This letter was written by a person incarcerated at Kern Valley.
It has been very rough this last year. There are other prisons that do way worse than ours, but it wasn’t easy. My building had an outbreak back in December. They locked down the whole prison.
All four yards. We started out with three infected inmates and it turned out to be the whole building. The whole prison had over 730 positive cases.
We were moved to other sections in the building to make room for a quarantine section. They didn’t care really. Well, they weren’t prepared. So when you got sick, they locked you in a cell until you either get better or get close to dying.
When they took a sick inmate out of a cell, they would put a healthy one in and he would get sick. Cops would bring the COVID in and hand out our food. Knowing that he/she had contact with another infected person, they would still come to work and infect several inmates.
I’m housed in what they call 180 design. It’s max security and we have very close quarters. I seen inmates that have been through riots, stabbing and war with each other, cry and beg for medical attention and be denied, because they weren’t sick enough. We didn’t have a voice and when you get sick they cut you off from everyone but your celly and see if you live or die, basically.
There were people that would refuse to test and know they were sick, try and hide it so they weren’t sent to the quarantine section, where cops tried to prevent themselves by going in. I am one of them. I got sick but refused to test. My celly and I took care of each other and just got lucky that it wasn’t really bad.
It was a punishment to test positive for COVID it seemed like.
I was not sentenced to death, but looking around, I could have been. It’s been really rough, but we are all vaccinated and opening back up in here. I don’t have the best story for your class, but thanks to God I didn’t have a more interesting story or tale.