Tag Archive: Victory

Developers halt plans for Carrboro CVS

carborocommuneFrom Daily Tarheel

Developers have pulled the application for a CVS/Pharmacy at the site, meaning there are no current development plans for a CVS at that location, according to the Active Project Report for Carrboro from earlier this year.

The developer pulled the CVS proposal after members of the Carrboro Board of Alderman said they likely wouldn’t rezone the property and repeatedly delayed their discussion of the site, said Martin Roupe, the town’s development review administrator, in the report.

Trish McGuire, planning director of Carrboro , said while the board did not initially wish to rezone the property, they would have considered a revised plan for the business. She has not heard from the developers since they pulled the application.


Exclusive: Freed Ex-Black Panther Marshall “Eddie” Conway on 44 Years in Prison & FBI Surveillance

From Democracy Now!

In a Democracy Now! exclusive, former Black Panther Party leader Marshall “Eddie” Conway joins us less than 24 hours after his release from nearly 44 years in prison. Supporters describe Conway as one of the country’s longest-held political prisoners. He was convicted of killing a Baltimore police officer in 1970, for which he has always maintained his innocence. The shooting occurred at a time when federal and local authorities were infiltrating and disrupting the Black Panthers and other activist groups. At the time of the shooting, the FBI was also monitoring Conway’s actions as part of its counterintelligence program, COINTELPRO. Numerous groups have campaigned for years calling for his release, saying he never received a fair trial and was convicted largely on the basis of testimony from a jailhouse informant. Politically active in prison, Conway founded Friend of a Friend, a group that helps young men, often gang members, resolve conflicts, and published a memoir, “Marshall Law: The Life & Times of a Baltimore Black Panther.” In his first interview since being released, Marshall details his time behind bars and the government surveillance he faced as a prominent Black Panther.

Full Episode Here

Eddie Conway Released From Prison!

eddieconwayFrom Corporate Media

Former Black Panther leader and convicted cop killer Marshall “Eddie” Conway was released after four decades behind bars on Tuesday, after striking an agreement with prosecutors over a challenge to his conviction based on of the way judges explained the law to juries in old cases.

Conway, now 67, spent more than 40 years behind bars after being convicted in the 1970 killing of Baltimore Police Officer Donald Sager, 35, who was killed in an ambush. Conway has maintained his innocence, saying that he was set up, and denied any role in the attack. For years there has been a campaign by supporters to get him pardoned.

His release Tuesday after a hearing in Baltimore Circuit Court was a result of the “Unger” decision, under which the state’s highest court ruled that jurors had been given improper instructions in cases tried before 1980. More than a dozen people were released last summer as a result of the decision, and officials have said as many as 200 others could be released. (more…)

Russell Maroon Shoatz released from solitary confinement – first time in general population in more than 22 years

maroonFrom Abolitionist Law Center

February 20, 2014: Pittsburgh PA —  Russell Maroon Shoatz was released from solitary confinement into the general prison population at State Correctional Institution (SCI) Graterford this morning, ending more than 22 consecutive years in solitary confinement. The news was confirmed by Maroon during a legal call with an attorney from the Abolitionist Law Center.

Maroon’s son, Russell Shoatz III, said, “We are very excited that this day has finally come. My father being released from solitary confinement is proof of the power of people organizing against injustice, and the importance of building strong coalitions. I especially want to thank all of those who have supported the collective struggle to end my father’s solitary confinement, including my siblings and members of the Shoatz family, the Human Rights Coalition, Abolitionist Law Center, Scientific Soul Sessions, the entire legal team, UN Special Rapporteur Juan Mendez, the 5 Nobel Peace Laureates, the National Lawyers Guild, Center for Constitutional Rights, along with the dozens of other organizations and thousands of individuals who have participated in this effort.”

The move comes after Maroon, who turned 70-years-old in August 2013, was transferred to three different Pennsylvania prisons in the past nine months. It marks the first time that Shoatz has been in the general prison population in the state of Pennsylvania since 1983, when he was placed in solitary confinement due to his work with the Pennsylvania Association of Lifers to abolish life-without-parole sentences. For a 17-month period between 1989-1991, Maroon was held in the general prison population at the federal penitentiary at Leavenworth, Kansas. (more…)

Prison Phone Calls Will No Longer Cost a Fortune

jail-phone-revenuePrison phone rates have decreased by 25% to 50% overnight thanks to new U.S. rules, according to one service provider

From Corporate Media

Hundreds of thousands of U.S. prison inmates and their families will now be able to speak by phone at much lower prices thanks to new federal rules that went into effect on Tuesday. The new rules were crafted by the Federal Communications Commission and are designed to crack down on what prison inmate advocates call abusive and predatory practices by phone companies.

For over a decade, many prison inmates in both state and federal facilities have paid significantly higher rates to make interstate phone calls than people outside of correctional facilities. According to the FCC, some prison inmates have had to pay as much as $17 for a 15 minute phone call.

The new rate caps, which were passed by the agency last fall under the leadership of acting FCC Chair Mignon Clyburn, impose a limit of 21 cents per minute for debit or pre-paid calls and 25 cents per minute for collect calls. At those levels, the cost of a 15-minute call would be reduced by as much 80% to $3.15.

“This is a huge victory for justice for ordinary people at an agency that is usually more attuned to private interests,” says Cheryl A. Leanza, policy director at the United Church of Christ, which has long advocated prison phone reform. “Increasing the connections between families and inmates helps all of us. Strong family connections improve the likelihood that when inmates are released, they will not become repeat offenders, and that makes our society safer. We are very grateful to Commissioner Clyburn.” (more…)

Westville Updates: Victory and Repression

bridgeFrom RIFIFI Bloomington

Received and transmitted:

Saturday January 25

Please man the phones on Monday, January 27,2014. Westville Correctional Facility (SUPER-MAX Prison) is retaliating against the inmates who protested last week by refusing to give them heated cells. Inmates in the A-Pods of “Westville Control Unit” the (Super-Max) are being deprived of heat because they protested the sack lunch that had been served to them over the last nine months. The Blue setion, A7 & A8, Yellow setion 5&6 range along with the Alpha Pod are experiencing extremly cold temperatures.The policy of the facilty states that they cannot use tactics such as these to punish individuals for demanding the same treatment as all other inmates; HEAT!

To justify their actions, the prison has stated that there is a new engineer that does not know how to adjust the system up on the roof. In the meantime they have passed out an extra blanket and jacket to combat the freezing temperature. We are once again asking that you call the GOVERNOR’S OFFICE (Pence) at 317 232-4567 and demand that either the heat gets fixed or that they remove these individuals from these freezing cells and put them in a warmer section as the policy dictates under emergency procedure. Also call the Commissioner’s office (Lemmon) at 317 232-5711.

Together we can make a difference. (more…)

Kevin is Finally Receiving Books! Thanks to Everyone Who Applied Pressure

prison-bible1-95764_200x200From SupportKevinandTyler.com

After a tug-a-war between jail superintendent Michael Waterworth and the (much more reasonable) people above him, fairness prevailed and Kevin is now receiving books.

Thanks to everyone who spoke up on Kevin’s and Tyler’s behalf (and everyone imprisoned in Woodford County).

Kevin’s book wish list is here, so if you have the means, please send him a book (or just a letter).

Thanks again for everyone’s support.

VICTORY: The book ban has been lifted! Kevin ends hunger strike

books posterFrom Support Kevin & Tyler

The book ban has been lifted + Kevin ends hunger strike.

After 8 days on a hunger strike, jail head Michael Waterworth told Kevin Olliff he was lifting the book ban. This huge victory comes after Kevin lost close to 20 pounds over the 8 days. Kevin has now ended his hunger strike, effective immediately.

Thanks to everyone worldwide who made calls, wrote articles, and organized support during Kevin’s hunger strike. While it is always unfortunate when someone is pushed into starving themselves to receive a basic human right, we can say that from everyone’s hard work and Kevin’s sacrifice, this episode has a happy ending.

Kevin at his first meal in over a week at lunchtime on Thursday, and was given a book. He was told the books that have been sent during the book ban will be given to him by the end of the day. (more…)

Herman Wallace’s Conviction Overturned and Immediate Release Ordered!


Update, 10 pm: Angola 3 News reports that Herman Wallace is free from solitary and from prison:

Even after Judge Jackson’s late evening ruling denying the State’s attempt at a stay and again ordering his immediate release, the State continued to stall. Once notified of the continued delay, Judge Jackson stoically refused to leave his quarters until Herman was released, and just minutes ago, Herman was driven away from the prison a free man, awake and able to revel in this miraculous turn of events. The State will likely still appeal to the 5th Circuit and attempt to have the order reversed, and may even re-indict him, but it seems that Herman, against all odds, has won.

From Angola 3 News

–Read today’s court ruling here
For more background, view the new Solitary Watch article here.

Miraculous news this morning! Judge Brian A. Jackson, Chief Judge of the United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana, has overturned Herman’s conviction, granting him full habeas relief based on the systematic exclusion of women from the jury in violation of the 14th Amendment.

Even more astonishingly, the Judge clearly orders that “the State immediately release Mr. Wallace from custody.”  No application for bail is required, and the State is given 30 days to notify Herman if they plan to re-indict him. (more…)

DA drops Durham police assault case

snFrom Capitalist Media

DURHAM, N.C.  — The Durham County District Attorney’s office has dropped all charges against Stephanie Nickerson.

The 25-year-old Navy veteran had faced resisting arrest and assaulting an officer charges in an October incident in which she claims an officer repeatedly punched her in the head and face – leaving her with a broken nose, a black eye and swollen lips.

Nickerson’s case has drawn considerable community attention, and prompted multiple protests in front of the Durham Police Department. Supporters have called for the officer involved to be removed from duty and criminally charged. (more…)