(From a July 20 @VoicesofSanQuentin Instagram post)
This is what Chris Scull was given when he was released for the eight-hour car ride from San Quentin to Los Angeles when he was released last week Monday, July 13, 2020. Head of the Inmate Advisory Council, Chris paroled after more than 22 years in prison and had made his plans to re-enter society in San Francisco — where he was accepted to several transitional housing units and has a job waiting. So imagine the shock when he was told while he was in the holding cell getting ready for release that he was being sent to Los Angeles. Chris recalls they said, “You are in a COVID-19 outbreak facility.”
I said, “Yeah. Thanks to you guys.”
They said, “No, this is it, there’s no room for change, there’s no more talk about it.”
After being locked up for more than 22 years, Chris said there wasn’t really a choice. “With the administration, their word will always prevail. They’ll drive the point home where you’re an inmate, you’re a number. Don’t try to exert any kind of worth or any rights because you’re not going to get it anyway. And at the worst, they could do me harm.” Chris said he felt guilty because there was no way of communicating to his friends waiting at the gate that he was going to be driven straight to LA.
He recalls that just before the ride, “They made ‘the speech’ — if you have to go to the bathroom do it now because when we’re on the road, you’re not going to be let out to the bathroom — and I’m thinking, shouldn’t there be different treatment? Because right now I’m being released. But the ideology is that I’m a prisoner all the way until the transportation is over. They walked me up to the room and watched me enter the room. Now I’m no longer a prisoner.”
Having tested positive, Chris is now in 14-day quarantine in a Los Angeles motel sorting out what will be next. Meanwhile, his team of supporters in the Bay Area have written letters to CDCR to urge Chris’ expedited transfer back to San Francisco.
We will hear more from Chris today about what happened inside today. In the meantime, let’s gear up for a busy week of phone calling and emailing to demand justice for San Quentin. The fight is not over. Please go to our profile for a link to learn how to help! #stopsanquentinoutbreak #human #carenotcages
Disclaimer: The views in this article are those of the author. Prison Journalism Project has verified the writer’s identity and basic facts such as the names of institutions mentioned.