Funny story, and true: 21 August. I just came back to my prison living unit from our four star dining at Stafford Creek Corrections Center, and by four star I’m referencing the old “Six Star” novelty stores whereby one could buy candy that had been on the shelf for about two and a half decades, adjust number of stars accordingly and you get my point. Plus, if you’ve been to the joint in Washington, you really get my point, beings that you had to experience four star dining yourself. I digress. So, returning from our four star dining, I have the opportunity to call a federal attorney that I have an appointment to talk (intellectually argue) with. I’m about ten minutes into our argument about miscalculated offender scores when the event happens.
So I’m logically arguing with this federal attorney, when this Gomer-Pyle correctional officer pig (my opinion) named COREY EVANS (actual name) comes over and directs me to get off the attorney phone. Incredulous, I say: “What? Emily (the attorney), please identify yourself as a lawyer to this public servant.” Evans says, “I don’t want to talk, get off the phone. You don’t have special permission to use the attorney phone.” Evans’ subsequent infraction report states that I say to Emily ‘Can I call you back on the non attorney phone? “He is being a FUCKING DICK!”‘ Emily told me to call her right back, and I terminated the phone call. As I stepped out of the phone booth, Evans directs me to cell in, which I promptly do, without argument.
Fifteen days later, I’m served with an infraction for the incident. The allegations, you ask? WAC 103, and 210, failing to follow written rules and being out of bounds cuz’ I was using the attorney phone at an “unauthorized time.” Except that a WAC 103 is failing to obey a directive of staff good job, Evans. So on 5 September I go see the unit Sgt for the hearing on Evans’ write-up. The Sgt reads it, and asks me “What’s an ‘unauthorized time’ to use the attorney phone?” I tell the Sgt what he already knows: that if the dayrooms are open, we can use any phone available. He asks if I was talking to an attorney, and I ask him if he’s checked his phone messages for the day yet? “Why do you ask?,” he inquires. “Because my Federal Attorney left you two messages about the situation,” I answer.
He puts his phone on speaker and enters the code for his voice mail. Four new, unchecked messages. First one was from Emily Bushaw, Esquire. She wants to talk to the Sgt about her version of what she heard on the phone on the day in question. Second one was also from Emily, identifying herself with her Bar number and law firm, and expanding on the first message. As the second message is playing, the Sgt is writing “NOT GUILTY” as his findings for the hearing I haven’t even made a statement at this point. The Sgt calls Evans in his office, and asks me to step outside briefly. I do, and I see the Sgt gesturing sternly, which I can only equate with him reprimanding Evans, although I can’t hear what was said. Sgt Martinez calls me back into his office, apologizes for his staff’s actions, and tells me to have a good evening. Respectable, classy guy, that Sgt Martinez.
Just when you think the story is dying down, let me tell you: PUT YOUR SEAT BELT ON! So after the hearing, I’m in my assigned day room in A-Pod Evans is working on the other side of the Unit, in B-Pod. As I’m casually chatting with two other offenders, here comes Corey Evans, hands in his pants and carelessly strolling nonchalantly right towards the table I’m sitting at. As he approaches, he rudely interrupts our chat and snidely remarks: “So, I heard you beat my infraction, huh? Congratulations.” But the “congratulations” came out like Bozo-the-Clown getting punched in the stomach and gasping for breath. I immediately excused myself from the table and walked directly away from Evans. He starts following me, calling my name in a taunting manner. “Maaaaatthhheewwwwws. Maaaaatthhheewwwwws.”
Then he tells me to stop. I ask him what he wants, and he says he wants to talk to me. I look for the nearest prisoner: “Izzy, I need a witness.” Izzy comes over, and Evans tells him to leave. I advised Evans: “I would like a witness, cuz’ you’re acting bizarre.” Evans directs Izzy to disburse, and directs me to follow him (Evans) as he walks towards the back sallyport doors, where the strip cells are located.
Believing and fearing that I could possibly be sexually assaulted by this wierdo Evans, I beeline for my Pod Officer, Mrs. Burns. I ask for her intervention and presence, as Evans is ORDERING me to go somewhere private with him after going out of his way to abandon his post to come over to my assigned pod and stalk me around the day room that he doesn’t even work in. Mrs. Burns ask Evans, “What’s going on”? Evans is like a deer caught in the headlights: “Uh, um, I, I just wanted to talk to him.” I pipe in, “You just tried to cross me out with the infraction and got your ass chewed out by your boss over it, and then you come over here harassing me about it. I don’t feel safe going anywhere private with you.” He tries to negotiate: “Just come right over here and let me talk to you.” I respond: “Anything you have to say to me can be said publicly?” He replies: “Well, I guess I don’t have anything to say to you, then.”
Mrs. Burns looks at Evans and remarks: “If you don’t have anything to say to him, then why are you over here to begin with”? Red-faced, Evans slinks away, ostensibly back to his (by now ten minute) abandoned-post.
The punch-line? There isn’t one. But there is humor attached, both in the entirety of the event and its concomitant outcome. See, I was not in the wrong to begin with I was speaking to a federal attorney on the designated attorney phone during designated–and authorized–hours. Evans–whom wasn’t even working in my assigned pod on 21 August either–took it upon himself to make up rules and interrupt my attorney call (First Amendment violation Count I) and then committed the prohibited tort of retaliation for something I allegedly said (“He’s being a FUCKING DICK!”) in confidence to my attorney on the designated and priveleged-communication attorney phone. Counts II and III. [Please note the specific use of the third-person relative nominal pronoun contraction “He’s,” as opposed to the first-person possessive pronoun “You are.” I was undoubtedly speaking TO my attorney ABOUT Evans, not to Evans directly]. Evans must not have read my last blog entry, which was titled: “IF THEY VIOLATE YOUR RIGHTS, SUE ‘EM”! If he had, he might not have given me these three causes of action.
And these are some of the types of officers that your incarcerated friends, family, and loved ones are in care of …
Categories: Brian Matthews