Author Archives: David Lee Anderson

History of the Death Penalty

There is no written record of the Stone Age executions, but in our recorded history we began with; “Stoning”, “Impaling”, “Disemboweling”, “Beheading”, and “Burning at the Stake”.
 
In our more recent history we have used; “A Firing Squad”, “The Guillotine” “Hanging”, “The Electric Chair”, “The Gas Chamber”, and now we are told “the most humane way to kill a human being”.

“Lethal Injection”.

Why has this search for the “Humane” way to kill a human being continued?

Public executions used to be public but we banned them and moved them to a more dignified private setting with only a few selected witnesses. Are we afraid to face the guilt we feel or agony of the condemned?

Knowing that we are guilty of the very crime the accused must sacrifice their life for is not a very comfortable position, to say nothing about the thought of execution of an innocent person.

No matter how long the search continues, we will never find a “Humane” way to kill another human being. There is none.

Mark Iannicelli Denver Revolutionary

Mark Iannicelli
The heart and soul of any revolution is found in the people who find the courage to stand up to the power of the state and cry out for justice. Such a man is Mark Iannicelli. Mark’s crime is to quietly and consistently inform the citizens of their rights. For this the state have brought the full force and power of their kangaroo courts with the aid of the Denver puppet police. Mark must be silenced, the status quo must be maintained.

Mark has been at the center of this revolution, a genteel giant who has faced the wrath of the courts and police with courage. Now comes May 31, 2016 when once again the state with all of the taxpayers resources will prosecute in their efforts to silence him with jail. The trial will be held in the Lindsay-Flanigan Courthouse.
Mark’s champion, a 90 pound woman, with the heart and courage of a lion, defense attorney, Katayoun Donnelly, will face off with the state in his defense.

I can think of no greater gesture to Mark, then for each of us to attend Mark’s trial and stand in solitary to say; We will not be silenced.

Judges need to see we are watching

Today 5/9/16, a small defense attorney, Katayoun Donnelly, with a powerful voice, stood up for Mark Iannicelli, an activist. She faced off against Judge Theresa Spahn in courtroom 3F of Denver’s municipal court.

Many of us have been crushed by the power and weight of the State when we become a defendant in their Kangaroo Kourts, and often we have faced that power with a attorney who we at times thought was working for the other side.

Today was much different, as I sat watching this little woman with a booming voice defend Mark. She was forceful and courageous with a strong spirit for justice. She was not intimidated. And I don’t believe the words “Back down” is in her vocabulary.

When May 31, 2016 at 10:00 AM rolls around, I’ll be there in courtroom 3F.

As I sat there watching it unfold, I was reminded of a time when 43 people filled a courtroom on my behalf, and the difference it made in my case.

I believe that it is inherent of us who have sat there as a defendant, to give back to someone like Mark, who has given so much of his time on social issues, and support such a worthy attorney that is rare and hard to find.

It is my hope that you will be there with us as this small woman with the powerful voice for justice cries out on Mark’s behalf. It would be wonderful to fill every seat in that courtroom and send a message to this judge “We Are Watching.”

There will be fireworks, you don’t want to miss it.

Shit in a Sack

?Cell House Three with 'Dog Cages' on the second floor, left.
From the front page of the Pueblo Star-Journal and Sunday Chieftain?, Dated Sunday November 6, 1977. The banner headline on the front page cried out in large bold lettering: NEWSMEN TOUR PRISON AND VIEW “LIVING HELL” By Bill Gagnon.

Canon City- A three-man reporter-photographer team from The Pueblo Chieftain and Pueblo Star-Journal stepped out of the bright and warm summerlike weather here last week and into a medieval chamber of horror- Cellhouse 3 at the Colorado State Penitentiary.

?Once inside the grim building, they were stunned by the sight of humans caged in filthy cells and living under the most wretched conditions imaginable, denied even the most simple and basic necessities of life – soap, towels, soaks, clean clothing, blankets and sheets. Yes , they even are denied the necessary materials to scrub and clean their steel hovels.

?For 24 hours a day, seven days a week, these unfortunate creatures are kept locked in their filth-covered cages with nothing to do except learn to hate an indifferent and unthinking society that keeps them there.

?Treated and looked upon as subhuman beings, even medical and dental services available to them are mediocre and to the point they are almost nil. And letters sent to them by loved ones outside the high, gray walls sometimes is delayed for weeks at the prison before being delivered to them.

?While these conditions observed first hand by the Pueblo news team in the prison’s so called “punitive segregation” section made a grown man ill, they were compounded by those seen in the narrow and darkened steel barred isolation cells in the solitary confinement wing. There, faceless and silent occupants huddle and cringe in the darkness amid the pungent stench of filth within the close confines of these cesspools like cubicles, almost concealed from those outside.

?Those confined to this living hell in the infamous Cellhouse 3 are stripped of all human dignity and respect. An aura of frustration and despair hands heavy throughout this living example of man’s inhumanity to man.

?Yet, despite such barbaric treatment, some find an inner strength which turns to outrage and they cry out to the world; “You can’t do this to me; I am a man!” But few outside the walls hear, or want to hear them.

?But the voice of one of these tortured men, David Anderson, in the form of a letter sent to the editors of these newspapers describing the deplorable conditions in maximum security, was heard. And it resulted in the assignment of this news team to investigate the shocking allegations.

?Note: the article also contained several photos of the conditions, and covered two full pages of the newspaper.

While I was confined there, Gerald Hayes, one of the prisoners, sat down in his cell, with an old razor blade, cut off his index finger.

With blood dripping from his hand, he scrawled a message on the wall of his cell “God! Help us, Convicts are people too.”

Gather round children, I’m about to tell you a true story. ?It happened nearly 40 years ago in the Colorado State Penitentiary. It happened in cell house three.

?Cell house three was isolated from the rest of the prison, it was built to house death row prisoners and other prisoners deemed problem prisoners.

?If you caused problems in cell house three, they would then send you to a special tier called the “Dog Cages” This was their jail within a jail within a prison. The “Dog Cages” was a 24/7 lock down in your cell. The only exception was when you were let out of your cell for an hour to take a shower. Some men lost their minds under those conditions. It was quite easy for a prisoner to become so confused after months, that he could not distinguish one day of the week from another.?

Many of the prisoners there committed self mutilation or suicide. In my efforts not to end up hanging from a dirty bed sheet as so many others, I chose humor as a means to hold on to my sanity.

?This is the story of one of those efforts.?

Since the beginning of time when we first started locking men in prisons, the prisoners have made knives for self protection. These homemade knives were called a “Shiv” or a “Shank” and over the years the prisoners found ingenious ways of hiding their “Shank” from the prison guards who were continually searching for the “Shank”.?

For many guards, finding a prisoners hidden contraband, made their day. And for some guards, finding a “Shank” was as near a sexual experience as they could get. They became ecstatic.?

With the hidden “Shank” and the prison guards lustful hunger to find it, I began to set up my plan.?

The chief “Shank” hunter of cell house three was well known; he was Lieutenant D. A. Davis, who was in charge of cell house three on the swing shift. Lt. D. A. Davis loved his job and the power he held over the prisoners lives, he never missed an opportunity to torment the prisoner with late delivery of their mail or medication, the two most important things to a prisoners.?

D. A. had on several occasions during the cold winter months, set the steam heater on the “Dog Cages” at the lowest setting, the control for the heaters were off tier in the control cage, there were many windows on the tier broken and snow would often blow onto the tier. Another little trick that seemed to give D.A. a lot of pleasure; when the food cart came to the cell house from the main dining room, he would let it set until the food was cold. He took joy in making the prisoners suffer, making sure to remind them he was in charge of every aspect of their lives’. ?

D.A. could also be cruel to the other prison guards. He was a Canon City hometown boy, who thought of the prison as their cottage industry, if a guard was from another city or another race ( D.A. was white) D.A. would made them also feel his wrath. guard Rodriquez had two strikes against him; he was Spanish from Pueblo.?D.A. was one of those spit and polish guards, sharp creases in his shirt and trousers, Lieutenant bars sparkling, I think he was afraid to sit down while in uniform for fear of wrinkling his trousers. He was an overweight heavy jowl bully with shifty eyes that seemed always searching as if his deeds would catch up with him.?

While Rodriquez was a complete opposite of D. A. in manner and dress.?

Rodriquez was a small quiet man, his uniform was always a little rumpled, in the several years I knew him, I never once saw Rodriquez mistreat a prisoner. He once confided to me that he thought being locked in a prison cell 24 hours a day was punishment enough and that he was not going to add to it. The empathy for the prisoners in his face was easy to see. He said that he had taken the job as a prison guard as a last resort only to take care of his family, after failing to gain employment in other areas. All the prisoners respected him for the kindness he showed them. Because of the way D.A. treated Rodriquez it could be said that he suffered as much abuse from D.A. as the prisoners did. ?

Rodriquez seemed always to have a slight smile whenever I made D.A. the brunt of one of my schemes, but he never said so with words. I think the enemy of our enemy can become our friend, it was Rodriquez who tossed the newspaper clipping ( Living Hell ) on my bunk one day, the news article was consider contraband and unavailable to the prisoners until I received that copy.

The Plan:
Timing was needed for my plan to be successful; It needed to happen just after D.A came on duty for the 3:00 swing shift, and there would need for one of the prisoners to be out of his cell for a shower. When a prisoner is out of his cell for showering, is the only time he would have access to the exterior windows you see in the photo above.?

I had acquired a small 8 inch by 12 inch plastic bag, in the bottom of this bag I place a 8 inch wooden stick and then took a nice big healthy shit in the bag, adding a smidgen of water so as to make the mixture runny. I rolled up the bag tightly and then wrapped it again in an old newspaper so that the contents were not visible. When you felt this concoction of stick, plastic and paper it felt like there could be a “Shank” hidden within. ?

The Hide:
I tied a short string in the center of this concoction and had the prisoner out for his shower lower it out the exterior window so that it hung between the second floor and the first floor. The time was about 3:15 and D.A. had just came on duty. The guard tower just yards away from the cell house had a clear view of the exterior of the cell house and I was sure what his reaction would be when he spotted it hanging there outside the window.?The prisoner out for his shower waited until the tower guard was on the back side of the tower before he lowered the bag out the window and tied it off on the bars.?

And just as I had planned; The tower guard spotted the bag hanging there a few minutes later, the Tower guard took out his binoculars for a closer inspection of the bag. Ah Ha! what are those convicts up to now? and then the next step, the guard picked up his phone to call the cell house and alert them to the mysterious bag hanging out the window on the “Dog Cage” tier. I heard the cell house phone ring.?
The Jig is up! D.A. the “Shank Hunter” was on the job.?

D.A. hollered out Lock-Up! meaning for the prisoner out for his shower to go to his cell. The cell block door slid open and D.A. came walking in as if he were doing a head count of the prisoners. He walked casually to the end of the tier, not looking at the widow where the bag was tied, on his return trip his demeanor was much different as he excitedly jumped to the window and pulled the bag up, ripping the sting from the bars. Glancing around he darted for the tier door with his prize in hand….of course, I hollered out “D.A. Come Back Here With My Shit!?

The prisoners all locked in their cells exploded in laughter.

?D.A. was still not sure of his prize as Rodriquez later told me of what happen when D.A. entered the cage. He feverishly began ripping opening the bag and discovered the sack of shit, he threw the bag on the floor and it splattered up on his pants. His face turned beet red with embarrassment as he remarked to Rodriquez he didn’t want to hear any talk of this incident. D.A. began to wretch and struggled to keep from vomiting. Of course we prisoners knew that we would have some new punishments coming from D.A., but hearing the laughter was so therapeutic, there are those moments when suffering and punishment reach a point that we don’t care what happen to us. ?

D.A. took a short leave to go home and change his pants.?

When Rodriquez came on the tier, he walked right up to my cell with the biggest smile I had ever seen on his face, and said I know you did it David and it was beautiful! my reply was “What are you talking about?”

The Moral of the story; When Shit Happens… make sure you’re not the one holding the sack.

Hillary, Trump Hold Historical Meeting

DLA News Service, Denver, Colorado
 
Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump, along with Bill and Melania have met privately to discuss the fall election. The meeting was conducted at a closed door meeting on Wall Street late Tuesday evening after sweeping wins by both candidates in Super Tuesday primaries. The candidates have made a tentative agreement, that after their nominations in their respective party conventions, they will suspend this fall’s Presidential election.

They have agreed that this is an effort to get their money out of politics, whereas they agree on so many of the political and social issues, they will each serve a two year term as President and vice President as soon as the Negros are evicted from the Whitehouse.

Due to the limited number of bedrooms in the Whitehouse, it was decided that Bill and Melania would share a bedroom while Hillary and Donald shared the Presidential Suite.

The one undecided issue is, who will get the first two year term.

There was also some discussion on merging the Democratic and Republican parties to simplify the Presidential elections, with a ban on all other political parties as a cost cutting maneuver.

The selection of all Senate and Congressional seats would then fall to the Vice Presidents office with no need of costly future elections.

The Children’s Escort Act?

From: The Denver School Board
To: All parents of the greater Denver School District
 
The School Board has received several calls from concerned parents in regards to the use of the children’s restrooms. The following directive will be sent to all parents and schools.

The Children’s Escort Act:

Children wishing to use the school restroom will be allowed the use of these facilities only while being escorted by one of the following certified volunteer escorts. ?Each parent must select from the following approved list by 4/30/2016:

1. Your local republican congressman.?

2. Your local catholic priest?

3. Any member of you local Denver Swat Team.

All volunteers have been trained in garment removal and are prepared to assist your child.?

This program has been funded, supported and approved by your local Republican Party, Tidy Bowl Cleaner and Port-A-Potty.

Whose hand is raised to go to the toilet off limits to trans students? It’s ALEC.

So all of a sudden in most of the southern states we have a lot of people afraid to use the toilet. The question I have is who is behind all these “Toilet Bowl Bills”? I’m not paranoid but it sure seems strange that all of a sudden these bills keep popping up. Who’s behind all this? Sounds like a lot of folks down south are shiting their pants afraid to go to the toilet.

U.S. protest photo of the millennium: post 9/11 Neodemocracy in American


MEDIA BLACKOUT ON 400+ ARRESTS AT WASHINGTON DC #DEMOCRACYSPRING –You don’t have to be there to support the work of these activists. You can help by making others aware of their action. Add your voice and share. They are standing up for us. It’s time we stand with them and spread the word of their action.

Mark Iannicelli: Denver’s Gentle Giant

Mark Iannicelli and the Fully Informed Jury Association
Who Doesn’t Love a Good Fairytale? The Story of Mark Iannicelli Denver’s Gentle Giant. Activist Mark Iannicelli was arrested in front of the Lindsey Flanigan Courthouse for distributing jury nullification literature. The nature of his crime was simply to inform citizens of their rights as a juror. Mark is a soft spoken gentle giant, always respectful. He can often be found in front of the courthouse or the Tattered Cover book store where he helps with feeding the homeless on Fridays.

Why was Mark targeted for arrest by the Sheriffs deputies ? Was Mark such a threat to society that arrest was warranted?

A non violent soft-spoken man passing out information concerning a citizens’ rights is considered such a danger that the waste of taxpayers’ money and police resources is the only solution?

And so the Fairytale begins, a man peacefully passing out small folders with innocent words, is seen as a threat to a system that operates in secrete behind closed doors, a system that would prefer the citizens remain ignorant of their rights.

Can a government that never miss’s an opportunity to tell the people they are “the land of the free and the home of the brave.” Be truly free when they tremble in such fear of information.

And the very sad part of this fairytale is that Mark was granted a federal injunction against arrest by the Federal Court in Denver for the act of giving information to the public at the courthouse.

Hillary, Bernie, and Elizabeth Warren

I have read often that it was time for our first woman President (Hillary). As a man I would agree with that. But I would also remind the reader that Lizzie Borden was a woman and we know how that worked out for her parents, when she hacked them to pieces with an axe.

If a man and woman were equally qualified for the presidency, I believe I would vote for the woman. But Hillary and Bernie are not equally qualified.

I base my decision on two factors; where did Hillary and Bernie get their financial support? Hillary got her money from the bankers and corporations, while Bernie’s money came from the people. We would be very foolish and naïve if we fail to understand the word “PAYBACK”. When the dust of the presidential election has settled, the bankers would have their first woman in the white house. If it was Bernie, then the people would have their president.

Of equal weight in my decision is Elizabeth Warren, a WOMAN that I deeply admire and respect, who just prior to the Iowa Caucus failed to endorse Hillary. When a woman like Elizabeth fails to support one of her own, it speaks loud and clear for Bernie.

Hillary wants to be president for all the wrong reasons; her legacy, the bankers who gave her the opportunity, while Bernie wants to be president for all the right reasons, The American People who gave him the opportunity.

Hillary wants to be the first woman president; but she is not that woman that America needs.

David, Goliath, and Eric Brandt


I must confess, I’m no fan of the Bible, I’ve never understood how a man’s lips are moving and it is called the word of god. The same is true with the written word, the pen is in the hand of the human. But there are stories in the bible with a powerful message. One such story is of a small shepherd boy who goes down into the valley armed with a slingshot and a few small stones. The story of Eric Brandt.

Eric Brant went down into the valley of the 16th street mall and waited there for the giant to come to him. Eric had baited his trap with a donut, he knew of the giant’s hunger for donuts.

The giant lard ass cop came into the valley astride his motorcycle, he meant to dispatch Eric to the nearest jail. This lard ass cop had with him the power of the prosecutor, the court and a kangaroo judge.

Eric had only the truth, a small sling shot and one small smooth stone, attorney David Lane who was with the gift of words.

The giant raised his mighty sword to slay Eric. With one smooth motion Eric brought forth his smooth stone (David Lane) and sent the giant to the ground in a matter of moments.

The Moral of this story: When you come into Eric’s valley, you better bring more than the power of the state or he will send your donut munching ass back to yo mom-ma, minus yo head and ego.

Care for the less fortunate


With dusk falling across the skyscrapers of upper Manhattan, Pope Francis implored the city – all cities – to care for the less fortunate. “There are the foreigners, their children who go without schooling, those deprived of medical insurance, the homeless, the forgotten elderly,” he said. “These people stand at the edges of our avenues, of our streets, in deafening anonymity.”

To the Denver Better Business Bureau: Complaint about DPD Moving & Storage


Dear sir,
We are writing to you as a last resort to recover our lost property or to receive compensation. On Sept. 18th of this year we contacted Toni Lopez ( Head Mover) with the DPD Moving & Storage Co. As you can see clearly in the attached video, when the DPD Moving & Storage showed up at our home, there were many more movers than were needed for the task at hand. It’s true they were all dressed in company uniform, but it seemed they were a little over-armed for the occasion.

Toni Lopez handed my husband the contract for his signature, my husband refused to sign until Lopez gave a cost estimate for the extra help. At that time my husband was overpowered by the movers demanding payment, he was place in one of the moving vans and taken to their office for further negotiations. They are now demanding one thousand dollars before my husband’s release from their office.

As you can see in the video, many of the movers at our home preformed no task and should not be paid. They left our home with trash scattered everywhere and now claim they have lost all our possessions. Any help you can give in this matter will be greatly appreciated.

Sincerely,
Freda Farkel

Denver’s 2015 Punch and Judy Show

Come One, Come All!
Admission: FREE FREE FREE!
Where: Denver Municipal Court
When: Tues, Aug 11, 2015, 1PM.
Featuring MARK IANNICELLI in his premiere performance and David Lane as his big stick.
 
As the drama unfolds, Mark will be charge with seven felony counts of jury tampering for passing free information to the citizen of Denver. David Lane, a seasoned defender of human rights, will protect Mark from the Judge and District Attorney, played by two Kangaroos. You won’t want to miss the final outcome of this grand performance by the city of Denver.

Clarence Darrow and Jury Nullification

Clarence Darrow’s closing arguments in Leopold & Loeb resonates today in the Denver Urban Camping Ban and Jury Nullification Trials.
 
“You can trace it all down through the history of man. You can trace the burnings, the boilings, the drawings and quarterings, the hangings of people in England at the crossroads, carving them up and hanging them, as examples for all to see.”

Darrow continued:

“We can come down to the last century when nearly two hundred crimes were punishable by death, and by death in every form; not only hanging that was too humane, but burning, boiling, cutting into pieces, torturing in all conceivable forms.

I know that every step in the progress of humanity has been met and opposed by prosecutors, and many times by courts. I know that when poaching and petty larceny was punishable by death in England, juries refused to convict. They were too humane to obey the law; and judges refused to sentence. I know that when the delusion of witchcraft was spreading over Europe, claiming its victims by the millions, many a judge so shaped his cases that no crime of witchcraft could be punished in his court. I know that these trials were stopped in America because juries would no longer convict.

Gradually the laws have been changed and modified, and men look back with horror at the hangings and the killings of the past. What did they find in England? That as they got rid of these barbarous statutes, crimes decreased instead of increased; as the criminal law was modified and humanized, there was less crime instead of more. I will undertake to say, Your Honor, that you can scarcely find a single book written by a student, and I will include all the works on criminology of the past, that has not made the statement over and over again that as the penal code was made less terrible, crimes grew less frequent”.

Now in the year 2015, in Denver, Colorado we arrest a man for doing nothing more than informing the citizen of their rights, committing the crime of passing out a pamphlet explaining their rights as a juror. Mark Lanicelli was arrested and jailed for this crime.

The police arrest a man, woman or child, that have already suffered the humiliation of being homeless for the crime of falling asleep in public, something that every human must do. They call this law the “Camping Ban”. Along with being homeless, they are thrown into jail and given a criminal record.

The above two examples are crimes committed by the city of Denver against the citizens.

These crimes will end only when the people of Denver find their voice and say no to the prosecutors with Jury Nullification.

The History of the Denver Police Department

Before the Denver Police Department began murdering the men, women and children of Denver, they were burglarizing Denver homes and businesses.
 
In 1960, the largest police corruption scandal in the U.S. to date began to unfold. More than 50 area law-enforcement personnel – almost entirely Denver Police Officers were caught in a burglary ring. Cops had stolen over a quarter of a million dollars from businesses they were supposed to be protecting on their beats over a ten-year period. Police cars would close down a few blocks of a major business avenue, such as University or Broadway, then burglarized and stole the safes from the businesses along the closed down portion of the street. Alarms would be going off all up and down the street, they would take their loot, then respond to the alarms and take the reports. It all came to a crashing halt when an officer named Art Winstanley literally had a safe fall out of the back of his police cruiser. He testified against his fellow officers and then by the end of 1961, 47 police officers had lost their badges. The DPD called it “Back Friday”.

Art was sent to the prison in Canon City along with over 40 of his cop buddies. When the prison door swung shut on Art, he complained to the warden that no one liked or respected him, he said the other convicts were being mean to him and spitting on his food tray; these were the convicts that Art had arrested and sent to prison for crimes that he had committed.

Many of these crimes by the Denver Police Department were known and whispered about at the time by other policemen, citizens and politicians, but for fear of retaliation from the cops, they remained silent.

It was only when one rat with his foot in the trap, trying to save himself, exposed the true extent of the crimes of the Denver Police Department. Sixty five years have now passed and the DPD have moved on from burglary to murder.

There are many who speak out for respect for the policeman, they see his blue uniform and badge, read his propaganda of “Protect & Serve” and then slovenly give them a free pass in all matter, they mistakenly think they are incapable of a lie.

These people are the product of police propaganda and a media who quietly sweeps police crimes and brutality under the rug, never to see the eyes of the public.

One of the best examples I can give is of a recent event; A policeman who was called for a disturbance at a Target store, helped a young boy repair his bike.

It seemed the boys bike chain had come off and the policeman helped him put it back on, the incident was reported by another policeman who was also there. It was said the this incident went viral; So what would my complaint be?

Had You or I, ordinary citizens stopped to help this boy, you would never had heard of the incident and it certainly wouldn’t have went viral.

I didn’t see a cop helping the boy, I saw only a man helping the boy. A blue uniform and badge does not make him a saint.
Truth be known; most of the general public have little or no contact with their police department outside of traffic stops. They have little knowledge of how brutal the unchecked police powers have become. And while these brutal crimes go on unchecked by some policemen, the others remain silent; that in itself is a crime. To be a good cop, he must stand up and bear witness to the crimes he has knowledge of, especially when it is wearing a blue uniform and badge. To do less, is to become a partner in crime.

Would that same cop who helped this boy with his bike, if put in the situation where he saw one of his fellow officers commit a crime, speak out and make an arrest of his fellow officer? History has taught us that he would not.
Where the general public see’s a badge, a blue uniform and give’s their respect, I see a human being that is capable of both good and bad deeds, and should be treated as such just as any citizen would be treated.

A question we might ask: How is it that the DA has not filed one criminal case against the police and yet the juries in civil court have awarded million of dollars to victims of police abuse.

Mitchell R. Morrissey was elected District Attorney of Denver in November 2004 and was sworn into office on January 11, 2005. He is responsible for the prosecution of more than 6,000 felony and 18,000 misdemeanor criminal cases every year.

Paul Castaway and a mother’s grief


DENVER, COLORADO- On July 19th 2015, I met the Mother of Paul Castaway, a young native American man who was shot four times by the Denver Police Department and died of those fatal shots. At the memorial service she saw me sitting there watching her, she quietly walked up and held out her hand and ask me my name, then in a very soft and quiet voice she said “Thank You, for coming” With her eyes and slow movement of her step you could see the weight of her grief. I was stunned into silence.

[Paul Castaway’s Mother and the memorial for her son, killed by the Denver Police Department one week ago on July 13th 2015.]

When we arrived at the memorial site, she knelt down in prayer placing flowers there.

I started to reach for my camera, and then I heard her first quiet sob. I was frozen in place as I listen to her sobbing, a mother’s grief for a lost son that only she can suffer alone. There would be no clicking of the camera in this moment of sorrow.

Earlier in the day I had been to a support the police rally in the Civic Center Park, I was there as part of a group of counter demonstrators. The police support group were very loud and unyielding in their support for their police Department.

As I sat listening to the Mother quietly sobbing for her lost son, I wondered; If those police supporters could hear this Mother’s grief, if they could see her tears; would they still fell the same about their blind support of the Denver Police Department.


[The police protecting their KILLER COPS supporters from peace activists.]

The New Slave Ships Have Arrived

The year was 1960, and there was only one men’s prison in Colorado at that time, located at Canon City. There was a women’s prison that sat next to the men’s prison. There were three small satellites off the main prison: the ranch, dairy farm and garden. And there was the young men’s reformatory at Buena Vista, for a total of three prisons. In 1960 the population figures for Colorado was nearly two million people, in 2010 it was a little over five million; In a span of fifty years Colorado gained three million people. In 1960, it took 3 prisons to confine the convicts of two million people living in Colorado. By 2006 there were 30 prisons in Colorado, while adding only three million people to the population. Hold on here a minute; something doesn’t add up: 2 million people needed 3 prisons, now 5 million people need 30 prisons?!

It would be safe to assume that this growth in population were of people about to commit a crime, judging from the growth of new prisons compared to the population growth.

That’s quite a growth from 3 prisons to 30 prisons in 26 years; but then we didn’t have the “Prison Industrial Complex” in those years; Corporation private prisons. Their motto should read “If there are no prisoners; there is no profit”

If you and your family were out on a Sunday drive in 1960 and happen to drive by “Old Max” on Hi-way 50, you would have noticed a sign in front of the prison that advertised “Visitors Welcome” the sign went on to tell you that you could enter the prison for fifty cents on a guided tour at certain hours. This fifty cents was to go into a prisoner burial fund, for indigent convicts who died while imprisoned. They would then be buried in a pauper grave yard and sentence was complete due to death.

A few years later these tours were discontinued for fear that the prisoners might take the tourist hostage, also the Prison Administration had decided that it was better not to let the taxpayer see the condition of the prison they were paying for.

My wife and I decided to take the tour.

I had the feeling of a rat in the trap when the large steel door slammed shut behind us. After taking only a few steps, we left behind a warm sunny day and stepped into a dark gray world. The doom and gloom seemed to lurk at every corner, the guards in their towers, stared down at the tour, rifles at ready. We had the feeling that this tour, was a bad idea.

There was a guard about 70 years old who served as our tour guide, he wore a guard’s uniform and walked backwards as he pointed out the finer attractions of the prison; like the hole or the gas chamber. We were not allowed to go into these building as the old guard explained; we could be taken hostage.
However we were taken to the curio shop where the convicts were allowed to sell their hobby work, and it was here that the old guard gave us some stories on the history of Roy Best an ex-warden who was discovered with state cattle on his personal ranch and convicts were used as ranch hands. The old guard told how Warden Best would tell all newly arrived convicts: “While serving your sentence, you are allowed to make a dollar any way you can, Just make sure it’s not my dollar.” He also told a story of what happen when two convicts were caught in a homosexual act; they would be taken to the curio shop and handcuffed to a steel rail, they both would be made to wear a woman’s dress, for all the tours to see. It didn’t matter who was pitcher and who was catcher, they both had to wear a dress.

There were two yellow lines painted on the concrete about six feet apart, we were warned as tourists of all the harm and mayhem that could befall us if we stepped outside of the yellow lines and it was here that some of the tourist began thinking about what a mistake this was and could they get their fifty cents back. And of course the convicts were well aware of the rule of crossing the yellow line while a tour was in the prison or of talking to any of the tourists; it meant a certain trip to the hole. As the tour progressed through the prison, I noticed that many of the tourist heads kept bobbing down, making sure their feet didn’t touch the yellow line.

As we neared the end of the tour we came to where three convicts were waiting for the tour to pass before crossing the yellow line; There was an older lady with white hair near the front of the tour, when she saw those three convicts, (who were all dressed in white pants and shirts) she whispered to the old guard.

“Who are those men?”

The guard turned to look and then began to name the convicts.

The old woman stopped him and said ” No! I mean are they convicts or are they civilian employees?”

“They are convicts,” the guard replied, “they are allowed to wear white because they all work in the hospital.”

The gray haired lady then exclaimed with the most bewildering look on her face “my goodness! They look like anybody else”.

It’s been over fifty years since that white haired lady spoke those words, but her words are burned into my memory as if she had only spoken them yesterday.
What the white haired lady never realized is those convicts were sons, with mothers and fathers.

As all convicts are; they are the sons and daughters, the brothers and sisters, mother and fathers of us all.

Like that old white haired lady’s words “They looked like anybody else,” society looks at prisoners and sees them all the same, maybe that’s because they are all dressed the same or their mailing address is the same. They eat the same food and spend the long boring days together. It’s true that while you are a prisoner, the rules of a prison or jail apply to all, a sort of “One size fits all.” Yet the crime that sent these men and women to prison are as different as day and night.

Willie “The Actor” Sutton, a bank robber from back in the 40s use to dress up as a policeman when robbing a bank. Willie would never put any bullets in his gun; he wanted to make sure that no one was injured while robbing the banks, you might say Willie was a little different kind of criminal, but when he was in prison, he dressed like all the other convicts.

Back in the 50s the prison at Canon City had a rule: all prisoners shoes must have a “V” shaped notch cut into the heel. This was intended to make it easier for the guards to track escaped convicts. In theory the rule seemed pretty “air tight.” The drawback was that the convicts all knew about the notch, and would simply fill the notch or remove the heel. It took a few year for the guards to figure out why they weren’t finding any tracks of escaped convicts with a “V” notch in the heel.

The old white haired lady was right about one thing; they do look like everyone else. But the underlying problem that sent them to prison are very different.

From the New York Times: U.S. prison population dwarfs that of other nations.

“The United States has less than 5 percent of the world’s population. But it has almost a quarter of the world’s prisoners. Indeed, the United States leads the world in producing prisoners, a reflection of a relatively recent and now entirely distinctive American approach to crime and punishment. Americans are locked up for crimes — from writing bad checks to using drugs — that would rarely produce prison sentences in other countries. And in particular they are kept incarcerated far longer than prisoners in other nations. Criminologists and legal scholars in other industrialized nations say they are mystified and appalled by the number and length of American prison sentences. The United States has, for instance, 2.3 million criminals behind bars, more than any other nation, according to data maintained by the International Center for Prison Studies at King’s College London.”

In reading the above and the complete 1700 word article you will not find the word ‘Corrections” used once.

Webster’s Dictionary: Correction; 1 a correction or being corrected, 2 a change that corrects a mistake; change from wrong to right or from abnormal to normal.

As you are reading this story you may have noticed that I do not use today’s language to describe prisons, convicts, guards and wardens, as “Correctional Facility”, “Correctional Officer”, “Superintendent” or “Inmate”. To call them “Correctional Facility’s or Correctional Officer” is the height of hypocrisy. The truth is the guards can’t correct the problems in their own lives let alone solve the many complex problems of the men and women they guard.

The word correction was introduced by the prison industrial complex to fool the public into thinking they were solving the problems of the people they were warehousing and collecting all of those tax dollars for.

Again! hold on here a minute; If they are correcting all the problems of these errant people? Then why are we building so many new prisons and filling them with men, women and children?

You might be asking yourself “How did America, end up with so many criminals? The truth is “We didn’t.” The American Prison Corporations quite simply found it very profitable to imprison citizens.

The Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) simple minded solution to the problem is to build more prisons and pass new laws which will produce more criminals for their prisons.

Looking to the CCA and their lobbyist is equivalent to hiring the fox to guard the hen house.

This all leads to a greater bottom line profit for the CCA but does little to solve the crime rate, the recidivism rate or help those prisoners who truly need help. And it certainly does not slow the growth of new prisons. “The breeding grounds of crime”.

Confronting Confinement, a June 2006 U.S. prison study by the bipartisan Commission on Safety and Abuse in America’s Prisons, reports than on any given day more than 2 million people are incarcerated in the United States, and that over the course of a year, 13.5 million spend time in prison or jail. African Americans are imprisoned at a rate roughly seven times higher than Whites, and Hispanics at a rate three times higher than Whites. Within three years of their release, 67% of former prisoners are rearrested and 52% are re-incarcerated, a recidivism rate that calls into question the effectiveness of America’s corrections system, which costs taxpayers $60 billion a year. Violence, overcrowding, poor medical and mental health care, and numerous other failings plague America’s 5,000 prisons and jails. The study indicates that even small improvements in medical care could significantly reduce recidivism. “What happens inside jails and prisons does not stay inside jails and prisons,” the commission concludes, since 95% of inmates are eventually released back into society, ill-equipped to lead productive lives. Given the dramatic rise in incarceration over the past decade, public safety is threatened unless the corrections system does in fact “correct” rather than simply punish. For a copy of the complete report and the commission’s recommendations for reform, see

From: U.S. Prisons Overcrowded and Violent, Recidivism High — Infoplease.com

In the words of George Carlin; we add syllables to soften the meaning of words; From the Colorado Central Magazine; (The polite modern terms are inmate, not prisoner or convict as in historical years, and corrections officer instead of guard.)

The Huffington Post published an excellent piece yesterday by reporter Chris Kirkham describing how the Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) wants to buy up state prisons, all under the guise of helping state governments deal with their budget shortfalls.

Called the Corrections Investment Initiative (sounds so positive, right?), it’s a sickening display of exploitive behavior — perhaps best underscored by the fact that the CCA stipulates in its “investment” overture that, as part of the deal, the states need to keep the prisons packed. Their language for it:

“An assurance by the agency partner [the state] that the agency has sufficient inmate population to maintain a minimum 90 percent occupancy rate over the term of the contract.”

In reading the above article I did not notice anything pertaining to correcting the prisoner’s problems that sent them to prison. I did read the words “Helping state governments deal with their budget shortfalls” Whenever someone comes to me and tells me they can save me money… But I have to spend money in order to save money, it’s right here I become suspicious of their motive, “Thank You, but, No Thanks'”

“The Corrections Corporation of America” and that white haired lady have something in common with one big difference; the white haired lady saw us all the same looking like anybody else but she had no motive for profit when she looked at us, she can be forgiven for her mistake.

“The Corrections Corporation of America” sees the prisoners also all the same; as a free labor force to manufacture goods in their prison industrial program. For the CCA it’s a win-win proposition, the taxpayer pays for housing their captive work force and then they again made a profit off the manufactured goods. It appears “The Corrections Corporation of America” has found a new way to reconstitute slavery. The only thing missing are the slave ships from Africa; we are already here so there is no need of the ships. However they will need to lobby the congress for new laws to insure the prisons are full of able bodied workers. And of course the lobbyists don’t work cheap; they have a large overhead in the moneys they must contribute to our elected legislator campaign fund.

The money travels from the taxpayer’s pocket to the government coffers, from the government coffers to “The Corrections Corporation of America” and then from their checking account back to the Colorado Legislator reelection fund, a vicious cycle that never ends. They are all so busy stuffing their pockets with the taxpayer’s money they have little left to correct the problems of the prisoners that got them the money in the first place.

In conclusion, with solutions; The unsuspecting, hardworking taxpayers have been taken for a ride for too long. It’s time we told the Prison Industrial Complex; “The Jig is Up.” It’s time for a revolution.

There is an old saying among the convicts; All the convicts in prison combined, never stole more money than one banker or corporation stole with one swipe of their pen. “While the poor man was out stealing a loaf of bread to feed his family, the banker was stealing the poor man’s house”.

One of the very best and clear examples I can give, happened right here in Colorado. For years and years the prisons have been filled with “Pot” smokers, the public was told; These are criminals, depraved drug addicts that will rob, steal and rape your daughter.

When the opposite was more true; ‘Pot” smokers are very relaxed, looking only for some Twinkies to munch on while watching cartoons.

And now that Colorado has de-criminalized marijuana, we are left with a bunch of taxpaying ‘Pot “smokers living normal lives, working and contributing to society. I’m sure that it’s not much consolation to all the men and women who suffered for years in prison, classified as a criminal, not to mention the families that were destroyed. Men and women who were filled with hate in this prison system, then released to commit a real crime.

Back in 1960, I was not taken as a hostage while touring the prison, but in 2015 we are all being held as hostage by the CCA (Private Prison Corp.) for our tax dollars.

You can help change that by contacting one of the local or national groups to end mass incarceration.

————–
About the author: David Anderson is an ex-convict, who had escaped from “Old Max” twice. He was serving three life sentences for crimes of which he was innocent. It took seven years for these convictions to be reversed. He walked out of the prison on April 29th 1983.

The Death Penalty

In May of 1960, I was place in the “Hole” for ten days, at that time they would feed you a bowl of spinach once a day. The “Hole” was in cell house three, which also housed death row. When the guard came to my cell, I refused the spinach. He told me that he bet I’d be eating it by the end of ten days. Directly on the tier above me was death row. One of the prisoners on death row (David F. Early) over-heard my conversation with the guard.

At meal time, David would share his meals with me; he had a string made from his mattress and would lower part of his meal down to me.

On Aug. 12th 1961, David was gassed in the gas chamber.

For those who would cry out, that the death penalty is a deterrent, I would say: we’ve had a few hundred years of this “deterrent” and it doesn’t seem to be working.

My opposition to the death penalty does not come from the kindness or compassion that David showed to me, but rather from the fact that I believed we as a society were more cruel to put a person in a small concrete room and then day after day tell them we were going to kill them.

It seemed to me then as it does now that our crime is far greater than theirs.

It was also a lesson for me about kindness and compassion; it’s possible to find even on death row.

On Nikki Haley, calling for the Death Penalty

Let’s all grab our pitch forks, run around and find something to kill. There now! that should make us all feel better about what happened. If you listen to moron politicians like Nikki Halley, then you are the sucker she is counting on. “Kill Dylann”, there! problem solved.
 
It was reported by some news media, that Dylann wanted to start a race war, because he lost a girl he liked to another boy who happen to be black. Guess Dylann wasn’t keeping up with current events, there is already a race war in progress. You need only look at the fact that he is still alive, after the horrific crime he is suspected of, while many, many black men, women and children are dead, committing no crime at all.

The number of these racially motivated crimes by the police are hidden for fear the citizens will see the true nature of their “Protect and Serve” law enforcement. Here are some facts;

1. The NRA; Since 1998, the NRA has spent $28.2 million on lobbying in Washington and employed between 16 and 35 lobbyists in any given year.

2. While The Bureau of Justice Statics does not provide the annual number of arrest-related deaths by race or ethnicity, a rough calculation based on its data shows that black people were about four times as likely to die in custody or while being arrested than whites.

3. Black men were more than six times as likely as white men to be incarcerated in federal and state prisons, and local jails.

4. While people of color make up about 30 percent of the United States’ population, they account for 60 percent of those imprisoned.

I could provide more facts and figures, they are there for anyone wishing to see the truth. As for Nikki and her comments; She is the worst of politicians, she is only appealing to the emotions of the moment.

According to a March 29, 2011 Congressional Research Service report, Congress has approved a total of $1.283 trillion for military operations, this taxpayer money was spent to protect Americans from the “Terrorist”, you know, that brown skinned man who lives in some foreign land. While at home, in the USA, the “Terrorist” is protected by the second amendment.

“There have been at least 70 mass shootings across the country, with the killings unfolding in 30 states from Massachusetts to Hawaii. Thirty-three of these mass shootings have occurred since 2006. Seven of them took place in 2012 alone, including Sandy Hook”.

Mass shootings toll exceeds 900 in past seven years, we can now add another 9 people to that list.

How many tax dollars have been spent keeping guns out of the hands of the “American Terrorist?” ZERO. The NRA has made sure of this with their control of congress. It should be noted that the NRA supports the supply of weapons to both the American and Foreign “Terrorist”.

The NRA like most of American Corporations sole function is to make money, and they have now militarized the police across US in their effort to control the mass population as they awake from a long slumber.

We need to look past the Dylann’s of America and see the culture that created him and then put a gun in his hands. Dylann serves only as a symptom of a greater disease.

It’s time for a revolution.

Videos of police behavior will only change things if the public sees them

 
Many people who watch the Sandusky traffic stop video will claim it’s only an isolated incident and is not representative of their local law enforcement. They are very naive and believe the propaganda their police departments have subjected them to for years. Incidents like the one in this video are happening all across America, thousands of times daily. It has been with the growing popularity of the cell phone camera that the citizen are beginning to see  and be exposed to the true conditions of their local law enforcement. These conditions are very similar to that of the Gestapo in Germany prior to the second world war. 

I personally, and a group here in Denver, have witness hundreds of theses very same incidents in actions with the Denver Police Department. There is a growing number of citizen calling for all police to be equipped with body cameras. To put it simply; the camera needs to be in the hands of the citizens, not the police.

If you go back and watch the video again and still believe those cops would allow that video to see the light of day, then you are living in an “Alice in Wonderland” world. That is akin to believing that a bank robber would turn over to the prosecutor a video of his crime.

I will cite only two of many incidents here in Denver of the police crimes; One  Caryn Sodaro was arrested in April for filming Denver police officers physically tormenting a citizen. She is now set for trial in late July, her only crime was in filming the police criminal behavior. Two, Jessica Hernandez, a 17 year old young woman was murdered by the Denver Police Department.

The crime of murder by the Denver Police was captured on video by a citizen, to this day the video has remained hidden by the police and the main stream media. Denver DA Mitch Morissey recently gave the Denver police a big thumbs up for their crime.

Below the Free Thought Project Video, I read the comments, there was a great deal of anger and frustration with the crimes the police are committing under the banner of “Protect and Serve”.

I understand that anger, but anger alone will not solve the problem. We must turn that anger into action.

Seek out local groups who are in the streets taking action, contact local media by phone, email, put pressure on local judges who are allowing this practice of “Protecting The Police”. Continue to make comments, but couple your comments with action. To do anything less would be un-American. You can make a difference, believe in your power as an individual and change will follow.