Skip to comments.Jail
Posted on 06/28/2005 12:33:03 AM PDT by The Other Harry
Ive been bitching and griping a bit here about my recent DUI arrest. All my fault, but there it was.
Lets talk a little bit about jail. I got to spend five days in the county jail, so I think I am qualified to have an opinion.
Overall, it was not all that bad. Most of the people were pretty nice. Inmates, guards, etc. There were some jerks, but not more than anywhere else. You definitely do mind your manners.
The jail where I was had three holding cells. There was one for the normal boys, most of us who were in for some kind of booze-related violation, but there were others also. This cell was designed to hold up to six people, but it often had more. People often slept on the floor. Maybe you get a sleeping mat and a blanket, maybe you do not.
The girls cell was not much different. They were across the way. We could see them coming and going. That was one of the few highlights of our day.
There were, by the way, no bars. We had some windows and thick buzzer-operated steel door. The guard station was right across the way. Nobody got out without a guard. About all we could do was to look for a girl to come or go,
The third cell was for the male crazies. These are people who need to be isolated. You need to be careful about these ones. We could see them, but we did not want to interact with them. A lot of them spent most of their time naked, staring out the little window in their door. They were spooky.
We could see them and we could see the girls when they were coming and going. We could also see the guards. They had a station out the front. That was about it.
One day, they opened up the shower door, which was in our cell. You get two showers a week. You are also allowed six pairs of undies (white) and three pairs of socks.
We showered first. They allowed us plenty of time. We didnt need that much.
Then the girls came thru. The problem was that there was a back door, so we could not see them. Not even coming and going. Major disappointment. There were girls among them who would have walked in naked.
That left the male crazies. That was an operation. The guards ran them in through our cell, but they never left them alone. One crazy, one guard. That was just as well. None of the rest of us wanted to get near them. They truly frightened me.
The worst things were the sanitation, the time, and the food.
The sanitation consisted of a metal cabinet-type thing in an alcove off to the side. It was, shall we say, less than ideal I am fairly private about my practices in that regard, and this was not good.
Related to that is the (t)issue of toilet paper.
Toilet paper is the currency of a jail. They give you one roll when you go in, but you are on your own after that. The guards will not give you things, regardless. They might say they will, but they will not. They do not want become your servants.
Therefore. every piece of TP becomes very valuable. Cigarettes sell for something like $8.00 a piece, so use your imagination as to TP. If someone gets released, you go get their unused TP. Not 15 minutes from now, Immediately.
That gets me to the food.
I dont really want to go there.
I could go a couple days without eating, but then I tried it. Im sure a qualified nutritionist worked it all out, but this stuff made Ipecac look tame.
You dont want to know the results. The combination of the food and the lack of TP was not good. It was very bad. Unpleasant.
Time is a hard thing to describe. You never know what time it is. The lights are always on, there are no exterior windows, there is always noise, the people who do have watches have watches which you cannot read. You do not know.
The first day after I got locked up, one of my cell-mates asked me if it was Sunday. It was not. I knew that it was Saturday. At first, I thought he was nuts. Later on, I understood.
Still, overall, jail was not all that bad. You need to keep your sense of humor.
> So were you ordered into a program because of the
> alcohol bust?
Yes. A DUI. I was guilty. I would not have gotten the jail time except that I was .22 -- pretty high.
Whether I was "ordered into" a program is not clear to me. This is a long story. For now, I will say that "they" offered me several very good programs, and I have declined them. They didn't like that.
For me, quitting drinking is something I think I must do on my own. I want to, but it isn't something that I can get to because of a program I required to attend.
Still, what got me stopped was expired stickers on my car. This relates (again) to me trying to quit drinking. Things do get complicated.
> Can you clean your record when you complete a program?
I don't know. Virgina makes it complicated. They want you to do all kinds of things.
> Did you get to read, watch TV or what?
None of that. I hallucinated.
That may sound odd, but there was not much else to do. I imagined things. I got pretty good at it.
This was okay at first, but then it got a little weird. I'm not sure I want to wade back into that pond.
> Did they offer you early release if you signed up for
> one of the experimental medical programs?
Not like that. They cut one day off my jail sentenace for every day I was a "good boy". A ten day sentence became five.
It really was not all that bad. Still, I don't recommend it.
> Did you get to read, watch TV or what?
You get to do nothing. There are no TV's, no books, no periodicals, no nothing. You can talk to your fellow inmates, sleep, and hallucinate. That is all there is.
Your profile says Central VA. Louisa county? Fluvanna?
Sounds like they kept you in a holding cell and you never got to a permanent cell. Most jails do have TV and a daily newspaper. Most also have a store that you can buy extra food and sanitary supplies once a week for very inflated prices. Been there done that, was given 90 days, spent 45.
The TP thing is enough to keep me, on the straight and narrow. Glad you got sprung....thanks for the inside look.
Chances are (great) that other alcohol related offenses will follow in time.
Not necessarily so, but a very great chance.
Was this the FIRST time you have ever driven after drinking?
Ever got in a fist fight while drinking?
Ever have lost time (that wasn't a result of alien abduction)?
Ever missed time from work because of drinking?
I know you've probably heard this stuff before - and if none of it applies to you - fine.
But if there's any question in your mind - you might save your family a ton of heartache in the future by at least inquiring of maybe AA or something.
(I know this because I have lived this).
Sounds like a casino.
Thanks for all the details, I've never been to a prison or a jail.
BTW, last friday (24th) I pray to God I had my last drink. It's only been 3 days but so far so good. The 4th of July might be a problem, but we'll see when when I get there. Good luck and God bless.
> Your profile says Central VA. Louisa county? Fluvanna?
It was Augusta County jail. I actually live in Waynesboro, but I got busted over in Staunton.
I am not quite sure how the system here works. I think Waynesnoro has its own jail, but Staunton uses the county jail. If that is correct, it does not make a lot of sense. Staunton is the larger city, and you would think it would be the other way around.
One thing I am NOT going to do is inquire about it further. I want no more contact with the police or the courts for several years. Not even a polite inquiry.
One time I spent a week inside a little country jail
And I dont guess Ill ever live it down
I was sittin at a red light when these two men came and got me
And said that I was speeding through their town
Well, they said,tomorrow morning you can see the judge then go.
They let me call one person on the phone
I thought Id be there overnight so I just called my boss
To tell him Id be off but not for long
Well, they motioned me inside a cell with seven other guys
One little barred up window in the rear
My cellmates said if they had let me bring some money in
We ought to send the jailer for some beer
Well, I had to pay him double cause he was the man in charge
And the jailers job was not the best in town
Later on his wife brought hot bologna, eggs and gravy
The first day I was there I turned it down
Well, next morning they just let us sleep but I was up real early
Wonderin when Id get my release
Later on we got more hot bologna, eggs and gravy
And by now I wasnt quite so hard to please
Two days later when I thought that I had been forgotten
The sheriff came in chewin on a straw
He said, where is the guy who thinks that this is indianapolis?
Id like to talk to him about the law.
Well, I told him who I was and told him I was working steady
And I really should be gettin on my way
That part about me bein who I was did not impress him
He said, the judgell be here any day.
The jailer had a wife and let me tell you she was awful
But she brought that hot bologna every day
And after seven days she got to lookin so much better
I asked her if shed like to run away
The next mornin that old judge took every nickel that I had
And he said, son, let this teach you not to race.
The jailers wife was smilin from the window as I left
In thirty minutes I was out of state
Upon your arrival at the jail, you should have asked for a Koran. Then their treatment of you would have improved considerably. Better catered food from the best restaurants, cable tv, as many rolls of TP that you wanted, visits with the female inmates, private air conditioned cell, etc.
They want you in any program, even one that you may not like because you are then at least doing something that at least makes you mindful those moments of the problem with drinking too much.
I guess they figure if you could handle it, you would have, so that is perhaps why they didn't like you to avoid a program.
You might see if it expunges your record to go to one.
It would be ashame if you could have cleared up your record, but failed to do so because of a lack of knowledge regarding these programs and the courts.
I'm not saying I KNOW anything, just that you should review your options fully before you jump in any one direction.
Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.