TO BE OR NOT TO BE...PAROLED DURING A PANDEMIC

Various; Khalif

Issue 61

MORE FROM THE PRISON FOCUS MAIL BOX

Predominant themes include:

  • Neglect to advance policies voted in by propositions
  • Unnecessary parole hearing postponements
  • Lack of information
  • Unfounded denials

 

PAROLE DENIED!! IS ANYONE PAYING ATTENTION?!

(June 2020) I just got a 7 year denial at the Board. I had just finished doing a 5 year denial. I’m 72 years old now. The Board is playing God with my life....

The Board of Parole are corrupt and abuse their authority. Just like these staff here.

Now they have some that are threatening inmates that write 602 appeals on them on the yard crew. Plus they are going through inmates’ C files here and putting inmates’ business out on the yard. True or Not! You understand they have their snitches that play along with them. For a radio or TV or etc..

They are corrupt here and even staff that aren’t state it. But they are scared to tell on them. That’s why people outside are protesting. Everyone understands now. But they also need to protest these officers in prison. Cut their pay and fire those that break the law. The counselors here also have their inmates that play along.

I look at it -- what is fair is fair, and what is wrong needs to be corrected! Just like that cop that killed Floyd he committed murder, but just because he is a COP means it’s OK. No, he needs to get the same treatment as if I committed the same crime The public pay these fools to protect and use sense and good judgment!!"

J [Ms. G's son. Real names withheld due to risk of retaliation]

 

HANGING IN THERE FOR MY SON

(June 2019) Hello. I’ve been wanting to write you, but my Health is not allowing me to do much. Sometimes I feel that the days are getting shorter, but I realize that is me, that I am getting slower. I guess it’s normal. I’ll be 88 soon. But anyway ~ Thank God that am still here. God knows that I have very important reason's to be alive, my Leo and my son Gerald. He is the one that helps me to do things for Leo.

He is a Blessing for me. Leo is the youngest.

About Leo, they have so many problems in that prison. They  are always on lock down. Sometimes the inmates, they don't even know why. Some officer killed himself and after that some inmates overdosed, so they took away all the programs. They wont be able to use the phones. And what the guards don't admit is that they are the ones that take the drugs and cell phones, etc. inside. The ones that get punished are the inmates, by searching their cells, so everybody gets affected except them [the guards]. But until they, up there in Sacramento, do what they’re supposed to, nothing is going to change that corruption - or change for me that I am aware of.

All this a is very painful, and at the same time I feel helpless, because if I had the money, Leo wouldn’t be there. Anyway, Leo has a meeting with the Board next year. I already sent some support letters, and am Praying that something good will come up this time...

May God Bless you all...

your friend, Ms. G (J’s Mom)

 

CALIFORNIA STATE PRISON - SOLANO

70 YEARS OLD & STILL LOCKED UP AFTER 39 YEARS

California State Prison - Solano, October 14, 2020 Greetings and well wishes to the staff, volunteers and families of all at CPF in these days of COVID-19, and the even deadlier virus of Donald Trump. May all just-minded people vote in droves and end his reign of domestic terror on November 3rd!

I would like to thank CPF for sending your latest newspaper and “Unkaged Slave” zine. They are informative, indeed, timely, and serve as a valuable tool for the incarcerated/enslaved populations. I see them as an indispensable avenue by which our issues may be brought to the public’s attention.

In that respect, I would like to spend some time speaking about my personal issues—something I have not previously done at length.

In 1981, I was captured and returned to the prison industrial complex after being duped into accepting a plea bargain on first degree and attempted murder charges. I am a 4th termer, having served my first prison term at D.V.I. in 1969.

I am not a political prisoner but have become politicized and an activist during the 39 years I’ve been deprived of my physical freedom during this term.

I grew up in the Watts/Compton areas of Los Angeles, I am 70 years old, and my immediate family (father, mother, grandparents, wife, and several siblings), have all passed over the years of my imprisonment. Consequently, I no longer have a support network in California. I hope to be able to start to build one thru these writings.

As said, I’m 70 years old and have been locked up 39 years. Not surprisingly, I have developed health problems over the years that puts me among that group of elders most susceptible to being infected and possibly dying from the coronavirus. I am diagnosed with Type II diabetes and hypertension and have a classification designation of medically high risk. I have filed a petition and 602 seeking release from custody due to the pandemic and those papers have been at the Third Level in Sacramento since June 26, 2020. A reply was due in August 26, 2020, but to date, nothing has been received. My inquiry, dated September 15, 2020, has likewise gone unanswered.

In addition to being at high risk for becoming infected by COVID-19, I am also eligible for release under the Elderly Parole Program but have never had a hearing under P.C. 3055. Part of the Elderly Parole Bill and Statute requires the BPH when considering suitability for parole to give special condition to whether age, time served, and diminished physical condition… have reduced the elderly prisoner’s risk for future violence. The prisoner’s disciplining record and victims’ input play a role in making that determination as well. As stated above, although clearly eligible, I have never had an Elderly Parole hearing.

On top of the high-risk medical classification already mentioned, I am also now permanently mobility impaired as a result of a botched knee replacement surgery performed while I was incarcerated at Pelican Bay State Prison in 2016, which has left me needing a cane to assist with walking.

With respect to my prison disciplining history, while I have received numerous and sometimes violent 115’s in my early years of imprisonment, I now have not received a serious 115 in over 5 years, a 115 involving a physical altercation in over 10 years, a 115 involving use and/ or possession of a weapon in over 20 years, and none involving drugs in over 30 years (tested positive for THC in 1988). Current law states that 115’s older than 5 years cannot be used by the BPH as grounds for denying a grant of parole.

Regarding victim impact statements, not a single victim, family member, or friend of the victims in my case has appeared at any of my suitability hearings or submitted a letter, video, or any other communication to the BPH or DA expressing fear for their safety if I were released from prison, nor a concern that I would pose a risk of danger to the public. The only people to ever make such statements and come to such conclusions are those with financial and political interest in keeping me locked up, i.e., the CDCR, DA, and BPH!

In sum, I am clearly eligible for release under the Elderly Parole Program and I am requesting all of the help and support I can get in advocating for my release. I am eager to join the new family I have been blessed to build since losing my biological family (my new wife of 12 years and her family reside in Texas), and to becoming an activist in contributing to the people’s struggles for justice in every way I can. Look forward to your feedback.

In Solidarity, Khalif

 

CORCORAN STATE PRISON

(August) It’s been two months since my parole board hearing was postponed to January 29th, 2021. Due to the Corona virus, parole board hearings are being conducted by video conference or postponed for eventual live appearance in court. I postponed my scheduled hearing until January 21st hoping to appear in front of the parole board in person. It had been highly recommended that I reconsider a video conference, as [a virtual board hearing] may not be in my best interest due to various reasons. Mainly it’s because of distractions that could make it difficult to hear and potential disconnections. The rate of releases is low—only 25% when inmates appear by video conference. Out of 8 inmates appearing by video, only 2 have been suitable for parole. The protests and of course COVID-19 are not in my favor.

 

CORRECTIONAL TRAINING FACILITY

(July) I was granted parole on February 27, 2020. The 150 days for the Governor to review my case are up. Now I’m waiting until December 21, 2020 to hopefully get released. Because of the virus though and because I have been found suitable for release, I am trying to petition to get out earlier.

 

CALIFORNIA STATE PRISON - LOS ANGELES COUNTY

(June) Restore Justice came to visit several of us (12 prisoners) that fell under the Senate Bill 1437. They read    us the fine print that most D.A.s were challenging the bill’s constitutionality, and that it was from D.A. to D.A. to decide who ultimately would be released. We were the first yard visited, and NONE OF US here in D facility have been released under SB1437. I know one guy who has been in court over a year and a half. I lasted eight months until I   was “DENIED” and the bums at the Public Defender’s office didn’t want to continue appealing for me.

The worst part of being denied under SB1437 is that the D.A. can use that as ammo at the BPH. It is a sham!

 

MULE CREEK STATE PRISON

(July) I am an Indian. And like many other tribes, I get casino payments from my tribe. But due to my getting set  up for a weapon charge, I was struck out. Third strike. And given a 26 year -to-life term.

I go to BPH – Board of Parole Hearings – in 2023. I’ve given them everything that was requested of me. I have a high school diploma, GED, AA, NA, Anger Management course. I’ve completed numerous self-help courses. But all they really look at are my prior violence reports that I’ve picked up in here over the 34 years that I’ve been locked down in this case.

I just want to get out and die a free man out there. I have my own land – 80 acres -- and two houses. Once out of here I’ll continue getting my casino payments, medical, dental, life insurance, etc. So I have a life out there – a place to live, income, everything I need.

 

CALIPATRIA STATE PRISON

(November) Well I finally heard from the Board of Parole Hearings, and their lie and excuse with no genuine reason for postponement, other then panel availability which is a lie being that the hearing would likely not be in person. The second excuse is that they had known of my transfer for months, and being transferred is not a [valid] reason. Mr.  R. Allen transferred with me from CIM, and    he still had his hearing. He was found suitable and is now home. He had been transferred within weeks of his hearing. But it’s all good. I shall remain strong and keep fighting.

A nurse here told me that she had submitted an early release request to Governor Gavin Newsome, and that I had 60 more days to hear from him. And if he doesn’t respond within these 60 days that l would be released. We’ll see. She also told me that I had been denied at a consultation hearing which I hadn't attended. So how did this hearing take place? I don’t believe she knew what she was even talking about.

I believe the real and true reason for this fake postponement is that I am in court at this moment under SB1437 Felony Murder rule. That very well could be a reason. I qualify for elderly parole, plus being very, very high risk for Covid-19. So come April not knowing the date. I hope for justice which is way over due. Each and every one a CPF please stay safe, healthy, strong and always keep the faith. Sincerely, LJM

P.S. Thank you for letting me know about the postponement. I hadn’t even known. The Board didn’t let me know until the day of the hearing. The nurse as well as the counselor were both shocked that I knew. Some things however are not to be told. It’s just the way I am. Oh! Before I go here is a little something that comes to mind which should be printed. "Hit the road Trump. And don’t you come back no more, no more. Hit the road Trump. You sill ass fool." All of you stay safe!

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