‘Code of silence’ pervades prison system


The Bakersfield Californian

We’d all like to think our state prisons are run by mature, competent, level-headed people. But a federal lawsuit filed earlier this month gives a glimpse of a world in which guards and administrators seem more like characters out of the movie “Mean Girls” than law enforcement professionals.

Beyond the petty backbiting, allegations in the suit also contend that the notorious “code of silence” still has a stranglehold on daily prison activities while administrators remain pathetically ineffective.

The lawsuit was filed by former guard Adam Faz against North Kern State Prison and the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation.

It contends prison administrators turned a blind eye as

Faz was severely harassed by fellow guard David Singleton, among others, for more than two years in retaliation for reporting an inmate rape that allegedly happened on Singleton’s watch.

Of course, it’s hard to know what’s true in these kinds of situations. Maybe Singleton did nothing. Maybe Faz is exaggerating. Maybe not.

One thing is clear. In early December 2007, Faz was so stressed out that he had to leave work and was sent to the state’s worker’s compensation doctor. He was diagnosed as having “situational anxiety of occupational origin,” according to paperwork from Central Valley Occupational Medical Group.

Despite that, Faz was sent back to work the very next day.

I don’t care if Faz was the worst employee in the history of employees (he wasn’t by the way, according to his exemplary annual reviews).

In fact, I don’t even care if Faz was faking. I do not want someone with that diagnosis walking around armed in a dangerous environment on my dime.

That’s just asking for trouble.

If nothing else, that one incident in this whole ugly mess ought be a red flag for someone in Sacramento that all is not right at North Kern.

Bad situation

But back to where it all started.

Continue Reading @ Bakersfield.com

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One thought on “‘Code of silence’ pervades prison system

  1. there is a lot of misinformation being spread about the conditions inside prisons. The truth is prisoners eat better and have better medical than 90% of the world. Do you have your meals prepared with the aid of a dietician? Do you have nurses standing by 24/7 for you if anything goes wrong? Do you have a psychologist coming by your house every week to see how you are? Can you afford to go to the DR or dentist for ANY little problem? Do you have guards standing by to keep you safe at all times (even if it is from yourself)? The things I describe are usually reserved for millionaires and up.. oh yeah and prisoners. Imagine never having to work a day in your life again. Imagine meals brought to your door. Homeless people on the streets would commit crimes just to go to prison if they knew how good it is. Words like inhumane, torture, gulag, barbaric, etc.. are absolutely false when used to describe prison life. There is no such thing as solitary confinement in the SHU. Prisoners are master manipulators, and this is what it comes down to: inmates spreading false information that gullible people believe, PERIOD. There is no torture, no inhumane conditions, no solitary confinement. WAKE UP PEOPLE! oh yeah, one more thing, the cells are NOT soundproof.

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