Monday, December 28, 2009

Attempted Murder of Peace Officer at California State Prison-Sacramento

Folsom – Law enforcement officials are investigating the attempted murder of a correctional officer that occurred in one of the maximum-security units at California State Prison-Sacramento (CSP-SAC).

On December 27, 2009, at approximately 7 p.m., inmate Jonathan McClaurin, 39, tried to murder a 33-year-old correctional officer by slashing the officer with an inmate-made weapon. McClaurin, who has been in prison since June 2, 1997, is serving a 135-year-to-life sentence from Los Angeles County for three counts of first-degree robbery, vehicle theft and disregard for safety.

The officer, a 3 ½ year veteran of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, was slashed on his neck, jaw and ear. He was taken to an outside hospital by ambulance for treatment. The officer was released later in the evening after receiving approximately 68 stitches.

CSP-SAC’s Investigative Services Unit is investigating the incident as an attempted murder. The Office of the Inspector General’s Bureau of Independent Review was notified of the incident.

California State Prison-Sacramento is a multi-mission institution that houses more than 3,100 inmates and employs nearly 1,700 people. Opened in 1986, the institution houses maximum-security inmates serving long sentences and those who have proved to be management problems at other institutions. The institution also serves as a medical hub for Northern California.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Corrections Standards Authority Awards $1.7 Million to Promote Local Evidence-Based Practices that Reduce Juvenile Recidivism

SACRAMENTO – The Corrections Standards Authority (CSA) of the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation has released $1.7 million in federal Juvenile Accountability Block Grant Funding for the Best Practices Approach Initiative to help the state’s juvenile justice system become more effective and efficient. The goal of the initiative is to assist probation departments, local juvenile judicial systems and other stakeholders in the use of best practices, including implementation of evidence based programs (EBP) that reduce recidivism in youthful offenders.

“By the conclusion of this three-year project, I believe that California will serve as a model state for the successful implementation of evidence-based programs in the juvenile justice system,” said Kurt Wilson, Executive Director of CSA. “That means turning young lives around, reducing juvenile recidivism and strengthening public safety while saving taxpayer dollars, during this time of serious budget constraints.”

Assessments.com (ADC), a Utah-based company focused on evidence based solutions in criminal justice systems, was chosen through a competitive bid process to direct this project. Assessments.com will partner with Dr. Ed Latessa, a recognized international expert in the field of criminal justice from the University of Cincinnati Center for Criminal Justice Research.

The Best Practices Approach Initiative has four primary objectives:


1. Determine the juvenile justice system’s state of progress in implementing evidence-based practices, develop web based resources to help counties share information about best practices and track their progress in achieving key EBP performance outcome measures.


2. Provide statewide regional trainings on evidence based practices and best practices to Juvenile Probation Departments, judges and other stakeholders in the juvenile justice system.


3. Direct approximately three quarters of the funding to provide organizational development services to a minimum of three probation departments and their community stakeholders. This intensive on-the-ground technical assistance and training will support each probation department and judicial community selected in implementing the systems changes needed to ensure a successful transition to evidence based approaches.


4. Develop a plan to help juvenile probation in California sustain these advances. To further support the Best Practices Approach Initiative, the CSA and the Administrative Office of the Courts, working as collaborative partners, will assist in the delivery of regional training for judicial personnel on the use of best practices and support local judicial teams in integrating services with the county probation departments that are transitioning to the use of evidence based practices.

About Assessments.com: Based in Bountiful, Utah, Assessments.com was formed in 1998 when it created a public/private partnership with the Washington Association of Juvenile Court Services and the Washington State Institute for Public Policy to change the way the state’s justice system worked with juveniles. ADC provides validated risk assessment and case management software, staff training and consulting for many of the largest criminal justice agencies in the United States involving juvenile and adult offenders. ADC, with experience working with more than 75 criminal justice systems, including those in California, Florida, Texas and Washington, is producing positive outcomes and cost-savings through innovative changes in business rules, more effective assessment and targeted case planning and needs management

About the Corrections Standards Authority: The Corrections Standards Authority through its Corrections Planning and Programs Division (CPPD) develops, administers and evaluates programs designed to improve the effectiveness of state and local correctional systems and enhance public safety. In carrying out its responsibilities, the CPPD works closely with federal, state and local government agencies, as well as the private sector and nonprofit service providers, to foster collaborative approaches for addressing crime and delinquency. The CPPD provides extensive technical assistance and training to state and local agencies as well as grantees.

About the Administrative Office of the Courts: The Administrative Office of the Courts is the staff agency of the Judicial Council, which has policy-making authority over the state court system. California Supreme Court Chief Justice Ronald M. George serves as chair of the Judicial Council. The agency is organized into nine divisions in San Francisco, one division in Sacramento, and three regional offices, with a staff of more than 750 serving the courts for the benefit of all Californians.

Update: California Institution for Men Returns to Normal Operation Following August 8 Riot

Ongoing Investigation Reveals Cause; Prison Issues 222 Rules Violations

Chino — The California Institution for Men (CIM) returned to normal program operation last week following the August 8 riot that left more than 240 inmates injured and destroyed two housing units at the prison.

Although the investigation is still ongoing, investigators with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) and the Investigative Services Unit at CIM have determined that the incident was sparked by an ongoing feud between rival gangs.

CDCR officials have 25 cases pending referral to the San Bernardino County District Attorney’s Office for prosecution on charges that include attempted murder, conspiracy to commit murder and battery on an inmate with a deadly weapon. A total of 222 rules violations also have been issued on inmates by prison officials. One inmate was cited for arson for starting the fire that burned down the Joshua Hall dormitory.

There were no fatalities, no staff injuries, no escapes and no hostage situations during the incident. A total of 55 inmates were transported to area hospitals for treatment with 185 treated at CIM. Numerous other inmates were treated for minor injuries.

Following the riot, CDCR officials moved nearly 1,300 inmates to nearby Heman G. Stark Youth Correctional Facility in Chino and four other state prisons. As of December 4, there were 792 CIM inmates housed at the Stark facility.

CIM was placed under modified program to limit inmate movement inside the prison to avoid future incidents. The prison was operating under a state of emergency until October 26. Normal operations began on Friday, December 4.

CIM plant operations staff began rebuilding destroyed dorms in the reception center west facility in early November. Construction to replace the nearly 1,800 beds damaged or destroyed in the riot is expected to be completed in September 2010 at a cost of $5.2 million. The Inmate Ward Labor Program is providing labor to limit costs.

CIM, which opened in 1941, serves as a reception center for parolees returning to custody and newly committed male felons from several Southern California counties. The reception center completes diagnostic tests, medical and mental health screening, and literacy assessments for classification to determine inmates’ appropriate institutional placement. The prison houses 5,507 inmates and employs approximately 2,100 people.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

California Men’s Colony Escapee Apprehended

San Luis Obispo — Bryan Charles Sims, who escaped from his job assignment at the California Men’s Colony (CMC) Waste Water Treatment Plant in San Luis Obispo on November 30 was arrested on December 3 in Fresno by Special Service Unit agents with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR).

A CDCR special agent in the Fresno office investigated leads provided by Investigative Services Unit staff at CMC and learned that escapee Sims was hiding out at a residence in Northwest Fresno. As Special Service Unit agents approached the residence, they saw Sims riding as a passenger in a vehicle that was departing the residence. The agents followed and initiated a vehicle stop. The driver attempted to evade the agents. When the vehicle came to a stop, Sims exited the vehicle and tried to evade the agents by running to a nearby residence. The agents took Sims into custody without further incident on Thursday, December 3, 2009 at 12:55 p.m.

Sims was 13 months into an eight-year sentence from Ventura County when he walked away from his job assignment on November 30, 2009.

Sims was sent to state prison in October 2008 for receiving stolen property. In March 2009, he was transferred to the minimum-security facility at CMC.

CDCR Special Service Unit agents are transporting Sims to North Kern State Prison where he will be housed in the prison’s Administrative Segregation Unit pending transfer to a higher security prison. He could face new felony charges for escape.

Of all inmates who escaped from a state prison, conservation camp or community-based program between 1977 and 2007, 99.1 percent have been apprehended.

Ventura Youth Correctional Facility Released From Health Care List

Will Continue as a Juvenile Rehabilitation Facility

Sacramento — The California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) today announced that the Ventura Youth Correctional Facility is no longer being considered for a possible medical facility for adult inmates. The facility will continue to be used for the rehabilitation of juvenile offenders.

After months of considering many potential sites, the federal court-appointed health care receiver and CDCR announced recently that facilities to provide mental health and medical care to upwards of 2,800 inmates would be constructed in Stockton, San Joaquin County.

“The Ventura Youth Correctional Facility is playing an increasingly important role in providing treatment to youthful offenders in Southern California,” said Bernard Warner, Chief Deputy Secretary for Juvenile Justice. “It is our only facility that provides treatment for females. As we shift our population resulting from closures in the next few months, we will be moving more male offenders to Ventura so that they can remain close to their families who live in the region.”

Currently, 78 females are provided a high school education and treatment services in Ventura. In the last year, approximately 136 males have also been moved to Ventura.

With the closure of the facility in Chino expected by March 2010, approximately 148 additional males will be housed in Ventura where they will receive treatment services in addition to a high school educational curriculum.

Approximately 1,600 youthful offenders are housed in six Division of Juvenile Justice facilities and two fire camps. They represent less than one percent of all juvenile arrests in the state.

Inmate Escapes from Taft Community Correctional Facility

Taft - Special agents with the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation (CDCR) Office of Correctional Safety are searching for an inmate who escaped from the Taft Community Correctional Facility in Taft. Inmate Rogelio Pedraza Sosa was found missing during the 9:15 p.m. count on December 2 from the Kern County facility.

Sosa, 37, is a male Hispanic, 6 feet tall, black hair and brown eyes, and weighs 170 pounds. He has a medium build, a dark complexion and a tattoo on the back of his neck that reads “Y-QUE.”

Sosa began serving a four-year, eight-month sentence from Kern County on August 7, 2009 for transporting and importing controlled substances for sale. He was scheduled to be released to parole in November 2011.

Sosa had a prior conviction for drug offenses from Orange County in 1993 under the name Martin Campos Rivas. He was paroled to federal immigration authorities in 1995 and 1996. Sosa has used several aliases in the past and is Spanish-speaking.

CDCR agents are working with the Taft Police Department and the Kern County Sheriff’s Department to apprehend Sosa. Anyone who sees him or knows of his whereabouts should call 9-1-1 immediately.

The Taft Community Correctional Facility is operated by the City of Taft, which contracts with the CDCR to house low-custody inmates.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

California Men's Colony Inmate Walks-Away from Work Assignment

San Luis Obispo – On November 30, 2009, at approximately 10:20 p.m., inmate Bryan Sims was discovered to be missing from his assigned job at the California Men’s Colony Waste Water Treatment Plant. Sims was last seen at approximately 9:40 p.m. by the Plant Supervisor and is now considered a walk-away. He was last seen wearing a lime green prison jumpsuit, a state issued blue denim jacket, and brown work boots, but he may have discarded them.

Inmate Sims is a 34-year-old White male, 6’ tall, and weighs 276 pounds. He has blonde hair and hazel eyes, but currently has a shaven head and a goatee. He has the following tattoos: one that says “SHANNON” on his chest; one that says “SHANNONS PLAY GROUND” on his stomach; a tribal symbol on his upper back; a tribal band on his upper right arm; and a tribal symbol on his upper right leg.

Sims was received by CMC on March 9, 2009. He was committed to the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation on October 22, 2008 from Ventura County with an eight-year sentence for receiving stolen property. A review of his records has revealed a non-violent history. He was housed at CMC’s Minimum Support Facility, and was scheduled for release in August 5, 2014.

Anyone seeing Sims should contact local law enforcement immediately.

California Men’s Colony employs 1,850 people and provides secure housing for approximately 6,500 minimum- and medium-security inmates. The prison provides offenders academic and vocational education programs, work skills in prison industries and inmate self-help group activities. In addition, CMC contains a minimum-security camp program for fire suppression, conservation and other community service work.