Song Pick: “Abracadabra” by Steve Miller Band
In my opinion:
Did you know that State Criminal Justice Agencies are required to keep accurate criminal records, and that if they don’t then they break State law? Or that if they refuse to fix inaccuracies in the records upon written challenge then they commit a misdemeanor?
DOC prisoner Brian Matthews (that’s me) knew it. So when I reviewed my prison file and noticed that my criminal records had faulty information in it, attributable to DOC, I made a written challenge to the information and requested correction pursuant to law. My then-prison counselor (Viola Gorham–Worst. Counselor. Ever! See You Next Tuesday, for those of you who get it) refused to do anything on my written challenges, as did her superior (Shannon Weidman)(Shannon’s a guy. I know, right?), and as did the prison’s Correctional Unit Supervisor, Dennis Cherry (Worst. CUS. Ever!).
And as did the prison’s Grievance Coordinator, Kerri McTarsnee (Worst. Grievance Coordinator. Ever!). And as did the investigating Classification Counselor III, Cheryl Roiko. And as did the Associate Superintendent of the prison, Jeneva Cotton. And as did the then-prison Superintendent, Margaret Gilbert (angry, control freak black woman). And as did the Deputy Director for Prison Command, Robert Herzog. And as did the then-DOC CEO, Richard Morgan (ironically, his nickname is “Dick”). And as did the Statewide Correctional Records Manager, Wendy Stigall. And as did Senior Assistant State Attorney General, Timothy Lang. In fact, every person I challenged my inaccurate records with either attempted to convince me that I HAD been convicted of the charges that I was challenging as being inaccurate or just blatantly refused to fix the inaccuracy. EVERY PERSON, WITHOUT EXCEPTION! Instead of listening to my protests or paying attention to my written complaints, I was given the [attempted] “Jedi Mind-Trick” and either told that my inaccurate records were accurate or that nothing was going to be done.
Until I filed suit under the Criminal Records Privacy Act, RCW 10.97 et seq. Turns out that it really IS a misdemeanor for each DOC personnel aforementioned to refuse to fix inaccuracies like the one I was challenging. Accord RCW 10.97.120. Luuuucyyyy, you have some ‘splaining to dooo! Suddenly, DOC changed their tune and, mendacious dungs (get a dictionary) that they are, pointed the finger at Washington State Patrol (WSP). WSP promptly (and respectfully tip ‘o the hat t’ya, WSP) accepted responsibility for, and fixed, their own criminal activity, and also fixed the inaccuracy that I had initially challenged to begin with. They quickly offered settlement and asked me what my number was. After a few rounds of negotiations, we settled for $800. WSP gave me $800 because DOC personnel were too proud to listen to a prisoner telling them that they were wrong. WSP gave me $800 to cover up DOC’s crimes and protect DOC personnel from being prosecuted for misdemeanors. Every DOC personnel named in this writing is, technically, a crook because each one intentionally violated State law and committed a misdemeanor. Learn the law, people! Read RCW 10.97.120.
Lest it be forgotten: Government Of the People. By the People. For the People. Our Public Servants need to realize that abusing the authority We, The People, entrust to them will not be tolerated. Maybe the next time someone tells DOC that its actions are illegal, DOC might listen. Maybe. But probably not. My lawsuit can be found at Grays Harbor County Superior Court Cause No. 16-2-00877-8.