Testimony of Validation Practice

By Peter Salazar, PBSP-Short Corridor, written on April 11, 2012

“I was incarcerated June 1995. I went through the prison receiving center in December of 1995.

In January of 1996, I was sent to High Desert State Prison. I was placed on a Maximum Security Yard because I was a lifer.

In April of 1996, I was taken to Ad-Seg by IGI. I was never told why I was being housed in Ad-Seg.

After several months in Ad-Seg. I was allowed to go back out to the General Population after a riot broke out, (which I was not involved in). I was taken back to Ad-Seg by IGI.

About a year later I was again allowed access to the mainline. The prison was on lockdown for 17 months. I never left my cell.

The day before we were to come off of lockdown, I was again escorted by IGI to Ad-Seg.

This time IGI told me that they sent a validation packet to Sacramento to validate me as a gang member.

I told IGI that I am not a gang member. IGI then told me that a prison informant said that I was trying to be a gang member and that was good for them.

IGI then told me that if I wanted to stay on the mainline all I had to do was tell on other gang members and I could stay on the mainline.

I told IGI: “I am no snitch.” I want to know who said that I’m a gang member. IGI said: “We don’t have to tell you that.”

I was sent to Pelican Bay State Prison SHU in 1999. I have been to every UCC and ICC Hearing.

I always tell them that I am not a gang member. But all they do is laugh at me, and make disrespectful comments.

I’ve been to (2) six year inactive reviews since I’ve been here in the SHU. Both times I was denied, because IGI/OCS and the committee said because in 1996 I was found guilty of gang activity I will have to stay here in the SHU.

I have repeatedly told committee that I’ve done nothing wrong in the last six years. Aren’t you suppose to let me go back out to the mainline?

Committee always says, “If you don’t debrief you can’t leave the SHU. Period!”

Now, I will be going to committee for my six year inactive review April 2012.

IGI searched my cell September 8, 2011. I was awoken at 4:00am, strip searched. Allowed only boxers and shower shoes, then taken to the rotunda and photographed.

All my property was taken by IGI. I was told it’s for my six year inactive review. Three days later I was given some property back.

IGI threw a bunch of my stuff away, and said it was “trash”. That was a lie by IGI. Some of my stuff they said was contraband and not allowed. The rest of the stuff they said was “gang activity”.

The items used by IGI will be (3) drawings. Two of which have the Mexican Huelga Bird, or United Farm Workers logo. One (1) item is a debriefers testimony.

None of these items constitute active gang activity, nor should they be considered gang activity. But I’m 100% sure that when I go to my inactive review in a few days committee will say “we are going to retain you in the SHU as an active gang member”

This process of, “how they get information to validate you and keep you in the SHU is foul”. I’ve been in the SHU (Short Corridor) for the last (7) years. I don’t see CDCR releasing anyone in the Short Corridor.

I have challenged my gang validation. I went as far as you can go. The CDCR system denied me at every level. The courts denied me, and said its an administration issue.

I refuse to believe that I should be treated like an animal. So that prison guards and politicians can line their pockets with fat pay checks for locking us in cells for 22 ½ hrs a day. Then calling it “security needs”.

The prison system has made solitary confinement a lucrative business. Housing us in solitary confinement costs $30,000. More than housing us in the General Population.

 I lost my mother to cancer on mothers day 2010. My biggest regret was not being able to hold her or kiss her on our last visit 2009.

My father was diagnosed with liver cancer and is dying. His last wish is to hug me and say goodbye. “

6 thoughts on “Testimony of Validation Practice

  1. As far out as this testimony may sound it is so true. I read this and I just can’t believe that in a country based on humanity and justice for all, we allow this type of treatment to exist. It’s even more appalling to me to hear judges say this is an administrative issue? Despite whose issue long term solitary confinement may belong to, someone in power must recognize the gross impact it has on any human being. These inmates have been handed their sentence and that sentence does not include extensive torture. I am a tax paying citizen who has never had more than a traffic ticket on my record and I truly believe that locking these people up and throwing away the key is not an answer or a solution to anything. Keep in mind CA that when these inmates begin to suffer psychological issues from being alone year after year enduring inhumane deprivation tactics it will be our taxpaying dollars that will have to pay for their medical attention. I realize many people will leave ignorant comments suggesting these inmates deserve nothing and they already get too much to begin with; however that type of thinking only breeds hatred and negativity which keeps the prison system alive and profitable. No one is asking to be released or pardoned, to the contrary these inmates are asking for their rights even as prisoners to be treated humanely. Although there is no nail pulling or whip lashing going on in the SHU the psychological torture kills the soul slowly every day and every minute spent in your readymade coffin.

  2. This is why I wrote the novella Underdog. I spent 10 years in California prisons. You have to understand that these prisons are overcrowded and inmates have to decide on who sits where, uses which workout bars, which showers etc. Riots are going to happen. There isn’t any self help or direction. You can be a solid person without any gang ties and have a good influence on the yard for peace, and still be labeled a gang member and sent to the SHU. I turned my life around by writing while in prison and now have 1 book in paperback and a total of 7 with kindle. I write to get the word out about injustice.

    • . You seem to have a lot to offer,but dont actually offer it up. The fact you are out does not help those who are still in struggling the same pains you seem to identify with. Instead of being so self promoting,why dont you get proactive and do something like talk about the issues, not your “kindle publications” Make a real stand, sacrifice something.the rest of the world might hear. Pointing out the problem is not identifying the solution. Your experience sounds much more mainline than SHU as it is….

  3. I have a son in prison and never in my life was / aware of so much horrible punishment by the guards
    and system put on prisoners, First of all, I do not condone crime, but once a person is sent to prison
    away from family especially parents etc. is punishment enough, guards from what I have seen and
    heard are SICK , and they are weak and have no authority per say and so their jobs give them authou-
    rity to mistreat prisoners. I would like mothers, ALL FAMILY MEMBERS, including me to start to
    figure out how we can STOP this inhumane treatment of our loved ones in prison

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