“A Tale of an American Political Prisoner”
Part 18.1: The DC Gulag; Washington, DC
–Life In the Gulag Supermax Part 1–
by: Jessica Watkins (X: @J6ssicaWatkins)

A True Story; 100% verifiable with BodyCam Footage, CCTV Surveillance Camera Footage, and Testimony.

After I was brought back to the jail, I found out that Harrelson had gotten sentenced to 4 years. To say the least, I wasn’t happy about that; I mean, fer crissakes the man LITERALLY rescued a Police Officer. But his was the lightest sentence given to an OathKeeper thus far and I knew he would be home soon enough. I texted Angel Harrelson (his wife), and offered my condolences and told her to have hope. That he would be home by Christmas. I had barely gotten settled back in my cell in when Liz (my paralegal) came to visit me. I wanted to give her a shoebox with all my Legal paperwork (plus a paper copy of my Novel – complete with the illustrations). This was the best way to ensure that a copy of my work escaped those walls. Mission-f***ing-Complete! I had gotten a digital copy out to my attorney, but the physical copy had the 41 illustrations (including the book cover/binding). I had worked for 6 months, 12 hours per day on that book, so I was DESPERATE to get it out. The visit with Liz was great, but kinda awkward. Weeks prior, I had written her a massive letter; with my concerns, my feelings. Some legal stuff, but LOTS of girl talk. I never expected those feelings to be discussed in person. I am sure you can understand, but someone in my situation has a lot of feelings, nevermind insecurities and fears. We discussed things of that nature, things that I am typically unused to sharing in person. Things I usually bottle up. But she stayed and talked with me for hours. She is such a sweet person. She’s going to be one of my Bridesmaids in my wedding actually ^_^ Anyway, I digress. The visit was nice… to talk with someone normal, about normal things… to someone NOT wearing orange. To someone who genuinely cared about me. After a while, I felt guilty taking up her time with such trivial matters as my feelings and such, and we bid each other a good night. The CO’s brought me back up to the Supermax where I would remain until the day I was transferred into the custody of the US Marshals and the Bureau of Prisons. It took a mere day for me to become uncomfortably aware how hostile the environment there had become. And that treatment would persist for months. For the sake of brevity, I will describe a few such instances.

Unlike in E2B, with the cell doors locked, the CO’s liked to come up to my window-slit, just to harass me. The CO’s in the Supermax Unit were ghetto as f***, hostile/aggressive, rude, and unprofessional. There was no Computer Lab (thank goodness that I “smuggled” a digital copy of my Book to my attorney on my thumb drive). The inmates housed with me were the “worst of the worst” (murderers and such) or just completely crazy; they got into fights ALL the time. In the Day Room there were no games… there was NOTHING to do. So when they called “Recreation”… I just stayed in my cell. There was no reason to come out, even for the couple hours I was allotted. I spent MONTHS in that cell. People even forgot I existed. I had some girls see me (going to Medical, or wherever) and they were always shocked, like “Oh damn! You’re back!” I looked at them and asked “Back, what do you mean back? Back from what?” They often replied “We ain’t seen you in months, we thought you left”. Nope, never did. I just never came out of my cell. Why would I want to sit in the Day Room just to listen to people fight, watch BET and have a guard scream at us about wearing COVID masks and such? I’d rather hide in my cell with no mask on, and listen to @DanBongino, @MarkLevin on my radio, or watch The Office on my GTL Tablet. Once we were issued tablets that made phone calls, I had NO REASON to leave my cell at all. I could call my husband from my bunk bed. I talked with Micki Larson-Olsen every day too, or my great friend Jen Baker. I made good friends with Don & Donna from @CowboyLogic too, and talked with them practically every night. I’m telling ya, if it weren’t for those phone calls, I would have gotten way crazier, and way quicker. I often called down to the Vigil at Freedom Corner. My cell was my own haven, my tablet was my cell phone (pun intended). My cell was the only place I felt safe/comfortable; the only place where I could be “off the radar” as much as possible. My food and Commissary was brought to me. There was simply no reason to leave, and so I made myself scarce. You would think that the CO’s would notice that I wasn’t coming out of my cell. That I was keeping to myself, that I was minding my own business, that I wasn’t causing any trouble, that every time they did a “shakedown” that I didn’t have any contraband. None of that would matter to them.

The guards in the Supermax LOVED to target me. They would scream at me through the glass in my door and treat me like I was an animal. It’s small surprise that I began to behave like one. Corporal Pryor (or Prior?) took great pleasure in targeting me. One day she came up to my cell and did a shakedown. She came into my cell, and immediately started trashing things. She wasn’t looking for anything, just throwing my property (books, food and such) on the floor and stepping on it. She took pictures of my pets and family and damaged/destroyed them. Then she took my “fish tank”. It was just a stupid Peanutbutter Jar filled with water, and a picture of a fish tank taped to it. It had sat on my desk for years by that point, but she hid it in her jacket during the shakedown and tried to steal it. All the contraband she siezed from other cells was taken to the Officer. But, my fish tank was not with it. I searched the trash can, I searched my cell. I looked everywhere for that damned fish tank. Even the CO on duty showed me what Pryor had seized, and the fish tank was not with it. Pryor was leaving the cell block and I finally snapped and said, “Hey! Where the f*** in my Fish Tank? What did you do with it?” She tried to play stupid, “I don’t know what you’re talking about”. But, I wasn’t having it. “No, you’re full of s***! you stole it! I know you stole it!” She started to walk out of the cell block and I followed her into the hallway. She ducked around the corner for a split second, and came back a second later with it in her hand. She HAD tried to steal it, and I caught her! She laughed with a cruel smile pasted across her face. “This what you want?” I was livid. “Yes! That’s not contraband! Give it back to me!” She took the fish picture and ripped it in half and threw it on the floor. “There, you can have that.” I picked up the picture, tears running down my face and stormed back into the Supermax. Now you might think this is stupid. OK, it’s just a picture of fish, right? You’re probably thinking, “just get another peanut butter jar and a new picture of fish”. But in SOLITARY CONFINEMENT, you don’t think rationally like that. All you know is that a bully on a power trip has stolen your property, destroyed it (in your face) for no reason whatseover, and then mocked you for it. And did so, immediately after targeting you and trashing all your OTHER property. I am sure it seems stupid to you. But to me, that fish tank was a big deal, I had it since I was in C2B, and the undeserved cruelty (just for cruelty’s sake) caused me to break down crying.

Speaking of, I get very unstable in Solitary Confinement. Like, I turn into a straight up crazy person. Cognitively, I know this and I can see that NOW. But when I am in Solitary Confinement, I don’t notice. It’s all too much pressure, and it pushes me to an indescribable brink. In hindsight, I can look back at my rapidly fluctuating emotions (rage, depression, lonliness, anxiety, unbridled laughter, etc), and the outbursts and such… and I can say “like, OK… that was pretty f***ing crazy”. But at the time, you don’t notice. Don’t judge me until YOU spend a year in Solitary Confinement. You just can’t understand the feelings of lonliness, fear, anxiety. Nevermind all the pressure of all the January 6 stuff in the media, the Indictments full of lies… all of that takes a massive toll on your psyche. Then you add on the isolation and the hostilities by hateful/racist guards on top of it, and even tiny little things can break you. Look, I wish I was a stronger person, but I’m sorry; I’m not as strong as I wish I was. I kinda tend to lose my s*** in Solitary Confinement. So, something as simple as the guard refusing to let me out of my cell to turn in clothes for weekly laundry is enough to make you flip the f*** out. Which, by the way, is exactly what happened. The guards had been harassing me, day in day out, for MONTHS by then. Beating on my door, screaming at me through the glass at all hours of the night. And I was often like, “YO! I am trapped in a F***ING BOX! Just leave me the f*** alone!” Nope. They loved it. And when the guard screamed at me, refusing to let me get my laundry washed, I flipped out. I had nothing to lose. They were just gonna scream at me anyway, so why not? The CO came up to my cell, and stuck her damned BodyCam in my window and was kinda lording over me from behind the glass. I snapped. I stormed over to the glass, looked her in the face, and beckoned her to put the BodyCam in my face. I got up close, like real f***ing close, inches away from the camera with only the glass between us. Then… I proceeded to punch myself in the face 40-50 times. Like HARD. Hard enough to swell my eye shut for a week, and blacken my face from my scalp to my jawline. I couldn’t open my mouth for days after that. I screamed “F*** YOU! F*** YOU! F*** YOU!” with every hit. Is that insane behavior? Why, yes. Yes it is. But I’d had enough, it was my breaking point. I just couldn’t take it anymore. Being denied the ability to wash my clothes, to have dirty underwear for 7 days, and then have a guard yell at me about it… it was my breaking point. It was a bridge too far and I simply flipped the f*** out.