House of Corrections; Yeah Right!

Written from Valley Street Jail in Manchester, NH

Today is July 23rd, my 12th day (of 60) in Valley Street Jail for resisting arrest. They (my captors) claim this is the Hillsborough County House of Corrections, but I’m failing to make such a connection. Every day my 40+ roommates and myself are brought food, which we didn’t cook, handed clean laundry, which we didn’t wash, and even have the channel on the TV changed for us. Sure, there are some programs like AA, GED classes, and a class where you can learn English – but nothing actually focuses on correcting the inmates’ behavior.

My first cell, while I was in “classification” status, had a view of the flat roof, a bare space with rocks and vents on it. I couldn’t help but think how great some raised garden beds would do up there. Also, if this place really wanted to replace bad behavior with “better”(or more productive) behavior, it would be great to teach inmates how to grow their own food. Of course, I state this overlooking the fact that most inmates I’ve encountered wouldn’t be here if the War on Drugs didn’t exist. How about letting some of these guys out to make their victims whole? Inmates who stole without using force or violence could be working off their bad deed directly to those they’ve harmed. Instead, we sit in our pod and have everything done for us.

Aside from the lack of responsibility we have for everyday basic needs, we, the inmates, are hassled regularly for silly things. For example, every time an inmate leaves his cell, according to the jail staff, he must make his bed, both sheets must be used, the jail-issued blanket must be on top and all four corners have to be tucked in. Anything less will get you written up and could possibly cost you “good time” – your opportunity for early release. The other day, my cellmate and I were “warned” for having books and a deck of cards on our desk. You can not have anything other than the Bible on your desk when you are not using it. Another corrections officer made us move our toothpaste from the desk to our shelf – again, stating, “next time you’ll be written up!” Some other rules I’ve learned while being here are:

-You can’t have more than three books in your cell.
-No more than 10 letters in your cell (This is one that I violate, considering I don’t know where to send the extras. The jail will not hold them with my property for me.)
-When the nurse is in the pod, no one is allowed to speak.
-You must walk on the right side of the hallway.
There are many more…

In case you missed my point, this place is a joke. I’ll spend 40-60 days (“good time” pending) in a frat house, where people are picked on, dirty jokes are made regularly and men act like boys. Don’t get me wrong, this place can be serious business. The childish games turn serious at times with nasty results, or a C.O.’s constant nagging can lead to a lockdown, or beat-down. At the end of the day neither side is better.

The inmates lose, the officers lose and the tax-payers fund it all. It’s the most wasteful use of time, money and life I’ve ever seen. Due to the systems idea of “correction” most will come back to these walls again, after their release – and that shouldn’t surprise anyone. When an inmate is released, he has spent his whole sentence waiting – not correcting. He hasn’t had to cook for himself, do laundry or provide for himself at all. Therefore, once released what do they do? They try to provide for themselves, but have not learned anything the state deems responsible behavior. So, they resort to what they know – drugs, booze and robbery… and back home, where they’re taken care of.

I have several ideas on how to fix these problems, but I’ll spare you my thoughts. Just know that the next time you pass your local jail or prison, the people inside aren’t all bad. In fact, few are. Know that no debt is being paid and no corrections are happening to those inside. Jails are here to put fear into those who haven’t been subjugated to them, and to control those who see them for what they are. I hope you take a better look at what this system deems justice, because I’ve yet to find any here.

 

EPN

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Ademo Freeman

was born and raised in Wisconsin, traveled the country in a RV dubbed “MARV” and is an advocate of a voluntary society, where force is replaced with voluntary interactions. He’s partaken in projects such as, Motorhome Diaries, Liberty on Tour, Free Keene, Free Talk Live and is the Founder of CopBlock.org.
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  • The resisting arrest charge is one of the more subjective out there. The range of behaviors that constitute it are quite frankly too broad for the charge to be valid in most jurisdictions.

    Where I live we also have another bogus charge, Failure to Move. I remember when I worked at the Attorney Generals office that consternation that one caused. You see, it wasn’t on the uniform charging code. And we followed UCC, not Providences version.

  • Ryan

    I couldn’t have said it any better. They are the biggest waste of time in the world with no positive inclination towards the people in there. We don’t care about actually “correcting” (whatever that means) behavior, we just shove people in boxes for a while and torture them with mindless rules to try and “improve” them.

    What a joke.

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  • Jay

    sounds like a Turkish prison.

  • Dan

    “Therefore, once released what do they do? They try to provide for themselves, but have not learned anything the state deems responsible behavior.”

    It’s called parenting!!

    The word Jail and the building that you see as a jail is suppose to be a deterrent, You don’t want to go there, inside things are not fun, people are not friendly.

    Action/reaction = jail

  • erik

    Hopefully after your wiretapping trial you will be able to write a review of the NH State Prison……bahhahahahbahahhhhbahahah

  • Uncle Mike

    Wow. Sounds just like NCOA (Non Commissioned Officers Academy) when I went through. Big deal. Oh, I did time in Chino, so give me no grief.

  • Common Sense

    what does he expect? college free tuitition? skip out of jail with a MBA?

    Sorry Adam, jail is supposed to suck, that’s why you get sent there when you break the law.

  • JasonCB

    Actually, jail is there to punish people *before* they’re found innocent or guilty. How many people find their cases dismissed after being punished for months, sometimes, and don’t get so much as an apology or have the means to pay for an attorney to right that wrong (as much as that’s possible)? It reminds me of an old fairy tale I heard long ago, “Innocent until *proven* guilty”.

  • As I noted elsewhere, there sure seem to be plenty of paid trolls for the police and FOP commenting on this story, but where are the snarky remarks over at the “Miami Police Sergeant indicted on nine felony counts” story? Do you not want to comment on the drug dealing SWAT cop, “common sense”? How about you “uncle mike”? You, “erik” or “dan”? Surely you witty little shills can help shed a little light, as you do so well on this story.

  • Common Sense

    MY GOD, a SWAT cop dealing drugs!!

    Out of the 14 million arrests in 2010, about 150-200 were cops.

    Sorry, but generally cops aren’t the law breakers.

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  • certain

    Common, that might just be the most ignorant thing you’ve ever stated on this site. And where do you get your 150-200 stat? Oh that’s right, same place as everything else you spew out, your ass.

  • Henry

    House of Corrections.

    When I read this, I realize how ignorant this guy is. Corrections is an old school term when it was believed that you could change someones behavior while they were in custody. First of all, jail is the punishment. When you are confined to jail by the court, that is the punishment. Jail isn’t supposed to be a vacation.

    I guess alot of people here would prefer that when a person breaks the law, that they are just given an unhappy face and that we accept their promise that they won’t do it again.

  • Donatien Alphonse François

    It is oblivious that the administrators and personnel at the Valley Street Jail are not well schooled in the proper methods of rehabilitation. Proper rehabilitation involves a regime of sensory deprivation, drugs and electro-convulsive therapy. If budgetary restrictions prohibit the acquisition of more sophisticated tools, stress positions, a propane torch and a sturdy pair of pliers make inexpensive and effective substitutes. Irrespective of the rehabilitative tools employed, the most important element of proper rehabilitation are dedicated personal willing to go that extra mile to get the job done.

  • Donatien Alphonse François

    In part one we talked amount the proper tools to utilize for the future rehabilitation of Ademo Freeman (aka Adam Mueller). In this section we provide advice in making the professional determination if the rehabilitation anticipated has proven effective.
    Always keep in mind the tried and true adage: “How do you tell if a convict is lying? His lips are moving.” In other words rehabilitation must never be stopped irrespective of the convicts pleas. Crying, pleading and begging are more often than not mere ploys. Sometimes the prisoner will feign illness, injury or unconsciousness. Never pay any attention to any conscious overt plea.
    When the convict, whether conscious or unconscious, looses control of his bowels and bladder, this is a generally good sign that the rehabilitation is having its proper effect. Yet always remember that Freeman/Mueller is deeply disturbed and psychotic, he has beaten the system once and for him to ever become a useful and productive citizen, rehabilitation must be continued. Only your supervisor has the knowledge and experience to end a rehabilitation session.
    Remember no communication of any sort is allowed to emanated from or inadvertently enter into the rehabilitation facility – leave all electronic devices and weapons in the shielded area prior to entry!

  • Kristi

    This pretty much sums up my thoughts of our nations penal institutions as well! Very well put. I admire you courage and wisdom. Keep doing what you’re doing and don’t get ANYTHING stop you!

  • Steve

    About the conditions in the facility you discussed. I have been in this facility before as an inmate worker and it isn’t nearly as bad as you make it sound. Walking in the hall requires us to stand on one side of the hall or the other as directed by the C.O. to keep hallways clear in the event of an emergency. How would it be that responding staff to a medical situation be slowed down by needing to dodge inmates. If you didn’t notice even staff stays to the edge of the hall. Yeah they say be quiet while the nurse is on because the pods house something like 100 inmates and it can get loud. Of course they change the channel for us. I can only imagine if they gave us the remote, there would be a fight in a matter of no time over who gets to keep it. I’m also noticing you have a blue suit so you were a blue band. Which raises some questions? When I was BB the C.O. was rarely on the unit due to it being the lowest security pod in the facility. With regards to cooking and housekeeping, all done by inmates overseen by staff. Working on the kitchen we got to eat good and get better uniforms in housekeeping. I never seen anyone go to the hole or “beat down”( never seen it happen for anything) for not making their bed or any other d report rule. Guys get moved for disrespecting staff and fighting stuff like that. Don’t get me wrong, that place sucked and I won’t go back but call it for what it is. If you need to make stuff up you don’t do your report any justice.

  • Jude

    Completely off primary topic… Adam did you get good time? Or Steve who posted above, did you get good time? If not why? Did/do you know of anyone who did? Do they deny this to pretty much everyone? Just trying to figure out when I can expect to see a friend of mine again. Thx in advance.

  • sarah

    It isnt that bad to you or the guys it is way different for the girls they treat the girls like shit and we cant doo all the shit the guys get to do so it is as bad as she says it is

  • joe bean

    The correcting takes place when a man with a badge, that looks like a “cop” tells you what to do all day, everyday….If you don’t comply with there “rules” your punished in someway, including loseing your “goodtime”…. The behaviour their trying to correct is your obedience to law enforcement…..Thats the correction…….your subservience to the MAN is their real goal…

  • Nik Schumacher

    This wasted time is sold to the govt. The govt [WE ] pay a stipend for every bed occupied by an inmate, lets say, $45 a day each inmate. Actual cost@ lets say $16 a day X maybe lets say, a couple a hunnert Thousand inmates,…………..Do the math! Follow the Money!

  • Nik Schumacher

    Its Warehousing for Profit! And our tax money pays for it!

  • Nik Schumacher

    Private companies are lining up to get these gravy contracts!

  • Megan S

    My husband was just transferred from Sullivan County to Valley St. This place is. Dirty nightmare… And let’s not start with the over population! The guards are something else, let me tell you and the phone calls end with no warning. Shitty place

  • Josh Martin

    I did 90 days there several years ago. Most of that article is typical whining. Its fucking JAIL what did you expect? The real problem with Valley Street is that it’s the only privately owned jail in New Hampshire. In order to get your good behavior time, they require you to have proof of a job waiting for you on the outside. No other jail in New Hampshire has this requirement because no other jail in New Hampshire is privately owned. Hillsboro county uses inmates for free labor to cut back on maintenance costs. They don’t want their slave labor force depleted so they added the employment requirement. Obviously it is next to impossible to find a job from behind bars. Many people get fake jobs from family or friends just to get their good time, but for those of us without that option, we have to do our entire bid, no matter how well we behave.
    You’d think they would use that all that saved money on programs for rehabilitation, yet they have none. There isn’t even a library. All there is is a work release program in which the jail gets kickbacks from the employers for getting such cheap labor (minimum wage does NOT apply to inmates)
    One time the food served was so awful that even the guards agreed it wasn’t edible and sent it back (anyone who’s done time can tell you that NEVER happens)
    I would bet the superintendent has quite a nice Summer home with a boat.