What Is Happening With The Keefe Group

Based out of St. Louis, the Keefe Group has been involved with some controversies lately. The company was recently mentioned in a report from PrisonCensorship.com about bribery and kickbacks that occurred in Florida, a state where the Keefe Group supplies food to prisoners. The news reports about the incident surely has caused some embarrassment for the Keefe Group.

The Keefe Group is by no means a small operation. The company earned $40+ million through contracts signed to deliver services in a number of correctional facilities.

The Keefe Group is far from a new enterprise. The company was founded in 1975 and, since that time, the Keefe Group has supplied food, clothing, technology, and other products to the correction industry in all its forms. The reports of bribery and kickbacks are not exactly going to be helpful to the public image of the company. More incidents of this nature could even lead to the Keefe Group losing contracts, which according to Corrections.com would be a devastating blow to the company’s bottom line.

A lot of discord could emerge no matter how the legal matters related to the accusations play out. Once the public gains a distrust or distaste for a business, such feelings may roll into perceptions about the entire industry. To say this would be unfortunate is an understatement.

Read more: http://www.cdispatch.com/news/article.asp?aid=39055

Burglar Jailed In Shereveport, La

Early morning on June 11, 2016, Sounds of broken glass prompted neighbors in the area of West 70th St. to phone police. Soon after, police arrived at a local restaurant, near the area where the suspicious activity was reported. The building was obviously damaged, with broken windows included. The suspect was reported to be suffering from a gun shot wound to the hand, acquired in an earlier dispute. Police then encountered a person matching that description, in the vicinity of the restaurant.
It was later discovered that the suspect they encountered and apprehended at the restaurant was the burglary suspect in the restaurant defacing. It also seems that the gunshot wound to the hand he was suffering from was self inflicted at some point when he broke into the building. It was discovered on surveillance video from the establishment that the 17-year-old suspect acted alone. He has since been booked into the Shreveport Jail.

Complacency and Corruption at Heart of NY Prison Escape

A report has recently been released that gives some insight into the successful escape by two inmates from the Clinton Correctional Facility last year. Much of this information comes from a statement by the surviving member of the duo, David Sweat. Sweat was captured after 3 weeks on the run. His partner, Richard Matt, was shot and killed during the course of the manhunt for the two men.

In Sweat’s 150-page statement, he details how he and Matt courted a woman, Joyce Mitchell, who worked in the prison’s tailor shop. He revealed how she smuggled tools, like drill bits, chisels and hacksaw blades, into the prison. Sweat goes on to detail how it took 85 days to dig through the prison walls to the outside. He had no building blueprints and basically used a trial and error method until he was successful.

Mitchell was also supposed to be outside the night of the escape with her car to pick the two men up. She never showed and they had to continue their escape on foot.

Sweat credits his escape to the lax security at the prison. He called the guards lazy and unconcerned. Most nights the guards never came through and did cell checks, nor did they inspect or patrol the catwalks and walkways where he was working. He said he was so sure of the laziness and blasé attitude, that he worked confidently and was unconcerned about being caught.

The information in Sweat’s report, and subsequent investigation into the matter, have led to charges being filed against some employees, numerous firings and resignations. The attorney general, Catherine Leahy Scott, commented on the events, saying “…failure to adhere to the most basic security standards uncovered by my investigation was egregious and inexcusable.”

Rikers Island Under Investigation For Unruly Guards

N.Y.C’s Modification Division has produced significant advancement toward creating “bearing reform” at Rikers Island, although assault against prisoners remains a substantial problem, the national tracking team managing a re making of city prisons published in a statement submitted on Thursday.

In the last weeks since a federal judge granted final approval to a far-reaching settlement arrangement designed to stop ongoing violence and negligence at metropolis prisons, the section has employed hundreds of new discipline officers, revisited coaching processes and guidelines regulating when officers may use too much pressure on prisoners, added 1,350 extra surveillance cameras and dramatically decreased the utilization of solitary confinement, the statement mentioned.

In several places, the department has fulfilled or exceeded necessary, the statement mentioned.

“The departments operation to date should be the stakeholders carefully confident that real change is under way and building momentum,” the statement mentioned.

Mysterious prisoner injuries, inappropriate use of pepper spray and unreported uses of unnecessary force also remained an issue, the statement mentioned.

The section has developed a new and improved plan requiring the use of bodily force by officers, among the necessary circumstances. Though the plan is not going to be completely put in place until June 2017, the section states that a new and improved instruction processes have minimized severe incidents and cell block conflicts.

In order to improve the inspections and investigations of unfair and unruly guards, the section has started to strengthen its internal affairs section. As of March 2016, the department had 129 researchers, in contrast to 66 in Jan 2015, and plans to employ 40 more, the statement mentioned. And the department has created a electronic case management system to replace document-based report maintaining.

In a statement, Frederick Ponte, the modification commissioner, stated the section looked forward to working together with the observation group “as we prepare for what is yet to come.”

Securus Technologies Offers Communication Options

A recent article in PR Newswire addressed the changing communication situation between inmates at facilities in America and the list of person these inmates want and need to keep in contact with. Securus Technologies is the company making limited and monitored communications possible between loved ones, attorneys, and the inmates. The system being used by Securus also allows for limited outside contact by the inmates for education and possible opportunities when incarcerations are ended. Securus Technologies is now operating 84,000 of these intelligent communication devices in a system that allows for this limited and restricted communication for prisoners. Securus plans for an increase in the number of units deployed, stating it will be 150,000 by the end of 2016.
Securus has in place a communication system that will allow friends and family of inmates greater and easier contact with their loved ones behind bars. The incarceration of a criminal is not only difficult for the prisoner but the family and friends as well. Imagine that your wife or sister was suddenly convicted of a crime and forced to spend years away from everything that had meaning to them, friends, family, home, car, clothes, jewelry. It is an unimaginable existence for most civilized humans, but people under the influence of alcohol or drugs do commit crimes and must be punished by the set of rules that we adhere to as a society.
Incarceration is the penalty aspect of those who have committed crimes and are a danger to society. They are separated from the society that they have harmed, but their return to society playing a positive role must be the objective of incarceration. The means to return are not only remorse but in many cases education. Many criminals commit crimes because they have no alternative avenue to make a living. But when in prison education to obtain a job must be the highest priority. Securus has included this in their communication systems, and we are all better off for their efforts. Source:Your text to link…

Viral Video Effect Backlash

If you are on Facebook, Youtube, Twitter or Instagram you are probably no stranger to viral videos. It only takes a matter of seconds before you log onto the internet and see the newest trending video. Most recently the black lives matter movement has taken over the internet and led to many trending videos. These trending videos include videos of people such as Mike Brown being killed by a police officer when allegedly his hands were up in the air. The videos being released led to many protesting because they feel the police system isn’t like it used to be.

Recently, an article was released that mentioned the “viral video effect” it is the effect that many believe has led to a decrease in hostile police environments. It is believed that many police officers no longer use deadly force because they fear they may end up losing their jobs if they use too much force when arresting men who are in trouble with the law.

This viral video effect has slowed down police brutality but many also fear that this effect will cause police to look the other way when they see crimes occurring simply because they are afraid of the backlash.

The City Of Fife Jail Implements New Communications System

The City of Fife has replaced its old, outdated telecommunication system with an updated, user-friendly system that is far more efficient.

The state-of-the-art Nexus Inmate Communications System, courtesy of Lattice Incorporated is a more mordern system that works very well with the prison. The platform is automated and will allow inmates to communicate with loved ones.

“The new system will definitely be an improvement,” according to Lattice CEO Paul Burgess. “It will allow staff and administrators to focus on more important things.” All parties agree that effective communication to the outside world will boost morale and cause recidivism rates to drop.

“We are hoping our partnership with Fife will be a good one,” said Burgess.

Lattice Incorporated is one of the fastest growing telecommunications companies in the U.S., according to a report in the Corridor Business Journal. The company provides highly-secure communications systems, voicemail, mobile phones, video visitation services and other devices for correctional facilities.

“The new system has been a tremendous improvement. The old system was very outdated and we are very pleased whit the new one,” said a spokesperson for Fife.

Lattice says its customer base is growing. Beside the U.S., Lattice provides services in Canada, Japan and Europe.

Brawl at Texas Prison Caused by Flooding

Power outages can be a pretty big deal in this day and age. For most people the loss of power is mainly and inconvenience, and leads to a lack of lighting and disconnection from the internet. But for a prison, the loss of power can be a catastrophe. Last week, Southeast Texas experienced having rains and flooding, which led to massive power outages all across the region. At the Luther Unit prison in Novasota, the powerwent out at 10 am on Saturday, and led to massive brawling and riots.

Normally a secondary generator would have come on and saved the day, but the flooding damaged the generator. Most of the locks and other security measures in the prison are controlled electronically, and the power outage caused major problems within the prison until it could be restored. About 50 inmates of the 1,300 housed in the prison were involved in the brawl before power was restored and the peace was restored. The fighting caused by the power did not result in any major injuries, but 3 of the inmates were sent to a nearby hospital for stitches once order had been restored. Fortunately there were no escapes reported during the sudden power outage.

San Luis Obispo County Jail Adding Video Visitation to Prisons

San Luis Obispo County Jail is implementing a new video streaming system for inmates to speak with family, friends, and lawyers without personal visitations. The experience is similar to skype but there is a fee involved in using it. Part of the reason for this is that the service has overhead for the correctional facilities and vendor companies. In addition to the overhead, many county correctional use a commission fee on the service as a way to help fund prisons which they claim have funding issues for years that this will alleviate.

The current pricing model for visitation is as follows: on-site visitation is free while the new video visitation is $15 for 20 minutes and $30 for 40 minutes. There had been a discussion of creating a monthly subscription model, but for the initial launch, it will be on a per minute basis. The vendor selected to implement the system was Global Tel-Link which will maintain not only the website portal for arranging calls but also the systems themselves.

Access to the system is fairly straight forward where users will register on the Global Tele-Link (GTL) website. From there they register a username, provide personal and financial information, and then generate a password for security. There is no fee for registration or logging in and the website service can be used to schedule on-site visits as well as video communication. The video communication is achieved via desktop, laptop, or tablets equipped with a camera and audio input device. All video feeds are routed through a monitoring counsel for security reasons.

Norway Looks To The Netherlands To Cope With Rising Prison Population

The movement of people around the world in the 21st century has had a surprising effect on the prison industry, which can be seen in the jail at Veenhuizen in The Netherlands where Norway’s government has recently been sending prison inmates. The approach taken to prison terms differs between the two neighboring nations as the cells of Norway are overflowing, while at the same time those in The Netherlands remain only two thirds full, according to DW.com.

The 240 inmates at Veenhuizen live and work on the site in an institution that offers many of the modern amenities seen in European jails; inmates enjoy large green spaces around the prison and the latest in modern technology that allows them the chance to Skype family members in Norway. Technology is not the only upgrade the prison has seen; a nearby factory provides work for inmates each morning and is followed by a range of sports, library and other activities to be undertaken each afternoon and evening.

The progressive approach to the time inmates spend in prison is seen in both Norway and The Netherlands, which includes the chance to become better prepared for life once their prison term is over. The benefits of renting out the Dutch jail to Norwegian authorities can be seen in the local community where high unemployment has been lowered with around 240 staff members from The Netherlands working at the jail.