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By Aaron Smith

My name is Aaron Smith and I am 29. I am a Juvenile lifer. I was locked up at 17, back in 1998. I am one of hundreds of juvenile lifers with no possibility of parole. I am in the Pennsylvania State Prison Of S.C.I — Huntington. I am like many of the other juvenile lifers. I am asking for people to support us with the Juvenile Justice Accountability and Improvement Act.

I was locked up over a serious robbery which turned into a robbery homicide murder. I learned that it only takes one second to make one bad choice in your life and that it can take you a life time to fix. Sometimes people leave this earth without having that chance. That is sad! I refuse to be one of those people.

Teenagers don’t realize the big picture of their future. They live in the moment. They react from emotions. Teenagers are trying to find their place in this world. Teenagers are constantly looking for people to accept them. They will sometimes attempt the unthinkable just to fit in and be a part of someone’s affection. At that point kids becomes vulnerable.

I grew up in an unstable house. My mother, Esther Ortiz, raised four children on welfare. My father was never around. My mother put clothes on our back, food on the table, and a roof over us. At 29, my mother was diagnosed with a skin disease that led to her developing lupus. Can you imagine our health care needs? Poverty and bad situations happened to our family like clockwork. I took care of my sick mother and my little sisters. My two problems came from trying to find out how to be a man. My second problem came from wanting to make money for my family. I looked to the streets. I am not saying all this for pity. I am just giving you a piece of my heart so you can understand our background.

Here I am with a couple guys about to destroy my life and I am saying, what am I doing? Now I’m locked up in this horrible place and I can’t wake up from this nightmare. I came in as a young minded child. I had to quickly learn how to become a man. The main thing that hurts me is not being able to be with my family. But the worst thing is that a couple years ago I lost my best friend, my mother, who passed away on August 29, 2008. Losing my mother while in this place was the worst pain of my life. At times I felt like giving up. But then I hear my mother saying , “Don’t give up”! Never give up son”!! So I keep fighting and praying, hoping and believing that one day she will smile from heaven because her son is back home again.

All I ask is for a second chance. I pray that God touches your hearts to support us. A wise man told me that without forgiveness life would be meaningless. I’m so sorry for the past and I am begging for mercy. I am simply a young man who made a bad choice in life and it cost me and the people I love most a lot. But I’m going to never give up. I want to thank you all for taking the time to hear my heart out. Please support us on forgiving the second chancers juvenile lifers. God bless you and your families. If you are interested in joining the campaign, please email leannacedeno.neoaccphilly@gmail or call 215- 634-3350.

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Charles William Wright, III was jailed
for not paying a $1.50 train ticket for
61 days without charges.

PHOTO /robert anital photography

By Charles William Wright III

I’m Charles William Wright III, a Chicago native. On September 7, 2010 I was thrown in what Los Angeles County Sherriffs called a “cell”. There was no toilet in the room (Century Regional Detention Facility, 11703 Alameda on Mona Blvd., side). I was handcuffed and not arrested (not read my Rights) for not paying $1.50 train fare instead of receiving a citation.

Sgt. Mario Rodarte waited until I was handcuffed in the car to pull out a TAZER and sparked it trying to intimidate me. I responded by cursing and ended up at Century Regional an hour later (near 8:30pm). The scene was 7th & Metro (Figueroa side) but I was taken over ten train stops away and thrown behind bars although I remained silent never showing ID.

I was booked under the fake name “Charles White” (booking#2469541) on September 7 although I hadn’t been asked to fingerprint (idiots book without prints). The next night (September 8) I was asked to print and exercised my right to refuse. Two men (uniformed) forced my prints while others videotaped. After the illegal printing I was taken to Men’s Central Jail .

I spent September 8-9 on a bench handcuffed as if I was Hannibal Lecter (Silence of the Lambs). I was in excruciating pain. I was tossed in 172B Pod-12 on the 7th floor of TTCF (Twin Towers Correctional Facility) but never knew which tower and no one answered my questions. My right arm was cuffed outside the Pod through a food drawer and attached to the door handle with my body inside.

On September 10 or 11 (hard to remember) three plain-clothed Hispanic men came up to the pod and yanked the chain with cuffs attached causing me to be cut and bloody in the middle of the night. I refused medical treatment and asked to be released because no charges were pending against me. I was laughed at and demanded a phone call. I was denied. I asked the nurse and psychiatrist (LACSD called me a mental patient) to get me a phone call to ACLU. It never happened.

I remained under “handcuffed observation” until September 20 and went to court (210 W. Temple Street “CCB”) barefooted and handcuffed behind my back in court. I remained silent and was thrown back into 172B Pod12 (no cuffs) until October 1 upon which time Sgt. Geary (white female) came up to the pod with a court order to release me because Judge Craig Richman knew there were no charges against me.

The Jail/Sherrifs ignored the order, put me on a bus, and I was forced into court. I remained silent and was thrown back into the Pod. On October 22 the Sheriff’s got a hearing for me to appear (1150 San Fernando Rd.) for a “Mental Competence Hearing”. I was deemed competent.

On November 5 Commissioner Kristi Lousteau gave me time served for 422 P.C. which my Public Defender (Brandon J. Henderson) said was a misdemeanor. They overlooked the fact that the complaint was unsigned by the alleged victim and committing magistrate. On November 9 I went to get a copy of the case file (BA375709) from the Clerks office and some employee forged the victims signature. Fortunately I had already obtained the original file from Henderson.

I was in jail for 61 days with no charges, no shower, no phone, no brushing teeth, , etc.. Sheriffs turned water off in the pod for 20 days and I was naked in the pod until November 5 after court. If you would like to help me sue and/or close the jail call 213.784.5135. Mailto:close.la_countyjail@yahoo.com.
By Charles William Wright III

October 2010: One supposed “suicide” each day. October 2-5: Three “suicides” in four days.

August 2009: Two supposed “suicides”. A mental patient murders a transient who was in jail for vandalism (why is a mental patient in population?)

2009: 8 supposed “suicides”

2000-2007: 10 of top 50 counties for inmate deaths in California. 17% of inmate deaths for top 50 counties in southern California

Note: they are not all suicides. An attempt was made on my life and it was set up to be a phony “suicide”. I know a Black family whose female relative was murdered in her single cell. The body was held from the family for thirty days and the autopsy was held longer. Cause of death was “inconclusive”.


This article originated in the People's Tribune
PO Box 3524, Chicago, IL 60654, 800-691-6888
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