Monthly Archives: December 2020

Political Prisoner profile: Dr. Mutulu Shakur

In 1987 Dr. Shakur was sentenced to 60 years imprisonment for his role in the Black Liberation Movement. In March 1982, Dr. Shakur and 10 others were indicted by a federal grand jury under a set of U.S. conspiracy laws called Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organization (RICO) laws. These conspiracy laws were ostensibly developed to aid the government in its prosecution of organized crime figures; however, they have been used with varying degrees of success against revolutionary organizations. 

Dr. Shakur was charged with conspiracy and participation in a group that carried out actual and attempted expropriations from several banks. Eight incidents were alleged to have occurred between December 1976 to October 1981. In addition, he was charged with participation in the 1979 prison escape of Assata Shakur, who is now in exile in Cuba. After five years underground, Dr. Shakur was arrested on February 12, 1986.

Dr. Shakur has worked to free political prisoners and to expose government abuses against political organizers. As an acupuncturist, Dr. Shakur challenged the use of methadone as a tool of recovery for addicts and founded the Black Acupuncture Advisory Association of North America as well as the Harlem Institute of Acupuncture. Many people credit Shakur with saving their lives. His accomplishments are featured in the recent podcast Dope is Death. There is a film by the same name that has been released. View the trailer.

While in prison, he has struggled to create peace between rival gangs. Dr. Shakur was diagnosed with cancer last year and recently contracted COVID-19 at FMC Lexington. In 2020, Dr. Shakur was denied compassionate release.

Dr. Mutulu Shakur #83205-012
FMC Lexington
Post Office Box 14500
Lexington, KY 40512

Birthday: August 8   

More information:
More PP addresses here.

We are Maroon: A Teach-in Event for Russell Maroon Shoatz

Friday, December 11, 2020 @ 7 p.m. EST
Russell Maroon Shoatz is a US-held political prisoner and community organizer who has spent 23 years in solitary confinement. Now, Maroon is suffering from Stage 4 cancer and COVID-19, but the PA DOC will not release him.

Featuring Speakers and artists:
Mike Africa Sr.
Tommy Joshua
Saleem Holbrook
Jean Schneider
Kempis Ghani Songster
Sister Lavinia “Vee”
Etta Cetera
Ben Barson
Jasiri X
Blak Rapp Madusa
Afro Yaqui Music Collective

Donations can be made at:
Event Link:

Jericho International Human Rights Day event- December 10th

72 years since the Universal Declaration of Human Rights was established, the Jericho Movement and UpRooted and Rising will host a Zoom forum to examine the health conditions of some of the longest held Political Prisoners in the U.S. under Covid19. We will hear from family members and recently released Political Prisoners about the current situation inside.
Jericho National Chair Jihad Abdulmumit
Jalil Muntaqim on his experience contracting Covid in prison
Theresa Shoatz on her father Russell Maroon Shoatz
Family of Alvin Joyner, Maroon’s co-defendant
Ksisay Sadiki on her father Kamau Sadiki
Pam Africa on Mumia Abu-Jamal
Marqueeta Peltier Shields on her father Leonard Peltier
Janet & Janine Africa
on Phil & Merle Africa’s suspicious illnesses and deaths in prison
Updates on
Dr. Mutulu Shakur, Ed Poindexter, Sundiata Acoli, Jamil Al-Amin
Music and Poetry by:Uprooted and Rising
Professor Louie
Other Cultural Warriors To Be Announced

For more information:
857-204-0072 • [email protected]
Click on the link to join the event:
FB event page:

Under CARES Act, These Moms Should Be Home. They Remain in COVID-Filled Prisons.

by Vikki Law, Truthout. December 3, 2020

When COVID entered the federal medical prison in Carswell, Texas, it ballooned within weeks — of the 1,288 people tested, 504 were positive. In one housing unit of 300 women, only 26 women tested negative, including 56-year-old Sandra Shoulders.

Shoulders has severe diabetes, respiratory problems, and, since entering prison in 2015, chronic kidney disease, leaving her at only 30 percent kidney function. All of these make her more vulnerable to becoming debilitated, if not dying, from COVID.

Meanwhile, the prison’s practices discourage people from getting tested for COVID. “Even when inmates feel ill now, they are so scared of those conditions to speak up,” Shoulders explained. She described how those who tested positive were treated: “You are held in a room, and expected to wear the same set of clothes for 21+ days, without laundry facilities. Food is dropped by the door and physically kicked into the room by the guards.”

Read the rest of the article at

10 Day Call-In Campaign for Ed Poindexter

Please phone the Nebraska Pardons Board as many times as you and your friends, comrades, associates, and family can between December 10th and December 20, 2020. We have provided a script below. Please give your name and the state that you live in, and if you can, leave a phone number.

Nebraska Board of Pardons P.O. Box 95007 Lincoln, NE 68509
EMAIL: [email protected]

CALL: Governor Pete Ricketts 402-471-2244
Attorney General Peterson: 402-471-2683
Secretary of State Evnen: 402-471-2554

Free Ed Poindexter Immediately (Script):

“Dear Pardons Board member,
I am calling to demand and pray for the Compassionate Release/Commutation of Sentence and rapid release of Mr. Edward Poindexter. Ed Poindexter is one of the eldest prisoners in the state penitentiary and as such, along with other elderly prisoners in Nebraska, is at great risk of serious illness or death should he contract the coronavirus. We are focusing on Ed, but also pray for the release of other elderly prisoners. 

Therefore, I request you schedule a special Pardons Board hearing this month to consider ALL the commutation applications at once, particularly for prisoners over the age of 60.

Nebraska is not alone in facing this crisis, and if you act now with compassion to protect the lives of elders in prison, you will be in step with several other states who have taken this important step toward humanity and toward the application of the basic principle of human rights. 

Please release Ed Poindexter and his peers immediately!  Thank you for having compassion for elderly prisoners who are at high risk of dying from covid19, and for recognizing that holding them during this worsening pandemic is tantamount to inflicting a sentence of death or debilitation.”

Ruchell Cinque Magee speaks

This year, unlike most for the past few decades, there were no in-person Black August mass commemorations here in the sacred Indigenous Ohlone lands aka the California Bay Area. However, some of us did gather at San Quentin State Prison before and after to demand the release of those unjustly held during this deadly pandemic that has claimed so many lives. 

In the spirit of Black August and as we celebrate the release in October of political prisoner and Jericho Amnesty Movement co-founder Baba Jalil Muntaqim after 50 years of torture, I want to share a recent message from Elder Ruchell Cinque Magee. 

Ruchell is now our longest unjustly held political prisoner in the US – and possibly our world – under lockdown for nearly six decades. Many are aware of the shoot-out at the Marin County Civic Center in 1970. Ruchell Cinque was a key figure in that situation but was acquitted of murder, along with our beloved and wise Elder Angela Davis. He should have been set free decades ago, and we must demand his immediate release now. Here we share his insightful words.

Read the interview with Ruchell Magee at

Political Prisoner profile: Cleveland 4

The Cleveland 4 were Occupy Cleveland activists, Connor, Doug and “Skelly.” They were arrested on April 30th, 2012 and accused of plotting a series of bombings, including that of an area bridge. The reality is that the FBI, working with an informant, created the scheme, produced the explosives, and coerced these four into participating.

Connor and Doug took non cooperating plea deals and pleaded guilty to all charges. The judge applied a “terrorist enhancement” charge to each of them. Doug is serving 11.5 years, and Connor 8 years 1 month. Skelly took his case to trial acting as his own lawyer. He was found guilty on all counts by his jury and sentenced to 10 years. The four have appealed their cases and lost. In July, 2019 Connor Stevens was released from prison and is serving lifetime supervised release.

Skelly* #57976-060
USP McCreary
PO Box 3000
Pine Knot, KY 42635
*Address envelope to Joshua Stafford.
Birthday: October 3

Douglas Wright #57973-060
USP Florence – High
Post Office Box 7000
Florence, CO 81226
Birthday: May 31

More information:
Info flyer
Info was taken from NYC ABC’s Illustrated Guide to Political Prisoners.
More PP addresses here.

As New York Coronavirus Metrics Worsen, State Prisons See Outbreaks

The Legal Aid Society urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state prison department to release inmates who are vulnerable to the coronavirus. The defense organization issued a statement saying each new case shows that the prison agency can’t contain the coronavirus.

By Ryan Tarinelli | December 03, 2020 at 06:13 PM          

Barbed wire fence at Men’s Correctional Facility. Photo: Joseph Sohm/Shutterstock

As New York faces a wave of new infections this autumn, about 20 state prisons have at least one active coronavirus case among their inmate population, state data shows.

Among the prisons, the largest virus outbreak currently appears to be at Attica Correctional Facility in Western New York, a region of the state where coronavirus cases have surged in recent weeks.

Attica has 45 inmates with active coronavirus cases, according to the latest figures from the Department of Corrections and Community Supervision. The department has 52 correctional facilities overall.

The Legal Aid Society on Wednesday urged Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state prison department to release inmates who are vulnerable to the coronavirus. For months, advocates for inmates have repeatedly called on the state to be more aggressive in releasing prisoners due to the pandemic.

Tina Luongo, attorney-in-charge of the criminal defense practice at the organization, issued a statement saying each new case shows that the prison agency can’t contain the coronavirus. 

“Instead of releasing enough people to enable social distancing in its prisons, the State has ignored hundreds upon hundreds of applications for early release,” Luongo said in a statement. “This is indeed a matter of life or death. To prevent additional loss of life, Governor Cuomo and DOCCS must follow the lead of other states and release New Yorkers.”

More than 1,825 coronavirus cases have been reported among the inmate population at state prisons.

“For those who have been infected, the lingering effects and long-term complications of the virus remain unknown,” The Legal Aid Society said in a press release.

Meanwhile, officials at the Federal Bureau of Prisons reported that between Tuesday and Thursday, 55 inmates at Brooklyn’s Metropolitan Detention Center tested positive for COVID-19. The new group of cases is more than double the total number of inmates who tested positive for COVID-19 between March 13 and Tuesday.

State prisons across New York are seeing coronavirus cases, with some facing more significant outbreaks among inmates.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Cayuga Correctional Facility had 19 active inmate cases while Clinton Correctional Facility had 15 and Bedford Hills Correctional Facility recorded seven, according to the latest data.

Visitation has been suspended at Elmira Correctional Facility, Greene Correctional Facility and Southport Correctional Facility, the state prison agency reported.

The department did not make a representative available for an interview Thursday. The agency did provide a written statement saying five prisoners are at an outside hospital because of the coronavirus. 

In the statement, the agency said it has developed an “asymptomatic surveillance testing plan” to allow a number of prisoners “from each facility to be tested every weekday, from multiple housing units.”

It was not immediately clear how expansive the plan would be.

In New York overall, key coronavirus figures have escalated in recent weeks. New York state officials on Thursday reported 9,855 new coronavirus cases.

NYCABC PP Updates & Announcements- 12/1

One part of NYC ABC‘s every-other-week Political Prisoner Letter-Writing Dinners is presenting updates and announcements. These typically relate to PPs, POWs, or are especially relevant to folks in NYC. Since February 2011, we’ve been printing and mailing hard copies of the updates and announcements to about a dozen imprisoned comrades.

In April 2013, along with Denver Anarchist Black Cross and Sacramento Prisoner Support, we expanded printing and mailing to include all U.S. held political prisoners and prisoners of war. As of September, 2014, that work has diffused over several support crews, collectives, and individuals.

Download at