Prisoners & Covid 19

Strickland, Joshua

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Prisoners & Covid 19 Lies, humiliation, threats, mistreatment; this is what is happening here at Lee State Prison. I am an inmate here currently sleeping in the same cell that the first inmate to die in Georgia lived in. This is a firsthand account of prisoners living conditions and treatment due to the coronavirus pandemic. On March 22 I was housed in dorm A-2 adjacent to dorm A1 which is the dorm for segregation and isolation. We were told to grab only a few things and our beds because we were being taken to the gym for a couple of days. We were instructed to leave all of our food, books, legal materials, and hygiene in our lockers. We spent the next 37 days sleeping on the floor. Every time it rained the roof leaked and flooded everything. The lights burning bright for days at a time. We were only allowed to shower 3 days a week, but the whole prison could shower any time they wanted. We found out that our dorm was being used to quarantine inmates that were suspected of being infected, locked in our cells with our property. We requested numerous times to get our property or to have it stored someplace else to prevent theft or vandalism of our personal property. We were told to "just deal with it," "that we would just have to get over it," so on and so forth. I witnessed an officer threaten an inmate, to 'turn his sentence into a death sentence' by placing him in the hole where the sick inmates were kept. I personally have been called racist names, other names, cursed out and yelled at. We feel like animals in here, and like we were punished and mistreated because of the crisis. The GDC website claims that we are being given Dial anti-bacterial soap every week, that was not true. My wife called up here to the facility to complain and check on me, she was told that no one even knew we were in the gym or if I was okay. I'm out of the gym now, on April 28 everyone originally from A-2 was put in dorms. I am now in F-1, where both fatalities occurred in the prison. After talking to several guys about the situations, I discovered that prior to A-2 being put in the gym, dorms F-1 and F-2 had spent the whole day in there while their dorms were sanitized. I asked several staff if the gym was cleaned before A-2 was put in there, they all said no. I can personally testify that it was filthy because I had to clean my area where I was going to be sleeping. Josh Strickland

Author: Strickland, Joshua

Author Location: Georgia

Date: June 3, 2020

Genre: Essay

Extent: 2 pages

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