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Abu Ghraib Right Here In South Carolina Federal Prison, Says Abused Inmate
Inmate Larry Lawton says at least three inmates have died due to improper medical attention. He has sent letters to numerous U.S. Senators without a response and is filing legal charges against prison authorities for his own medical condition being ignored by authorities.4 Aug 2005
By Greg Szymanski
There are many prison stories that never see the light of day, but Lawrence Lawton's isn't one of them. And for trying to go public, he received five months "in the hole," punishment for trying to blow the whistle on prison abuse leading to the deaths of three other inmates.
Although there is little public sympathy for prisoners, even the most hardened of hearts might take a second look at the inhumane treatment
Convicted in 1996 for interstate jewelry theft,
"I believe the death of at least three inmates recently has been caused by the direct medical neglect of the prison staff," said
Prison authorities would not comment on
Lander is representing
"He's not the type of person who complains and according to my client, prison authorities are still ignoring his condition despite being alerted to his severe problem," said Lander this week from his law office in
To call public attention to the severity of his scoliosis problem and the problem of a lack of medical care for the three other inmates who died,
"Due to my letters and inquiries into these very serious matters, I was put in the hole for what they said was an investigation. That's the magic word," said
"Also, numerous prison staff members told me it was my constant complaining to Congress about improper medical care at this federal facility that landed me in solitary confinement. Please, someone, contact the Senators for me in order that I may get some help so that conditions here can be improved."
"I know my son isn't getting proper attention for his medical condition and he told me about what happened to the other prisoners. I think the prison authorities punished him for bringing these abuses out in the open," said
One of the prison abuses reported by
Describing the brutal and inhumane death,
"His cellmate, Inmate Brawley, went to the head of the medical unit at the afternoon meal, explaining the situation and was told to tell Shifflett to sign up for sick call. That night he awoke Brawley begging for help and there was blood all over the cell.
"It took the prison authorities over 30 minutes to get Shifflett out of his cell and by that time he was already dead He was only 41 years old and didn't they know he had cancer? And Brawley said it was the most brutal and inhumane death he ever saw."
"For more than a week, Arch was complaining of chest pains, arm pains and feeling ill. He kept going t the medical department and was always told he had gas pains and to stop complaining. Arch was given Maalox and told to go back to his sell, but when he was walking back, he grabbed inmate Brown, saying 'help me, Jimmy, I'm dying' and right there on the spot he dropped dead.
"Later, the prison investigators, asked Brown and another inmate named Alberson in an intimidating fashion: 'Didn't you see him hit his head?' Alberson and Brown can verify what I am saying and even add much more."
Lawton then goes on to talk about another inmate name Harris who died in his cell early one morning after receiving inadequate treatment the night before. He also talks about witnessing another inmate near him in solitary confinement undergoing brutal and inhumane treatment.
"While I was in the hole, there was inmate across from me who had no legs. His condition was so poor that a Lieutenant on duty took a video and told me if someone saw this video, someone would be in handcuffs," said
In his letter to the
"Why is there no medical staff on duty after midnight?" asked
"The inhumane treatment of inmates here at Edgefield has at the very lest contributed to the deaths of numerous inmates. The outrage about Abu Ghraib is justified and right. But I want people in