Published in the Las Vegas Review Journal:
Thankfully, I received a second phone call not too long after I published the last post. During that call, he told me that the fight has been moved to the gym, where it can’t really be observed by anyone. There had been a smaller right, where two cell mates got into it with each other, and he had mopped blood up off the floor; if the CO’s see blood or evidence of a fight, all of the inmates pay for it by getting written up or locked down, etc.
I told him that I am glad the fight was moved, since it is no longer in close proximity to him, but that even though no one will see what is going on, evidence of it will be clear, when these guys return with busted lips, bloody noses, missing teeth, etc. All he could do was chuckle about the insanity of the situation.
Anyway, for now, a crisis has been averted, and I am very grateful for that.
One of the most horrifying situations I have ever had to witness just happened/is happening NOW: I didn’t hear from him this morning, which is unusual, since we talk several times a day from when he’s first able to call (just after 8:00 am), then again at lunch, and then in the evening. So, I knew something must have been happening. When he called me just now, he told me that there is a lot of tension going on and that there is about to be a racial incident, since one of the black prisoners is fighting with one of the white prisoners. He said that they think the guard doesn’t know what’s about to “pop off,” but that the guard already has his handgun ready.
He said “If I have to suddenly get off the phone, you’ll know why.” I told him to get off the phone NOW and get to his cell, but he said his cell door is shut (so he can’t go inside), and that he’s right under the guard tower, plus there is a camera about 5 feet away, so there would be proof that he wasn’t involved in any of it. But I told him I don’t care about any kind of proof, etc. that he’s not involved – I just want him to be safe. We spoke for only a few minutes more before he said “With that, I’m going to go rack in…” He told me he will call me later this evening if he can, but if a race riot or gang fight breaks out, the entire prison will be locked down, and there will likely be shooting going on.
Obviously, I’;m scared out of my mind about him. He has witnessed shootings before, and High Desert State Prison is famous for shootings inside the prison. I just don’t want him to get hurt at all. I don’t want him to have to witness any of that, either. And knowing what is happening up there is almost more than I can handle. I am a worrier, and I panic. I have always been that way, and I’m sure I always will be. If I don’t hear him from tonight, I probably won’t be able to sleep.
Oh, god – if you only knew the strength it takes to love someone who is in prison and not lose your mind, you would bet money that I could physically pick up a mountain and move it. True story. I will get through this, and so will he – but it’s not going to be easy. I am scared right now.
Here is a link to a story about an inmate shooting which took place at High Desert State Prison in Indian Springs, Nevada; this is the same prison where my loved one is incarcerated on a misdemeanor charge: