Struggle for Native Prisoners’ Rights at Federal Prison in Adelanto

Oso Blanco, other Native Prisoners, campaigning for their rights

A campaign was recently launched on behalf of indigenous political prisoners at the US Penitentiary Victorville in Adelanto CA, and their right to engage in their religious ceremonies and practices, especially the restoration of their sweat lodge, which had been destroyed and desecrated by prison authorities.

In response, there have been some developments regarding Oso Blanco (Byron Shane Chubbuck), a Native political prisoner recognized by the Jericho Movement, who is incarcerated there. His outside supporters have been instrumental in the campaign.

Here are some recent developments:

–USP Victorville has been on lockdown since March 24th due to two deaths (OD’s) that are being investigated. Prison staff are responsible for bringing those drugs into the facility.

–Oso Blanco (OB) is currently in administrative segregation. In accordance with his personal beliefs, he does not use or distribute drugs. Prison staff and administration know this.

–OB was not directly informed why he was placed in segregation. But he was placed in administrative segregation following an exchange with Chaplain Doran Kelvington in which OB calmly advocated for peaceful resolution of the issues around rebuilding the sweat lodge.

–AW Lepe came and told OB on March 29th that a couple people including the pipe holder, Larry, will start cleaning up the sweat lodge area.

–Lepe stated that he will be sure to get the willows himself, he will not wait for the chaplain to do this.

–OB also told Lepe that grass is needed surrounding the area due to the intense heat. It is dangerous to step on the ground/dirt barefoot. Shade is also needed so that no one is at risk for heat stroke which could be fatal.

You can write to Oso Blanco at

Byron Shane Chubbuck #07909-051
USP Victorville United States Penitentiary
PO Box 3900
Adelanto CA 92301