Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Where's Bryan??? He has been moved, *** UPDATE 10-13-11 - Corcoran Prison

Knowing other family members who have loved ones in prison is a blessing.  To keep connections strong, after I check emails, I usually followup with phone calls to coalition members and then family members.  Of course, many of the most informed and productive coalition members are family members.

Today, when I was on one of these calls, I was able to determine that one of the representatives who was in ASU (Administrative Segregation) with Bryan has been moved....or I should say "on the move".  Confirmed with PBSP Public Information Officer Lt. Chris Acosta by the prisoner's wife, this man was on his way to a location/facility for "high level care".  The thought immediately hit me, "Is Bryan being moved?"

To determine the location of any inmate in CDCR, I go to the "Inmate Locator Page" and enter the person's CDCR number or last name.  Then the information pops up like so....I have done an example with the name "Carpenter"

NameCDCR #AgeAdmission DateCurrent LocationMap Link
CARPENTER, ALBERT VAUGHN AC50745203/12/2010San QuentinDirections
CARPENTER, ANTONIO DANTE AH45392505/25/2011San QuentinDirections
CARPENTER, BARRY WAYNEF088403001/10/2006DeuelDirections
CARPENTER, CHAD MICHAEL F130943301/23/2006ChinoDirections
CARPENTER, CHAD THOMAS G339102309/26/2008TehachapiDirections
CARPENTER, CHARLES LOREN V085804110/02/2003IronwoodDirections
CARPENTER, CHARLETTE DENISE X199112608/10/2006Valley State PrisonDirections
CARPENTER, COREY LANCE E928983904/16/1991Salinas ValleyDirections
CARPENTER, CURT CARY H761374405/07/1993SusanvilleDirections



The inmate locator said Bryan was still at Pelican Bay.

Being familiar with the system means there are many legitimate ways to get information.  For instance, after talking to a second family member who has someone in ASU being moved, I tried to call Acosta to find out about Bryan.  I couldn't get through to Acosta and the inmate locator said Bryan was still at Pelican Bay.  So I called visiting to try to set up a visit with Bryan this weekend, as is my right as an approved visitor.  I was told that because he was a hunger striker, all visits would be denied until he began eating.  When I inquired whether the denial of visits was due to not eating or being in ASU, this CO looked that up and determined that "he is no longer housed there" -- clarifying that he was no longer at Pelican Bay at all.  When I told her that the inmate locator showed him at PB, she said the website takes a while to catch up.

OK, so I'm doing the math...three of the prisoners moved from the SHU to ASU are now on the move again.  About this point (day 15) in the July HS, CDCR moved the most physically compromised to Corcoran prison, where there is an accredited hospital.  They said it was because some of the older/sicker hunger strikers were failing, and they decided to move those who had lost 30 lbs or more.   Last time, Bryan lost 29 lbs, so he didn't go.

Here's how I think this is playing out, and this is speculation on my part, but it is the "put two and two together" reasoning that serves me so well....

Pelican Bay only has an infirmary, and feeding by nasal tube to the stomach is a procedure that can't be done there....but it can be done at the hospital section in Corcoran.  I believe that CDCR plans to throw out the explicit instructions of the men NOT to receive artificial nutrition (known as force feeding when it is done against your will) and/or get a court order allowing them to override the Advance Directives the men signed refusing said measure.  There are several layers of CDCR policy that all contradict each other and  legal  injunctions can be obtained, but the bottom line --- we are coming to the situation that was averted last hunger strike.....men, including Bryan, are going "to the tube".

I cannot stress enough how terrified Bryan is of force feeding, even more than death.  In visit, he told me that the legal right to invade his body under the ruse of "force feeding" allows the opportunity for incredible torture.  Personally, I have two friends who had a tube put down their nose for medical purposes and even with the most gentle approach, it was horrible and painful...imagine if a mean-spirited,  "let's break this prison hunger strike" application of this technique were used!   Under prison force feeding protocol, they "get the tube", are fed, unhooked, then chained to a restraining chair so they won't vomit.  After a period of time, they are thrown back in their cells... only to be fed again every three days.  That's a lot of cramming tubes into their already fragile bodies.
 
It is lose/lose... torture by the feeding tube, or death from starvation. Wouldn't it be better for CDCR to just address the reasonable demands of the men?  To follow through on the promises made which led to the suspension of the hunger strike in July?

This is how Bryan told me things would evolve. He said, "we have to 'get to the tube' against our will or die before it will disturb politicians and the general pubic enough to support us"

This next development it isn't good, but it is how it must be before CDCR will budge from their "no negotiations" position.

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