Prison Guard Brutality in LA

Jay sent up this article about an inmate at the Three Towers Correctional Institution in Los Angeles who was sprayed with pepper spray in his genital area. The inmate contends he was assaulted and sprayed for cursing at a guard who refused his request for a clean shirt. Pepper spray, like tasers, are supposed to be used as alternatives to firearms to control aggressive and violent persons by temporarily incapacitating them. Clearly, both have, instead, come to be used as vindictive and punitive torture devices.

From my own limited experience working for a Prisoner's Rights Organization I can tell you that the use of pepper spray was (and probably still is) extremely rampant in Florida. Guards would spray cells of inmates who has complained about prison conditions as a form of payback. They would also continually use the spray on the same inmate night after night for an incident that may have happened in the pass. Guidelines called for the immediate showering of the inmate as well as a change of clothes, two basics that were often ignored in Florida prisons. The spray was also often used on known asthmatics and in areas where there was virtually no ventilation.

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