Substance abuse, childhood traumas and learning acceptance. True justice is not locking me up and throwing away the key. This translate that I am no good, that I can’t be used for something. I agree with getting prison time. I agree with having to pay restitution, I just don't agree with 290 years. This sentence doesn't reflect the hard work I put in to become a better man A better Son, a good Brother, an awesome Father, and a trusted friend. This doesn't fit the hard work I am willing to put in for not only those whom I affected but those who continues to be affected. I sincerely apologize for all of the hurt that I've caused. I'm sorry to all of my victims. To my Mother, to my Daughter, to my Brothers and-also to my Niece's and Nephew's. To the community I apologize as well. Thank you for listening.
also see: Tyrone Munson blog post one
Tyrone Munson blog post two

Sunday, January 24, 2016

Todd Jones

Todd J Jones #333660
CCI
PO Box 900
Portage, Wi 53901

WHAT IS PRISON?
Prison is:
A place where you write letters and can't think of anything to say... A place where you wait for letters that come less and less often ... A place where you gradually stop writing all together. A place where you lost respect for the law because you see it raw, naked, bent, ignored and blown out of proportion to suit the people who enforce it... A place where it is proven that absolute power corrupts absolutely. A place where you wait for a visit that doesn't happen... and although you know the real reason, you have to accept the lies. A place where you learn that nobody needs you... you are the forgotten man, and the world goes on without you... A place where you discover that all of the talents and abilities you have are worthless, for you are a man in green. A place where you receive your divorce papers and you learn the meaning of the words "Till Death Do us part"... for the outside world you are a dead man. A place that doesn't exist in the minds of friends, for they cannot put it on an envelope, nor can they find it in a car... A place that exists only in a time warp, for you are only remembered in past tense... and that's probably appropriate, for you can see no future. A place where days blend into weeks, months merge into years, and eons pass without feeling the touch of a human hand unless it is raised in anger... A place where a kind word and an affectionate touch are only memories. A place where basic humanity is ignored, discarded, and eventually forgotten... A place where men are stripped of their clothes as well as their dignity, and herded like the beast society believes them to be. A place where you go to bed early, even if you are not tired; you walk in circles, even though you have nowhere to go; and you pull the covers over head, even though you're not cold. A place where escape is possible, but only through reading, dreaming, or just plain going mad. Can a man survive prison and resume a useful life? If he can overcome the degradation that is heaped upon him, society will continue to remind him that he is tainted. Does he deserve what he got? Of course! And smug society can be assured that it bas done the right and proper thing. Until... circumstances, errors, accidents, or a mistake in the judicial system flips the table and they find themselves in the shoes of the man in the cell next door!!!!
by: Mr. Todd Jones, #333660
P.O. Box 900 (CCI)
Portage, Wi 53901

THE HOLE
You wanna walk in my shoes, well here you go, gone try them on/ be sure to let me know what it's like, when you sit in this cell all alone./ You gone trip, but don't start tweaking, when you see flies flying around/ cause that's just the beginning, wait till you see, them fruitflies that patrol the ground./ Your days become planned out to the tee, while you wait for the next big argument/ you hope that carries you to about 4:30, till you get that delivery from the mail department./ Well let me rephrase that because I forgot to tell you something you should know/ Don't plan your days around getting some mail, cause you gone be sick when the mailman passes your door./ Asking other brothaz "Was that mail?" when you know damn well it was/ just that feeling of hurt & shock, cause ain't nobody wrote to show they love./ Don't get mad though, because at one point or another, its happened to all of us/ you'll forget all ya pains anyway, especially when that med cart pull up at ya door like a city bus./ Its 40,000 ways to pass time, but yet down here we chose one/ conversation about any & everythang, ribbing each other just to have fun./ The c.o.s, oh they become victims, mainly crued by the circumstances/ you try to be cool cause every 30 days, you hoping that the review boards handed out them advancements./ One to you of course, no doubt, while the rest go out to ya guys/ when they come ask a cat they shoe £ clothes sizes, I wish I could see the reaction of their eyes./ To so many of us, this hole ain't nothing, so we accept it as it come/ we soldier on every damn day, but we don't march to the beat of the drum./ The hole is pretty unique, so don't break no rules to come here/ then you got the crisis worker at ya door, asking bout ya pills that'll keep you in gear./ Plus don't get all spooked when cats kick the door, like a soccer player kick the ball for a goal/ man be honest what did you expect, you just spent a day up in the hole.
by: Mr. Tod Jones, #333660 P.O. Box 900 (CCI) Portage,WI 53901

Wake Up Call
Is this a hellish nightmare that I have awaken from?
Caged and confined, thinking and pondering,
I wonder what human is this
that he should be subject to imprisonment
that neither improves nor corrects his soul.
Is there compassion for restoring a man
to contribute to this nation?
Or does the dark side of humanity
see offenders of the law as utter undesirables
unworthy of aid and therapy?
Society, I have been tried and sentenced.
Serving time for violating the law
is not supposed to be a picnic.
But demoralizing and dehumanizing a man
to the dust of the ground does not correct behavior
which got him incarcerated in the first place.
This only fuels the fire, a fire which, if not handled properly, will in time burn everything in its path.
NOW, WHO IS THE CRIMINAL?

by: Mr. Todd Jones, #333660 P.0. Pox 900 (CCI)
Portage, WI 53901

As you got up this morning, I watched you, and hoped you would talk top me, even if it was just a few words, asking my opinion or thanking me for something good that happened in your life yesterday. But I noticed you were too busy, trying to find the right outfit to wear.
When you ran around the house getting ready, I knew there would be a few minutes for you to stop and say hello, but you were too busy. At one point you had to wait fifteen minutes with nothing to do except sit in a chair. Isaw you spring to your feet. I thought you wanted to talk to me but you ran to the phone and called a friend to get the latest gossip instead. I watched patiently all day long, with all your activities I guess you were to busy to say anything to me.
I noticed that before lunch you looked around, maybe you felt embarrassed to talk to me, that is why you didn't bow your head. You glanced three or four tables over and you noticed some of your friends talking to me briefly before they ate, but, you didn't. That's okay. There is still more time left, and I hope that you will talk to me yet.
You went home and it seems as if you had lots of things to do. After a few of them were done, you turned on the TV. I don't know if you like TV or not, just about everything goes there and you spend a lot of time each day in front of it not thinking about anything, just enjoying the show. I waited patiently again as you watched the TV and ate your meal, but again you didn't talk to me.
At bedtime I guess you were too tired. After you said goodnight to your family you plopped into bed and fell asleep in no time. That's okay because you may not realize that I am always there for you. I've got patience, more than you will never know. I even want to teach you how to be patient with others as well.
I love you so much that I wait everyday for a nod, prayer or thought, or a thankful part of your heart. It's hard to have a one-sided conversation.
Well, you are getting up once again. Once again I will wait, with nothing but love for you. Hoping that today you will give me some time. Have a nice day!
Your friend, God

Saturday, January 23, 2016

Shulbert Williams

SECOND CHANCE FOR JUVENILE OFFENDERS


Shulbert Williams 258920
Columbia Correctional Institution
P.O. Box 900
Portage, Wi. 53901

My name is Shulbert Williams. I am an inmate currently incarcerate at Columbia Correctional Institution. I was arrested approximately one month after my 18th birthday and convicted of four counts of armed robbery. I was sentenced to server 100 years in prison with a parole eligibility date of 2020.

Before my arrest I was an impressionable child with no education nor any sense of direction. I never completed the 9th grade and upon entering prison my test scores showed that I had a 7th grade reading level and a 5th grade math level. I am now 32 years old, I have served 14 years and 3 months in prison. This has been a tough school to learn in, if I may call it that. However, I’ve managed to make a man out of myself by taking advantage of the opportunities and programs that are available. I have successfully complete anger management, restorative justice, I have received my HSED and earned top honors upon completing a vocational trade from MATC. I have also earned a slew of certificates of completion from several voluntary programs.

Prison has sincerely humbled me and given me a new perspective on which to view life. I value everything that I’ve achieved while being incarcerated because it wasn’t easy. It was hard work, something I can now appreciate because the hard work is what gives a person balance. I feel I deserve a second chance at freedon to show, not only those who have stood by me and believed in me all these years, but to also show the naysayers and non believers that the system does work and rehabilitation is real. At last, I am ready tobe the father to my daughter that I was meant to be.



Sincerely,

Shulbert Williams

Thursday, July 9, 2015

timothy morgan



Timothy Morgan 275295 GBCI
In 1993 at the age of 16 I was charged and waived into adult court, and in 1994 I was sentenced at the age of 17 to life without the possibility of parole until the year 2019, which is now only 5 years away. Throughout my incarceration I have completed my HSED, Anger Management, CGIP 1&2, Challenges and Possibilities, Business Math and Communications Voc Ed., and currently sit on a waiting list for the Barber/Cosmetology Program held here at Green Bay in hopes of attaining a license in that field. I have been employed for almost all of my incarceration, with the exception of being in segregation on two different occasions. My conduct history has been stellar outside of these two major conduct reports. I spend my time in religious studies, legal research, maintaining my health with good exercise, painting and anything that will contribute to having a positive learning experience and human experience that I can share with others regardless of the limitations of restrictions surrounding being incarcerated. I also just started writing blog posts that can be viewed at (www.timmymorgan.blogspot.com).

      Many of us incarcerated have beautiful families, yet lack the luxury of expression through the social vehicles that they readily have access to, and that continues to shadow the bright minds that await the exposure to the world. It's not the families fault for not truly understanding the complexity of these conditions while thinking that support only comes in our visits, letters, phone calls, and money for canteen... when in reality it's much greater than that. It is said that love is the highest elevation of understanding and so strong it's unbreakable... this is what I want my life to exude upon everyone I can possibly meet in this world and not just for me, but for the ideal that hopefulness has thrived in the hearts of many forgotten adolescents who are now priceless adults like myself who’s ready to not only make some differences, but become whose differences by God’s permission.

Friday, July 26, 2013

Carl Morgan

Carl Morgan #529452
WSPF; PO Box 9900; Boscobel, WI 53805
Click once on story photos below to view larger.



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Friday, February 8, 2013

Jevon Jackson

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Profile


-NAME: Jevon Jackson
#299078

ADDRESS: Columbia Corr. Inst.; P0 Box 900; Portage, WI 53901

-SENTENCE: Life with parole in 2078

-CONVICTION: Armed Robbery, Homicide, Possession of Weapon

-AGE INCARCERATED: 16 years old -DATE OF BIRTH: 5/07/77

-ELIGIBLE AGE FOR PAROLE: 101 years old

SHOULD I BE GIVEN A 2ND CHANCE?: If prison is truly about rehabilitation, then I’ve consistently demonstrated, over the past 20 years, that I am reformed and ready to integrate back into society as a productive, hard—working man. I’ve taken advantage of all available education opportunities, maintained ongoing and steady employment since being incarcerated, and I continue to learn relevant jobs skills (such as basic computer skills).

I’ve avoided violent altercations and all criminal activity, which is a challenge within itself considering that prison is a violent and turbulent environment where fighting is a normal part of everyday activities.

During the span of my incarceration, I’ve evolved into an introspective Man who has purpose and compassion and the self— motivation to improve, not just myself, but the people and the circumstances that surround me.

What’s troubling is that the state of Wisconsin does not recognize legitimate “rehabilitation” as a reason to allow one’s sentence to be reduced, but yet, the state does allow sentence reductions for guys who provide helpful information to law enforcement agencies. For example, if a guy has information that could help the state convict another person suspected of committing a crime, then such a situation would allow a guy to get his sentence reduced, regardless if he’s legitimately reformed or not. But when a person consistently demonstrates the measure of his rehabilitation, over a 20 year span, by living a positive and purpose-driven life, then this should also factor in when considering to allow someone a sentence reduction.. Vet, it’s not.

I’m hopeful that more people out there continue to recognize that 16 year olds do not have the same degree of culpability as adults, and that juveniles shouldn’t be treated the same as adults when being sentenced. Juveniles should definitely be punished for their wrongs, but the punishment must be comparative to their level of maturity. If a 16 year old is not mature enough to be allowed to vote or buy liquor, then it would be cruel and unreasonable to suddenly treat the 16 year old as an adult when issuing punishment for a criminal conviction.


-cONTACT INFO: Please feel free to contact me at the address above or leave me a short message at www.prisoninmates.com/Jenb7ackson299O78

 Poem
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MILLER versus ALABAMA


From the bottoms of the earth’s blood to the Saturns in the skies, we survive the wormwood
where Jeffrey Dahmer dies.

Between a wall and a steel cot we conceal the ruckus in our dreams, Damn near 40, and under lock since we were incorrigibly 16.

Convicted teens, this is all we know-— prison prison prison and jail, But they just don’t wanna let us go so we can prove our evolution, availed.

A hundred years is not a hundred years,
No, not in the deep dark rear of iniquity;
A hundred years imprisoned is a blind cruel beast
that strangles us, long, beneath its wild blue sea.

We’ve watched our baby Loved Ones
become parents with their own families, (we’re locked away); We’ve witnessed mischievous little cousins
grow into esteemed collegiate honorees, (we rot away).

Some of us have beeĆ¼ gone so long that nobody plays that song anymore! Most of us growl and sneer, to be strong
because its hard to fit Love through that door.

From the darkness of a coal mine to the brilliance of sparkling stones; We shine mighty in the mind
as we climb our way home.

[Note: Miller v. Alabama is a Supreme Court ruling (from 2012) where the court decided that it was unconstitutional to sentence a juvenile to a “mandatory” punishment of Life without parole; although, judges are still allowed to sentence juveniles to Life without parole, judges must consider the “mitigating factors of youth” before imposing such a harsh sentence.]
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WHAT I’VE SEEN


I once watched a prison take a child and stretch him into angles, so when that little boy walks home, instinctively, they all scram out his way.

I once watched a prison
fight a tiger--biggest one I’ve ever seen, with claws that plucked dragons quick out the sky;
I once watched a prison smite a tiger gut a lair twist a jungle inside out.

I once watched a prison stomp—stomp, extemporaneously, on all the glowing garden flowers budding fresh in our Imaginations, so when folks speak of orchids and azaleas and sun-kissed lilies, we run to hush their lips, for safe.

I once watched a prison do long division with human heads, with cold bodies coiled tightly
in the damp black earth, fresh mud, the fingernails-- a filthy team of angst and cudgeled anger crumpled into a fist
of sloped open graves.

I once watched a prison shrivel up the sun into an orange pebbled nut, not with bergs of ice or black holes, but simply with the bent silhouette of its stone razored face pressed firm
against the dirty glass window.


--by Jevon

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THE HOPE ROOM


I go there
when the light weighs a thousand tons, and I am unable to move
from this cold, boulder, locked;

I go there
when What Is Next leans offensive against my surface, my purpose, my name;

I go there not to get away, but to get a way to heal this, to feel the good Cod medicine warm quiet against the rind;

I go there
when I am most confused, when
I fall nauseous to the wicked creep
of wretched circumstance, the dragon;

I go there, the vacant old pagoda, to soothe crumpled wings, make rich-- the tiny pauper;

I go there (frequently, I show up there) when I am broken, a billion smithereens
from scattered dust to gathered stars, truly I show up there, way—way up there, with asteroids for guts and green planets for brains;

I go there
to sip slow, the sun, to feel the glorious weightless push of bliss plus bliss plus melody;

I go there
whenever I am not here,
when the soul needs a good place to eat,
a space it knows as roam sweet.








Thursday, July 19, 2012

James Earl Jackson

My Life, My Struggles, My Story
James Earl Jackson and his Dughter 2012, now 20
James Earl Jackson #200607
RCI
PO Box 900
james Sturtevant, Wi 53177

My name is James Earl Jackson. I was born in St. Louis, MO on April 1, l976. I am now 36 years old. I am the second oldest of four. I am my mothers only son.

I grew up on the north side of Milwaukee. My mother moved here after my father was killed in St. Louis. My father was shot and killed just two weeks after my second birthday. I was too young to remember my father but I was told that my father was a good man and loved me as his own. I always wanted a father when I was growing up! And for some reason I always wanted to meet the person who murdered my Dad.

My mother’s name was Irishstina Ann Jackson and for whatever reason, she always told people that she was from the ‘show me state” whenever she became upset. My mother was a good mother as a single mother of four(3 girls, one boy) . She did the best that she could to raise and to provide for us. I love my mother very much and I will always remember her as the number one mom in the world.

Unfortunately my mother was not strong enough to continue facing and standing up to all the problems that life put on her. She looked for and found her peace of mind in the use of drugs and alcohol. Tragically on June 1, l990 at 6:30 pm that Friday evening my mother was pronounced dead.

The cause of my mother’s death was a drug overdose. Sadly my mother was pregnant with twins when she died. My mother was 33 years old at the time of her death. She was so young and certainly too young to have died.

I was l4 years old when my mother died. I remember feeling like life doesn’t matter to me anymore and as I had no father and now no mother, I felt like I wanted to die myself.
I never had a male figure in my life to guide me positively to the duties of manhood. I never had a positive example to follow in my transformation from a boy to a man! I was a little boy in pain being emotionally destroyed by all that was happening to me in my life. I just wanted to feel loved and accepted by somebody. I wanted a family I just wanted to feel like somebody.
At 14 years old I felt like I had nobody to turn to. I felt like nobody understood me and how I was feeling about the loss of my mother. I turned to my childhood friends in my neighborhood because they are the only people that I felt understood me. For the most part we all was fatherless and had drug addicted mothers. Everyone called us trouble makers and told us that we all would be dead or in prison before our 18th birthdays ( Sadly, these predictions were correct).

By this time in my life I didn’t care about what people said about me or my childhood friends because the truth is that, I found love and acceptance in my friends they were the only family that I had known. None of us had parents to tell us what to do or when to come in , or where to go to school etc… For the most part we all did whatever we wanted to do. We had no curfew so staying out on the streets until two or three oclock in the morning was normal for us.
As a child I had so much anger inside of me, I didn’t care about who I hurt nor did I care about what might happen tome. I hated God. I hated life and honestly I hated being me.
In l992 shortly before my daughter was born, I committed a horrifying crime. I shot and killed a man in his own home. On June 10 1992(at 16 years old) I turned myself in to the Milwaukee police department for the crime I had committed. I was sent to a juvenile detention center and shortly thereafter I was waived and moved to the adult court system. ( I never seen or hugged my daughter as a free man).

My being 16 years old at the time, I didn’t understand anything about the law nor the legal troubles that I was in. I was kept among adult repeat offenders and they repeatedly told me to go to jury trial and to not take the plea deal that my public defender attorney advised me to take. As I listened to these adults , I went to jury trial, (against my own choice) and I was found guilty of 1st degree intentional homicide.

On Jan. 5, l993 – 3 months before my 17th birthday- I was sentenced to life in prison with a parole eligibility date set for January, 2025.

At the time I committed my crime I didn’t understand the seriousness of what I had done. I didn’t understand the seriousness of what I had done to the victim or myself.
I wasn’t until I was around 29 years old, that I finally began to realize the truly reality of what I had done. It was at this time that I began to realize and fully understand how much pain that I had caused my victim’s family, and that I had taken a life from this world.

I then started thinking about the relationship between actions and consequences. This started me to thinking about good choices rather than fast bad choices. With this I began to adopt positive change in my life. I begin to think before acting. I started to understand the importance of making productive decisions rather than destructive decisions. I finally understand the power of positive thinking.

I have learned so much in prison. I understand that some mistakes I will never stop paying for and that I have to learn to live the and deal with my life problems in a responsible manner. I have learned how to accept responsibility for all my actions. As a child I didn’t know how to accept responsibility for my actions because I always made an excuse and put blame for my action on the things that I been through as a child.

As my mind matured, I came to realize that I am the only person that is responsible for my actions, and for all the choice that I make in my life. As a man I accept full responsibility for everything I have done. I have made so many mistakes and I have learned from my mistakes but most importantly I have also learned from the mistakes of others.

As a mentally matured adult I don’t believe that I should be let off the hook for my crimes as a juvenile. I believe that everyone should be punished for any and all criminal activity in which he or she involve themselves in whether he or she be a juvenile or an adult, however I strongly believe in second chances! I don’t believe that a 15 year old or a l6 year old juvenile should be sent to prison for life as if a juvenile can’t change his or her ways of thinking. . Juveniles can change and I believe that all juveniles should be given a second chance to prove that their destructive behavior could be transformed into positive constructive behavior if given the chance to prove it. I’m a 36 year old man . I been in prison since I was 16 years old and since I been in prison I have changed my way of thinking and I have changed my behavioral patters. I have earned my H.S.E.D. and I became a licensed barber/cosmetologist. I have took classes on character development and I’m constantly trying to better myself as a person.

My goals are to be home with my 20 year old daughter that would love for me to be a part of her life. If paroled I want to open my own barbershop and start an Intervention program for troubled teen to help them to not make the same mistakes that I have made.

I am praying for a second chance at real life. If you have any questions or comments please write me at address listed above.

James Earl Jackson #200607