Yet another case of justice for inmates who have been abused by employees of a correctional facility. This is federal, it is my hope the DOJ will start to look at what is going on at the state level.

Former Kentucky Jail Supervisor Sentenced on Charges Related to Abuse of Detainees
WASHINGTON—Thomas E. Perez, Assistant Attorney General for the Civil Rights Division, announced today that Kristine Lafoe, a former lieutenant and supervisor at the Lexington-Fayette County Detention Center (FCDC), was sentenced in federal court for her role in covering up systematic detainee abuse. Lafoe was sentenced in Lexington, Ken., by Federal Judge Karen K. Caldwell, to serve one year in prison and two years of supervised release.
Lafoe pleaded guilty on May 14, 2009, to a charge of conspiring to obstruct justice for her role in concealing abuses at FCDC. According to the plea proceeding and documents filed in court, Lafoe, who supervised the midnight intake shift at the FCDC, admitted that between January and October 2006, she instructed officers under her command to falsify reports by using inaccurate language to describe uses of force, so that the physical abuse of detainees would sound innocuous and justifiable. As a supervisor, Lafoe then reviewed these false reports and submitted them to her supervisors, knowing that the reports would conceal and cover up detainee abuse and would obstruct any federal investigations of the abuse. Lafoe admitted that her actions allowed officers under her command to continue abusing detainees with impunity.

Here in Alaska they also disapear the grievances filed by inmates about abuse, lack of healthcare, and violations of civil rights. They also will not put out grievance forms, especially if someone like me is around. Now, in those reports about inmates here in Alaska what terminology is used to describe chaining mentally ill inmates to the floor because you abruptly stopped their medication and they could not control their behavior? Oh, what do you call that wooded thingy that you put over the doors of cells of mentally ill inmates who are angry because you would not let them take a shower for several days or lied to them about their court heartings? What do they call these things? Remember that inmate accross from me? When you told her she could not have a shower and said it was not because she was black, even though the white inmates were getting showers. You said it was because your supervisor would not allow it and she said, "Linda, Linda, Linda, let me talk to your supervisor Linda, because the little people, they just can't get anything done." Remember that, she said it over and over for hours? This was a nurse, not a corrections officer who did this.

“Law enforcement officers who abuse their power undermine public safety and the public trust, and they make the work of law enforcement all the more difficult,” said Assistant Attorney General Perez. “As we’ve shown in this case, we will vigorously prosecute officers who engage in acts of criminal misconduct.”

Their abuse also causes psychological damage to inmates which in many cases is permanent. Changing the wording to make situations sound different or to blame inmates to justify abuse is not an unusual practice. They lie to protect themselves. Corrections officers need to be supervised very closely. It is well known that people given power over others can become very abusive, especially if a group is involved. It is especially bad on night shift when less supervisors are around. I have worked in prisons and I know the corrections officers can start acting like a bunch of junior high school kids and when confronted will come up with very illogical reasons for their abuse. I also know many of them think of the inmates as not being human and don't care if they are harmed. I am very outspoken and very familiar with the eighth amendment and when I was wrongfully imprisoned many of them were absolutely unmerciful to not only myself, but the mentally ill inmates. There is no way to communicate to anyone higher up because the grievances go directly to the officer who is on and they disappear. I never had one hearing about a grievance and I was continually writing them. The only response I ever got was that I used the wrong form because they hid the regular ones. When I said none were available they called me a liar. They would threaten me when they read them and tell me they would just say I was lying and their supervisor would believe them over me. They also would step up their harsh treatment and psychological abuse in retaliation to my grievance writing. I once had a corrections officer go get a large stack of grievance forms and throw them at me. It did not stop me, I kept writing them. I realized I was dealing with a heartless and mindless group of unsupervised bullies.

The defendant’s conviction resulted from the investigative work of the FBI’s Louisville Division and the Civil Rights Division. The case was prosecuted by division attorneys Jared Fishman and Benjamin Hawk.

A message from Assistant Attorney General Thomas E. Perez

(He is over the civil rights division)

From the time of our nation’s founding, Americans have cherished above all else the promise of equal opportunity and equal justice under the law. The Civil Rights Division is the conscience of our country, enforcing laws designed to give meaning to that enduring promise.

Attorney General Eric Holder has called the Civil Rights Division the “crown jewel” of the Department of Justice. Indeed, the Division has a long and distinguished history of combating discrimination in all its shapes and forms. I am honored to serve as the Assistant Attorney General for the Division, and will work tirelessly with the dedicated career staff to restore the luster to this crown jewel, and ensure that the Division is the nation’s preeminent civil rights law enforcement agency.

I had the privilege of serving as a career prosecutor in the Civil Rights Division for many years. I am proud of the work the Division performed during those years, and I had the opportunity to witness first-hand the strong commitment to aggressive, even-handed, nonpartisan law enforcement. This ethic is critical to the Division’s success.

America has come a long way in the battle against bigotry, but we are all too frequently reminded that, in the words of the late Senator Edward Kennedy, civil rights remains the unfinished business of America. The Civil Rights Division has a critical role to play in addressing this unfinished business.

Many civil rights challenges have regrettably endured for decades, while new challenges continue to emerge. The Civil Rights Division must address both. We will use all of the tools in our arsenal to enforce the laws of the land so that everyone has access to equal justice, and the opportunity to reach for the American Dream. We will work in partnership with sister agencies at a federal, state and local level, as well as other stakeholders. We will reach out to communities so that we can prevent discrimination and violence from occurring in the first place.

Our nations vivid, storied and sometimes heartbreaking past has led to much progress. We should allow that progress to inspire us to continue the fight that was started centuries ago, and to continue to pursue America’s promise of equal opportunity for all.

No inmate in the United States should be mistreated physically or mentally. No inmate should be denied healthcare. These unbelievable abuses happen all the time.

”Harshest of all is the Prison Litigation Reform Act of 1996, passed by a Republican Congress and signed by President Clinton. Among other things it requires prisoners to exhaust a prison's ‘administrative remedies’ for mistreatment before they can sue. They may have as little as five days to do that; they may not know how, and they may face retaliation if they complain. If they fail that barrier, they have waived their rights.”

Charles Graner was the ringleader on nights at Abu Ghraib. His abusive skills were honed in an American gulag.

Charles was just filled with the glee of opportunity to go over there, because he said as we're walking down the corridor, "I can't wait to go kill some sand niggers." That smile he showed, he showed best when he was getting some prisoner to lose it, to snap, to lose his mind and scream at Charles. He loved it. – Former death row inmate Nicholas Yarris, recalling to CNN his memories of prison guard Charles Graner, later charged with abusing prisoners at Abu Ghraib.

Nicholas Yarris was exonerated, I believe he was wrongfully imprisoned about twenty years.

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