Richard at Tomoka-Update
Richard just called me tonight. I am outraged. He is being made to suffer for having spoken out. I have inquired but I cannot find out why these facility changes (to Lake Butler and then to Daytona Beach) have occurred except to say they are normal movements done in order to have a medical evaluation of his chronic pain. He has yet to be seen for that evaluation.
Two doctors in the DOC (Dr Rechtine and Dr Thayer) have lied to me about their knowledge of Rich’s status and Mr Burke (DOC official)cannot seem to ferret out the person who authorized these changes and says normal bureaucratic mistakes and sluggish action is the reason that Rich has been treated so poorly. FLDOC has known about Rich’s pump from the beginning yet after a year in prison they now believe he should be placed in a semi-confinement status where he is made to suffer in the heat.
Rich’s writing and drawing materials are considered contraband and have been confiscated. He is unsure if they will allow him to keep materials to create more of his toons. The cell is so hot that Rich is in bed ninety five percent of the time due to his MS induced heat intolerance. He said even if he could sit up to write, the paper is damp and the envelopes are stuck together due to the heat and humidity. The mail is slow, numerous correspondences have not yet reached him. They told me Rich was placed here for his protection yet he has had his life threatened twice and he hasn’t even been at this facility for two weeks. ( He was never threatened before he was moved to Tomoka.) He is severely limited in getting into the law library and he restricted from going to the chapel entirely. I have restricted visitation and he is not allowed access to the phone for most of the day.
Rich has spoken to numerous inmates with chronic pain and all have sad stories to tell of their pain treatment or lack of treatment under the prison system. Richard will be sending me information on men like David Pruit who was forced off his pump in prison disregarding of his severe chronic pain.
Rich’s case is such a travesty to begin with let alone the treatment he has had to endure this past month and worrying whether they will make good their threat of stopping his pump. His pump is due to run out in two weeks. Even if they choose to fill it this time they can revisit this question with every refill. I am currently arranging for legal council, we are that worried. Please do what you can to expose what they are doing to Richard, Its the only way I can safeguard his health in prison.
via email 8/23/05