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Arizona General Prison Talk, Introductions & Chit Chat Topics & Discussions relating to Prison & the Criminal Justice System in Arizona that do not fit into any other Arizona sub-forum category. Please feel free to also introduce yourself to other members in the state and talk about whatever topics come to mind that may not have anything to do with prison.

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  #1  
Old 11-27-2018, 09:25 AM
Citadel3 Citadel3 is offline
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Default Sorry state of affairs

So just a general rant. As a convicted felon for Aggravated DUI - going through the prison system
I have sort of a unique perspective on this whole thing of Mandatory Minimum sentences regarding DUIs, and the mandatory DUI classes, and Subtance Abuse classes.

I think the intent is great, but the execution is a complete joke...

So, They ship you too a minimum security facility (Private Prison - GEO). they put you on Mandatory Work Release for $4.25/hr 10 hours a day, 5 days a week. They take 35% of your paycheck and give it to the prison. Weekends you sit through "Certified" Substance Abuse classes (Which arent recognized by the DMV, or any other agency outside of the Department of Corrections). Which rightfully so, because my classes all entailed watching movies. (Blow w/Johnny Depp, Traffic w/ that one old guy, Sicario with.. good actors but dont remember their name either). Because the "certified" coulcelors find the literature ridiculous to teach.

You take these classes for 4 - 8 months. Then you are considered "Cured". And now you are just a worker, and your only value is what you earn the Prison. You are reminded of this fact, because if you take a day off, you are threatened with losing your job, and sending you too Kingman. Also, you get a ticket if you are fired. You are not allowed to work inside the prison (Kitchen, library, etc).

Then you find out there are 7 other prisons built, just for people like you! They are called DUI
yards. And all offer the same amazing Jobs through ACI (Arizona Correctional Industries). And you too
can go to any of these yards by applying because they all offer those high paying jobs!

Now, I think those jobs are great. I saved a lot of money in my Retention account, and i was able to send money to my kids, rather then ask for money. We also got special privledges (Other then working
outside the gate). Like Video games (PS4/Xbox), and special fundraisers and BINGO competitions.
But if you step back, you see this whole thing as a way to prop up the budget of DOC, and the push to increase sentences on a victimless crime (Unless you hurt someone or destroy property in which case you should be punished in my view).

Now as a taxpayer, I would be livid. At the media, equally livid, because they tend to just regurjate the DOC talking points anytime they mention "programs" for DUI/Drugs, without actually
looking at what they entail.

Okay, my ranting is done
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Old 11-27-2018, 12:39 PM
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Originally Posted by Citadel3 View Post
But if you step back, you see this whole thing as a way to prop up the budget of DOC, and the push to increase sentences on a victimless crime (Unless you hurt someone or destroy property in which case you should be punished in my view).

Now as a taxpayer, I would be livid. At the media, equally livid, because they tend to just regurjate the DOC talking points anytime they mention "programs" for DUI/Drugs, without actually
looking at what they entail.
While I strongly disagree that DUIs are victimless crimes, the rest of the above statement is true for the majority of our convicted in the US. Indeterminate sentences, LWOP, excessive sentencing laws including enhancements and stacking do almost nothing to reform but assist in keeping a for-profit industry afloat. I do think there is a deviant mindset that can, and should, be held accountable for repeat offenses, but I would argue that it's less prevalent than our hysterical lock-em-up culture has promoted.
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  #3  
Old 11-27-2018, 02:19 PM
Citadel3 Citadel3 is offline
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I cant speak for other DUIs, only my own. Nobody was involved in an accident or injury. It was me
being wreckless (endagering others) by drinking. When the state during sentencing is suppose
to allow any victims to speak, they cant produce one in my case, because there was none in my case.
I think the judge put it better then i ever could "The victim in this case is everybody." - which includes me and my family.

I believe the public good was not served, but harmed for my sentencing. Removing a taxpayer from society, putting his family on welfare, and then paying to have him stored in a warehouse is a unjust burden to society.

What if I was an alcholic and I really needed help? The state sends me to a glorified movie theatre
where I cant leave? Thats a disservice to people who need or want help.

I think repetitive DUIs are a dangeous thing and the law needs to intervene in those cases. As well
as cases where a victim of injury/death or property occurs. But a criminal justice intervention is not needed I believe for a 1 time offense. Unfortunately this state does not make a distinction on what you did, only the statue as written.

Though i do believe society is tired of seeing their loved ones killed by idiots who choose to drink and drive.

ehhh.. just my two cents.
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Old 11-27-2018, 02:48 PM
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In a huge sense, I understand what you're talking about, since my husband got really stupid and drank a beer while driving. I do believe there should be consequences for people who drink and drive, but I'm not sure incarceration is the answer especially if no one was killed or injured.


However, what they are putting my husband through right now is the biggest joke that ever hit the planet. They have him on "house arrest" with an ankle monitor because the judge said he could do 90 days standing on his head. (True) However, the ankle monitor is a huge joke and we both said it's a money making gimmick.


Why do I say that? Because he is supposed to call any time he leaves the house, but he can go anywhere. On more than one occasion, he has forgotten to call them, and they haven't called him. They only call if the monitor loses its charge.


Then he was supposed to give them another x amount of dollars for the month, and he forgot. They told him if he didn't pay, they would put an attachment out on him. OKay, so he had somebody go pay it for him and got the receipt and all. (He was out of state, and his PO knew where he was). They STILL put out an attachment for him, and he had to go to the local sheriff's office to get it all straight. He was not arrested, and the PO was pissed at the monitoring people.


He has classes that he has to attend, which aren't cheap. There are the fines, of course. Yeah, we're broke as shit because of his stupidity. He hasn't had a drink since.
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Old 11-27-2018, 03:23 PM
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Wow! yeah, the stuff we go through is insane. Makes me wish I would have robbed someone. Would have gotten less time, and paid less in heartache, money and frustration
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Old 11-27-2018, 03:48 PM
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Mandatory sentencing. We were foolish in voting for it, we were misled to believe it was for our "safety" to keep the "BAD" people in the prisons where we were told they belonged.

I was a good parent, we stayed married, raised 2 kids in a good, loving & law abiding home, taught them right & wrong, had consequences for breaking rules, etc. Heck, I even turned 1 of my kids in when he was being a little juvenile delinquent (like I was, once upon a time, too!)

One day, my oldest made the mistake of defending himself - but we lived in a state with mandatory sentencing for using a weapon...and let me tell you ANYTHING can be considered a weapon. Years pass, our other child make a series of poor choices & the feds rounded him up in a sting that they had set up on Craigslist. Again, we faced mandatory sentencing.
Here is MY POINT. BOTH times, BOTH judges, in separate kinds of circumstances, in separate states (& 1 was in federal, no less) said that they were appalled that they were forced to dole out these sentences because the punishment did not fit the crimes. These were both 1st offenders, 1 was defending himself against a known gang member with a GUN (my child had no gun, the other guy did, so he hit him with a bat) and the other was another of those victimless crimes, no human being who actually existed was ever contacted or anything, just the LURE of a young man into a sweet little trap all set up to ruin individuals & break up families to feed the incarceration machine.
Judges have their hands tied, for the most part & the mandatory sentencing laws will touch us all. I feel so sad for families of the accused, for they are victims as well.

There MUST be changes ...there just has to be.
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Old 11-28-2018, 12:59 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Citadel3 View Post
So just a general rant. As a convicted felon for Aggravated DUI - going through the prison system
I have sort of a unique perspective on this whole thing of Mandatory Minimum sentences regarding DUIs, and the mandatory DUI classes, and Subtance Abuse classes.

I think the intent is great, but the execution is a complete joke...

So, They ship you too a minimum security facility (Private Prison - GEO). they put you on Mandatory Work Release for $4.25/hr 10 hours a day, 5 days a week. They take 35% of your paycheck and give it to the prison. Weekends you sit through "Certified" Substance Abuse classes (Which arent recognized by the DMV, or any other agency outside of the Department of Corrections). Which rightfully so, because my classes all entailed watching movies. (Blow w/Johnny Depp, Traffic w/ that one old guy, Sicario with.. good actors but dont remember their name either). Because the "certified" coulcelors find the literature ridiculous to teach.

You take these classes for 4 - 8 months. Then you are considered "Cured". And now you are just a worker, and your only value is what you earn the Prison. You are reminded of this fact, because if you take a day off, you are threatened with losing your job, and sending you too Kingman. Also, you get a ticket if you are fired. You are not allowed to work inside the prison (Kitchen, library, etc).

Then you find out there are 7 other prisons built, just for people like you! They are called DUI
yards. And all offer the same amazing Jobs through ACI (Arizona Correctional Industries). And you too
can go to any of these yards by applying because they all offer those high paying jobs!

Now, I think those jobs are great. I saved a lot of money in my Retention account, and i was able to send money to my kids, rather then ask for money. We also got special privledges (Other then working
outside the gate). Like Video games (PS4/Xbox), and special fundraisers and BINGO competitions.
But if you step back, you see this whole thing as a way to prop up the budget of DOC, and the push to increase sentences on a victimless crime (Unless you hurt someone or destroy property in which case you should be punished in my view).

Now as a taxpayer, I would be livid. At the media, equally livid, because they tend to just regurjate the DOC talking points anytime they mention "programs" for DUI/Drugs, without actually
looking at what they entail.

Okay, my ranting is done
As a counselor (not for them just in general) I have heard a lot about how they struggle greatly w hiring qualified counselors so that would prob be one main reason why you get ones that claim the material is bad and show movies instead they prob are lazy too but if they are not qualified they donít know what they are doing and easier to say the material is bad then they are bad sadly.
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Old 12-10-2018, 06:50 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Citadel3 View Post
So just a general rant. As a convicted felon for Aggravated DUI - going through the prison system

I have sort of a unique perspective on this whole thing of Mandatory Minimum sentences regarding DUIs, and the mandatory DUI classes, and Subtance Abuse classes.



I think the intent is great, but the execution is a complete joke...



So, They ship you too a minimum security facility (Private Prison - GEO). they put you on Mandatory Work Release for $4.25/hr 10 hours a day, 5 days a week. They take 35% of your paycheck and give it to the prison. Weekends you sit through "Certified" Substance Abuse classes (Which arent recognized by the DMV, or any other agency outside of the Department of Corrections). Which rightfully so, because my classes all entailed watching movies. (Blow w/Johnny Depp, Traffic w/ that one old guy, Sicario with.. good actors but dont remember their name either). Because the "certified" coulcelors find the literature ridiculous to teach.



You take these classes for 4 - 8 months. Then you are considered "Cured". And now you are just a worker, and your only value is what you earn the Prison. You are reminded of this fact, because if you take a day off, you are threatened with losing your job, and sending you too Kingman. Also, you get a ticket if you are fired. You are not allowed to work inside the prison (Kitchen, library, etc).



Then you find out there are 7 other prisons built, just for people like you! They are called DUI

yards. And all offer the same amazing Jobs through ACI (Arizona Correctional Industries). And you too

can go to any of these yards by applying because they all offer those high paying jobs!



Now, I think those jobs are great. I saved a lot of money in my Retention account, and i was able to send money to my kids, rather then ask for money. We also got special privledges (Other then working

outside the gate). Like Video games (PS4/Xbox), and special fundraisers and BINGO competitions.

But if you step back, you see this whole thing as a way to prop up the budget of DOC, and the push to increase sentences on a victimless crime (Unless you hurt someone or destroy property in which case you should be punished in my view).



Now as a taxpayer, I would be livid. At the media, equally livid, because they tend to just regurjate the DOC talking points anytime they mention "programs" for DUI/Drugs, without actually

looking at what they entail.



Okay, my ranting is done


Things have changed since you were there. First, not everyone gets the luxury of working outside the prison. For those that do, there are a variety of jobs at various lousy hourly rates, but none that Iím aware of that pays as much as $4.25/hour.
The fees also seem to be much more than 35%, including gate fees, fees for utilities, and whatever else they tack on, so youíre lucky if your net is 60 cents an hour ó not even enough to cover your own weekly commissary.

The so-called classes are essentially 12-step meetings, and they arenít mandatory. If youíre working outside the gate 5 days/week, you wouldnít be around to attend them even if you wanted to. In fact, you might not be around for things like mail delivery or library services, depending on the schedule of the prison employees who take care of that stuff, and your work schedule.

As far as doing something useful with your time, something helpful to your future, forget it. Those outside jobs arenít helping you develop new or useful skills. Just manual labor. Education? Well if you never finished high school, you can get your GED, and if youíve never been to college, you can take a few community college classes by mail ó no internet.

Mostly youíre just slave labor for however many years you are there.
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Old 12-14-2018, 08:38 PM
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My son was on probation. He was attending mandatory counseling. The counselor was partying with them, having sex with at least one of the young women, and a conduit for drugs. He left town the morning following my son's arrest.

So, the whole system from the front end is screwed up. My son was trying to commit suicide when he committed his crime. His final plea was aggravated assault with a 6 to 10 to be decided by the judge. He went through Allahmbre but no mental health or drug treatment were assigned to him. He got straight after his first 10 months because of another inmate taking him under his wing, and my son finally got his head in the right place to be ready for the help. That was December 2013. His early release date is a little over 5 months away. He got an 8 year sentence at 85%.

I agree with what everyone here is posting. The system does nothing to rehabilitate - it is just a money maker. It does nothing about drugs and my son's first use of heroin was after he was in a state prison. One of our local county sheriffs was arrested by the FBI as part of a group that was bringing drugs across the border - that same deputy sheriff was in charge of my son while he was in the county jail.

A trial would have resulted in 25 years in this county. The sentencing, the judge went with the middle, because the victim was a pharmacist who refused to testify against my son because he watched my son swallow drugs trying to kill himself.

On a plus note, the cops did talk my son into giving himself up and didn't just shoot him. I recognize that being white probably contributed to that, but as a mom I am grateful.

My son wanted help. He didn't want to keep using. But a 22 year old, with no insurance, and attending counseling run by an active drug user - he gave up on everything. If he hadn't gone to prison, I suspect he would now be dead. But it wasn't the prison or the system that helped him, it was other inmates. I am so appreciative of that person who saw the good in my son and decided to make a difference. But our system doesn't work at every level and until American voters wake up and change the laws and the medical system, it's not going to get better.
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Old 12-14-2018, 09:59 PM
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Thank you, Liz. I totally concur. I understand and relate to the situation as well.
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Old 01-07-2019, 01:53 PM
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I have recently had the opportunity to thank that inmate that straightened my son out. He had an accident and his arm was cut off. He performed his own first aid, saved his arm, and they reattached it. I have no idea what his original crime is, but that is a hell of a role model my son ended up meeting in the chaos of prison. I am forever grateful.

People make the differences in our life and I guess the one lesson I have learned is that prison isn't going to, the system isn't there to make a difference, but perhaps the people (other inmates) will.
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