Saturday, December 25, 2010

One Vance Laughlin (Allegedly) Having An Inappropriate Relationship With An Employee

Employees from CCA's Adams County Correctional Facility alleged to this blog that Vance Laughlin was or is having a very inappropriate relationship with a member of his staff who works under him. This employee is also allegedly paid in a higher pay grade than they should be. Adams County Correctional Facility staff alleged to this blog that this was possibly some sort of "Quid Pro Quo" action for the alleged CCA staff member being in the relationship with Vance Laughlin.

Before printing this allegation this blog attempted to contact Corrections Corporation of America but they continue to block this blogs email (along with blocking this blogs address from CCA computers). I guess Corrections Corporation of America does not like or care for what we have to say that's critical of them. Possibly the truth just hurts.

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Two Vance Laughlins Not Prosecuting A Staff Member Who Physically Abused A Detainee!

On November 30, 2010 Correction's Corporation of America's own sad little blog posted an entry condemning the Associated Press for releasing footage of an inmate in a CCA facility being attacked to the point that he ended up in a coma while CCA's officers apparently sat on the sidelines and watched the attack without attempting to help the inmate. Even worse than that allegedly the staff members put the inmate in that specific housing unit to allow the inmates to attack him.

CCA some how thinks that they can take the high road on this incident and claim a variety of reasons why they can not talk about the incident. Yet they then proceed to somehow try to spin it into a PR win for CCA.

Well we here at the 270 View are going to call BULLSHIT on this one. In CCA's story they state the following:

"In regard to the incident, CCA management and staff at the Idaho Correctional Center cooperated fully with the Ada County Sheriff's office and Ada County Prosecuting Attorney's office to ensure that inmate James Haver was prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. It is CCA's understanding that Haver plead guilty to both aggravated battery and to committing battery with the intent to promote gang activity, and was sentenced to serve an additional 17 years in prison for his crime. It is also our understanding that CCA's security system video recording of the attack was key to the state's successful prosecution."

they go on to say:

"CCA is committed to safety and security for the community, our employees and the inmates in our care. Every day CCA's dedicated family of nearly 17,000 corrections professionals - including more than 350 in Idaho - face personal risk while fulfilling this commitment. As Mr. Haver's wanton attack illustrates, correctional and medical personnel must often respond to render aid in dangerous situations, not knowing the extent of the risk they may face when they do. Our hard working employees receive a high standard of training and supervision in order to comply with all state and federal standards with respect to the care, custody and control of the inmates and detainees housed in CCA facilities and to ensure reasonable efforts are made to protect the safety and security of the public, CCA employees and inmates housed in our facilities."

Whats ironic to this blog is that at the Stewart Detention Center under Warden Vance Laughlin leadership a correctional officer physically assaulted a detainee in the cafeteria and nothing really happened at all. This officer was caught on camera and filmed conducting the abusive attack on the detainee. It is this blogs understanding that the officer resigned or was fired but that he was not prosecuted for abusing the detainee. I guess sadly that CCA staff members physically abusing a detainee in an ICE facility does not warrant prosecution from Corrections Corporation of America in the same way that an inmate on inmate attack does.

One can only wonder why this attack was not prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. What is known is that CCA and ICE officials viewed the footage of the attack. This blog wonders if Stewart County law enforcement officers were ever allowed to see the footage or received any reports on the attack it is not believed that they were given the chance to investigate the incident. This blog wonders if Vance Laughlin or CCA took these actions in order to attempt to conceal the violation of the detainees rights from the public or detention monitoring groups.

While CCA might have attempted to bury this incident by possibly not reporting it I am sure that one day the true details will come to light. Maybe one day a reporter or a detention monitoring group filing out a few freedom of information requests will turn up a disciplinary action on the employee or an incident report on the abusive attack on the detainee.

This blog again calls for an investigation into the activities that took place under Vance Laughlin's rather poor leadership of the Stewart Detention Center. This blog believes that the string of leadership failures he was responsible for along with the abuse of detainees and failure of CCA staff to comply with mandatory ICE detention standards clearly show that neither Vance Laughlin or Corrections Corporation of America are fit to run taxpayer paid for detention centers like the Stewart Detention Center. This blog continues to wonder how a company like CCA continued to employ Vance Laughlin as a Warden knowing about incidents like the one discussed here today.

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Three Vance Laughlins Allowing HR Departments To Abuse Staff

We have heard allegations that Vance Laughlins HR Department in Natchez is a mess. Oddly this to seems like a common theme with Vance. At the Stewart Detention Center Vance's HR department was causing employees all kind of grief. This allegedly lead to staff members vandalising the HR Managers car because they were so fed up. Vance Laughlin then had to assign Managers assigned parking spots just to get his HR Manager a spot on camera because of all the alleged vandalism to her car.

Speaking personally I know how inefficient and vindictive the HR Manager at the Stewart Detention Center was. Vance Laughlin received numerous complaints and seemed to do absolutely nothing to resolve them. This was a HR Manager that would loose your checks, short your paycheck and even pay you for less hours than the Warden had signed off on weekly time sheets. It seemed like the HR Manager would do whatever she felt like to cause staff members grief on more than one occasion. It could take days or weeks to get your back pay. I know for a fact that this went on even at the holidays and if you complained it would even take longer. Vance Laughlin would repeatedly tell you that you would be getting your back pay in a day or two but it would never show up. On at least one occassion his boss at the corporate office was asked about the missing back pay that Vance had allegedly talked to him about getting fixed, but he was not even aware of the problem. Apparently at times Vance Laughlin was less than honest in trying to fix things like employees missing pay.

Adams County Correctional Facility employees from Natchez County, Mississippi have contacted this blog to allege that the same time of activities are going on at ACCF. It's a shame that CCA corporate staff seems to have such a sorry history of addressing concerns like this. I wish these employees luck but sadly I can not see either Vance Laughlin or CCA corporate staff addressing them. These types of personal abuses of power seem acceptable in the CCA working world. These issues could easily be addressed if CCA corporate staff would allow workers to contact them directly through an 800 number. But by making them go through a facility HR department and facilities Warden it allows a culture of abuse to possibly take shape with little to no chance of workers getting there HR issues resolved.

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Four Vance Laughlin's Chasing After Unattended Guns

While Vance Laughlin was Warden of the Stewart Detention Center a gun was left unattended within reach of a detainee who was taken to the local hospital in Richland, GA for medical care. It is my understanding that it was left within arms reach of a detainee and that the staff member had sat it down and then left the area. It is my understanding that a Corrections Corporation of America guard received a disciplinary write-up for this.

A few weeks later a second gun was left unattended leaning against the sally port gate/fence area overnight. While Vance could probably not be blamed for the first instance what was remarkable about the second one was that Vance Laughlin implemented a cover-up plan to try and prevent Corrections Corporation of America corporate staff from hearing about it. Vance Laughlin directly told senior managers and assistant wardens not to report the second instance because he would probably get fired.

Corrections Corporation of America and ICE were both previously made aware of this. Yet somehow Corrections Corporation of America keeps a Warden in a leadership position over employees and inmates/detainees even though he engages in deliberate activities to cover-up incidents that should of been reported. It makes this blog wonder what else is going on that CCA or Vance Laughlin might not be reporting.

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Five Vance Laughlins Yelling "Three Strikes and Somehow I'm Not Out!"

As we continue to examine the epic failure that was the Stewart Detention Center under Vance Laughlins leadership we will examine yet another failed audit.

In December of 2008 the Georgia Detention Watch conducted an independent review of the Stewart Detention Facility using ICE guidelines as a basis. While they did not have the same access as the first two groups, they did turn up many of the same issues. Taken together all three of the audits seem to paint a remarkably similar picture of a facility in which ICE contract mandated requirements (ICE Detention Standards) were not being met. It seems like the facility, ICE and CCA failed to take any of these results seriously and failed to make many if any corrective action's based off of the findings leading to a third group making several of the same observations. One can only wonder what it takes for Corrections Corporation of America to fire a Warden or ICE to actually enforce contract requirements with a private for-profit contracted company like Corrections Corporation of America.

The Georgia Detention Watch groups report can be found here.

Riot At A CCA Facility In Texas

Originally found here

December 21, 2010

Two inmates hurt in CCA disturbance

By Christin Coyne
Mineral Wells Index

PALO PINTO COUNTY — Two inmates reportedly received minor injuries during a disturbance Friday night at the Corrections Corporation of America Pre-Parole Transfer Facility but facility personnel were able to gain control of the inmates within a short time.

“At about 8:45 p.m. Friday evening, approximately 30 offenders refused to go to their assigned housing locations on the north side [of the facility],” facility manager Maria White said.

The inmates reportedly encouraged others to join them, according to White.

“With minimal use of chemical agents, supervisors maintained control of the unit and quelled the incident within an hour,” White said. “At no time was public safety threatened as the incident was quickly contained by staff.”

Two of the 48 inmates believed to be involved received minor injuries, were transported to the hospital for treatment and released back to the facility.

No staff was injured.

Local law enforcement personnel were contacted according to standard procedure, White said.

Mineral Wells police, Palo Pinto County sheriff’s deputies and Department of Public Safety officers, responded to a call of a riot at the facility around 9:30 p.m and maintained a perimeter until about 11 p.m. but was not asked to intervene.

“CCA would like to extend our sincere thanks to the local law enforcement agencies for their quick response,” White said.

Contact Index staff writer Christin Coyne at (940) 325-4465, ext. 3428, or

Monday, December 20, 2010

Six Vance Laughlins Ordering ICE Not To Observe A Riot At The Stewart Detention Center

Yesterday we wrote about a very, very disturbing audit in which Vance Laughlin was found by the Department of Homeland Security/Immigrations and Customs Enforcement Agency to be running (In our opinion) such a sad and pathetic facility that ICE had to take the unusual step of declaring the audit a "practice" audit, thus concealing the sorry state of the Stewart Detention Center.

Today we will address the tension level of this facility and the way in which the immigration detainees (in my opinion) chose to show their dissatisfaction with Vance Laughlin's leadership, Corrections Corporation of America and the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement Agency.

During the final exit meeting in which ICE staff members were revealing the pathetic audit findings the facility lost control over several housing units as the detainees caused a serious disturbance that appeared to of possibly been planned to correspond with the ICE audit. Corrections Corporation of America removed there guards from the effected housing units and the detainees caused minor facility damage and minor physical altercations as they attempted to get there dissatisfaction across.

What followed was a situation that would have been comical in a keystone cops sort of way if it was not for the physical well being of CCA employees and the detainees that was at stake.

Some of the ICE staff who were giving the final audit meeting then walked out of the meeting room and went down to the area of the riot to observe what was happening. What followed was a very surreal situation in which Vance Laughlin told the ICE auditors to exit the area where they were observing the riot. Unbelievably these ICE staff members then actually left the area! One can only wonder how CCA can maintain a contract with ICE after they give orders removing ICE employees from being able to observe a riot in a facility that they are paying to operate! In my opinion, it is pathetic that tax payer money is going to fund a facility in which ICE would accept that they do not have the right to observe any actions taking place in it!

Vance Laughlin then sat in his chair in his Wardens office in Administration and repeatedly ordered his Chief of Security over the radio to "breech" the area that inmates were in control of. Vance's Chief of Security continued to ask for permission to use force. Eventually CCA staff entered the affected housing units after Vance got his Chief to understand that he was ordering him to use force against the detainees if necessary. I believe chemical agents were also used.

After the facility was back under CCA's control, Vance Laughlin then asserted that what happened was because of the detainees dissatisfaction with ICE staff not meeting with them regularly as they should of been. It is this blogs opinion that this was not entirely true and that while that may of been one of the detainees issues, there were actually many more issues they had with both CCA and ICE. In this blogs opinion, it is very ironic that previously ICE would attempt to cover-up a bad audits findings by declaring it a "practice audit" (In effect helping Vance to save a then quickly fading career in corrections) but that Vance Laughlin would be so quick to throw ICE under the bus as the only reason for a riot.

Regardless of why the detainees were angry it continues to amaze me that a audit could be declared a "practice audit" and that ICE employees would willingly submit to CCA authority and leave an area of a facility that they are paying a private for-profit company to run when it is their detainees involved in the riot. It is this blogs belief that this issue was covered up and never investigated properly. Issues like this lead me to believe that a government inquiry should be conducted at the congressional level into possible contract violations that have taken place at private detention facilities like the Stewart Detention Center and whether ICE management of facilities like the Stewart Detention Center is appropriate.

Oddly this incident also does not appear to be listed by CCA here.

This blog again wonders how an individual can still be employed as a Warden with this kind of track record! It again calls on Corrections Corporation of America and the Bureau of Prisons to examine his operations and past record to determine if he really is qualified to lead any institution. Personally, This blog does not feel that Vance Laughlin is qualified to be the Assistant Manager over French Fries at a Burger Barn.

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Seven Vance Laughlins Failing A ICE Audit

Yesterday we discussed one of Corrections Corporation of America's corporate conducted operational audits of Warden Vance Laughlin. Today we will discuss an audit that the Department of Homeland Security/Immigration and Customs Enforcement conducted under his leadership at the Stewart Detention Center. The Department of Homeland Security/Immigrations and Customs Enforcement contract with Stewart County, Georgia and CCA to run the Stewart Detention Center. It is my understanding that CCA now houses over 50% of the total number of immigrants that are being detained by ICE in contracted for-profit facilities.

ICE Audits are designed to monitor a facilities operations through measurable criteria. They can also be used as a way to monitor how well a private company is running a ICE contracted facility. The standards that Vance Laughlin and the Stewart Detention Center were measured under can be found here.

On this occasion ICE brought in an audit team that found the Stewart Detention Center under Vance Laughlins leadership to be so troubled that it refused to complete the audit as scheduled. In my opinion this was because the Stewart Detention Center had performed so sub-par that ICE was afraid to actually document it's official findings. ICE audit staff took the step of declaring that the audit was a "practice" audit. However this was done only after it had started the audit and began to find very serious and disturbing answers to the questions and observations it was making during it's official auditing process.

One can only wonder what is actually going on inside of ICE's privatised for-profit facilities. If what ICE did at the Stewart Detention Center on this occasion is a common practice then how can people trust it's monitoring of any privatised facilities? By engaging in a conspiracy to cover-up and hide the results of it's own findings ICE is showing a serious lack of credibility in it's ability to monitor privatised facilities. To this writer, ICE also seems to be purposefully creating a deceitful situation in which the American public is being conned into believing that ICE contracted facilities are being ran much better and safer than they actually are.

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Eight Vance Laughlins Setting A CCA Record For Failure

Vance Laughlin's part time hobby seems to be parroting how great Corrections Corporation of America is. One only has to search his name or read a few stories on the companies internal propaganda website to realise this. CCA's frequent use of Vance Laughlin in company news stories seems to directly contradict his work history with the company. This blog believes it speaks volumes that CCA would choose to highlight one of CCA's wardens who possibly could be considered one of the worst Wardens that CCA has ever hired. Perhaps it is Vance Laughlin's ability to say the right thing to corporate public relations departments that has led to him still having a career with CCA. For a company that professes to having such high ideals it seems strangely odd that they would present any quotes and/or videos from Warden Laughlin in public relations or news stories.

Today this blog will examine Vance Laughlin's record at the Stewart Detention Center on one occasion in a way that we believe will undeniably show his lack of leadership skills and his total inability to correctly run a facility or to be held truly accountable by Corrections Corporation of America.

A very large part of Corrections Corporation of America's way of evaluating a facilities operational performance relies on an annual audit performed by it's corporate Facility Support Center. This audit usually lasts for several days and monitors a facilities policies and actual practices in performing it's daily activities. Corrections Corporation of America claims that these audits allow it to better hold facility staff accountable for adherence to policies and procedures guiding facility operations. This story however will cast serious doubt over whether Corrections Corporation of America holds a Warden like Vance laughlin accountable after it performs an internal Quality Assurance audit.

After an internal audit by CCA's corporate Facility Support Center Vance Laughlin held a meeting in the facilities detainee/inmate dining room and revealed to several hundred of the facilities employees that the Stewart Detention Center had done so badly that it had set a company wide record for the lowest internal audit score ever at a CCA facility in the companies entire history of over twenty-five years.

On a separate occasion Vance Laughlins attitude was much different. Vance revealed that he really did not care about the low audit score because part of his annual CCA performance bonus as a CCA Warden required the facility to improve it's Facility Support Center audit score. Vance Laughlin revealed that now he could always receive this part of his bonus by slowly raising the bar year to year. He very flippantly stated that "It's harder work to improve a high score." This blog believes that on several occasions Warden Vance Laughlin seemed to spend more time worrying about his yearly bonus than his facilities actual performance.

This blog is well aware that Vance was talked to by CCA corporate staff on several occasions about his low performance. Vance Laughlin also was sent to other facilities for retraining and had other CCA facilities send employees to the Stewart Detention Center to retrain him. It is this blogs view that the taxpayers are being short changed by having tax money awarded to a private for-profit prison company that employee's a Warden with a record like Vance Laughlins. Should'nt a company like Corrections Corporation of America perform better after over twenty five years of operations and not worse? If Corrections Corporation of America truly believes that it's internal Quality Assurance audit process holds people accountable how can it justify not having fired the Warden of a facility that set a company wide record for failure after a twenty-five year time period?

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Nine Vance Laughlins Breaking Labor Laws to use Illegal Immigrants to Build a CCA Facility

What is two three letter words for hypocrisy? CCA & ICE

On December 15, 2010 Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue and Georgia Department of Corrections commissioner Brian Owens, as well as local leaders and Corrections Corporation of America (CCA) corporate officials held a groundbreaking in Millen Georgia for CCA's newest prison the Jenkins Correctional Center.

Today the 270 View Internet blog ( would like to bring to the publics attention violations of several United States laws by Corrections Corporation of America at the Stewart Detention Center (SDC) while current CCA/Adams County Correctional Center Warden Vance Laughlin was SDC's Warden. During this time period Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials discovered that illegal immigrant labor was being used by Corrections Corporation of America to build the facilities intake and court house additions to the Stewart Detention Center. This was well after ICE and CCA had opened the facility and several hundred detainees were housed at it. Apparently ICE contracted with a company who used illegal immigrants to build a court house in which Immigration and Customs Enforcement held hearings to deport other illegal immigrants.

One can honestly say that CCA not only profits off of ICE paying it to house undocumented workers but also evidently saves money on constructing it's facilities by using undocumented workers to build them. The use of undocumented workers in construction is unfortunately a way in which companies like Corrections Corporation of America can exploit illegal immigrants hired into construction jobs in order to lower costs by not paying required coverages like workers compensation or insurance and also by paying individuals a wage often many times lower than the government mandated minimum wage. These workers also often do not have taxes taken out of there paychecks since they are being employed illegally. It is not known if this happened on this construction project. But if this were true in this case then CCA would be profiting off of detention contracts paid for by the United States tax payers while in return not paying taxes for work that undocumented workers performed building parts of the Stewart Detention Center.

The discovery that Corrections Corporation of America was using undocumented workers only came about after ICE staff checked the identification of construction workers who had been entering the facilities secure perimeter for months and discovered that the CCA contracted companies construction employee's were in the United States as illegally as the detainees that CCA was being paid by ICE to detain inside the Stewart Detention Center. Over the course of constructing the facility hundreds of ICE agents had walked by the undocumented workers. ICE felt the need to verify the legality of the construction work force only after Fort Benning (less than an hour North of SDC) had been raided by ICE and had several of it's construction workers rounded up in January of 2007 on immigration violations. Ironically it is are understanding that the illegal immigrant construction workers detained at Fort Benning were later held by ICE and CCA at the Stewart Detention Center.

Following the Fort Benning raid local ICE and CCA officials quickly came up with a system in which construction workers at the Stewart Detention Center had to show identification cards to enter the facility to work. The illegal immigrants who lacked the required identification were told to not come back to the job site. They were never charged or detained at the work site most likely because of the embarrassment it would cause both Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Corrections Corporation of America. However under exactly the same conditions ICE was happy to embarrass the United States Military for using undocumented workers on construction projects at Fort Benning. It is my understanding that both ICE guidelines and CCA policies require the showing of identification upon entering detention facilities. Yet for several months this procedure was not followed by Corrections Corporation of America at the Stewart Detention Center which allowed CCA to use undocumented workers in constructing it's facility.

Corrections Corporation of America regularly boasts of how it saves taxpayer money. This incident seems to show just one of the negative ways in which Corrections Corporation of America engages in saving money and increasing profits. CCA claims to hire local labor yet these undocumented workers in this case were brought in from another state. The use of undocumented workers in constructing CCA prisons could possibly be seen as taking the same local jobs that CCA claims to create when it talks a town like Millen, GA into the many benefits of cooperating with them in building a new prison or detention center.

Stewart Detention Center is the largest detention center for undocumented workers in the United States. It is a for profit facility that ICE contracts with Stewart County, GA and Corrections Corporation of America. It is located in Lumpkin, GA. Corrections Corporation of America is the nation’s largest provider of for profit corrections. Corrections Corporation of America is also the largest private company that ICE contracts with to house undocumented workers awaiting court hearings and/or deportment.

The 270 View Internet blog was started as a place for people who are concerned about Corrections Corporation of America to share their views. Since September of 2008 it has highlighted unfavorable conditions and illegal practices taking place at Corrections Corporation of America facilities like the Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin,GA. Members of the media or public can contact The 270 View at

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Ten Vance Laughlins Sneaking Contraband

Vance Laughlin seems to have a comprehension problem. From what we hear he allegedly does not seem to understand that a "Tobacco Free Facility" includes chewing tobacco. At Stewart Detention Center both Vance and his Assistant Warden Charlie Peterson used dip daily. They both seemed to always be carrying a can or cup to spit in, which presents quite the professional image. Not to mention that this violated CCA corporate policies on tobacco free facilities. Behavior like this is just another example of how Vance thinks he is above having to follow rules and can do as he likes. It also shows the problems that CCA has day in and day out in managing facilities when individuals like Vance, who maybe don't deserve the trust and responsibility that CCA places in them, continue to do as they want with little or no repercussions from a corporation that fails to manage them effectively or hold them accountable.

From what we understand Vance continues to act as he wants and just recently got into an argument with a CCA security staff member who found him in possession of contraband in his current facilities lobby. Some people just never get it. Hey Vance, when you dodge the rules and requirements that everyone else has to follow it speaks volumes about your own character and eventually it will catch up with you.

In a news story found here Vance Laughlin stated:

“Through our own investigation with our criminal investigation team on site and the assistance of her actual shift supervisor, she was caught red handed with contraband,” Laughlin said. “She was suspended and shortly after that she resigned.”

Further investigation of the case is being handled by the Adams County Sheriff’s Office, Laughlin said

Hmmmmm.... As we reported above (allegedly) Vance Laughlin was also caught "red handed" but it seems like he handled his own situation much differently. If Vance Laughlin did allegedly bring contraband into his own facility then it probably should of also been forwarded to the Adams County Sheriff's office for possible charges of introduction of Contraband into a correctional facility.

We have requested that the Federal Bureau of Prisons investigate the alleged smuggling of contraband into the Adams County Correctional Facility by Warden Vance Laughlin.

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Eleven Homophobic Vance Laughlin's Making Hateful Comments

“Here, everyone gets a fair shake,” says Warden Vance Laughlin of Stewart Detention Center

During Warden Vance Laughlin's very brief and extremely troubled time at Correction Corporation of America's Stewart Detention Center in Lumpkin, Georgia Vance gave a well known immigration reform advocate a tour of the facility. This advocate Vance Laughlin knew had previously organized a protest against the facility and CCA. During this tour of SDC, Vance decided to make homophobic and insulting remarks making fun of a transgendered detainee being detained at the facility to the advocate. Regardless of what Vance Laughlin thinks about transgendered individuals one can only wonder how ignorant and dumb one has to be to make comments mocking this detainee to a very well known advocate for immigration reform and detainee rights.

It's hard to imagine that a company as big as CCA can not manage to get across to it's employees to shut the hell up about making statements this dumb to people when they are leading facility tours. One would also think that CCA would do a much better job of screening Warden applicants to make sure they do not hold discriminatory beliefs like this against detainees or employees who they have been directly placed by CCA in a leadership role over. Instead CCA apparently has an individual like Vance Laughlin selecting it's future Wardens and facility leadership.

Previously Vance Laughlin was also known to of made insulting and homophobic comments about a previous husband of his current wife (while he was assigned to SDC) who Vance alleged had been gay. I am not sure why the alleged sexual orientation of his wife's previous husband affected him but for some reason he felt the need to comment on it in a very graphic and explicit way.

This blog wants CCA to know that it will continue to highlight any alleged hate speech that CCA Warden Vance Laughlin makes. CCA should be aware that by leaving an individual with discriminatory beliefs in a leadership role over detainees, prisoners and employees after it has been brought to CCA's attention, CCA could very well find itself accepting liability for potentially harmful future situations.

I guess Vance Laughlin must of dozed off when they were giving training on the CCA Way corporate dogma and discussing "Respect." I have seen small kids that had school teachers pin notes to them so they did not lose them. Perhaps Vance could staple the CCA Way to his sleeve so that everytime he looked at his sleeve he could be reminded to respect his employees, prisoners and detainees.... even the transgendered ones that he apparently wants to mock and laugh at...

All opinions and allegations expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own decision.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Twelve Vance Laughlins Illegally Discharging Firearms On Prison Grounds...

The 270 View has heard a rumor that on the afternoon of Wednesday November, 10 2010 Warden Laughlin allegedly shot a nice 10 point Buck about a hundred yards from the facility on Corrections Corporation of America property. We hear that Vance started the day off by calling the perimeter driver and stating that he would be on the firing range sighting in his rifle, and ended the evening just before dark calling back and saying that "Since it is hunting season now, I'm going to be back on the property getting my stand out of the woods." This call allegedly came in about 3 minutes after a single shot rang out about 50 yards on the other side of the firing range. We have heard that Warden Laughlin was previously told that he could not hunt the property, even with a bow which begs the question of why there was a hunting stand in the woods in the first place. If this is true it would directly show the integrity and character of facility leader Warden Vance Laughlin.

A previous quote from Vance Laughlin found here:

"We started with the interview and hiring process by looking for people who reflected the CCA Way," Laughlin says. "We had to work harder to hire staff, but we couldn't bend and hire people who didn't fit the CCA Way mold. We placed such a high value on integrity, respect, trust and loyalty, and I think that's the reason why the staff is operating at such a high level today."

To further refine his staff, Laughlin emphasized the principle of accountability. "Staff knew what our expectations were, and if they didn't live up to them, we would take steps to correct that with the disciplinary process," he says.

So I guess if this allegation is true it leaves Vance in a really bad position. Vance would have not only of violated policies and procedures but he would have done it in a very open and callous way showing the facilities employees that he could do what he wanted and was exempt from the rules and regulations that they had to follow. So this would now leave him with a very hard decision to make, since this allegation is now seeing the light of day and apparently several employees are aware of his actions he can now either confess to his alleged unacceptable behavior and accept some accountability for his actions or Vance can continue to show staff that he is above the law by not taking ownership over his alleged actions (if they are true). If he continues to deny it he just may find himself in a credibility war with Adams County Correctional Facility employees. I'm willing to bet that if they got asked about Vance's alleged behavior then they just might hold to the CCA Ways guiding principals and submit a statement on a hunting incident or two on facility grounds....

Perhaps Brian Collins just needs to go ahead and talk to Vance about Integrity and accountability....

The 270 View will be forwarding these allegations to the Bureau of Prisons.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Unusual methods helped ICE break deportation record, e-mails and interviews show

Originally found here

By Andrew Becker

Center for Investigative Reporting

Monday, December 6, 2010; 12:08 AM

For much of this year, the Obama administration touted its tougher-than-ever approach to immigration enforcement, culminating in a record number of deportations.

But in reaching 392,862 deportations, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement included more than 19,000 immigrants who had exited the previous fiscal year, according to agency statistics. ICE also ran a Mexican repatriation program five weeks longer than ever before, allowing the agency to count at least 6,500 exits that, without the program, would normally have been tallied by the U.S. Border Patrol.

When ICE officials realized in the final weeks of the fiscal year, which ended Sept. 30, that the agency still was in jeopardy of falling short of last year's mark, it scrambled to reach the goal. Officials quietly directed immigration officers to bypass backlogged immigration courts and time-consuming deportation hearings whenever possible, internal e-mails and interviews show.

Instead, officials told immigration officers to encourage eligible foreign nationals to accept a quick pass to their countries without a negative mark on their immigration record, ICE employees said.

The option, known as voluntary return, may have allowed hundreds of immigrants - who typically would have gone before an immigration judge to contest deportation for offenses such as drunken driving, domestic violence and misdemeanor assault - to leave the country. A voluntary return doesn't bar a foreigner from applying for legal residence or traveling to the United States in the future.

Once the agency closed the books for fiscal 2010 and the record was broken, agents say they were told to stop widely offering the voluntary return option and revert to business as usual.

Without these efforts and the more than 25,000 deportations that came with them, the agency would not have topped last year's record level of 389,834, current and former ICE employees and officials said.

The Obama administration was intent on doing so even as it came under attack by some Republicans for not being tough enough on immigration enforcement and by some Democrats for failing to deliver on promises of comprehensive immigration reform.

"It's not unusual for any administration to get the numbers they need by reaching into their bag of tricks to boost figures," said Neil Clark, who retired as the Seattle field office director in late June, adding that in the 12 years he spent in management he saw the Bush and Clinton administrations do similar things.

But at a news conference Oct. 6, ICE Director John T. Morton said that no unusual practices were used to break the previous year's mark.

"When the secretary tells you that the numbers are at an all-time high, that's straight, on the merits, no cooking of the books," Morton said, referring to his boss, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano. "It's what happened."

ICE declined to make any officials available for interviews. In selected responses to e-mailed questions, spokesman Brian P. Hale wrote that the agency did nothing different from previous years but did not deny that ICE had focused on voluntary returns when it faced a shortfall weeks before the fiscal year ended. Rather, field offices were reminded of the voluntary return option, he said.

"ICE offered eligible aliens . . . the opportunity to accept voluntary return," Hale said. "The decision to accept VR [voluntary return] was the aliens'."

Those efforts did not appear to result in a spike in voluntary returns. Statistics provided by ICE show that voluntary returns peaked at 8,960 in June, before dipping and then leveling off in the last two months of the fiscal year. A total of 64,876 immigrants were voluntarily returned to their home countries in 2010.

Chris Crane, president of the American Federation of Government Employees National Council 118, the union that represents ICE immigration agents and officers, said offering voluntary return was not common practice for the agency. The union has been at odds with Morton over what it calls lax enforcement and gave him a no-confidence vote in June.

"It's breaking the rules to break the record," Crane said. "You don't change the way you do business to meet some quota. Morton said we don't do quotas. But that's what this is."

New accounting

On Oct. 1 - the start of fiscal 2011 - Robin F. Baker, an acting ICE assistant director, cheered field directors on to the finish line in an e-mail obtained by the Center for Investigative Reporting.

"We are just 1061 shy of 390,000. However, we still get to count closed cases through Monday, October 4th so . . . keep having your folks concentrate on closing those cases," Baker wrote.

Starting in 2009, ICE began to shut its books for the fiscal year ending Sept. 30 in the first few days of October. Any deportations that take place in one fiscal year but are confirmed after Oct. 5 are added to the next fiscal year's statistics.

Based on the new accounting approach, the agency counted 19,422 removals from 2009 in the 2010 statistics. In 2010 itself, 373,440 other people were deported.

Current and former ICE employees also point to an expanded U.S.-Mexico partnership as another way the agency increased overall deportation numbers.

Known as the Mexican Interior Repatriation Program, the bilateral effort between the U.S. and Mexican governments focuses on reducing the deaths of migrants attempting to cross the border during the scorching Arizona summer. Mexicans caught by Border Patrol agents in the Sonoran Desert region and southern Arizona are turned over to ICE agents, who carry out the removals to Mexico.

In a February memo, James M. Chaparro, ICE's head of enforcement and removal operations, called on field directors to "maximize" participation in the program, which he outlined as one of the ways to increase removals and "move us into position to meet or exceed the fiscal year goals."

Since its launch in 2004, the program had never started earlier than July 7. This year, the first flight full of Mexicans departed June 1. By starting in June, ICE tallied 6,527 returns that in the past would have been handled - and counted - by the U.S. Border Patrol. Overall, a record 23,384 Mexicans between June and September accepted flights back to Mexico City, and then a bus ticket to their home town, at a cost of almost $15 million.

ICE spokesman Hale said the agency started the program early because of available funds and a timely agreement between the United States and Mexico. He acknowledged that some of the immigrants removed through the program were caught or detained hundreds of miles from Arizona.

"Select individuals from west Texas were offered an opportunity to volunteer for safe return to their place of origin in the interior of Mexico," Hale said.

He also confirmed that Mexican nationals detained near Seattle - possibly as many as 500 immigrants, according to one local officer - were also included on the flights.

A year-end scramble

The surge to break the deportation record in the final weeks of the fiscal year consumed the agency, said a high-ranking immigration official, who spoke on the condition of anonymity because the person wasn't authorized to discuss the matter publicly.

"They had everyone burning the candle at both ends to reach 390,000," the official said. "They were basically saying anything you can do to increase the overall removal number, that's what you should do - over everything else."

lIn the Seattle area, immigration officers were instructed to give the voluntary return option to immigrants who did not face mandatory detention and didn't have attorneys.

lIn the Atlanta area, ICE officers were told to persuade immigrants who had already asked to see an immigration judge to instead voluntarily leave the country.

lIn Chicago, officers were told to stop releasing eligible immigrants and monitoring them with electronic ankle bracelets, which might spur more to accept voluntary removals, according to a Sept. 22 e-mail.

"Due to our increase in funding for detention for the remainder of the fiscal year, do not release anyone on an order of recognizance at this time," James McPeek, an assistant field office director in Chicago, wrote in the e-mail to employees. "Another option is to offer a VR [voluntary return] and keep in custody - this will increase our removal numbers for the fiscal year."

An ICE employee in Louisiana, who spoke on the condition of anonymity for fear of reprisal, estimated that over a two-week period at least 100 to 150 Mexican nationals, some of whom had multiple drunken driving convictions, had their court cases reassigned as voluntary return, which was not common practice. ICE agents elsewhere reported similar numbers.

Several ICE employees said, however, that once the fiscal year ended, their offices reverted to infrequently offering the return option. In the Pacific Northwest, some employees received an e-mail stating just that.

"Effective immediately: do not offer V/Rs [voluntary returns] to aliens who have been convicted of or are pending DUI," ICE supervisor Elizabeth Godfrey wrote Oct. 4.

ICE's goal for 2011 is to remove 404,000 immigrants.

Andrew Becker is a reporter for the Center for Investigative Reporting. He can be reached at CIR is a nonprofit news organization based in Berkeley, Calif., dedicated to producing investigative journalism. Its stories have appeared frequently in The Washington Post and other newspapers.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Coming Next Week: 12 Straight Days of Allegations About Vance Laughlin!

In the past week we have heard from several different employees at the Adams County Correctional Center in Natchez, Mississippi and several of the allegations we have been forwarded sound very familiar to ones we have heard before. These allegations of misconduct all revolve around the facilities Warden Vance Laughlin. Readers of this blog will likely recognize that name as the name of a former warden of Stewart Detention Center.

Starting in about a week we will be running a blog every day or so concerning past and present allegations about Vance Laughlin and the facilities he is or has been the Warden of. We will also be contacting the Federal Bureau of Prisons (BOP) Correctional Programs Division in Central Office who provide oversight for privately-operated facilities as well as Immigration and Customs Enforcement's Department of Homeland Security, Office of Inspector General as necessary with copies of the allegations that we blog about.

The conversations I have had this last week with Adams County Correctional Facility present and former employees have been very informative. Adams County employees should feel free to keep contacting me with your concerns.

We know that Warden Laughlin is under a lot of stress and we hate to add to it. In the interest of fairness I will not print these blogs if Vance chooses to resign from CCA and send this humble blog a copy of his letter of resignation. Please keep in mind that all opinions expressed here are just that. Please cross check anything you read before forming your own opinion.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

FBI investigates CCA-run Idaho prison

In a frame grab from video obtained by The Associated Press, an inmate attacks fellow inmate Hanni Elabed at the privately-run Idaho Correctional Center just south of Boise, Idaho. Elabed suffered brain damage and persistent short-term memory loss after he was beaten by inmate James Haver while multiple guards watched at the Idaho prison operated by Corrections Corporation of America. (AP Photo)

Photo found here


Originally found here

BOISE, Idaho — Idaho prison officials say they are cooperating with federal investigators looking into possible criminal misconduct on the part of guards and staff at a prison run by Nashville-based Corrections Corporation of America.

Wendy Olson, the U.S. Attorney in Idaho, confirmed Tuesday the Department of Justice has been investigating the conduct of prison staff at the Idaho Correctional Center and their role in the high rate of inmate-on-inmate violence at a facility known by inmates as "Gladiator School." Olson said FBI agents are focusing on whether ICC staffers have violated the civil rights of inmates at the prison, operated by the CCA under a contract with the state.

Idaho Department of Correction Director Brent Reinke said Tuesday his agency is concerned about the safety of ICC inmates and holding prison staff accountable for conduct that threatens the welfare of inmates. "Safety and accountability are at the core of IDOC's mission," Reinke said in a statement. "That is not limited to the safety of staff and the accountability of offenders. We also expect offenders to be safe while incarcerated and correctional professionals to be held accountable when necessary."

Olson confirmed the FBI inquiry Tuesday after The Associated Press published a story and surveillance video of an attack on former ICC inmate Hanni Elabed. In January, Elabed was assaulted moments after prison staff reassigned him to a cellblock with inmates he previously identified as being involved in peddling contraband with a staffer. The January 2010 assault left him with brain damage and prompted his medical release from the prison.

Another Death at a CCA Facility

Inmate Mixon dies in Bay County

Originaly found here
By David Adlerstein

Joseph Mixon, the man responsible for igniting the Nov. 2008 fire that destroyed the Apalachicola State Bank building downtown, has died.

According to a media statement issued Monday by the Corrections Corporation of America, Mixon, an inmate at the Bay Correctional Facility in Panama City, was pronounced dead by emergency medical technicians at 2:19 p.m. on Nov. 24.

“At this time the death appears to be of unnatural causes and does not appear to involve foul play,” read the statement.
Bay County Medical Examiner Dr. Michael Hunter has the task of determining the cause of death. “Corrections Corporation of America is working in full cooperation with local and state law enforcement officials as they investigate,” the statement read.

Mixon arrived in April at the 985-bed Bay Correctional, which houses male inmates for the Florida Department of Corrections and has been managed by CCA since 1995 under a contract with the Florida Department of Management Services. CCA is the nation’s largest owner and operator of government-contracted correctional and detention facilities, operating 65 facilities, including 44 company-owned facilities, with approximately 87,000 beds, in 19 states and the District of Columbia.

Mixon, 45, of Apalachicola, was sentenced on May 11, 2009 by Circuit Judge James Hankinson to three years in state prison after being convicted on charges of grand theft of a motor vehicle and criminal mischief with property damage.

The convictions came as a result of Mixon’s actions during the pre-dawn hours of Nov. 15, 2008 when he rammed a 2007 Peterbilt truck he took without permission from Ward and Sons Seafood Company into the side of the bank building.

In addition to Apalachicola firefighters, crews responded from St. George Island, Carrabelle and Eastpoint, bringing with them eight trucks, including two ladder trucks that enabled better access to the flames engulfing the second story. The firefighters finished dousing the flames around 10 a.m. that morning, but the building would be later razed. The new bank on the site at Market Street and Avenue E, now owned by Centennial Bank, is in the process of construction.

Mixon spent several of his early adult years in state prison. He was sentenced to nine years in Oct. 1985, at the age of 20, for three felonies - burglary of an unoccupied structure, armed robbery and arson.

After his release in Dec. 1991, Mixon moved to Escambia County, where in Oct. 1995 he was convicted for selling marijuana and sentenced to three years. He was incarcerated until Nov. 1997.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Brewer Linked To Private Prisons Housing Illegal Immigrants

Originally found here.

Brewer Linked To Private Prisons Housing Illegal Immigrants - Phoenix News Story - KPHO Phoenix

Brewer Linked To Private Prisons Housing Illegal Immigrants
New Questions Raised About Lobbyist Advice
Morgan Loew, CBS 5 Investigative Reporter

POSTED: 10:03 pm MST August 31, 2010
UPDATED: 11:58 am MST September 2, 2010

PHOENIX, Ariz. -- Gov. Jan Brewer’s campaign chairman and policy adviser is also a lobbyist for the largest private prison company in the country.

Chuck Coughlin is one of two people in the Brewer administration with ties to Corrections Corporation of America. The other administration member is communications director Paul Senseman, a former CCA lobbyist. His wife still lobbies for the company.

According to campaign finance records, CCA executives and employees contributed more than $1,000 to the governor’s re-election campaign. The company’s political action committee and its lobbyists contributed another $60,000 to Brewer’s top legislative priority, Proposition 100, a sales tax to help avoid budget cuts to education.

Caroline Isaacs from the American Friends Service Committee, which advocates for social justice issues, said the money is evidence of influence the company has on the governor.

Isaacs said private prison companies have been buying influence in Arizona politics for years. The number of private prisons and jails operating across the state shows the result of that influence, he said. Currently, there are at least 12 for-profit prison, jail and detention facilities in Arizona.

Isaacs said the state has something else that attracts these companies.

“The other Holy Grail, if you will, of private prison construction is immigrant detention,” Isaacs said.

Corrections Corporation of America holds the contract with Immigration and Customs Enforcement to lock up illegal immigrants picked up in Arizona. Tough immigration laws such as Arizona's SB 1070 could send thousands of new bodies its way, and millions of dollars.

Coughlin told CBS 5 News and other media outlets that there is no connection between Brewer and illegal immigrants arrested by local law enforcement.

Coughlin appeared on KAET TV’s “Horizon” two weeks ago. “When somebody gets arrested, they go to jail. There are no private jails. Those are public jails. ICE has said they are not taking prisoners arrested under that, so there would be no transport into the state prison system when this happens,” he told the host of “Horizon.”

But ICE’s spokesman in Phoenix told CBS 5 News the agency gets most of its detainees from local law enforcement. Records obtained through a Freedom of Information Act request show Arizona agencies turned over 23,000 illegal immigrants to ICE over the past three years. Hundreds of them ended in up CCA facilities.

“Anyone who is a serious criminal or is a flight risk is more than likely going to end up in detention here in Arizona,” said Vinnie Picard from ICE.

CBS 5 News invited Coughlin to explain what he told the governor about the effects of SB 1070 on CCA, but after weeks of negotiating through e-mail, Coughlin backed out of an on-camera interview.

He sent CBS 5 News e-mail from CCA, which stated: “CCA has neither directly, nor indirectly attempted to influence immigration policy, including SB 1070, and absolutely did not engage anyone in the Governor’s Office on signature of that bill.”

People such as Isaacs, who study the private prison industry, said they don’t buy it.

“My reaction to that statement is then why did they give them all that money?” she said.

Coughlin’s company has canceled all of the governor’s campaign advertising on CBS 5 News.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Hernando commission withholds payment to CCA

This story can be found here.

Hernando commission withholds payment to jail contractor

By Barbara Behrendt, Times Staff Writer
In Print: Wednesday, September 1, 2010

BROOKSVILLE — With the cost and responsibility for repairs at the Hernando County Jail still up in the air, the County Commission voted unanimously Tuesday to hold on to $1.86 million billed by Corrections Corporation of America.

Lisa Hammond, the purchasing consultant for the clerk of the circuit court, recommended the action, citing a provision in the jail contract that spells out a process for disputed payments. Last week, the county notified CCA that the commission would consider withholding payment of the company's July and August invoices and placing them in a third-party escrow account on Tuesday.

But CCA officials balked. In a letter dated Monday, Natasha Metcalf of CCA, the private company that operated the jail for the past two decades, stated that the contract "does not provide for the withholding of payment in the manner you are proposing.''

She added that she hoped that County Administrator David Hamilton would not recommend withholding payments and asked Hamilton to send to CCA detailed invoices for $34,000 worth of jail repairs for which the county believes CCA is responsible so far.

"Under a complete reservation of the rights and remedies available under the contract, at law and in equity, CCA remains willing to work through any outstanding maintenance issues cooperatively with the county,'' Metcalf wrote. "We can be available to meet with you to discuss these issues at your convenience."

But the commission wanted a much better picture of what was wrong with the facility before releasing the money.

The county is in the process of assessing the quantity and seriousness of problems with the jail facility. CCA vacated operation of the jail last Thursday, and Sheriff Richard Nugent assumed responsibility for running it.

It was Nugent who brought the deteriorating condition of the facility to the commissioners' attention in April, and since that time various investigations have been conducted inside the building. Problems with water infiltration, rusty doors, frozen hinges, an improperly sloped roof and floor surfaces, and a variety of other issues have been identified.

Last month, the county agreed to hire HDR Engineering Inc. to provide a proposal for the jail upgrade at a cost of $239,000. The firm is expected to produce a report in about 40 days, Hammond told commissioners.

With payment to CCA tied into the conclusion of that report, Commissioner Jim Adkins urged Hammond to have the firm work as quickly as possible. Hammond said she would talk to officials from HDR when she meets with them Thursday, and she agreed that the county doesn't want to hold on to CCA's money any longer than it has to.

County Attorney Garth Coller urged commissioners to limit their discussion about the issue because the county could land in litigation.

Barbara Behrendt can be reached at or (352) 848-1434.

[Last modified: Aug 31, 2010 06:16 PM]

Monday, August 23, 2010

CCA Detention Officer Admits Groping Women

Originally found here.

Detention officer admits groping women
Hutto immigration facility employee faces charges

Updated: Friday, 20 Aug 2010, 6:45 PM CDT
Published : Thursday, 19 Aug 2010, 5:24 PM CDT

Jarrod Wise
Jackie Vega

TAYLOR, Texas (KXAN) - A former employee of a federal immigration detention center has been arrested after police say he admitted to groping several women he was supposed to be transporting to the airport after being released on bond.

Donald Charles Dunn, 30, a resident supervisor at the T. Don Hutto facility in Taylor and employee of Correction Corporation of America, told officers that on these trips, "he told the women he was going to 'frisk' them and then inappropriately touched their breasts, crotch and buttocks," according to a news release by the Williamson County Sheriff's Office.

"Mr. Dunn advised that he didn’t do this for safety concerns but as self gratification," the release said. "Mr. Dunn indicated to Detectives that he had done this to numerous other women while performing his duties as a transport officer."

Dunn told officers he had done this with several women, while he was transporting them late at night, and would stop at several locations in Williamson and Travis counties to abuse them on the way to Austin Bergstrom International Airport.

The women were being given the rides to the airport and bus stations as a courtesy while they were out on bond, awaiting immigration hearings.

"So, I'm sick of the lack of oversight that got us here and I am disgusted with the continued failure to adequately manage this facility," said Lisa Grabill with the Texas ACLU.

The first report came on May 11, 2010 , when Austin police told Williamson County Sheriff's deputies that a woman had alerted an airport official that she had been abused on the way to the airport from the facility in Taylor. That's when detectives met with Dunn and listened to his description of groping "numerous women" while doing his duties as a transport officer.

"The only reason we know about this is that one of these women said to an airport transportation person, this isn't supposed to happen in this country is it? And the fact that question even has to be asked is what I find so devastating about this situation," said Graybill.

Graybill has been following the problems and criticism the facility has had since they opened in 2006.

"Opposite sex transport officers are not supposed to be alone with detainees, and that happened not once, not twice, but apparently as many as 10 times leaving these women vulnerable to abuse," she said.

"A large scale investigation into the current locations of other possible victims began immediately after Mr. Dunn’s interview," the news release said. "Detectives from Williamson County and Immigration and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (Office of Professional Responsibility/San Antonio) set out to make contact with several of the possible victims, who had located across the country since bonding out of the facility.

"Mr. Dunn was subsequently terminated from his contract employment with Correction Corporation of America when the allegation was first reported to authorities."

The investigation revealed that all of the possible victims of Mr. Dunn had been released on bond from the facility and were being transported to the Austin-Bergstrom Airport or bus station when the attacks occurred.

It was during these "courtesy transports" that Dunn would stop at different locations in the areas of both Travis and Williamson County.

Three women said they'd been inappropriately touched.Two of those victims said they were taken against their will to a location near a convenience store, during which one woman said she thought she'd either be killed or raped.

"Several (other) women who were interviewed denied any contact with Mr. Dunn," the statement read. "Some of those advised that they were transported in the daylight hours and or it was raining. Several women could not be located for questioning because of out of date addresses with Immigration and Customs Enforcement."

Dunn was arrested on Thursday around 5 p.m. in Austin and was jailed on $35,000 bond. He faces three counts of official oppression and two counts of unlawful restraint.

The investigation is still ongoing at this time. Anyone having information about a victim or Mr. Dunn’s crimes is encouraged to call the Williamson County Sheriff’s Office at 512-943-1300 or the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Agency.

According to the news release:

The T. Don Hutto facility opened in May, 2006 as a family residential facility housing families while they awaited their immigration hearings or decisions The facility changed over to housing females in a separate area of the facility in February, 2008 and in September, 2009 the entire facility began housing only females. The facility is operated under an Immigration and Customs Intergovernmental Service Agreement with Williamson County. Williamson County contracts with Corrections Corporation of America for the facility's day-to-day operation. A new agreement with Williamson County became effective February 1, 2010. The facility employees 169 Correction Corporation of America Staff, 30 U.S. Immigration and Customs

Sunday, August 22, 2010

CCA decides to throw out Max Security Prisoners in Oklahoma for more profitable ICE detainees

"We've openly been marketing our empty prisons," Steve Owen said. "There is a demand and a need for prison services." Apparently by empty beds he also means beds that have Oklahoma minimum and maximum security prisoners sleeping in them.

It appears that CCA is now dumping prisoners back onto states in order to sign more lucrative (PROFITABLE!) contracts with the federal government. Looks like Oklahoma taxpayers are going to lose millions and have to scramble to find beds for these prisoners. Or maybe just let a bunch of convicts loose on the good citizens in Oklahoma if no beds are available. I would imagine that on top of a higher per diem rate CCA will also be laying off workers from these three prisons. ICE prisons typically do not have education staff or other program staff. Additionally the medical departments are often run by the federal government. Looks like lots of CCA employees could also possibly be losing jobs as CCA makes itself even more profit at the expense of Oklahoma citizens who welcomed the company to there communities! I hope Valdosta is paying attention. CCA is no ones friend.

Originally found here.

Federal contract could displace more than 2,000 Oklahoma prisoners
Corrections Corporation of America officials alerted Oklahoma corrections authorities in July of their intent to offer the Federal Bureau of Prisons space at three prisons in the state.

1st Published: August 22, 2010

More than 2,000 state inmates could be displaced from private prisons if a federal contract to house criminal illegal immigrants is awarded here. The move could cost the state Corrections Department and Oklahoma taxpayers millions of dollars.

Corrections Corporation of America officials told state corrections authorities in July they intended to offer three Oklahoma-based prisons to the Federal Bureau of Prisons. They are: Cimarron Correctional Facility in Cushing, Davis Correctional Facility in Holdenville and the empty Diamondback Correctional Facility in Watonga.

"There shouldn't be any surprise when something like this happens," said Justin Jones, state Corrections Department director. "Their product is the incarceration of criminals and it's a for-profit business."

If the contract is awarded, it could affect the placement of 1,800 medium security prisoners at Cimarron and Davis, and 360 maximum-security inmates at Davis, corrections officials said.

The department is operating with a more than $40 million budget deficit.

Federal officials would use the private prisons to house low-security male inmates, primarily criminal illegal immigrants who are Mexican citizens with one year or less to serve.

The business of incarceration

Federal contracts typically pay between $60 and $65 daily per prisoner, Jones said.

Oklahoma has one of the lowest reimbursement rates in the country. They range from about $42 for minimum security inmates to about $57 for maximum security.

If the prisoners are moved, that could mean an increase of as much as $15 per prisoner, Jones said.

Corrections Corporation of America spokesman Steve Owen wouldn't comment on rates discussed with the Federal Bureau of Prisons for the contract.

Offers are being accepted from companies in New Mexico, Oklahoma, Arizona and Texas, and would require 3,000 beds, according to a bid request from the bureau.

Bids are competitive, often based on geographic needs, Owen said.

Earnings increase

Corrections Corporation of America earlier this month reported their second-quarter earnings had increased nearly two percent in 2010 to $419.4 million from $412 million in 2009. The increase was fueled by a jump in inmate populations and a boost from new contracts with the Federal Bureau of Prisons. It notes the opening of a center in Mississippi to house about 2,500 illegal immigrants convicted of crimes and awaiting deportation.

"We've openly been marketing our empty prisons," Owen said. "There is a demand and a need for prison services."

Corrections Corporation of America is the largest for-profit prison company in the U.S. It currently houses about 75,000 individuals in more than 60 prisons and detention centers in the country, according to information on the company website. It partners with the Federal Bureau of Prisons, the U.S. Marshals Service, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, states and municipalities.

In 2009 financial statements, competitor GEO Group officials reported, "We believe that this federal initiative to target, detain, and deport criminal aliens throughout the country will continue to drive the need for immigration detention beds over the next several years."

GEO Group recently bought Cornell Cos., operator of Great Plains Correctional Facility in Hinton. The company has offered use of the prison for federal inmates as well.

This month, officials at the prison announced they would be laying off nearly 300 employees and sending more than 1,700 inmates back to Arizona. No Oklahoma prisoners are housed there.

Even county jails are responding to the need for federal bed space.

Tulsa County officials entered into an agreement with U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement in 2007. Garvin County also has an agreement with the agency to house and transport federal detainees.

Displaced inmates and jobs

Jones said if the bid by Corrections Corporation of America is accepted, the most challenging task would be finding room for the nearly 360 maximum-security prisoners being held at Davis.

There are not enough open maximum-security beds in the state to keep them there, he said. This might result in prisoners being shipped out of state — the first time it's happened since the mid-1990s.

"Obviously this would be a huge burden to families of those prisoners," he said. "It would also probably cost us more."

At the same time state officials worry about prison beds, the question looms about how Oklahoma jobs will be affected.

The possibility of jobs returning to the Watonga area is a bright spot. More than 300 Corrections Corporation of America employees lost their jobs when the Diamondback prison closed there in May. More than 2,000 inmates were returned to Arizona.

It was the largest employer in the area. Owen said company officials are anxious to get the prison running again.

He said he's not sure how employment would be affected at Davis and Cimarron if the bid is accepted.

In 2007, nearly 200 Cornell employees at the Great Plains Correctional Center in Hinton lost work after the state Corrections Department and the company failed to come to an agreement about reimbursement rates. The company then negotiated a contract for Arizona inmates.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

This Land Is (D) Representative Bobby Bright's Land - This Land Is Not Your Land

First off I want to say that I wanted to like Representative Bobby Bright but I just could not. He is a likable enough person when you meet him, he just seems to have no true convictions. Or at least no stance that he has not carefully crafted a fall back position on. Mr. Bright dodges responsibility and questions like Keanu Reeves in the Matrix. He is a geriatric superhero with a superhuman "attempt to dodge" ability. He always seems to have prepared an out.

Mr. Bright said that he votes what his constituents believe and not necessarily what he himself believes. He is a Democrat but no one seems to of told him exactly what a Democrat is or how one should vote. As a Republican I have lost a lot of faith in my own party in the last few years but whether or not I agree with them on every issue I at least understand what the typical Republican is likely to feel about an issue and I agree with them on more issues than I disagree. Mr. Bright on the other hand seems to vote against his party on almost every "big issue." He is an enigma hidden within a riddle.

Friday I met Mr. Bright in Dothan at his Immigration Town Hall meeting. I knew the day was going to be "taxing" based on all the "I Heart Sarah Palin" stickers I passed in the parking lot. This was my first run in with a large group of Tea Party type people. I was actually surprised that while I do not agree with there ideology (and surely not that Sarah Palin is the best female Republican contender for a national office) the tea party folks were in general a likable enough crowd. They were not nearly as angry as I have seen them portrayed in the media. It was no surprise that not many of them agreed with any of my thoughts but they were all certainly respectful of my right to express my beliefs. Only one of them caused a scene and that was when he got up at almost the end of the presentation and stormed out saying it was 4 PM and he had to go (Maybe he was just a really big Glenn Beck fan).

Mr. Bright and several of the tea party people repeatedly spoke of the Constitution and the danger that immigration was posing to it. Are they not aware that the Constitution was itself written, ratified and amended by immigrants and the direct descendants of immigrants to the US? In fact one could argue that the Constitution itself in a twisted way encouraged immigration. The issue of slavery was too controversial to be resolved during the Philadelphia Convention. As a result, the original Constitution contained four provisions tacitly allowing slavery to continue for the next 20 years. In fact Section 9 of Article I allowed the continued "importation" of such persons, Section 2 of Article IV prohibited the provision of assistance to escaping persons and required their return if successful and Section 2 of Article I defined other persons as "three-fifths" of a person for calculations of each state's official population for representation and federal taxation. Article V prohibited any amendments or legislation changing the provision regarding slave importation until 1808, thereby giving the States then existing 20 years to resolve this issue. The fact that this was not done in fact led to the Civil War.

I also want to say that Dothan is a very odd place to be having a Town Hall meeting on Immigration. According to Wikipedia in 2007 Dothan had 65,447 people living in it. Of these 1.32% are Hispanic or Latino. Bobby Bright and many of the people in the audience spoke of Dothan as if it was being swarmed by illegals like they were'ing a trip from the US Border directly to Dothan. It was also sad to hear Dothan City Commissioner John Craig saying, "We’re being asked on the commission what we're doing about the people that are already here. What are we doing to get rid of them and once they're taking jobs and running our hospital bills up.” I think in Dothan many more poor people are probably stiffing the hospitals with unpaid bills than illegals.

Mr. Bright showed the very small crowd (60-80 people tops) a slide presentation that amounted to him smiling on the border, standing with various ICE & Border Patrol officials and a photo of him touring a contract detention facility in El Paso, Texas. It was like sitting through your neighbors very bad vacation slide show with way to much smiling going on. If it was a theme park then I don't think Bobby Bright made it farther than "Fantasyland." This was a Utopian vision of the US border where everything was pretty much working except for the horde of illegals lining up to run across the border to "destroy are way of life." Mr. Bright also thought that an already overworked US military should some how be used to secure the borders. I guess Mr. Bright is not really aware of the intense events going on in Iraq and Afghanistan that are consuming so much of the armed forces time (Wait a minute I think I saw a bunch of pictures of him in Baghdad on his website!).

Mr. Bright stated that he "totally agreed" with the recent law the State of Arizona had passed on immigration. But most disturbing of all was how he continually throughout his thirty minute or so speech on Immigration referred to illegals as "them" and "those people." Talk like this reminded me of Alabama's own Civil Rights history. Perhaps a politician from Montgomery, Alabama could be more careful or sensitive with the words he uses. To me the words possibly hinted at his own mindset and what he might really be thinking.

I originally came to this meeting without planning to speak. However after hearing all that was said and the continual "them" and "those people" I knew that I needed to say something. I briefly spoke to the crowd about my grandmother immigrating to this country from England by way of Bermuda and how this country was founded and built on the backs of immigrant labor. On how fear was being used and how that was not the reality of the situation. I discussed what I thought about a politician using expressions like "Them" and "those people." I spoke of my own employment in a Immigration Detention Center. I spoke about how illegal immigrant labor was used at places like Fort Benning and also even used to build parts of the Stewart Detention Center that houses illegals awaiting detention/deportation hearings. I spoke on how ICE declared an audit a "practice audit" after the Stewart Detention Center failed it very, very badly. I also spoke on the high number of sexual assaults in Immigration Detention Centers. Finally thinking about Roberto Martinez Medina who died at the Stewart Detention Center I spoke of the more than 100 deaths in Detention Centers in the last few years.

Bobby Bright responded by stating "If a person comes in to our country and does what we ask them to do, and they are legal, I don't think there is a person in this room that would not do what they could to help that person get a job," Bright said. "The problem we have here is this: We are entitled to run this nation in the way we have set it up to run. Immigrants should give us the decency to do what we say must be done to be a legal citizen in this nation."

Mr. Bright still does not get it. We can not build a border wall high enough to keep everyone out as long as we silently encourage illegal immigrants to work here. It is a very mixed message we are sending. Employers are rarely held responsible for hiring illegal immigrants. Many American businesses could not succeed without the cheap foreign supplied labor. Americans are more than happy to buy low priced goods that are only possible through the exploitation of illegal immigrants living in the United States. Families that are torn apart by ICE and immigration policies will most likely come back together, even if it means crossing an invisible border or one of the border walls that Bobby Bright made a political photo opportunity out of. The reasonable thing would probably be to come up with a fair path to citizenship based on an immigrants contributions to are country but I think many of the illegals here don't even want that. Many of them would just settle for a chance to live and work here without the fear they now must live under.

I will put it in terms that even Mr. Bright can understand, only by granting more legal options and/or work visa's for "those people" to work here can the immigration issue be fixed.

Friday, June 4, 2010

CCA docked $2,600 a day for using unqualified counselors

Originally found here.

Idaho imposes fines for contract violation

By Getahn Ward • THE TENNESSEAN • June 2, 2010

Corrections Corporation of America has been fined more than $47,200 and counting for not having qualified drug and alcohol counselors at a prison that it manages in Idaho.

The $2,600-a-day tab will continue to run until the Nashville-based prison operator addresses the problem by getting staff members accredited or by hiring more qualified people, said Jeffrey Ray, a spokesman for the Idaho Department of Correction.

The department for whom CCA operates the 2,080-bed Idaho Correctional Center south of Boise imposed the damages after CCA had failed by May 13 to meet certain requirements for counselors under its contract.

As many as 10 of 13 addiction treatment counselors didn't meet terms of the contract, according to the department's notice to CCA sent a month and a half ago. "Those folks are supposed to have certain accreditations, meet certain standards, and they don't," Ray said. "As a result, the department is applying a provision in the contract under which you can seek damages."

The penalties come after separate medical audits of the Idaho Correctional Center earlier this year found various other issues. Those included sloppy record-keeping, delays in providing medications and a lack of follow-up when inmates were returned to the prison after hospitalizations, Ray said.

In a statement, CCA said it would continue efforts to recruit qualified and credentialed professionals.

"We are confident that these efforts will result in our company being in
compliance in the near term with a fully credentialed therapeutic community staff, as local qualified professionals seek employment opportunities," CCA said.

The Nashville-based prison operator added that it's working to resolve issues raised in the recent medical audits at the Idaho Correctional Center, adding those issues are separate from the drug counseling complaints and aren't at a critical phase. Idaho corrections officials said they're concerned that shortcomings in the drug and alcohol program could increase costs for the state and result in prisoners having to stay in jail longer.

Getahn Ward can be reached at 615-726-5968 or at This story includes material from The Associated Press.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Why Are Workers in Lumpkin Not Getting $25 an Hour?

We first wrote about this some time back. It is very interesting that CCA is paying over $25 an hour for an ICE facility in Las Vegas and so much less to people in Lumpkin. Most likely it's because of all the Vegas competition. But at the same time what does that say about the exploitation of the workers in Lumpkin and the profit being taken out of SDC? Are you really worth so much less? If I worked at Stewart I would probably get together with my fellow Correctional Officers and demand a raise. Maybe if CCA paid a living wage then it's facilities would have less abuse claims do to a higher caliber of employee that could be attracted by paying more. But I think we all know that it's probably not really about the worker or prisoner... nope it's most likely about the PROFIT. CCA's contract probably sets the pay rate at $25+ an hour. Which is a sign that all of these communities begging for a facility could really be doing a lot better also if they reexamined there contracts with CCA. I hope Lumpkin is listening. With all the poverty in Stewart County they could definitely hold CCA more accountable and to a higher standard than they are. After all it is Stewart County that ICE pays not CCA. Seems like CCA's bag man (Stewart County) could be doing much better. Maybe even $25+ an hour better for it's citizens that work at this hell hole.

CCA will hold job fair on 28th

Originally found here.

Corrections Corporation of America will begin accepting job applications on the Internet for the Nevada Southern Detention Center April 28, according to CCA Vice-President of Marketing Louise Grant.

A job fair will be held in Pahrump for prospective applicants interesting in working at the federal detention center from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., April 30 and May 1, at Great Basin College, 550 E. Calvada Blvd., Grant said.

Job seekers won't be able to submit hard copies of applications at the job fair, but they can use computers at Great Basin College and get assistance in filling out the online application, which is the only way CCA will accept applications.

The Web site for applications online is

Company representatives will be available at the two-day event to answer questions about the application process and outline criteria for getting a job. Job seekers will also be able to get information about CCA, the company benefits package and promotional opportunities, Grant said.

A career information day Jan. 20 attracted a packed house of 300 prospective applicants at each of two sessions held at the Pahrump Nugget.

Applicants will have 180 computers available to use at Great Basin College, Bill Verbeck, the director of the Pahrump Great Basin College campus, said.

He added, "Talking to CCA, we expect more people than we're going to be able to accommodate in two days."

Great Basin College and Career Connections announced a series of job readiness workshops to prepare local residents for the CCA career fair.

Sessions will be from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m., 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. on three Fridays, -- April 9, 16 and 23.

There will also be one session from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. on Saturdays, April 10, 17 and 24.

The workshops will help applicants create their resume, apply for jobs at the facility online, give tips to job seekers for the interview and advice on how to dress, as well as managing their money. A vigorous credit check is conducted by the U.S. Marshals Service; applicants must have a good credit history.

The workshops will be held at the Great Basin College-Career Connections Center, 1541 E. Basin Ave. The phone number to call is 537-2323.

"We want our folks in the valley as qualified as they can be. These online applications are tricky," Verbeck said.

People who want to sign up for the workshops must be registered with Career Connections, he said.

CCA expects to employ 231 people at the detention center. About 150 of those employees will be correctional officers, who will be paid a federal prevailing wage of over $25 per hour.

CCA will have a booth at the annual Biz Expo sponsored by the Pahrump Valley Chamber of Commerce from noon to 7 p.m., Friday, April 23, and from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday, April 24, at the Pahrump Nugget Events Center.

CCA said its participation is part of the national company's Diversity Business Inclusion Program, through which CCA will subcontract with local businesses classified as "diverse," such as those owned by minorities, women and veterans for the Nevada Southern Detention Center, Grant said.

The expo is a chance for thousands of Pahrump attendees to learn about the company and is also a networking venue for new and existing businesses, she said.

"CCA recognizes the importance of including diverse businesses in our procurement practices," said Dawn Williams, CCA manager of Diversity Business Development out of CCA's Nashville, Tenn., headquarters. "By creating sound business relationships, we strengthen economic development and enhance viability for diverse businesses in Pahrump Valley. Our commitment encourages job creation and strengthens purchasing power of those within the community."

The $80 million detention center is scheduled to be completed in July. As of early March, Grant said roofing work was 95 percent complete; interior work like drywall, ceiling grid installation and painting were well under way; perimeter fencing was more than half completed; and the general contractor was receiving bunks and tables.

CCA expects to begin receiving the first prisoners in October. The facility will have a capacity of holding 1,072 inmates awaiting trial in federal court or deportation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement.