Monday, June 20, 2011

The Violent Worst

In the bad old days, when we couldn't see our files. Things were said, stated as bald fact, by staff who believed we would never find out. This is the story of the only accusation of violence made against me, though "accusation" is not quite the word. That implies I knew about it.
24 years ago, I was laying on my bed over a lunchtime in Featherstone nick. We often sleep over lunchtimes, it kills the time, especially sans television.
The door crashed open and a gang of screws "invited" me to accompany them to the Block. Bemused, but unworried, I was walked down the Ml corridor to the Block and parked in a cell. Minutes after the door was banged, it popped open. A Block screw flung an envelope filled with cigarettes on the bed, said, "it's out of order", and vanished. A little while later, a governor came to tell me that I was being put on GOAD.
Good Order and Discipline...the prison’s way of throwing you into indefinite isolation without so much as a disciplinary hearing. Back then, being told you were on GOAD was all the info you received. After 70 days in isolation, and no wiser, I was shipped to another prison.
Five years later, and our dossiers became "open". I finally found out what that incident was all about. They believed that I was plotting up to stab a fellow lifer. When I discovered his name, my reaction was, "who?!" I'd never even heard of him!
That's how it worked back then. Secret allegations made, never put to the con, no Charges offered, no opportunity to rebut them. And that crap is still there in my parole dossier, unsubstantiated by a shred of evidence.
That, folks, is the only allegation of violence made against me. For all we shall ever know, this was just another case of a "note in the box".


  1. And fancy calling it 'goad', kinda gives the game away, doesn't it. How awful for you though, 70 days like that for nothing, that is terrible Ben, no wonder you are suspicious, you have to be. : (

  2. So why have you wanted to hang around there for so long?


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