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Update from Jalil Muntaqim

March 19, 2013
jalilFrom NYC Anarchist Black Cross
Jalil was recently found guilty of, get this, having two stamps in a book while trying to go to the law library. The punishment? Seven days in keeplock (23 hours a day locked in his cell). Once he got out of keeplock, he sent the
 following update, including the prison report.
As you can see from the enclosed, I was just released from keeplock status. I am providing with the typed (prototype) of the disciplinary report, the disposition and my written argument made to the disciplinary hearing.
Naturally, they were not going to dismiss the entire report and had to find me guilty of something, although I never made it to the law library. There is a group of guards here that do not want me in general population. They
 believe I should spend the rest of my time in the SHU. At any rate, I want to send this out to be posted to show folks an aspect of the petty harassment I have to confront in this prison. My only hope is this disciplinary disposition will not prohibit me from participating in the trailer visit with my Mom. We are waiting for approval of the application. I must admit there is a facility rule that prisoners are not to have stamps and personal property in the law library. Any stamps brought to the law library must be already glued on envelopes. I didn’t know this!
However, the guard who targeted only me to be searched could have made the disciplinary report a Tier I or II, not the highest Tier III. The Captain conducting the hearing stated as soon as I walked into the hearing room that
 the disciplinary report should have been a Tier II. He told me that he intended to release me from keeplock and have my property returned to me. But he was going to find me guilty of 113.22, with the penalty as indicated. Even when they know it’s bullshit, they still want to get the $5.00 surcharge.
Please extend my very best regards to the righteous of heart with you.
Revolutionary love and unity,
Jalil
ATTICA CORRECTIONAL FACILITY
INMATE MISBEHAVIOR REPORT
BOTTOM, A. 77A4283 D-41-40
D-BLOCK LOBBY 28 FEB 13 Approx. 6:50 PM
Rule Violation(s): Tier III Disciplinary Hearing
113.22 – AUTHORIZED ITEMS IN UNAUTHORIZED AREAS
114.10 – SMUGGLING
103.20 – SOLICITATION
113.23 – CONTRABAND OTHER
Description of Incident:
ON THE ABOVE DATE AND TIME, I, C.O. C. YACKEREN, WAS AUTHORIZED BY SERGEANT
LEVULIS TO FRISK INMATE BOTTOM (77A4283) ON HIS WAY TO HIS LAW LIBRARY CALLOUT.
UPON FRISKING THE CONTENTS OF HIS LEGAL FOLDER I FOUND HE WAS TRYING TO SMUGGLE
TWO (2) STAMPS INSIDE A FOLDED LETTER ALONG WITH TWO (2) PERSONAL LETTERS, ALL OF
WHICH ARE NOT ALLOWED IN THE LAW LIBRARY. THE TWO LETTERS FOUND IN BETWEEN HIS
LEGAL PAPERS WERE A PHOTOCOPY OF A BOOK TABLE WITH A BOOK AUTHORED BY INMATE
BOTTOM USING HIS KNOWN ALIAS, JALIL A. MUNTAQIM, TITLED “WE ARE OUR OWN
LIBERATORS,” AND A LETTER SOLICITING HIS BOOK AND REVOLUTIONARY IDEAS AND WAS
SIGNED BY HIM USING HIS KNOWN ALIAS AND HIS KNOWN WEB PAGE ADDRESS.
ALL ITEMS CONFISCATED WERE TURNED IN TO THE CONTRABAND OFFICE.
Disposition:
103.20 Solicitation Not Guilty
113.22 Property in Unauthorized Area Guilty
113.23 Contraband Not Guilty
114.10 Smuggling Not Guilty
Penalty;
7 Days Keeplock in Cell (23 hr. locked in cell)
Counsel and Reprimand $5.00 surcharge
A. Statement of Evidence Relied Upon:
The report by Officer Yackeren proves to be credible. Inmate Bottom pled not guilty to all charges. It appears to this Hearing Officer that Inmate Bottom inadvertently carried the reported items en route to the law library.
B. Reasons for Disposition:
Although Inmate Bottom inadvertently carried the reported items en route to the law library, it is still not
allowed. Inmate Bottom will be held accountable.
C. Special Instruction on Correspondence Restrictions and Referrals:
Return items to Inmate Bottom.
Hearing Officer: Captain Covenant Date: 3/6/13 Time 11:17 AM
TO: Superintendent Hearing Officer
FR: ANTHONY BOTTOM, 77A4283, D-41-40
RE: Inmate Misbehavior Report of 28 Feb. 13 written by C.O. C. Yackeren
DT: March 4, 2013
Superintendent Hearing Officer:
To rebut the allegation made in C.O. Yackeren’s misbehavior report referred to above, for the following reasons it is requested this misbehavior report be dismissed, and personal property returned. First, according to Attica Facility Rule Book #10.14: “Inmates are allowed a maximum of $22.00 worth of
 stamps in their possession (on person, in cell).” The DOCCS State Inmate Rule Book, #113.16: “An inmate shall not be in possession of stamps in excess of $20 in value, money, a credit card, credit card numbers, check or unauthorized valuable or property.” There is absolutely nothing in either Rule Book that informs stamps are contraband, or possessing stamps, specifically two (2) stamps is a violation of any rule. Since stamps or the possession of stamps are not contraband, the charge of smuggling fails to meet the test of a
 violation. In the case of Matter of Secore v. Goord, 666 N.Y.S. 2d 530, inmate Secore was charged with smuggling cigarettes that he had in his socks, but because cigarettes were not contraband, the Court held that, “… respondent’s determination that petitioner was guilty of smuggling is not supported by substantial evidence (See, generally, People ex rel. Vega v. Smith, 66 N.Y. 2d 130, 139, 495 N.Y.S. 2d 322, 484 N.E. 2d 997).”
Hence, I cannot be charged with smuggling an item that is not contraband, and according to the Attica Facility Rule Book (#10.14) and Statewide Inmate Rule Book (#113.16), I am permitted to have in my possession. It is incomprehensible that a photocopy of my book is contraband. In fact, it is unconscionable that a personal letter discussing my book or IDEAS, having absolutely nothing to do with this facility, could be found as a rule violation. As a prolific writer who has been published in University books “New abolitionists: (Neo) Slave Narratives and Contemporary Prison Writings,” ed. Joy James (Brown University 2009); “Schooling a Generation in the Politics of Prisons,” ed. Chinsole (1996, Berkeley, CA: New Earth Publications); “This
 Country Must Change,” ed. Craig Rosebraugh (200, Arissa Media Group); “Exiting the Prism – Fade to Black…” Poems by Jalil Muntaqim, ed. Schwartz, (2012, Olive Tree Publishing), journals, and various forms of print media, (NYC Amsterdam News, San Francisco Bayview) etc., it seems this disciplinary proceeding wants to censure or prohibit my capacity to communicate/correspond or limit my First Amendment right of speech.
 Neither the photocopy nor letter is contraband, and personal correspondence mentioning or promoting my writings does not rise to the charge of solicitation. One final point: D-Block lobby, for all intents and purposes, is not the Law Library. If the charges reflect a violation of Law Library rules and regulations without entering the Law Library, and void any actual materials or
 property pertaining to the Law Library, the charges are absent supportive substantial evidence. In essence, any item alleged to be prohibited in the Law Library never reached the Law Library, was never in the Law Library.
 Therefore, no Law Library rule or regulation was violated.
For all the above reasons, this misbehavior report and all charges should be dismissed. Your fair and impartial consideration in this matter is greatly appreciated.
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