WELCOME TO DOWNSTATE

I’m talking to a young lady. She is asking me how I am getting along here at the New York State Reception Facility called Downstate. I do not even know how I got to her office save by the CO escort. I do not know why she is asking me that anyway as I am not getting along. This is prison and it stinks. Do all the guards hit you like that white shirt guy did I ask her? No, she answers after closing the door. The last time someone did that I got slapped, so I tense. She says she has heard of it before, but no, it is not right.

No it is not. I could not do anything and had no idea what was coming. I had been staring at the floor, feeling how my new clothes felt when I was awoken from my stupor and led to the white shirt’s office. The white shirt told me to stand against the wall with my hands behind me, which I did. That is when one of the two very large blue shirted CO’s with night sticks closed the door and stood with their back to me. I knew that was not good. Then I heard their boss say something to me before he slapped my face. Then again. I could not believe what was happening. Then once more. I was told to put my hands on the desk where he proceeded to hit them with a very large book, a dictionary I think. How many times? Eight or ten I think but was lost in the thought that this was really taking place. The blue shirts were just waiting for me to react. My instincts wanted to fight back, but the meds dulled my reaction thankfully. He told me to stand as before, yelled at me some more and then punched me in the stomach a couple of times. Then he had me sign a form, saying that I did not want to go to PC. (protective custody) I did not know what he meant but did as he instructed out of fear.

Later others went into his office. One did not return. I do not know why. Many, like me, were teary eyed returning, sitting alone and staring at the floor. Is this what I can expect in here? This young lady, a counselor I was later told, says no, it is not normal. Honey, nothing inside corrections is normal for me. She just said we would talk again tomorrow.

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