Prison

8:01am

Mon June 9, 2014
Mental Health

Gov. Hickenlooper Has Signed A Ban On Long-term Solitary For The Mentally Ill

A sheriff's deputy checks on prisoners in the administrative segregation section, Unit 4C, of the Pueblo County, Colo., jail April 4, 2014.
Joe Mahoney Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

Gov. John Hickenlooper signed a bill Friday, June 6 that bans the practice of keeping seriously mentally ill prisoners in solitary confinement.

The bill, which passed with strong bipartisan support, won the support of advocates and rights groups like the American Civil Liberties Union, who say the isolation of prisoners with mental illness violates the constitution’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment and endangers public safety.

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2:08pm

Wed June 4, 2014
NPR News Investigations

Life After 'Life': Aging Inmates Struggle For Redemption

Originally published on Thu June 5, 2014 3:29 pm

John Huckleberry sits in the back seat of a friend's car on the way back from visiting inmates at Sterling Correctional Facility. After 30 years in prison, Huckleberry — who was released in 2012 — helps aging inmates prepare for life outside prison.
John W. Poole NPR

Out in the empty plains of northeast Colorado two years ago, nine inmates line up against a wall inside the Sterling Correctional Facility. It's a line of green jumpsuits and gray hair.

The men, hobbling on canes, wait for the others to pull plastic chairs into a circle so class can begin. Today's instruction is about what life is like on the outside: how to use an ATM, how to find a job, what the Internet is.

These men have been in prison for two, three or four decades. These are things none of them know.

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1:42am

Fri May 16, 2014
StoryCorps

An Inmate Who Killed Another Rethinks His Own Past

Originally published on Fri May 16, 2014 10:07 am

Carlos Rocha, 40, is serving a 30-year sentence for possession of a weapon and murder.
Courtesy of the Danville Correctional Center

Carlos Rocha grew up in Chicago and became a gang member like his brothers. In 1998, he was arrested for weapons possession and sent to prison.

Right before he was to be released on bond, Carlos, now 40, got into a fight with another inmate and killed him, resulting in an additional 24 years behind bars.

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5:00am

Tue May 13, 2014
Health

'Significant And Persisting' Mental Illness A Challenge for Larimer, Fort Collins Law Enforcement

Fort Collins Police Department Officer Maureen Noe at work. Noe and other FCPD officers have regular training to work with those who have mental illnesses.
Grace Hood KUNC

Larimer County law enforcement, either on the street or in the county jail, say they're seeing more significant and persisting mental illnesses like mood, bipolar, psychotic disorders and schizophrenia.

The shift is taxing resources with Emergency Rooms, health care providers, jail resources and the Fort Collins Police Department.

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5:00am

Tue May 13, 2014
Health

For Mental Illnesses, Steep Costs Found Behind Bars

Joe Mahoney Rocky Mountain PBS I-News

People with mental illnesses in Colorado are more than five times as likely to be housed in jails or in prisons than in hospital psychiatric beds. Colorado’s sheriffs say county jails are overwhelmed with inmates who need hospitalization or treatment for their mental health problems – not incarceration.

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