Action Alert: Stop retaliation in the Corcoran SHU


Corcoran Prison, California SHUPrisoner Hunger Strike Solidarity (PHSS) and Californians United for a Responsible Budget (CURB) are calling for solidarity activists to call and email California State Prison, Corcoran (Corcoran Prison) and California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) authorities to demand the end to destructive and retaliatory cell searches. View the Emergency Response Alert by CURB here.

According to PHSS:

The 2013 hunger strikes are over, but the retaliation against peaceful protesters exercising their first amendment rights continues. For the last month or so, the Institutional Gang Investigators (I.G.I.) have been staging invasive and destructive “cell searches” in the torture units at Corcoran Prison, with a focus on people who participated in last year’s hunger strike.

Cell search by guard / corrections officer

When CDCR staff conducts these searches, they are supposed to keep a record of anything removed from the cell and return all items unless they allege them to be contraband. Instead, they have thrown away or destroyed basic personal items that people in these units have difficulty obtaining, as well as sentimental items like family photos or letters.

Please call or email the following people, and send a letter if you can. See below for a sample letter phone call script.

Corcoran Warden
Mr. Dave Davey
Phone:  559-992-8800 ext. 5008
Email: dave.davey@cdcr.ca.gov
Corcoran State Prison
P.O. Box 8800
Corcoran, CA. 93212

Office of the Ombudsman
Cherita Wofford
Phone: 918-324-6123
Email: cherita.wofford@cdcr.ca.gov

CDCR Oversight
Mr. Michael Stainer, Director of Adult Institutions
Phone: 916-445-7688
Email: michael.stainer@cdcr.gov

Office of the Inspector General
Mr. Robert Barton
Phone: (800) 700-5952
Email: bartonr@oig.ca.gov
Office of the Inspector General
10111 Old Placerville Road, Suite 110
Sacramento, CA 95827

SAMPLE LETTER

Dear _________:

I have recently learned that the I.G.I. at CSP-Corcoran, on Feb. 21, 2014, and other dates since then, has thrown away the personal property of people imprisoned in sections of the Corcoran SHUs during cell searches that turned up no contraband. Please immediately put a stop to this type of retaliatory action and complete disregard for CDCR regulations, and return or reimburse people for their property.

The property thrown out or destroyed was purely practical and could not in any remote way threaten institutional security , including items like hygiene items, shoes, food and coffee, dentures, headphones, appliances and clothing items. Irreplaceable property was also destroyed – legal papers, family photos and other items with purely personal or sentimental value.

These mean-spirited actions are alarming to me, because the people in this unit already have so little, and what little they do have has been purchased by family and friends. The officers responsible for these cell searches kept no record of property removed from cells, as they are supposed to do. This type of wanton destruction of property is against CDCR regulations, as you know.

Sincerely,

(Name)
(City & State)

SAMPLE PHONE CALL SCRIPT

I have recently learned that the I.G.I. at CSP-Corcoran, on Feb. 21, 2014, and other dates since then, has thrown away the personal property of people imprisoned in sections of the Corcoran SHUs during cell searches that turned up no contraband. I request that you:

1. Stop all destructive cell searches of people held in the Corcoran SHU by the I.G.I. (Institutional Gang Investigators) and prison guards.

2. Immediately return all confiscated property to prisoners whose cells were searched; account for all property taken; and reimburse prisoners for all destroyed property.

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