For the past few weeks, KALW News has been featuring a series of stories reported by Nancy Mullane from inside some of the hardest to access cellblocks in California's state prison system. Follow Mullane as she gains press access to these restricted areas, include death row at San Quentin State Prison, in the series Getting into Prison: Reporting from California's most restricted cellblocks.
California Proposition 34, on the ballot this November, would abolish the death penalty and replace it with life without the possibility of parole. The Attorney Donald Heller originally wrote the ballot measure that reinstated the death penalty in California in 1978. Heller now supports Proposition 34.
San Quentin inmate Troy Williams interviewed Heller by phone about his change of heart.
Credit Credit California Department of Corrections & Rehabilitation
The California Men's Colony (CMC)
Inmate Richard Gilliam has been sending us dispatches to let the general public know what life is like for California’s roughly 136,000 prisoners. Gilliam starts today by talking about the effects of the civil rights movement on inmate life.
GILLIAM: It was due to fears about prisoner empowerment and social-recognition that politicians and law enforcement officials began a vilification campaign of criminals. They acheived this by positing criminals – and by extension prisoners – opposite the victims of crime.