Summary of “Kent Sorenson Was a Tea Party Hero. Then He Lost Everything.”

After his bed was finally vacated and Sorenson was allowed to settle in, he started chatting with a nearby neighbor.
Then it happened: Wall Street, perched above Sorenson one day, spit downward on his rival’s head. Rushing up to face him, Sorenson was flanked by both Dough Boy and the Gangster Disciples’ shot-caller.
One day, he was pulled aside by a prison official: The MCC had been contacted by Grassley’s office, and Sorenson needed to sign a waiver giving the prison permission to discuss his status with a third party.
“Kent Sorenson personally told me he was offered a large sum of money to go to work for the Paul campaign,” Bachmann told reporters outside of her campaign bus, barely three hours after Sorenson’s speech.
Sorenson tells me he said this on the advice of his attorney, Ted Sporer, who felt it was legally defensible because the money had been routed through the audio-visual company to Sorenson’s LLC, not directly to the senator himself.
A few weeks after Kent Jr. passed, without any idea of how the word could have gotten to USP Thomson, Sorenson received a sympathy card in the mail with handwritten notes from dozens of his former inmates.
The effort had been organized by Nicholson-who, Sorenson later learned, lost 21 days of “Good time” from his sentence because he had communicated with a paroled convict.
Kent Sorenson has a more pressing task: salvaging a shred of hope from the wreckage of his life.

The orginal article.

Summary of “One man’s mission to bring better ramen to the incarcerated”

Over the past three years, Freeman has been developing a low-sodium ramen that will soon be sold at correctional institution commissaries across the country.
Ramen has become such a staple for the incarcerated that it has usurped tobacco as a de facto currency.
Michael Gibson-Light, a Ph.D student at the University of Arizona, conducted a study on the prominence of ramen in correctional facilities, spending 18 months inside an unnamed state prison during which he interviewed dozens of inmates and employees.
Several inmates at the Jackson Correctional Institution in Wisconsin wrote to Freeman earlier this year chronicling their issues with commissary ramen after they saw on social media that his product would be on the market soon.
“Their noodles are high in sodium which cause the high blood pressure and cholesterol, which I have since I been eating these high-sodium ramen noodles,” one man wrote.
The ramen comes in four flavors: seafood gumbo, chicken taco, chicken fajita, and lamb stew, which Freeman said he developed for Muslims.
In his Victorville kitchen, Freeman prepared a bowl of his ramen for me to try.
Freeman has received comments on his social media criticizing him for taking advantage of mass incarceration to make profits, but he argued that he sees his ramen as a solution and not part of the problem.

The orginal article.

Summary of “‘I have no thought of escaping’: inside the Brazilian prisons with no guards”

At an Apac jail, there are no guards or weapons, and inmates literally hold the keys.
A visit to the Apac men’s and women’s prisons in Ita├║na subverts all expectations about the penal system in Brazil, where overcrowding, squalor and gang rivalry regularly cause deadly riots.
In contrast with mainstream prisons, Apac inmates are addressed by name rather than number.
Another reason inmates uphold the strict routine of work and study required by Apac – under which no one is permitted to stay in their cells unless they are sick or being punished – is that an escape attempt would return them to the mainstream system, which all inmates have experienced before.
Apac prisons, coordinated and supported by the Italian AVSI Foundation, impose a limit of 200 inmates to prevent overcrowding.
Founded in 1972 by evangelical Christians to provide a humanising alternative to mainstream prisons, the system has now reached 49 jails in Brazil, and has branches in Costa Rica, Chile and Ecuador.
In mainstream prisons, tens of thousands are detained, sometimes for years, before their cases even go to trial.
Across town, in the open section of at the Apac women’s prison, inmate Aguimara Campos, 30, explains her role as president of the eight-member council of sincerity and solidarity, which organises some aspects of prison life and is a bridge with the administration.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Big Business of Prisoner Care Packages”

The Los Angeles County jails’ contract for care packages includes annual “Gift packs” that are given to inmates for free during the winter holiday season, complete with a card from the county.
Prisoner care packages are part of a lucrative industry that provides a range of services.
Access Securepak has used inmates to unload trucks, stock and pick items from warehouses and assemble packages, according to a 2015 West Virginia contract proposal.
In some facilities, inmates who are eligible to receive packages can get a care package once every three months; at others, inmates are allowed weekly deliveries.
Jennifer Gross of Livonia, Michigan, says she sent her boyfriend, an inmate in the Michigan Department of Corrections, a care package containing toilet paper after he told her he had gone without for four days.
Against prison officials and private companies over the cost of care packages, with little luck.
Despite her frustrations with the industry, Davis estimates that she spends as much as $600 of her monthly budget on staying in touch with her husband through things like phone calls, visits and care packages.
She has two recommendations for other families who want to send care packages to incarcerated loved ones: “Have a budget and a lot of patience.”

The orginal article.

Summary of “How an inmate hacker turned a prison upside down”

By 2015, Johnston had been in prison for 15 years, but called home frequently, affectionately referring to his mother as “Woman.” After she told Johnston over the phone how she had intervened in an episode of familial drama, he told her, “You done started a shit storm, woman, huh?” Other times, they’d reminisce: on one call, Gallienne recalled seeing fish tanks inmates kept at the prison, and watching one fish attempt an escape, leaping out of the tank and flopping on the floor helplessly.
Transkiy ran recycling, Johnston was treasurer, and Spriggs worked on IT. “This prison isn’t like what you see on TV or in the movies,” the warden, a former social worker, said onstage at the 2012 TEDx event, casually dressed in shorts and a green polo.
In one text, Gallienne sent Johnston an address, which Johnston told her “Sounds really close to your house.” The forensics team also discovered the applications to banks for credit cards under the name Kyle Patrick, a prisoner in the Ohio system.
Investigators turned to recordings of calls that Johnston had made to Gallienne from the prison.
Investigators moved to interview Johnston, who, in the meantime, had been moved two hours northeast to Grafton Correctional Institution, another facility in the Ohio prison system.
With remote access, Johnston could access the prison staff network from a nearby office, where he was already allowed.
An inmate caught up in the investigation was found in possession of a thumb drive loaded with porn, which Johnston admitted to downloading.
Later in the letter, Johnston’s mind turned to the future.

The orginal article.

Summary of “The Incarcerated Women Who Fight California’s Wildfires”

During World War II, California turned its prisons into factories for the military industry and moved inmates into the temporary forestry camps of the Civilian Conservation Corps, a public work-relief program created during the Depression.
In 1946, as part of Gov. Earl Warren’s Prisoner Rehabilitation Act, the state opened Camp Rainbow which – under the joint supervision of the state’s Division of Forestry and the California Department of Corrections – housed inmates to clear fire lines.
”Any fire you go on statewide, whether it be small or large, the inmate hand crews make up anywhere from 50 to 80 percent of the total fire personnel,” says Lt. Keith Radey, the commander who is in charge of a camp where women train.
At Malibu 13, one of three conservation camps that house women, the commander, John Scott, showed me a printout: Inmate firefighters can make a maximum of $2.56 a day in camp and $1 an hour when they’re fighting fires.
After visiting three camps over a year and a half, I could see why inmates would accept the risks.
They’re being trained to work in a field they will probably have trouble finding a job in when they get out: Los Angeles County Fire won’t hire felons and C.D.C.R. doesn’t offer any formal help to inmates who want firefighting jobs when they’re released.
The Conservation Camp Program saves California taxpayers approximately $100 million a year, according to C.D.C.R. Several states, including Arizona, Nevada, Wyoming and Georgia employ prisoners to fight fires, but none of them rely as heavily on its inmate population as California does.
Faced with the prospect of a state in flames, California continues to depend on its inmate firefighters as a tenuous and all-but-invisible line of defense.

The orginal article.