Thursday, November 30, 2006

Is Actually Getting Justice Going To Be a New Trend?

$2 million to victim of FBI blunder

Filed under: — Eideard @ 8:30 am

Jailed for conspiracy in Madrid terror bombing

The U.S. government agreed Wednesday to pay $2 million to settle a lawsuit filed by an Oregon lawyer who was arrested and jailed for two weeks in 2004 after the FBI bungled a fingerprint match and mistakenly linked him to a terrorist attack in Spain.

Under the terms of the settlement filed Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Portland, the government also issued an unusual apology to Brandon Mayfield for the suffering caused by his wrongful arrest and imprisonment. It acknowledged that the ordeal was deeply upsetting to Mayfield and his family.

Mayfield will be able to continue pursuing his legal challenge to the constitutionality of the Patriot Act anti-terrorism law, which was used to obtain his personal records while he was under investigation.

The payment is a clear embarrassment for the FBI, which arrested Mayfield as a material witness in May 2004 after FBI examiners erroneously linked him to a partial fingerprint on a bag of detonators found after terrorists bombed commuter trains in Madrid, killing 191 people. The bureau compounded its error by stridently resisting the conclusions of the Spanish National Police, which notified the FBI that the fingerprint did not belong to Mayfield three weeks before he was arrested.

The case has become a potent symbol for civil liberties advocates who argue that it shows how easily the government can abuse its powers to detain alleged terrorism suspects under relaxed standards of probable cause.

A report released in March by Justice Department Inspector General Glenn Fine found that while Mayfield’s religion was not a factor in his initial identification, it contributed to the FBI’s reluctance to re-examine its conclusions after challenges from Spanish police.

Every criticism of the foolhardiness of Homeland Insecurity, the Patriot Act and Bush’s War on Terror — came to pass in this case. Government hacks screwed up. They refused to admit they screwed up. They denied they screwed up.

It took a lawsuit and a separate investigation before a citizen was restored his rights and dignity and compensated for his injury.

Click Here for where I found the above on the web

A Friend Recommends:

This movie

Click Here for images from movie, The Hurricane (1999)

Click Here for Denzel Washington profiled

It is supposedly is a true story and shows the nature of American politics and justice.

* * * *

Click Here for post on Racist Courts

Click Here for Liars on the Court

Click Here for a video of me testifying about Judicial Misconduct in front of a Judicial Reform Committee. The US Judiciary should not be this bad.

Click Here Chris Kennedy speaks out about Judicial Abuse, part 1 YouTube video

Click Here for Chris Kennedy part 2

Switching Parties to be Heard?

The Republicans are really taking a beating thanks mainly to George W. Bush.

POLITICS (Connecticut)

Irresistible Temptation

A Discouraged Republican Legislator Switches Parties So Her Ideas Will Be Heard
November 22, 2006
By CHRISTOPHER KEATING, Capitol Bureau Chief, The Hartford Courant
It's hard to imagine the state Republican Party any more decimated than it was the day after this month's election.

Except for Gov. M. Jodi Rell, every GOP candidate for statewide election was smoked by at least a 2-1 ratio. In the legislature, Democrats gained their biggest House majority since the post-Watergate election of 1974.

Now, as if to punctuate the GOP collapse, one of a small contingent of Republican House members has switched her political affiliation to the Democratic Party.

The defection of state Rep. Diana Urban of North Stonington is the first such switch in recent memory and widens the House Democrats' commanding lead over Republicans to 107-44.

Surrounded by top Democratic leaders Tuesday, Urban received a hug from House Speaker James Amann and applause as she joined the majority after six years as a GOP legislator.

One Republican leader called the switch "disingenuous" and criticized Urban for accepting GOP campaign money, then abandoning the party two weeks after the election.

A lifelong Republican, Urban, 57, said she had gradually become discontent with the national GOP because it is no longer the party of Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt. As a former New Yorker, she said, she does not recognize the party that was once led by moderates such as former New York Gov. Nelson Rockefeller and former U.S. Senator Jacob Javits.

"The party has changed," she said.

"At what point in time," Urban asked, "do you say to yourself: `I'm not really getting anything done that I want to get done to the extent that I think I am capable of doing it?' ... At some point, you say to yourself, the time is now. And you stop trying to pull the party to the center with you or maybe to the left of center with you. It's time to be with a party that's really willing to listen to your voice."

There was little sympathy Tuesday among Republicans, who stripped Urban's name from the House Republican website even before Urban had finished her news conference with her new Democratic friends.

"The whole move is somewhat disingenuous," said Rep. Lawrence Cafero, who takes over as the new House GOP leader in January. "She ran and accepted money as a Republican and yet before even being sworn in, she is switching to be a Democrat. ... I don't understand the timing."

Amann told reporters two other House Republicans had approached him about becoming Democrats, but he refused to reveal their names.

Cafero said he was unaware of that, adding, "The speaker must know something I don't."

Both publicly and privately, Republicans questioned the timing of Urban's switch. She was a GOP pariah because she often socialized and voted with the Democrats and frequently spent time in the House chamber talking to her close friend, Rep. Stephen Fontana, vice chairman of the state Democratic Party.

"It has been a strained relationship" with Republicans, said Cafero. "She found more comfort - not only politically, but in many cases personally and socially - on the other side of the aisle, and there wasn't much we could do with that."

Cafero said he was caught off guard by Urban's announcement because he had told her only last week that he would "wipe the slate clean" as the party's new House leader and strongly consider her for a committee assignment as the top-ranking Republican on issues that interest her.

Privately, Republicans shed no tears over her departure because she often voted with the Democrats on environmental and affordable-housing issues, among others.

"This just means she can caucus with the people she votes with," said one GOP insider. "There's no change here. This is all about her."

Urban has been elected four times to a seat formerly held by Republican Rob Simmons, who earlier this month lost a re-election battle for Congress. Urban ran unopposed this year, and insiders said that Democrats did not mind the lack of an opponent. Known for her independent streak, Urban said she was aware of friction with Republicans.

"I've been called a maverick," Urban said. "I've been called other things, too, but we'll leave it at maverick. ... My voice is heard on this [Democratic] side of the aisle a lot more than it is on the other side of the aisle."

Rell, who is the de facto leader of the state GOP, declined to comment on Urban's switch and did not provide any details on how the Republicans will regain their momentum.

"Gov. Rell was deeply concerned by the election results," said her spokesman, Judd Everhart. "She will be working with top GOP leaders to determine a strategy for rebuilding the party going forward. In the meantime, she expects her good working relationship with the majority party to continue in the 2007 session."

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Unresponsive US Senator from Connecticut, Dodd

Unresponsive Democrat U.S. Senator Christopher Dodd

I wrote Dodd when I was a Connecticut property and business owner. He was unresponsive, his staff was unresponsive, and the issues I wrote to him about took me and others down only months later.

I then contacted his office after the fact, and again, no response.

My letter and the post that I would never have needed to post, if he or others got off their asses, is in the �Read More� section.


Email that should have been answered, at least by a staff member:

Date: Fri, 12 Jan 2001 23:55:49
From: Steven G. Erickson
[ Add to Address Book | Block Address | Report as Spam ]
Subject: landlord rights

Dear Honorable Senator Dodd,

I bought and fixed up a 3 and 4 family houses
that were boarded up in Stafford Springs, CT,
in July ‘98. Now all are fixed up and rented.

There are ‘professional’ tenants that get access
to apartments, do damage and stay as long as they
can for as long as they can over and over where
ever they can.

There seems to be nothing illegal
about this and police do not go after those that
have done severe damage and even left drug
using equipment.

I have had to pay movers to remove
one tenant that I evicted after she moved in
without my permission and stayed many months
for free. I have lost over $25,000 last year in
damages and lost rent and have no way to recover.

I have sued tenants in Small Claims Court and have
yet to receive a dime for any of my wins. If I owned
a candy store and these people stole candy bars,
I could have them arrested ...
but instead, I may lose my properties and the criminals/
drug users go on their merry way without a thought.

Please consider addressing these issues in this
next session,

Thank you, Steven G. Erickson, Stafford Springs, CT

P.S. Are hardworking people to be punished, and
irresponsible con artists rewarded?

Life as I knew it ended when I was attacked on my property by a police informant 10-11-01. I was arrested and put in prison, losing everything.

Connecticut Culture of Corruption Courts


`Super-Sealed' Excavation

November 29, 2006
By LYNNE TUOHY, Hartford Courant Staff Writer
Forty court files remain "super-sealed" four years after revelations that the judicial branch had concealed existence of many lawsuits, enraging lawmakers and the public.

But more information about the cases trickled out Tuesday as a judge and lawyers for several litigants who have sued the court system over the practice try to solve the conundrum.

Several cases involve people who changed their names in the face of viable and detailed death threats, according to participants at the hearing in Middlesex Superior Court. A woman who claimed police brutality had her file sealed.

One man whose ex-wife is a well-known Westport lawyer said he felt pressured into agreeing to have all trace of their divorce case erased from public view.

"The issue was purely financial," physicist Michael Lubell said of his 1999 divorce from lawyer Ellen Lubell. "If I didn't agree to certain terms, it would go to litigation. Her firm was representing her. For me, the meter was running."

Lubell testified at the hearing identified only as "Mr. L." He endorsed unsealing the entire file in his case, and after court he provided his full identity.

Lubell could not recall the name of the judge in Milford Superior Court who super-sealed the file. "There was an agreement, and the court accepted it," he said.

The hearing highlighted both the sensitive nature of some of the files and the machinations behind the sealing of others. Because only Superior Court Judge Robert E. Beach Jr. has reviewed all the files in question, the arguments at times were painfully cryptic, laced with speculation and hypothetical situations.

"It's hard to argue in the abstract," said Daniel J. Klau, the attorney for The Courant and the Connecticut Law Tribune.

"I'm trying to give you the `why' in cases where there are valid privacy interests," Beach replied.

The two publications have been steeped in litigation for more than three years in an effort to get the state judicial branch to release just the docket sheets of the super-sealed cases, in an effort to learn what caused such extraordinary treatment.

Klau argued that the news value of the individual cases is not at issue.

"What has been driving this litigation is a deep desire to know how, in the state of Connecticut in the 21st century, cases were disappearing from the docket," he said.

The existence of this extreme sealing practice may have been first documented in a memo to court clerks in 2000, instructing them to not even acknowledge the existence of a "Level 1" sealed case. Such cases were referenced by number, not by the names of the parties.

The judicial branch in 2003 acknowledged the existence of at least 185 Level 1 files, many of which were swiftly converted to a status of Level 2 - in which the docket number, names of the parties and nature of the litigation is public information - or unsealed altogether. Among those 185 Level 1 files was the divorce case of University of Connecticut President Philip E. Austin, first discovered by the Connecticut Law Tribune in December 2002. It was titled, "in re Level 1-10 v. in re Level 1-10."

Although the U.S. 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals ruled two years ago that docket sheets are presumed to be a matter of public record, it also ruled that judicial branch administrators have no authority to upset the order of a trial judge to seal a file. This began a lengthy, often awkward process of trying to ascertain whether sealing orders existed for the remaining 40 files.

Beach said Tuesday that he is prepared to modify the sealing orders in many of the files to release the maximum degree of information possible. This drew the concern of Steven R. Dembo, who represents a party in a seemingly volatile divorce and custody case.

"How do I unring the bell if the court goes too far?" Dembo asked.

"You're going to know the basic nature of the case and why they wanted it sealed," Beach said. "My inclination is to disclose as much as I can without stepping on protective issues."

He said he had his clerk send notices by certified mail to the parties and attorneys in the 40 cases, to the best of his ability to track their whereabouts.

Only seven responses came back to the court, including a letter from a lawyer in one case saying he's no longer involved, and a letter from a lawyer in another case saying he never knew the file was sealed.

Only one litigant other than Lubell testified Tuesday.

"Mrs. P." said she would consent to having only the names of the parties and the docket number disclosed in her case. After court, she would say only that her case involved a police brutality complaint, "in which there appeared to be intentional interference by the political arena and the court system and several attorneys." She noted that the case some years later affected the civil rights of one of her parents. Beyond that, she would not elaborate.

Beach set no continuance date for the hearing, but wished everyone "happy holidays" before adjourning court, suggesting that nothing further is expected before the first of the year.

Contact Lynne Tuohy at

* * * *


Secret Program Target Of Suit

Yale Students Seek Information On Techniques Used To Investigate Immigrants
November 29, 2006
By KIM MARTINEAU, Hartford Courant Staff Writer
NEW HAVEN -- Students at Yale Law School are suing the federal government to learn more about Operation Front Line, a secretive program that is overseen by the Department of Homeland Security and gathers information on immigrants.

Daniel Freeman, a law student at Yale, learned about Operation Front Line through a client who sought the help of one of Yale's free legal clinics. The client was an immigrant living in Connecticut who had been investigated through the program and arrested. Yale's Jerome Frank Legal Services Organization, along with the Allard Lowenstein International Human Rights Project, recently filed suit against the U.S. Department of Homeland Security in federal court in New Haven, in an attempt to find out more about the program's investigative techniques.

In the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, federal authorities have used immigration law violations to weed out possible terrorists. Officials have kept much of their work secret, invoking national security. The secrecy has raised concerns among civil rights groups that investigators may be singling out immigrants based on race, religion or ethnicity.

President Bush's program to spy on some Americans without a warrant has been among the most controversial. In August, a federal judge in Detroit declared the spying program unconstitutional but the spying continues as the case winds through appeal. Another program requires all men older than 16 from nations considered an "elevated security threat," to register. Nearly all have Muslim majorities.

Freeman said he's found only one official reference to Operation Front Line: buried in a cost benefit analysis done by the White House's Office of Management and Budget. The 2006 budget report said the operation is overseen by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the largest investigative arm of Homeland Security. Its mission, according to the lawsuit, is "to address potential vulnerabilities in immigration and trade systems relative to the national security of the United States."

Michael Gilhooly, a Department of Homeland Security spokesman, said Tuesday in a statement that Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigators have not used race, religion or ethnicity to single out "immigration violators." He said Front Line was carried out in the months leading up to the 2004 presidential election and through the 2005 presidential inauguration to find "immigration violators that may have posed an enhanced public safety or national security threat."

Freeman and his professor at Yale, Michael Wishnie, filed a federal Freedom of Information Act request last month, asking for any records involving Front Line. When Homeland Security failed to acknowledge their request, a lawsuit was brought on behalf of Yale's legal clinic. The case that led to the Front Line discovery remains mostly secret, for now. Freeman declined to discuss his client's immigration status, why he was arrested or how the case turned out.

Operation Front Line would seem to fall within Immigration and Customs Enforcement's massive intelligence budget: $1.4 billion for next year alone. Yet no details about its scope, methodology or results have been made public, the lawsuit contends.

"If we are expending so much to investigate immigrants, the public has a right to know how the investigations are being conducted," said Freeman.

There are about 12 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. If Operation Front Line didn't single out anyone by race, religion or ethnicity, Freeman would like to know what criteria they did use.

"Front Line didn't target all of them," he said. He also said it seemed odd that the government waited until 2004 to decide that certain immigrants posed a national security threat.

* * * *

COMMENTARY (Hartford Courant)

Check Still Needed On Judicial Power

Should Judges Answer Only To Themselves?
November 26, 2006
No one can question the courage of senior Associate Supreme Court Justice David Borden. He filed the complaint, and made public the events, that led to the Judicial Review Council's sanctioning of former Chief Justice William J. Sullivan for trying to keep from the legislature a court decision limiting public access to judicial records.

He's leading a much-needed overhaul of the judicial branch's rules and policies on transparency - even in the face of intense opposition by some of his colleagues on the bench. But perhaps he showed the most courage when he recently met in a no-questions-barred session with members of the Connecticut Council on Freedom of Information.

The council is an umbrella group representing the state's print, broadcast and cable news media. It advocates for strong open government laws and a vigorous First Amendment. It's been most critical of the culture of secrecy in Connecticut courts and is crusading for a constitutional amendment to assure greater accountability over our judges. So Justice Borden knew he was entering the proverbial lion's den in meeting with them.

The state constitution states that the "powers and jurisdiction" of the courts "shall be defined by law." The Council on Freedom of Information has proposed that this provision be amended by adding the words "and the practices and procedures of the courts, including their openness and accountability to the public, shall be established by statute."

Justice Borden's argument against this constitutional amendment was two-fold. First, he argued that the recent scandal that precipitated the call for such an amendment had nothing to do with the judicial branch's power to make rules governing the courts.

Second, he maintained that such an amendment is unnecessary now since internal reforms are already under way that, if implemented, will provide for far greater transparency than is currently the case.

It was a good argument, articulately presented. But I think it falls short on both accounts.

It was not just the Sullivan scandal that precipitated the initiative for a constitutional amendment. It was also the protocols that came to light a few years ago, in which a large number of court files and proceedings had been clandestinely closed to the public, and the judicial branch's vigorous attempt to keep some of those records secret - including the identities of the judges who entered sealing and closure orders.

In fact, these are just two of the more publicized examples of what many consider judicial arrogance - or "robe-itis" as it is now called. Other examples include the decision to keep the meetings of the Superior Court Rules Committee closed to the public, the decision not to permit public attendance at the annual convention of judges, and the numerous decisions of judges to prohibit cameras in their courtrooms. One judge even prohibited note-taking by a reporter in her courtroom.

Interestingly enough, each one of these decisions has been, or is in the process of being, changed under Justice Borden's enlightened leadership. But the fact is that no remedial action occurred until the recent scandals unfolded. So why shouldn't we be skeptical that without a change in the one fundamental law that binds the courts - the constitution - these improvements won't be reversed by a judiciary led by someone other than Justice Borden?

The fact is, there is no guarantee without a constitutional amendment.

Why is this so important? In effect, Justice Borden is attempting to establish within the judicial branch, by rule and policy, something akin to our Freedom of Information Act. But alleged violations of these provisions would not be reviewable by, or appealable to, any independent authority, such as the Freedom of Information Commission. Nor would any rule change be subject to legislative approval, as it is in the federal system.

Thus, any newfound transparency would be exclusively at the sufferance of the very judges who, in the future, may decide to close records or proceedings from public scrutiny.

I certainly understand why judges don't want independent oversight of such decisions. No one likes someone else looking over their shoulders and second-guessing them. But in our system of government, that's what "checks and balances" are all about, and the judicial branch shouldn't be immune from such accountability under some self-serving system it designs to cloak itself from that accountability.

Justice Borden made some legitimate points in arguing against amending the constitution. And I agree that the constitution should not be amended without very good reason. But I submit there well might be such reasons in this instance. At the least, the legislature should look closely at the issue, hold public hearings on it, and then decide whether to institute the constitutional processes for amendment, in which the ultimate decision would be left to the people of this state.

Mitchell W. Pearlman is the former executive director of the Connecticut Freedom of Information Commission and a member of the Governor's Commission on Judicial Reform.

* * * *

Click Here for my take on Judicial Corruption. Post includes YouTube Videos

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

brazilian police shoot protesters (anti bush riot 2005)

Government Harassment of Citizens

Racism, Separate and Unequal, and Blanket Retaliation is the result of a Government that has no Oversight. We the People need to keep them honest.

Abuse has been going on since the beginning of any government.

America is no exception.

It gets better or worse based on the public’s perception and willingness to accept the party line.

I wanted Civilian Oversight of Police and Judicial Accountability.

For that I was stalked and investigated by the Connecticut State Police.

I was mugged. I went to prison losing everything. Silence signifies acceptance. If you don’t care, why should anyone care if it happens to you or yours?

If I did “overreact” to being mugged; being beaten from behind, having my life threatened, and then ending the attempted robbery with pepper spray, and if I was guilty of anything, the punishment did not fit the crime. There should be some consistency in the courts and in law enforcement. It is now a “Free for All” for them and “Freedom for No One” for us.

Should I not get any decent employment or be denied most lodging opportunities because of a bogus criminal record that directly resulted for Free Speech, speaking out, about official abuse in newspapers and proposing legislation to elected officials? Isn’t America founded on individual rights, access to government, redress of grievances, and the ability to voice one’s opinions?

Giving citizens a criminal record is a way of making a vast underclass. Jim Crow still lives in America, it is just more covert. Racism is institutionalized in a pretend Drug War with policies to make a larger and larger divide among America’s two remaining classes.

In most Connecticut court rooms a judge can tell a defendant to take a deal, guilty or not, without a lawyer, “Take the Deal of Else!”

It is Black and White, the abuse is real and plain to see.

I have posted a video within (click here, scroll to bottom) this post where citizen testify in front of the Connecticut legislature in December of 1996. Connecticut Police are guilty of rape, murder, and a host of other crimes, reams of accusations not even investigated. If a woman is raped by a Connecticut State Trooper the case might not even be investigated and the whole police force can then go after the woman that was out to tarnish “their image”.

Governor M. Jodi Rell nominates judges with absolutely no criminal or family court experience. The legislature then puts on their rubberstamp of approval. Almost no judges ever get punished for anything, especially in Connecticut. Until officials, prosecutors, police, and judges fear arrest and prison, like the rest of us, the abuse will only continue.

The government, police, judges, and prosecutors should not be able to do surveillance on their slightest whim with no oversight of their activities. Past history and wars should tell us where America is heading without public vigilance and intervention.

Stand up and be heard now or all future generations will blame you for the downfall of America and Global Freedom as a few once knew it for a short time. Having Rights and Freedoms does not come free. Do your part, expect to get honest value for your taxes paid in.

If an American President such as George W. Bush needs to be hauled off in handcuffs by regular cops to face a trial for crimes committed, for all officials to get that the party is over and they all our accountable for their actions, so be it.

If a doctor cuts off a patient's wrong leg, he or she could be held accountable, criminally and civilly.

If a judge, prosecutor, and police do worse to a citizen and then do it again to other citizens there is no punishment. There is no one to complain to, and when you do, too often there is retaliation and you are worse off, just seeking justice.

If an average citizen steals a candy bar from a convenience store, there could be jail time and a permanent criminal record.

Trillions of dollars worth of candy bars are stolen by dishonest officials and their corrupt corporate buddies all the time, maybe as a matter of course everyday. Why shouldn’t they be subject to the same laws and same procedures as the rest of us?

Trial transcripts and any video or audio recordings should be available to any citizen going through court proceedings. Access to the courts is denied to those that can’t get what they need to fight back.

There should be impact statements before any citizens. There should be an individual impact statement, family impact statement, and societal impact statement. I would not have been nailed and there would be some much less abuse if impact statements were made into law, nationally.

Official, Police, Prosecutorial, Attorney, and Judicial Misconduct will be the rule not the exception if something is not done, and done now.

Connecticut is a very good example of how bad a state can get.

America, pay attention and act before it is too late for all future generations, and We the People, now as we speak.

-Steven G. Erickson a.k.a. blogger Vikingas

* * * *


Justice Department Eyes Spy Program

6:51 AM EST, November 28, 2006
By LARA JAKES JORDAN, Associated Press Writer, The Hartford Courant
WASHINGTON -- The Justice Department has begun an internal investigation into its handling of information gathered in the government's domestic spying program. However, Democrats criticized the review as too narrow to determine whether the program violated federal law.

The inquiry by Glenn A. Fine, the department's inspector general, will focus on the role of Justice prosecutors and agents in carrying out the warrantless surveillance program run by the National Security Agency.

Fine's investigation is not expected to address whether the controversial program is an unconstitutional expansion of presidential power, as its critics and a federal judge in Detroit have charged.

"After conducting initial inquiries into the program, we have decided to open a program review that will examine the department's controls and use of information related to the program," Fine wrote in a letter dated Monday to House Judiciary Committee leaders. The four-paragraph letter was obtained by The Associated Press.

Justice Department spokesman Brian Roehrkasse said the agency welcomes the review: "We expect that this review will assist Justice Department personnel in ensuring that the department's activities comply with the legal requirements that govern the operation of the program."

In January, Fine's office rejected a request by more than three dozen Democrats to investigate the secret program, which monitors phone calls and e-mails between people in the U.S. and abroad when a link to terrorism is suspected.

Fine's letter outlining his review was welcomed by congressional Democrats. At the same time, they said it falls short of examining issues at the heart of the debate -- how the spying program evolved, and whether its creation violated any laws.

"A full investigation into the program as a whole, not just the DOJ's involvement, will be necessary," said Rep. Zoe Lofgren, D-Calif.

The review could include whether the spying program complies with the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, which requires judicial authorization for electronic surveillance and physical searches of people suspected of espionage or international terrorism on behalf of a foreign power. The Justice Department requests surveillance approval from the FISA court.

Democrats also questioned the timing of the review. Fine's letter noted that his office asked the White House on Oct. 20 for additional security clearances that were approved just last week -- following the Nov. 7 elections that gave Democrats control of Congress.

Noting Democrats' renewed power to subpoena Bush administration officials next year, Rep. Maurice Hinchey, D-N.Y., questioned that Fine's investigation "is only coming now after the election as an attempt to appease Democrats" who have been critical of the NSA program.

The letter was sent to House Judiciary Chairman James Sensenbrenner, R-Wis., and the panel's top Democrat and incoming chairman, Rep. John Conyers, D-Mich. Sensenbrenner had no comment. Conyers called the review "a long overdue investigation of a highly controversial program."

The Justice Department has called the program a necessary tool in the fight against terrorism, and Attorney General Alberto Gonzales is pushing congressional Republicans to authorize it by law before they cede power at the year's end -- a prospect with at best a slim shot of approval.

Former Reagan administration national security official Robert F. Turner, now associate director at the Center for National Security Law at the University of Virginia, said congressional demands for sensitive information about the program puts them at odds with long-standing presidential powers over the collection of foreign intelligence.

"It's good that the executive branch, on its own, is making sure that someone's not abusing this power," Turner said. "But when Congress usurps power vested in the president by the people through the Constitution, then it becomes the lawbreaker."

Countering, Caroline Fredrickson, the director of the ACLU's office in Washington, urged Fine "to seek the hidden truth about this program. ... No one, not even the president, is above the law."

* __

On the Net:

Justice Department:

Monday, November 27, 2006

The costs in misery when Judges are Sociopaths

Judge Jonathan Kaplan, Rockville Connecticut Superior Court

I tried to have Kaplan removed for bias against the self-employed, contactors, and landlords.

Judge Jonathan Kaplan takes pleasure in the misery of others, it is obvious on his face. He likes to break up families and to be as malicious and down as dirty as he can. He is known as a complete prick that will retaliate to the end of the earth once angered. Almost no lawyer would even dare make a complaint or talk on the record of what an absolute scumbag Kaplan is .

I was very open about it as I thought he was a disgusting piece of shit in civil court. I openly tried to have him removed and would openly show how disgusted with him I was. I wrote him a letter after the Haas vs. Erickson saying how disgusted I was with him. Kaplan was openly juvenile to me.

He then did me in as I went to prison for being a mugging victim on my own property.

I owned 3 houses and was going to retire early. I have worked little in the last 5 years as I am considered too violent to load boxes on trucks. Click on the image below for larger image. It is part of 9 pages, the last page. I used to have great credit and no criminal record. Connecticut State Trooper Langlois and Amaral committed perjury saying I never made the request to make a complaint after I was jumped on my own property.


You are losing out. I have lost out. The economy has lost out. My family continues to suffer. Judges, prosecutors, and police should not be above the law, neither should the President or anyone else. Until they face arrests and prison for wrongdoing, things will only get worse.

Sunday, November 26, 2006

What is Prison Really Like?

a recovered post Part 1:

October 06, 2003

What is prison really like?


If you have never been to prison before, you can be in for a real shock. Since prison beds have increased 10 fold from 1980 to 1999, your chances of being an inmate have become at least ten times greater.

Part 2 (The Aftermath)

What is Prison Really Like? Part 3, preparing for possible incarceration

The prison system is a business of building prisons and housing inmates at over $73/day/inmate an approximately half billion dollar taxpayer paid boon for just Connecticut alone, never mind the other states. The national figure must be staggering.

Click on the link below and I will tell you my story starting from being taken away in leg irons and chains wrapped around me.


I had kept out of trouble my entire life, and thought because I had worked so many hours on my contracting business, and in fixing up 4 Connecticut houses from a dilapidated state, the 3 and 4 family were boarded up shells, that I would not go to prison for defending myself with pepper spray when attacked from behind on my own property.

I was wrong, I was sentenced to a year in prison, 3 years probation. My attacker was not badly injured as he allegedly attacked 2 bar patrons from behind at Lark�s Cafe in Stafford Springs, CT, just days after assaulting me, according to Melissa Comstock a bartender at Lark�s and my former tenant.

I did not know it wasn�t a good idea to wear dress shoes to court if you are going to jail, sneakers are the right choice as you won�t stand out. It is also a good idea to wear several pairs of underwear and socks over each other as you can go weeks in the same underwear and socks in prison.

I wasn�t thinking of such things, I was thinking of using my 100,000 points on my Amex accumulated fixing up the houses I owned from a very bad condition to finally take a vacation, bringing my daughter to Paris.

My daughter had finally gotten permission to live with me full time. I was looking forward to going to my 20th high school reunion, the holidays, the annual family ski trip to Vermont, and doing the contracts and work I had lined up to financially recover for my mistake of investing in Connecticut.

Judge Jonathan Kaplan sentenced me at the end of October �02, I was brought downstairs put in leg irons, and was put in a holding cells. Others were screaming, jumping up and down in their cages. Hours went by, and I wondered why countless criminals don�t even get the attention of law enforcement and why they do they get all sorts of breaks in courts, as there is pity, but I was of 2 of the considered slimiest professions, contractor and landlord and got the harshest possible treatment and sentence.

I was wrapped in chains around a sweatshirt, the leg irons cut into my ankles as I stepped up onto the �ice cream� truck, the prison transport. The air was stifling and we were packed in on a steel bench with very little air to breath in the cramped quarters. The heat was on extremely hot and as sweat poured down my face and I soaked sweat through my cloths I thought I might die of heat stroke. I was so tightly wrapped in chains I could not even itch my nose and my feet were throbbing from the tight leg irons. The inmate beside me showed me his extremely long thumb nails, he told me they were for gouging eyes out.

I was transported to Hartford Correctional Center, HCC. I was photographed and put into a holding cell that was so cramped that inmates were sitting on a soiled toilet and other inmates were lying under steel benches others were standing on. The stench of sweat, feces, body order, and vomit were overpowering. Alcoholics and drug addicts were detoxing right in the holding cell and were not able to control their bodily functions in or out. Others were angry and wanted to start an altercation with anyone pressed up against them.

After hours and hours we were finally brought to get the prison uniforms, no consideration of your size is taken, you can get pants and a shirt too small to wear or too big to stay on, and the correction guards will only laugh at you if you ask to exchange. Everyone is subject to delousing, I would have thrown up but had nothing in my stomach in 12 hours. I was given injections and blood was taken with nothing being explained to me. It was done in a rough, unpleasant way. There are many inmates with HIV and other diseases.

There were no bunks available, so I was sent to the overflow in one of the cafeterias. I had to sleep on the floor packed in like sardines. Inmates were coming off drugs and alcohol so were soiling themselves and throwing up all hours, guards came in the main entrance just behind us everyday, every five minutes or so holding their noses, calling us pigs. I thought I was in hell sleeping and wearing the same underwear and socks for days and days, sharing 2 soiled toilets without seats with 100�s of others, deprived of sleep, and given food that I would not have fed my dog in Styrofoam �to go� containers that often contained soap suds and hair.

I saw someone I knew, Rodney Spittle. He was the brother of Robin Pelc. Rodney was not my tenant but he would often pass out in my former backyard, would build campfires without my permission and drink beer and do drugs until he passed out, while I was off at work all day. He was one of the runners that would service the drive-by customers on Church St, Stafford Springs, Connecticut, looking for marijuana, crack, and heroine.

Which was being sold out of Ken and Robin Pelcs�s apartment. I could not get police to do anything about the customers coming to the Pelcs� apartment all hours, for the assaults going on inside and outside their apartment over drug deals gone bad, infidelity, noise disturbing other tenants etc that was going on as if it was a Jerry Springer set.

It wasn�t until the Pelcs were faced with a DSS drug test for leaving their children without food and supervision, did they leave without a trace to avoid punishment. They left my home with all the doors smashed, most of the windows, urinated on trash with their crack pipe underneath, and wires ripped out of the walls. The arriving police officer told me that he nor the courts served landlords, not wanting to take my felony property damage complaint against the Pelcs.

Rodney Spittle came to me, saying a gang member demanded money from him or he would be dead. Rodney was scared and asked my help, which I declined. He called his �girl� Melody, to get the gang member�s brother the money for the 13 to 14 bags of heroine that Rodney owed the gang member for.

There were constant assaults, inmates on inmates, pools of blood could be seen on the floor daily. The only activity I would risk being in large groups was to wait for the phone. A 15 minute collect phone call would cost whomever I called around $20, which was split by MCI Worldcom and the State of Connecticut. Inmate calls are a billion dollar a year business nationally and are a boon to states and phone companies. Inmate families, most of them struggling, are bilked out of desperately needed cash just to keep in contact with an imprisoned family member.

I was labeled as a �snitch� by other inmates and by guards. I had not belonged to the criminal or drug culture and was lost amongst the inmates that were. I feared for my life. I was told I would spend my time in hell, HCC.

But, shortly after a federal prison inspectors allegedly came to investigate HCC for unsanitary, unsafe conditions, October 29 (give or take) 2002, and about 4 to 4:30AM we were taken out of the cafeteria after hiding our mattresses in a storeroom we were locked in the shower area, elbow to elbow, away from the inspectors.

I was called to Captain Murphy�s office. He mocked me about being a political prisoner, about my problems with police, and about my writing letters to the editor. I was asked whether I was going to report conditions at HCC. Murphy yelled at me and told me, I was, �Outta here!�

I was put in a cell by myself and feared that at any time, a group of Connecticut State police were going to come and beat me. I had tried to complain about 2 Connecticut police officers that committed perjury at my trial, and feared all that I had written in newspapers critical of police was going to be taken out on me in a beating in that holding cell.

I was sent to Bergin Correctional Institute, Storrs, Connecticut. I was strip searched after visits with my family, and various guards mocked me bring up my feud with State Police. It told me they talked to each other. I stayed on my bunk as much as possible to avoid any concocted events or problems that could have kept me for years in prison.

I was called separately to get my inmate legal mail. Lt Desso, also a Stafford Connecticut police officer, left me out in the cold winter winds to suffer. Desso would mock me as he illegally read my privileged legal mail. Desso would point me out to other corrections officers. Desso told me I was not allowed back in Stafford, even to visit, as he released me, and other guards mocked and laughed at me.

For some reason, I was given a TS date to leave, and it was not honored. Mine came and went and I noticed other inmates getting out on their dates. I was held in prison beyond my TS date, why? I tried to take classes while in prison, they were court ordered, and it would have been more convenient to take them for free while incarcerated. But again, I got separate and unequal treatment.

I was prevented from taking the classes, given the runaround, probably to cause me further inconvenience by having to pay for classes and having appointments every week around seeing my parole officer.

Parole officer, Eric Ellison, screamed at me and threatened me upon release. He claimed he had talked to his friend, Desso, about me. Ellison demanded to know if I was complaining about any police officers and told me I would be going back to prison if I contacted the media. I talked to others that had Ellison was in charge of. They said he was friendly and some had Ellison before after other bids in prison.

After my parole was up I went to Manchester Connecticut Adult probation. I was kept waiting for about 3 hours, and noticed others that came, were in and out, except me. Probation officer, Angela K., told me she was sick of getting phone calls regarding me, and if I did not find a way to get transferred out of Connecticut, she would be inclined just to �violate� me.

So I faced up to another 3 or 4 years in Connecticut prison. I came up with an address in Massachusetts, and was told to leave Connecticut within an hour or face prison. I packed my stuff up and left the State. Massachusetts authorities did not even bother contacting me for a number of weeks, my Massachusetts probation officer could not understand why I got prison time for a first offense, for 2 relatively minor misdemeanor offenses and a RIDICULOUS 3 years probation.

I have been treated with respect and decency by Massachusetts authorities, unlike the nightmare I endured in Connecticut. I had seen countless criminals, frauds, parasites, and drug dealers go unpunished for years in Connecticut. I had invested in the American Dream buying and fixing up investment properties in Connecticut.

That and testing free speech in Connecticut newspapers, being critical of the courts and police, is what landed me in prison not, in my opinion, for using pepper spray ending the beating I was taken in my dark driveway.

I no longer consider Connecticut an American State and this was my prison experience.

Steven G. Erickson

P.S. my story of how I ended up in prison is posted here Oct. 4, 2003.


Updates, January 25, 2004, 1:37 PM EST:

Click for January 25, 2004, post discussing prison and prisoners.

David Mark Tracey

David Mark Tracey, 20, a death allegedly attributed to bad policies. He allegedly received 30 months in prison for $100 worth of drugs.


Inmate blood drained for blood product companies, who got rich, and was the public endangered?


Anatomy of a downtown America criminal breeding ground.

Picture of me, Steven G. Erickson, and my now former wife. This is the before picture, before I invested in real estate in Connecticut, found out police did not usually protect and serve downtown property and business owners, and before I wrote letters to the editor, emails, and letters critical of police and the judiciary, causing me to be railroaded to prison on a �concocted� excuse for pissing off police officer, the prosecutor who prosecuted me, and the judge who sentenced me. Exercising free speech can lead directly to a prison sentence.

Arthur L. Spada, head of the Connecticut State Police

The Story of Never Ending Sleaze

The most compact list of links to the Steven G. Erickson story: (link)

If you would like to donate to the fight against injustice, an overgrown prison system, and my continuing to write against injustice, please let me know with your pictures and stories, and if possible, donations.

Donations, pictures, and stories accepted at:

Steven G. Erickson
PO Box 730
Enfield, CT 06083-0730 (checks payable to Steven G. Erickson)

Posted by Vikingas at October 6, 2003 09:11 AM | TrackBack

I haven't commented much on these posts, Steve, but I have been reading them. You're correct that reading your mail without a search warrant is an arrestable offense. If it happened in Stafford, CT, this is the proper authority to whom to report it:

BOSTON MA 02210-2114

Phone : 617-556-4400
Fax : 617-556-0400

You might also contact the US Attorney's office in Boston. They're in charge of handling complaints of civil rights violations by state authorities, and have a duty to act upon complaints they receive. Posted by: Grim at October 6, 2003 09:56 AM

Thanks Grim. I'll follow it up.

I could be put in prison a 2nd time for testing free speech ...

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 6, 2003 10:03 AM

What happens when your attorney does little or nothing in your defense, does not call witnesses, does not appeal your case or file a reason why, and comes to see you as your ‘friend’ when you end up in prison saying the visit is not going to be charged to you, and then sends a bill for $300? Well, nothing happens to the attorney at least in my case. Agranoff told me I owed him
another $12,000, was the reason for his visit.

A stamp would have been sufficient, not a $300,
charge for a visit I did not want from him anyway.

I tried to complain to the Connecticut Statewide Grievance Committee, a panel of lawyers, that was unwilling to schedule a hearing for Attorney Michael Agranoff, who charged over $17,000 to defend me against 2 misdemeanor charges when I had no record.

The fee seems excessive compared with other attorneys, and few if any ever go to prison with the very same charges, even if they have a previous record or are on probation! I had no record and the individual that brought the party to me was not even arrested.

Had I not been attacked there probably some other concocted event or charges as I was a considered a complete pain in the ass BEFORE the incident as I had been writing some very disturbing letters to the editor as police had commented on what I wrote blasting them.

If police had not consistently denied me protection and service, and harassed me when I called, maybe they could have prevented what happened, as my assailant was disturbing my neighbors often after midnight, banging on my door, for weeks before he finally caught me out in the open. There would have been no ‘event’ had I not been jumped as the party came to me, I was not looking for trouble when I came home exhausted after a double shift of work.

Brian Caldwell was going back and forth from the bar and Gauthier’s apartment 10 and � hours looking to attack me. Caldwell left a voicemail saying he was going to ‘hurt’ me at 1:00 PM and he attacked me just before midnight. But that is okay with the police, prosecutor, and Judge Jonathan Kaplan.

Having a ‘Big Mouth’ is not okay.

Does it pass the ‘smell test’ that I was sentenced to a year in prison, 3 years probation, when I was called the ‘victim’ in a follow up police report, police were unwilling to do until a month of me pressuring high ranking law enforcement personnel, the Chief State’s Attorney, and countless politicians.

It seems that Agranoff cooperated with the prosecutor, judge, and police and completely did not act in my best interest for a $17,000 plus fee.

If I were to have defended myself, at least I would have called the countless witnesses aware of my assailant harassing, stalking me and threatening me weeks before he attacked me, to the attack itself, the death threats, and the continuing harassment seemingly with police approval all the way up to trial.

The only witness against me was tenant Cheryl Gauthier, a tenant I had started eviction on her BEFORE the incident.

My assailant had been going in and out of her apartment waiting me out. Agranoff did not dispute Gauthier’s testimony when she would have had to been able to see through a house for her to have seen Caldwell beating me during the robbery attempt.

Cheryl Gauthier tried to have her NEW landlord arrested soon after he served her with eviction, when the new landlord took over.

I stood behind the officer that had his cuffs ready to arrest the new landlord, and told the officer, “So you only arrest landlords around here, not the criminals.”

This is a good example of how the 'Revenue Collection System' um, ah I mean how the American Justice System works in Connecticut.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 6, 2003 10:07 AM


I just sent a copy of this piece to:,,,,,,,

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 6, 2003 12:08 PM

The idea of prison for non-violent offenders blows my mind. It's simply ridiculous.

And, to put a punk rock spin on it, my friends band, which prides itself on democratic, working class rights, has a song about Lori Berenson, a political prisoner help capitive in Peru for allegedly leading a insurgent organization. Lori Berenson was a writer, working on articles for progressive political magazines.

Steve, you'd probably be interested in this because it violates, terribly, her freedom of speech/expression, for which she, like you, was jailed, but also gets into the whole living and working in another country deal.

I'll give you the link, and you really should listen to the song too. If you have some means of DLing it, its called Free Lori Now by the Hudson Falcons. I can email it to you if you cant find it. But, anyhow, this is an infuriatingly interesting situation:

Posted by: mel at October 6, 2003 02:12 PM

Thanks, Mel.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 6, 2003 02:41 PM

What happens to someone that has been incarcerated?

For me all that I built up over a lifetime, I found out can disappear in half a second.

Why save or plan for retirement? I worked extra hours, nights and weekends, all for nothing. It can be taken away if you upset someone in power or if you have something worth taking and someone more powerful wants it.

All relationships whether it be a marriage, child/parent bond, friendships, business relationships, credit, home and vehicle ownership can be undone permanently with even a small stint in jail.

I have to worry about going back in prison for the slightest violation of probation.

Which was in, Connecticut, a probation officer that did not like receiving calls regarding me. It was more convenient for her to violate me on probation sending me back to prison for years or sending me out of state, not to get a few phone calls. So all I do for the next three years can be undone in half a second and I am back in prison just on someone’s whim or chance mishap.

If all that I had can be taken in half a second, including my so called American rights, I never had them to begin with and rights aren’t guaranteed even in America.

Imagine what that must be like for me every second of every day.

What bugs me more than anything, is that I was harassed, terrorized and stalked for weeks doing all I could do to avoid my tormentor. He is preferred, encouraged, and was never punished.

Being too tired to work any longer installing wall coverings in offices for a second shift, coming home near midnight was all it took for me to be caught in my dark driveway unaware.

I knew from what I had written in the newspaper, the comments I was getting, and how police officers were harassing me, that I was going to be done on the slightest excuse.

Representative Mordasky’s aid warned me after I had suggested ‘Civilian Oversight’ of police that I had gone too far and should leave Connecticut as soon as was possible.

I couldn’t leave the 100’s of thousand of dollars I had spent fixing up my 3 houses containing 9 apartments. I felt I can’t run from 4 years of hard work and leave just when I was going to see a profit and see that I was going to have a retirement in is as little as 12 years.

It would have been better if I had just abandoned my life and escaped out of Connecticut before I was assaulted or something worse happened to me.

Living downtown or having a business downtown you are dependent on police acting as advertised, if they don’t your life or quality of life and financial well being, hang in the balance.

I demanded help with the crime, fraud, property damage and nuisance crime just so I could survive. I was wrong for that.

I did not know it would be my undoing. They probably should not teach American children what might now be untrue, as saps like me, believed in the American ideals like free speech, free enterprise, and other crap I was taught up through college.

From all I have seen the last five years, maybe the US Constitution belongs in a museum or even the fairy story section for children, because maybe it no longer applies or never did.

Right, comrades?

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 6, 2003 06:21 PM

I can see you've had a rough time of it--all of us can. It's clear that you're angry--rightfully, under the circumstances. And I agree, as far as it goes, that nonviolent offenders shouldn't be locked up, when a fine or community service would do. (I'm not really in favor of locking up the violent ones either, now that you mention it. We've got plenty of rope.)

Nevertheless, before you condemn America to the dustbin of history, avail yourself of some of the legal remedies at your disposal. Put your case together, and get with the US Attorney's office. Contact the Inspectors General of the Postal Service. See what comes of it.

Things do break down sometimes, but there are more defenses available to you than your pitiful lawyer advised. There may be no guarantee that the government won't wrongfully tred upon you rights, but that doesn't mean the rights aren't real, or that the government isn't obliged to uphold them. You may yet find satisfaction through the law: not only redress, but satisfaction.

Posted by: Grim at October 6, 2003 08:28 PM

Thank you, Grim,

I contacted the US Dept of Justice, the US Atty of CT, the Atty General, the Chief State's Atty, and the Governor's office with no luck.

I tried to lodge complaints against police officers, the prosecutor, and the judge, before I was even in trouble.

Maybe things are different in other states, but I have not found a venue in which to lodge complaints or get any type of satisfaction. If officials can act on their personal whim or in collusion with others, it is not American.

There was such a sloppy job done of my trial it was almost comical. Attorney Michael Agranoff let a worker for the police on the jury to become the jury foreman against my wishes. If he had any want to win my case he would not have done that. The lawyer grievance committee won't even schedule a hearing against my complaints against Agranoff, who won't even release my legal file to me, if one even exists.

To try and dismiss our only witness when I wasn't paying attention and then catch Agranoff, only to have him not ask the case winning question and Agranoff verbally attacked our witness as if he were the prosecutor.

My lawyer clearly acted with the prosecution, police, and judge. Collusion is illegal. I watched Connecticut State Troopers Ameral and Langlais boldly lie on the stand, committing perjury to get my conviction. Ameral turned red and it seemed obvious he was lying on the stand.

I would doubt anyone in the history of Connecticut went to prison with no previous record for pepper spraying someone who beat them and tried to rob them on their own property, where the assailant and attempted robber is not even arrested.

I guess I did break the biggest law as revealed
by Jack Nicholson when he was being questioned by the paparazzi, "Don't embarrass a cop in his presences." I did and paid the price. I wrote critical pieces om law enforcement and the judiciary in newspapers. Free Speech is not free in regards to speaking out about police.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 6, 2003 08:56 PM

I'm sorry that things have worked out so badly for you. For what it is worth, things are different in other states. As I think I mentioned elsewhere, I wrote a hard piece on police corruption in Savannah, GA, once, and had the state GBI respond to my request for an investigation by referring it to the local police, with my name and address attached. The corruption continues--but no one ever harrassed me over it.

I once got out of a speeding ticket in Bryan County, Georgia, by pointing out that the police officer had not offered to check the radar. Why did he fail? Well, because he'd not noticed that I was carrying a .44 Remington Magnum revolver until I pointed it out by handing him my firearms license. After that, all his procedures went to hell. The trooper tried to pretend none of this had happened on the witness stand, perjuring himself. Even though I called him on it on before the court (and, in fairness, even though I was red-handed guilty of driving 88 in a 55), in front of everyone, the judge followed the law and threw out the ticket.

Maybe you're right, and you've been reaping the whirlwind because you've tried so hard to be kind and play by the rules. I always advocate that a free man ought to be ready to defy the world and "appeal to arms, and the God of Hosts". Maybe a free man has to be just dangerous enough that the law will fear to tred on his rights.

I would hate to think that was true, and prefer to think that things will yet work out for you. Greater injustices even than this have come around in my days--I have seen the Ku Klux Klan banished from the public square, where they used to march openly on the fourth of July. I have seen a lot of things, and most of it gives me hope.

But in truth, it was not the law that banished the Klan, but the strong arms and voices of men who would tolerate them no longer. It may be, at last, that rights extend only so far as we are willing to defend them, at peril and even onto death: Non enim propter gloriam, diuicias aut honores pugnamus set propter libertatem solummodo quam Nemo bonus nisi simul cum vita amittit.

It sounds like you're a better man than I am, as I have frequently treated the law with less honor than she deserves. I wish you the best of her--and I still hope you will get it. It doesn't sound like you're the sort who won't fight in the face of injustice. Good luck.

Posted by: Grim at October 6, 2003 10:25 PM

It not legal to defend yourself in Connecticut. If I were in any other state I probably would have been ok. Connecticut, in my opinion, is the least friendly to small business and property investors than other states I am aware of.

An Ellington, CT, convenience store owner told me how she had coffee at the gas station when it was just a gas station. There was a donation cup near the coffee. A Connecticut revenue agent contacted her coffee supplier, found out she did not charge tax on the sometimes 'free' coffee but figured out she had to pay back taxes, fines, and fees something between $5000 and $15,000.

I was arbitrarily sent a bill for $146,000 by the Connecticut revenue department. It said it had to be paid in 30 days or my property would be confiscated. I called them telling I owed them nothing, and the agent agreed. It seemed odd, as I had about that much equity in my 3 pieces of property.

There seems to be a cop on every street corner in Connecticut. It should be the safest state there is. Except the police are out after honest citizens for traffic fines, fees, and even property confiscation. There is always some type of sting going on to nail some type of small business.

If Connecticut authorites targetted criminals the way they go after revenue, there would not be the frauds, prostitutes, drug users, alcoholics, and career criminal parasites in the Connecticut downtowns in such numbers. There seems to be an over abundance of these characters in downtown Connecticut as compared to other states lowering the quality of life, hurting small business and property investors.

When I first started fixing up the boarded up properties in Stafford, Connecticut, I was freshly divorced. I was actually married to a lingerie model I had met in a country above Poland, so I wasn't looking too hard especially in Stafford as I like women with teeth and that aren't tattooed head to toe as many of the downtown women are.

A buxom blond started hitting on me. I eventually started dating her. She broke down told me that she worked as an informant for the police and was offered $10,000 to compromise me, find out if there was any drug dealing, or other not so kosher things going on so that my property could be confiscated. I also found out that Barbara S. was married.

She told me should wanted to leave her husband for me. I dumped her.

Barbara told me she could make or break me and I could get a DUI or whatever if I did not see her. I didn't drink and drive any way and never did drugs so I was careful of being out and about.

Barbara would show up if I was out or on a date and follow me, for over a year. A woman I had a first date with was stopped and searched near my house after leaving, and then followed to near her home 45 minutes away in upper crust Farmington/Canton and stopped and searched again. The woman I had a first date said she had never been hassled like that by the police and did not want a second date.

I did get police protection and assistance while I dated Barbara, when I was no longer her 'mark'. Barbara said she was instrumental in taking one bar over drug dealing and was working on the another in Stafford. If they prosecuted the drug patrons as caught, businesses would have customers not involved in drugs, and those caught would not be facing serious charges but would be 'corrected' earlier in the process.

I never knew how things really work, and how sleazy those in power, namely the State Police in Connecticut, operate. It seems more like a mafia operation than law enforcement.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 7, 2003 06:17 AM

I'll call shenanigans on this. You were sentenced to a year in prison for using pepper spray? What grade spray was it? If it was illegal where you were, why did you have it? Why were you, for no apparent reason, classified as a political prisoner? According to your story, you were just minding your own business when cops in prison started harassing you for no reason at all. Why did you basically let it all happen to you? Why didn't you get a different lawyer? What about public defender? Why not appeal to the ACLU? If you were sentenced at the "end of October �02", how were you posting on September 21?

Why does a quick search of Jonathan Kaplan return no hits on Connecticut's Judge lookup page? In fact, a google search for his name and connecticut judges returns nothing on any judges of any level.

Sorry, but your story doesn't jive. No idea why you'd make something up like this, but there are too many holes to believe it.

Posted by: Court at October 12, 2003 02:03 AM

NM, there is a judge Kaplan, but that still doesn't explain the rest of it.

Posted by: Court at October 12, 2003 02:27 AM

The court's phone number is 860-870-3200, Rockville (Vernon), 20 Park St, Connecticut.

Within the transcripts of the trial, the dialogue where my assailant admits threatening to kill me after demanding money, must be within that text, which is to the best of my knowlege.

I had tried to have Judge Jonathan Kaplan removed for bias against the self-employed, namely landlords, for about 2 years before the incident. I tried to have him removed through State Sen Anthony Guglielmo, former Rep Mordasky, and speaking out at the Enfield Property Owner's Associtation meeting and the lobbying group in Hartford.

Rep Mordasky's aid told me that I should leave Connecticut before it was too late, as she feared for my safety after I had tried to suggest 'Civil overight' of police laws and because I had been outspoken about the bias of police and the courts in newspapers.

I would suppose it is not in the public's best interest to put a 'victim' of an assault and attempted robbery, that has no previous record, in prison for such misdemeanor charges given the circumstances, while being ok with the attempted robber/assailant receiving no punishment.

If you are not getting Judge Jonathan Kaplan of Connecticut information, you are using the wrong search engine.

It makes no sense to ignore drug and other crimes in downtown Stafford Connecticut, to only put someone that complains about crime and disrespects the police and the courts in newspapers by exposing the truth, in prison.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 13, 2003 09:06 AM

The grade of the pepper spray was twice the power of what cops in CT carry but is legal. I had accidently sprayed myself while struggling with my assailant. He did get the worst of the spray and I had gotten the worst of the beating as he jumped me from behing and landed several good punches before I turned around.

My assailant puked on the side of my face, down my back and on my front.

When I came out of my apartment, after changing my shirt, and running water in my eyes, I encountered CT Troopers, Langlais and Ameral, and told them I wished to make a complaint against my assailant for trying to rob and then attacking me. They refused to listen to the taped threats that were on my voicemail and even on tenant's answering maching, saying he (Brian Caldwell) would be 'hurting' me when I got home.

Brian Caldwell allegedly was telling everyone he would see for about 2 weeks before he attacked me that he would 'kill' me or attack me before he did. I tried to avoid him and got as quickly from my vehicle into my apartment, but was too tired from working a double shift when he finally did catch me out in the open on my property.

The Connecticut State Police would only hassle and ridicule me if I called. I was hoping one of my tenants would call when he would be banging on my door after midnight, saying he wanted to cut my 'dick' off screaming at the top of his lungs disturbing single family homeowners and tenants at 4 separate houses.

The police, prosecutor, and Judge Kaplan must prefer someone that stalks, threatens, assaults, pisses on public buildings, passes out on sidewalks, is an alcoholic drug user (admitted in court) that robs people to a property investor that fixes up and rents out boarded up houses, but is outspoken, complaining about police and the court system in newspapers. BIG MOUTHS go to prison, not necessarily serious criminals in Connecticut.

Putting someone in prison, completely wrecking their financial and family life, for speaking out
and proposing laws, is CENSORSHIP, and is a major violation of my 1st Amendment rights.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 13, 2003 09:20 AM

for more on my story, click on my name

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 17, 2003 07:03 AM

Dear Connecticut Attorney General, October 17, 2003
Subject: Docket # CR01-0074672, Rockville Court, Connecticut, 20 Park St.

With all due respect, I am trying to convey my story without a tone of anger, which is impossible. I mean no disrespect to you in any of my words below. I admit a lack of tact and can be guilty of not having basic common sense, but I have worked hard my entire life, spoke my mind too often, and have tried to improve my life and for those around me as long as I have been old enough to be aware. I feel a grave injustice has occurred and wish to make you aware for possibly investigating my claims.

Should the Justice System, including law enforcement, in a State, act in anyway similar to a KKK infested state, as was the case in some States at the height of the Klan?

Judge Jonathan Kaplan was aware of me being stalked, harassed, threatened, including my life, while my assailant and I struggled as I defended myself, ending the assault in my dark driveway with pepper spray. In court late October 2002, my assailant admitted to the judge that he, Brian Caldwell, had threatened my life while demanding money. Isn’t that attempted robbery?

Is it strange that police refused to arrest Caldwell, the prosecutor refused to sign Caldwell’s arrest application, and a judge is fine with a landlord being beaten, threatened, stalked before and after the incident, attempted robbery, but is not ok with a landlord ‘overreacting’ defending him/herself?

I was called the victim, when I finally got the police to take my statement almost a month later. But, prosecutor John Panone, refused to sign the arrest application for my assailant, refused to drop the charges against me when I was declared the ‘victim’, and even refused to offer me the AR program that I was eligible for that would have ended up in my charges being erased.

I was sentenced to one year in prison and 3 years probation, had no former record, and was defending myself on my own property during a robbery attempt.

Troopers Ameral and Langlais, refused to take my statement/complaint the night I was attacked on my property, refused to interview witnesses, refused to look at my injuries, but paraded me around the 3 and 4 family houses in Stafford Springs, CT, in front of my neighbors and tenants, then leaving me propped up against a police car with the blue lights flashing for as many as 15 minutes to be displayed, lit, and prominent, for all passing traffic on the major Rt. of 190.

I had spent 4 years and 100’s of thousands and dollars, blood and sweat, fixing up those formerly boarded up properties.

The criminals and drug dealers still operate in Stafford Springs, Connecticut. Yet, after police officers had bragged that ‘Big Mouth’ was going to be run out of town, and taught a lesson, and had bragged I was going to prison before I even went to trial, justice has not been served.

Troopers Ameral and Langlais committed perjury in order that I be convicted. The State Police Internal Affairs refuses to deny nor to take my complaint against officers.

I feel my First Amendment rights have been violated, as I had complained about police and the local court system in newspapers, and had proposed legislation inflammatory to police and those in the judiciary BEFORE I was railroaded to prison.

Your attention to this matter would be greatly appreciated,
Steven G. Erickson
PO Box 730
Enfield, CT 06083

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 17, 2003 08:16 AM

I have cut and pasted 2 police reports Connecticut State Police Internal Affairs refuses to take nor deny.
-Steven G. Erickson

RE: Landlord Rights (by Steven G. Erickson[CT])
Posted on: Oct 2, 2003 7:14 PM

Connecticut State Police Internal Affairs refused to take nor deny these complaints:

Steven G. Erickson February 14, 2003
PO Box 730 Enfield, CT 06083-0730

To whom it may concern at Connecticut State Police Internal Affairs: (fax to 203-238-6447, tel 238-6390)

I belief Troopers Ameral and Langlais of Connecticut State Police, Troop C, Tolland Connecticut, committed perjury in my criminal trial at Rockville GA#19, 20 Park St, Connecticut on 10-22-02, to get me convicted on 2 misdemeanor charges.

I would like to formerly lodge a complaint against Trooper Ameral and Langlais as I believe they perjured themselves. Trooper Ameral seemed to turn red and choke over his words as he testified that when asked whether or not I had asked to make a statement and identified myself 10-11-01, after I was nearly robbed, beaten, and threatened on my own property at night after arriving home with Clayton Varno in my van.

Troopers Ameral and Langlais refused to listen to the taped threats on Sue xxxx answering machine against me, 10-11-01, before I was assaulted, to take Sue xxxx statement, Apt x, 5 Church St., Stafford Springs, CT 06076 (860-684-xxxx). The pair also refused to take my statement, refused to listen to the threats against me from my assailant made from 1:00 PM that day against me.

I had identified myself as a crime victim, my name, and that I wished to make a complained. Both officers denied me this. Trooper Ameral refused to take my statement during processing 10-12-01, and refused to listen to my voicemail with the threats against me.

My assailant was not arrested. I asked Trooper Ameral more than once to make a complaint and wanted my statement taken. I called out while being held, and asked to make a complaint against my assailant for attempted robbery, assault, and the threatening of me, Sgt Sticca refused to take my statement, 10-12-01.

I called Troop C, when I arrived home in the morning after being held at Troop C, Trooper Decker listened to my entire account of the previous events from the late evening before. I believe he interviewed tenants that had heard my assailant threaten my life and were aware of my assailant going back and forth from the local bar all day looking for me, each time saying he was going to hurt or kill me when I got home.

Trooper Decker politely refused my 2 or more requests to take my written statement regarding the events from the previous day.

My assailant continued to harass and threaten me and attempted to beat me again, Oct 18, 2001. I called the State Police and I believe it was Trooper Colleen Anuszewski, who responded to the call maybe sometime between 8PM and 9PM.

She listened to the threats on my voicemail and listened to my account of the threats made against me and that I had just nearly escaped a 2nd beating by locking myself in my office in my other multi family house, 3 Church St, Stafford Springs, CT.

My assailant came after me 7 times in the time before my trial. 4 of the times I reported the incidents to police.

There was a follow up investigation that calls me the victim of the assault in which I have included. This tells me that if my statement was taken before I was arrested that I would never have been arrested, and at the time of the 2nd report, I think my charges should have been dropped.

Sgt Izzarelli took my statement and interviewed Sue xxxx, possibly Clayton Varno, and others. Sgt Izzarelli came calling on me and in the presence of Sue xxxx, seemed surprised that my assailant was not arrested and with my case in general, in my opinion.

I believe I had previous arguments with Trooper Langlais, over teens drinking, fighting, and selling drugs off my front lawn, and my displeasure over losing sleep and with the lack of anything being done. Langlais may have been one of the officers on a previous occasion to Oct 11, 2001, that were chanting, "Oh Stevie, Oh

Stevie, Oh Stevie!" outside my office door waking me up maybe 2AM or 3AM in the morning maybe an hour or so after I had called in and complained about intoxicated teenagers, banging into my house, and being so loud they were keeping me awake. The contents of this letter are to my best belief and knowlege. Thank you, Steven G. Erickson --

RE: Landlord Rights (by Steven G. Erickson[CT])
Posted on: Oct 2, 2003 7:16 PM
Steven G. Erickson April 16, 2003
xxx xxxx (an address)

To Whom It May Concern at the Connecticut State Police Internal Affairs Unit (fax to 203-238-6447, tel 238-6390.

Subject: Trooper Mulcahey’s possible violation of my (Steven G. Erickson) 1st and 14th Amendment rights, civil rights violations, and improper conduct unbecoming of a State Law Official

I believe Trooper Mulcahey acted improperly in telling me I would be arrested if I pursued any charges or allegations against anyone and did not leave the State of Connecticut.

I had brought a tape that Trooper Mulcahey took possession of threats against my daughter, her life, by a man who was sexually obsessed with my then 14 year old daughter and her friend Leann.

The tape also had threats against me, possibly 15 to 20 involving Peter Coukos. Please look into my allegations and take my complaint.

From statements made by Peter Coukos, before I was harassed by him telling me that the Stafford Resident Trooper and Stafford Police Officers did not like him (Peter Coukos) getting along with me and encouraged him to harass me and get rid of me.

After making this statement, Peter Coukos, told me that if I did not write him a check for $30,000 he would make up a false police report, report me to the building inspector for possible code violations, and would try and say I had committed fraud in some way or another fabricating a complaint.

I was also told I was evicted from the property by Peter Coukos, when I believe only a court order could bar me from 3 and 5 Church St.

Stafford Springs, CT, and that it was entirely illegal that I could be told I was barred from Stafford Springs and/or Connecticut, by someone saying they are speaking on behalf of the police.

I asked Trooper Mulcahey to take my complaint against Peter Coukos more than once and over time from as early as February 2002 into the Summer of 2002, regarding Peter Coukos threatening me, assaulting me, locking me of my apartment, blocking my vehicles in the driveway, breaking into my apartment, stealing my van seats and pick up truck cap, etc.

I believe it was an admission to these crimes by Peter Coukos when he signed an agreement not to harass me and to settle my Small Claims suit I brought against him regarding the stolen property.

I do not think it honorable and legal for a State Trooper to threaten me with arrest for being the victim of crimes, not the perpetrator, if I pursued matters taken in police reports, and if I did not leave Stafford Springs and/or Connecticut as soon as was possible.

I find it disturbing that Peter Coukos, claimed to me that the Resident State Trooper had told him, “Big Mouth is going to be shut up,” “Big Mouth is going to be run out of town,” and “Big Mouth is going to be taught a lesson,” before the harassment began, telling me it was encouraged and condoned possibly violating federal and Connecticut laws by police officers and Peter Coukos.

What is contained in this letter is to my best belief and knowledge. Please look into my allegations and take my complaint. Thank you, Steven G. Erickson P.S. the address of some of the violation is 3 and 5 Church St., Stafford Springs, CT 06076 --

RE: Landlord Rights (by Steven G. Erickson[CT])
Posted on: Oct 2, 2003 7:19 PM
October 2, 2003 Heard from a former tenant today and was informed that Peter Coukos called police in Stafford Connecticut today to 5 Church St, Stafford Springs, CT, and they met with him at the address to discuss his allegations that I broke into his basement, kicking in the door, leaving my picture, and a note saying “F*ck the Police.” Peter later was overheard saying he had a gun permit, could carry a gun if I were to come around the property. I hope Peter Coukos does not have a gun permit as he allegedly ran a woman off the road hitting her car repeatedly getting a DUI, takes large amounts of pain killers, is known to smoke marijuana daily, and allegedly attended NA after James Hogancamp and Vicky Tamaro supplied and smoked crack with him, getting him addicted. Peter Coukos is also known to drink large amounts of alcohol daily. --

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at October 22, 2003 07:30 AM

Brian Caldwell, the alleged alcoholic drug user that attacked me, has allegedly been harassing elderly residents at Avery Park in Stafford, Connecticut, when there are all night drug and alcohol parties at Frank Armstrongs apartment.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at November 2, 2003 07:31 AM

post on

Quote for the Day (by Nancy[MI])
Posted on: Nov 1, 2003 3:24 AM
Message: "If you want to know how rich you really are, find out what would be left of you tomorrow if you should lose every dollar you own tonight". William J. H. Boetcker, Clergyman 1873-1962 --


RE: Quote for the Day (by SAM[OR])
Posted on: Nov 1, 2003 9:53 AM
Message: Its kinda like retiring... --


RE: Quote for the Day (by Steven G. Erickson[CT])
Posted on: Nov 2, 2003 9:17 AM
Message: good quote. Thank you. --


RE: Quote for the Day (by Anon[us])
Posted on: Nov 2, 2003 11:21 AM
Message: Steven you kind of found that out, however you survived and passed with flying colors, the second time around will be a piece of cake with your kind of tenacity...GO GET're millionaire material, you got staying power. and Mr. thats all you need. --

Posted by: at November 2, 2003 03:09 PM

I think that the circumstances under which you were sent to prison are totally rediculous. But I do not think that the conditions of prisons are terribly unreasonable (even in Connecticut). Exactly what kind of treatment do you think criminals deserve?

Posted by: Fairy at November 18, 2003 06:37 PM

an open 'letter' to Governor Rowland of Connecticut. Click 'letter'

Posted by: letter at November 24, 2003 09:58 PM

I fell onto this site by accident and just read this story. It was the most interetsing, and while I know it was horrible for you, story I have read in a while. I give you credit for being able to be strong in there like that. I myself would have prob had a mental breakdown. Thanks for sharing that with everyone.

Posted by: shawn at December 5, 2003 03:40 PM

there is no such thing as free speech. Governments created this to give a sence to the public that they are living in a free style world.

Its not true. Get over it. Thats why terrorists are born.

Posted by: enigmatixz at January 17, 2004 12:02 PM

A 20 year old sent to prison for $100 worth of drugs, for 30 months ...

The story:

David Mark Tracy, Dead, Victim of Bad Policies in Connecticut

Posted by: at January 21, 2004 10:15 AM

What is Prison Really Like? Part 2 and 3

April 22, 2004

"What is Prison Really like?" Part 2 The Aftermath

Part 1, found here.

Would you like to know the telltale signs someone was in prison, and what it is like being out of prison?


The easiest way to tell if someone has been in prison is how they are around food and their willingness to answer ANY question without suspicion on why you asked the question.

Former inmates are more likely than not to have tattoos especially crude ones.

Everything and everyone is taken away from you when you become an inmate, so your value system is forever changed. Life is temporary, relationships are temporary, and owning anything, even a pencil, is temporary.

Information, associations, and potential opportunities are the new sources of wealth and power inside the walls of a prison. A meal might be traded for toilet paper, use of a pen, or a place in line to read an old newspaper. When you get visits in prison, other inmates will want to know their names, address, vehicles etc, to sent their friends on the outside to rip them off, knowing they are visiting you.

You are only allowed about 5 or less minutes to eat an entire meal, so if a former inmate is daydreaming, the whole plate of food and the drink might be consumed faster than you have ever seen before. Place your hand near the plate and your hand is struck or grabbed and you get a look like you are about to be killed, there is a good chance you are eating with a former inmate.

Every nuance of your life is exposed while you are prison, figure others have gone through your most private belongings, your clothes, vehicles, everything. If you drove yourself to court in your own vehicle and were sentenced, your car and the belongings are already long gone.

If you are in long enough, you come out without a valid driver�s license, your cloths have been thrown out or donated, so you walk out the gates with unclean, donated items that may not match and possibly aren�t even your size.

Most likely you are on parole, have a strict curfew at your new address, if you are not in a halfway house as most 2nd stinters have no one left that will associate with them, and 1st timers see who their friends really are, and how fragile family connections really are. Your children, siblings, and parents may not even accept mail from you, never mind talk to you.

Rape in prison?

Well, it is a distinct possibility. But you are more likely to be roughed up by guards or other inmates, fights occur almost all the time. If you are raped in prison, you may have to register as a sex offender, according to what I read on one of the posted sheets at a Connecticut Prison on the subject.

I was able to grow a full beard in relatively short time, and looked like Charles Manson on steroids so even hardened criminals looked at me with at least a little fear. One African American with no family on the outside receiving about $3 or so a week for commissary items, was willing to pay the $2 in trade to the floor barber to shave me and cut my hair.

Youthful or easily intimidated individuals are treated ferociously, and give up food, cloths, their toothbrush, and their only towel in absolute fear. Showing fear or telling on a guard or another inmate could mean the severest of consequences or even death.

Being on the outside it is possible that you have no belongings, bank accounts, credit cards, credit, a phone, recent job history, family contacts, friends, decent cloths, or even any great amount of on hand cash.

An inmate may never save money or accumulate possessions as they may fear losing everything at any given moment and know how temporary everything really is.

Fear of authority, lack of respect for those in authority, and knowing really how petty and wasteful Big Brother is, becomes knowledge that you will have above all others that don�t know what human nature and how ugly its head is ALWAYS there.

Others that know that you are on parole might try to have you violated and sent back for sport, or to extort something out of you. One argument with a jealous lover can send you back for years and years.

Prison should be reserved for those that are not able to be reformed when all other forms of punishment have not worked.

A 2nd DUI offense may land a person in prison and wreck their lives permanently, their families may never recover. Retirement and comfort are gone with the wind.

At home confinement, where families stay intact, jobs, home ownership, and credit stay intact, should be a consideration. Families, children, parents, and friends are punished along with the inmate, and they are completely innocent.

-Steven G. Erickson (Vikingas)

What is Prison Really Like? Part 3, preparing for possible incarceration

Additional Notes:
It is hard enough to get a job in the current market, try and get one after being out of circulation forced to be idle with nothing to do for long periods of time and no mental stimulation, with no recent job history, a criminal record, and having to report to a probation or parole officer and special classes at the most inconvenient times, multiple times in a week and actually get a job.

Just having an arrogant, life wrecking, power ego maniac call where you actually get a job, checking up on you and see if you keep that job you struggled so hard to find.

People that knew you before or even asked you advice can now slam a door in your face, insult you calling you �inmate,� or �jailbird,� not ask for you expertise or advice, avoid you, or inform others of your demise if they even ever acknowledge your existence ever again.

If you have ever pissed off even one police officer, every step you take in prison and on the outside will be met with difficulty and PAY BACK.

I may have pissed off the head of the Connecticut State Police and every member below him, with what I wrote in newspapers, emails, and proposed as legislation limitting police powers making police responsible to the people, not just to officials interested in taking our last dollar and our rights.

I tried to have multiple officers fired, the prosecutor who prosecuted me twice fired, and tried to have the judge who sentenced me removed that sentenced me for two years actively BEFORE I was railroaded for �overreacting� while being beaten from behind in my dark driveway after being stalked and threatened, and nearly robbed by an alleged police informant that was allegedly encouraged by police to harass me because I had complained to legislators and in newspapers about police misconduct and had proposed �Civilian Oversight� of police, the express route to prison and out of a state.

Free Speech has a price in America, prison!

* * *

It probably cost 10�s of thousands of dollars of taxpayer money to force me into going to trial, where my charges should have been dropped when police finally did an investigation and I was called the �victim� in police reports, but my assailant was not even arrested.

I was supposedly guaranteed a first offender program for $100 allowing to keep my clean record, home, family, pets, business, credit, health insurance, retirement, and the sum total of my life�s work, but the prosecutor I twice tried to have fired for not serving landlords refused to grant me the program.

So it is ok for someone to leave threatening messages on a voicemail, threaten to kill an individual during a robbery attempt on the individual�s property, to stalk and harass, but not to �overreact� as a victim on your own property.

I saw years of drug dealing, vandalism, break-ins, assaults, and other crimes even with the police witnessing the crimes with no arrests or nothing done, as police were more interested in property confiscation, collecting fines, and making high profile busts, not wasting their time on quality of life or social issues, protecting and serving the public.

You as a taxpayer paid $74/day (your federal taxes) to keep me confined above and beyond the trial cost.

I no longer have a business, home, credit, or much of anything. So you now pay my health insurance, replace my retirement I had worked years investing in, and now you suffer the losses to the local economy as I am no longer a consumer of many goods and services and am no longer a taxpayer.

The non-productive, criminals that greatly outnumbered me in my former Stafford Springs, Connecticut neighborhood continue their parasitic lifestyles unimpeded.

Does this make sense?

My daughter suffers as she no longer has any contact with me, does not live with me as she should, and is not getting a car, or tuition paid by me for her college. My family doesn�t see much me and suffers the embarrassment of having a member that has gone to prison.

For pepper spraying someone who was beating me on my own property, my punishment seems overly unreasonable and harsh. My father had invested $50,000 or so in the renovations to the boarded up properties. I had invested 4 years of back breaking work sometimes every waking moment, 7 days a week for too many months, investing all I had ever made in my lifetime, all lost!

So your tax dollars have been used to ruin a productive citizen, hurting the economy. Possibly millions lost, for what?

The police, prosecutors, and judges (in Connecticut) are doing little to those that are the least moral, responsible, productive, and honest. I guess they figure doing their jobs would keep them from having job security and you would ask how your money was being spent (wasted).

I see that unelected officials and law enforcement officers wield the power, obey what laws they feel like, arbitrarily ruin people�s lives, and operate the puppets, elected officials.

What is wrong with a typical downtown?

Posted by Vikingas at April 22, 2004 11:34 AM | TrackBack

What can concerned citizens do about this?

Posted by: LQ at April 22, 2004 12:00 PM

more Americans need to care, vote, speak out, and write letters and call local and national legislators.

We need to take back America from powerfull assholes that are holding us hostage, limitting our rights and freedoms, and charging us more and more of our daily toil just to live day to day.

The prison system is a taxpayer scam. There is no reason other than greed and corruption to increase the prison cells nationally tenfold from 1980 to 1999 for any other reason.

Police, prosecutors, and judges are not answerable to anyone except themselves. They choose what laws they themselves obey, who they nail, and whose lives they arbitrarily ruin.

Unelected officials have more power than the elected ones. J. Edgar Hoover is the best example as maybe Presidents were answerable to his whims.

Silence is acceptance.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at April 22, 2004 01:15 PM

The police, prosecutors, and judges (in Connecticut) are doing little to those that are the least moral, responsible, productive, and honest. I guess they figure doing their jobs would keep them from having job security and you would ask how your money was being spent (wasted).

I see that unelected officials and law enforcement officers wield the power, obey what laws they feel like, arbitrarily ruin people�s lives, and operate the puppets, elected officials.


It seems to me that the above-mentioned clowns are the finest that money can BUY. Good luck. And take care.

Posted by: Raul Valadez at April 25, 2004 01:22 PM

'clowns' is a good term for the Connecticut police, prosecutors, and judges, I like it.

Posted by: Steven G. Erickson at April 25, 2004 06:04 PM

* * * *

May 02, 2004

What is Prison Really Like? Part 3, preparing for possible incarceration


click below for more.


Part 1 (Being in Prison)

Part 2 (The Aftermath)

What is Prison Really Like? Part 3, preparing for possible incarceration

The number one thing to remember is that the judicial process is cold and impersonal and if you are given an inmate number, it is yours for life. Meaning that if you ever go back in, you get your same number.

There is untold and permanent damage done to you when you are thrown away like a piece of trash, to lose possibly all that you ever had, your credit, ability to get a job, a much harder time finding a mate, lifetime embarrassment, and maybe you�ll be shunned from family, friends, and work associates.

Juries might be shown video tapes of how to find you guilty, but not innocent. I know that there is no recourse for police if they commit perjury, if a prosecutor knowingly prosecutes the victim, but not the perpetrator, and if a judge can retaliate with a prison sentence someone who mocks him in letters and tries to have him removed for bias BEFORE any criminal proceedings, that you only have rights if someone will take your complaint. If it is valid, they may not, as police officers do not like to investigate, nor punish their own. Prosecutors and Judges know the law applies to you, but not them.

So if any type of acceptable plea bargain is available it might be your only real way out. Because a prosecutor looks at wins and losses and probably couldn�t care a whip about you or whether or not you are guilty or innocent. It takes special skill to railroad an obviously innocent individual to prison, a prosecutor may take special pride in such an accomplishment. Judges are often former prosecutors and can just be a rubber stamp for the prosecutor and police.

The cards are stacked against you, and the house may cheat to win.

Revolving bills are bad to have if you think you may end up in prison. Consider selling all that you have, including your house, car, and items. Whatever you did have could be long gone when you get out.

I lost about $10,000 supplies and furniture. Most of what was of value was stolen and my furniture was thrown out in the rain. My vehicle was damaged and my most personal items were gone through. Renting storage is a bad idea as you don�t know if you will get more time in prison or whether you�ll have any income at all when you get out.

You should where 3 pairs of underwear and 3 pairs of socks into the last day of court. If you have dress shoes on in court, they will be what you where until they are in very bad condition and then you will have to buy yourself some jail issue sneakers if you can afford them.

Shoe laces maybe taken away. Do not wear anything with a logo or colors that can be considered gang associated. Steel toes and lace hooks are not allowed. What ever you where in, can possibly get thrown out or donated.

If you have a fear of hypodermic needles, get over it. You will wait in line and get a series of shots. Ask what they are, you probably won�t be told, for all you know you could be injected with anything at their whim.

They are not gentle or caring as you don�t rights, as you are an inmate, anything you don�t want to do can be met with intimidation and physical violence of the guards. If you in anyway make any difficulty for the nurse there are at least 2 guards there to make the process even more painful and disturbing. If one of the injections causes a red, swelled reaction, you will be quarantined.

You may have to where donated cloths that don�t fit you that aren�t even washed upon your release and walk to the gate caring a clear trash bag holding everything you own in this world.

Velcro straps on sneakers are your best bet to wear on your last day of court. You may not get a shower for a day or even weeks, but mostly likely will get one upon arrival. If you want clean underwear and socks you will have to wash them yourself in a sink with soap if you can come by some and let them hang somewhere to dry. It will be a time before you are issued a mesh bag to do your laundry with.

It is better to sell something willingly than to lose it or have it taken away. You have to reduce your whole life down to 2 or 3 trash bags of cloths and important papers. Worrying about water damage and mice is a consideration, as that is all you may have to your name when you get out. You don�t want to take up anymore space than part of a closet or attic as you are relying on someone moving your stuff and keeping it for you if they move while you�re away.

Prison authorities like to take your belongings, throw them away, accidentally lose them, etc. A guard told me that my driver�s license must have been thrown away as I was being released, but his expression gave him away and I told I know you have found it. So important documents, keys, identification and other items should not be with you in your last day of court. Don�t drive yourself there as your vehicle will then be history.

Whatever money you have on you will be put on your books. You may only earn $3 or so a week for your necessary items you can order from commissary. If you are busted for any drug offense, usually they only allow you to keep $25 of what you had on you and the rest is confiscated, upon arrival.

Pay attention that the correct amount is placed on the entry form, or it could end up in the Correction Officer�s pocket. Corrections officers cooperate with police and some are police officers as a 2nd job. Piss one CO (Corrections Officer), police officer, judge, or prosecutor off and their wrath will dog your everyday inside and when you get out.

You will need to know up to 10 Complete names, their birth dates, exact address, and telephone numbers if you want them to be able to visit you and be able to send money to you to put on your books to be able to order a television, radio, reading materials, soap, shampoo, food items, etc from the prison commissary.

If you make a mistake it could be considered making a false statement and you might be charged. You are not allowed to bring papers or anything else in with you so you have to remember all exact details. It may take 30 to 90 days to make any changes to your list once you make it the first time, upon your arrival.

Many inmates first end up at a county jail first and are later transferred to another facility based on length of sentence and the type and seriousness of the crime.

When you finally get visits don�t bring anything with you, especially paper or writing instruments or you could be 30 t0 90 days without another visit. Expect to be strip searched and worse, possibly after every visit.

Pretend you do not hear guard taunts, don�t volunteer information, and say only �yes sir� or� no sir�, and yes use the word, ma�am if it is a female guard. If you make any racist or sexist comment to a woman or minority, especially a guard, the wrath will last and last, or worse hit on a female guard.

Tell friends and family not to send you stamps, reading material, print outs from the internet, cassettes, CD�s, nor anything pornographic as they will be confiscated or sent back and you may end up in some sort of trouble. Drugs used to be smuggled in prisons using pages in a book. You are allowed to buy stamped envelopes, paper, reading materials etc, eventually when your inmate account is set-up and you are settled in.

You are only allowed to have a certain number of photos and other items, having too many beyond policy will get you written up with an inmate ticket or charge. Usually tickets are in 3 degrees. Minor offenses mean loss of privileges and visits. Major ones can land you in solitary and usually to another more strict prison.

Don�t talk about your family, job, possessions, what you are in for or how long your sentence is if possible. Realize that nobody really cares, it is just useful information, inmate currency, on how to get over on you, tell their friends on the outside a house to break into while they are off visiting you. If you have a wife, girlfriend, or significant other, an inmate may tell a friend on the outside who she is and she is now a target.

If an inmate got more time for your same offense, you might get seriously injured or make yourself a target. Child molesters, rapists, and those in for beating up a spouse receive ribbing and worse. Don�t get labeled as a snitch or your days could be numbered.

I was labeled a snitch to guards and inmates just after arrival. So I had to come clean, explaining that I was not a snitch and went to prison for 2 minor charges, with no previous record, for what I had written inflaming police to act against me in Connecticut. My sentence did not make sense and they were suspicious that I was a plant.

It was easily proven as a heroin addict that used to pass out on front lawn in Stafford Springs, CT, verified that I had pissed police off with what I had written in newspapers prior to my arrest, so I avoided the wrath of other inmates.

If an inmate get used to you being around and is jealous that you are leaving, you have end up getting sabotaged and end up getting more time. Fudge and evade when asked when you will be getting out.

Give locations of your vehicles and your property and expect it will be someone else�s hands when and if you ever get out. Yes, it is easier to get in trouble in prison than being on the outside. Charges and more time are so easy to get. Assaults happen often, and being killed in prison is a possibility.

Eye contact is bad and you should know what cues you are giving others by practicing in the mirror before going, as a wrong expression to an inmate with political power or guard can be very bad for you.

There are no glass mirrors, just shiny metal, bolted down, so learning how to shave, �by feel� is a good idea. You will be strip searched and worse, sometimes daily. Pay attention to walking along the wall in hallways, moving slowly and talking slowly around guards in a compliant tone.

Some are sadists and love the ability to beat on you. When you are roughly placed on the wall for the pat down, you have to spread your feet apart. Failure to do so, will allow the guard to kick you quite hard in both ankles.

Male and female guards can ask you to bend over and spread your cheeks of your ass at anytime as they may want to check what is up in there. There is no privacy as there are few if any doors anywhere for your use. If you are a man, you will be asked to pull your ball sack over, for further humiliation. Plan not to show any emotion and do what they ask slowly and deliberately as the guards love scaring a new inmate into bruising himself or hurting his own privates.

If you see someone on the street or in prison with long thumbnails, but trimmed fingernails, the longer thumb nails are used for gouging out eyes. You get in trouble for any physical encounter, so many think that they will make it count. The victim is also likely to be punished the same as the one who initiated it. If you don�t fight back you are going to be punched and kicked, ridiculed, and worse for your entire stay and what little you have will be taken from you.

Expect to be called, �Inmate,� �Jailbird,� and worse for the rest of your life. Expect other inmates to taunt you by saying things about your family, you personally, your kids etc. The less they know the less they have to use. It is best to stay near your bunk as much as possible to you get to know those around you. You risk injury and assault mainly in the common areas and when moving. Pay attention to someone that is �wigging out� and stay away from them as they don�t care about themselves, the consequences, nor what happens to you.

If you get raped or coerced into a sex act and you are caught, you may have to register as a sex offender for the rest of your life, as there is a special charge for consensual and non-consensual sex in prison. It is your word against another�s and nobody cares about you, the truth, or justice, as you probably already learned that having been tangled up in the American Justice System to land you in prison.

A drug dealer punched me in the kidney from behind and I double over from the pain. Other inmates helped me up and to my bunk. I had gained status on my block and he later came to me to apologize, and I told him that I expected 2 soups or a candy bar every week and that my laundry was to be washed and folded on my bunk until the end of my stay. Which it was.

As an inmate there are no doors on toilet stalls in most cases, you are expected to flush as something drops, called a �courtesy flush.� I was told by an inmate loaded with tattoos, about 6�4� to 6�6� doing curls using a mop bucket with 5 gallon buckets on it that I was not allowed in the bathroom during his �work out� time. I went over to the toilet and purposely didn�t courtesy flush. I�m still alive and my status grew.

There can�t be 2 inmates on the top position on the block. He or I had to go, or we had to go at it. I had paid attention to 2 locks being opened and knew the combinations, and had at least 2 newer socks that would do well if needed. They weren�t, as the muscle bound asshole, violated himself, on a simply ticket issue, and was moved to another prison, so there was no showdown.

If you ever become an inmate, welcome to reality, as you now know, the true essence of human nature, that owning anything, relationships, justice, and all that you have ever learned is bullshit, temporary, arbitrary, and/or in anyway resembling anything fair. But, such is life.
-Steven G. Erickson (Vikingas)

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The Net can nab criminals when other means fail

Posted by Vikingas at May 2, 2004 01:12 PM

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