“A Tale of an American Political Prisoner”

Part 3.2: Butler County Jail; Cincinnati, Ohio

A True Story; 100% verifiable with Text Messages, Emails, Video/Audio, Court Documents and Testimony.

The bear armed with bear mace stared down at me from his intimidating polo shirt; violence and threats radiating out from him as he attempted to coerce me to strip naked. By this point I was beyond infuriated. It was this precise moment, the very first time that I realized that I was a Political Prisoner. I was innocent, and I was being targeted for crimes I did not commit. Rather than let it break me, I opted for defiant compliance. He wants me to strip naked? Fine then. Bear-boy was going to get a full eyeful. I stripped and spread my arms, making HARD eye contact. Soak it up, sonny. Tits, tattoos, everything. Take a picture, it will last longer. He threw what’s known as a “turtle suit” at me, which hit me in the torso and slid to the floor. Fine, we can play things that way. I told him, “My arm is broken. You need to help me put it on.” He shook his head vehemently, “Not my job”, and pointed toward the door. I was paraded through the jail naked as a jay-bird. I walked with my shoulders back, head held high, and made hard eye contact with the Medical Supervisor on the way by. Once we left the room, one of the Sheriffs looked at me and quickly looked away. I think, somewhere in his mind that he knew what was happening to me was wrong. It was all over his face; the shame. I don’t think he had THIS in mind when he took the Oath, yet here he was. Doing it. I hardened my jaw, my eyes burning with rage and I told him, “Thank you for getting me away from that Devil-Woman. She’s had it out for me since I got here.” He remained silent, head down in semi-shame as he led me through the hallways of the jail naked.

I was placed into one of the glass cells in the Intake/Booking Lobby. My pride and defiance quickly eroded. In THIS cell, the lights remained on 24/7. I’d guess the temperatures were in the high 50’s or the low 60’s. That’s FREEZING when you’re naked for 4 straight days. I was given a “suicide blanket”, a heavy canvas covering about 5’x’5. It’s just enough to curl up under, if you ball yourself up into the fetal position. But my ribs were broken, so this arrangement was excruciating. I still did it. Even still, the bright lights from the cell would stream in from under the edge of the “blanket”, bringing with it the gusts of freezing air. I slept-cried-slept-cried-slept-cried until the food trays began to pile up. There was no clock visible and no sun to gauge the time of day. With the 24/7 lights on, meals and guard shift rotations were the only way to keep track of time. I was fed 3 times per day, so 3 meals is roughly a day, once you figure in the night shift. Once meal 4 (breakfast) arrives, it must have been morning of a new day. I continued to insist on my Hunger Strike until a psychologist came in to see me. He said, He asked, “Are you suicidal?” I broke down sobbing “NO! I just want my ARM FIXED! If I wanted to die, why would I care so much about having my arm fixed? That’s why I am on a Strike!” He shook his head and said, “Well, please just eat something, and we will see about fixing your arm. I promise I will get you a medic to look at it.” I believed him and ate. I should have kept it up.

4 meals came and went. No doctor. I cried-slept-cried-slept-cried. I took to chewing up the Baby Carrots they gave me with lunch, and writing “I’m Not Suicidal” on the floor where the camera could see it. The Sheriffs would come in, kick the carrot message and leave. After they left, I’d scramble to write it again. Sometimes the Sheriffs would wake me up and question me, “What were you doing at the Capitol? Why were you there? Who were you with?” In a haze of misery and half-sleep I’d mumble, “I was there to help people sir, I didn’t do anything. I didn’t hurt anybody or break stuff, I just wanted to help people…” and I’d break down crying again, until I faded out once more into a fitful half-sleep. After days of pain from my STILL unsupported broken arm, freezing cold, being naked, and with the lights never turning off… the world becomes different. I can’t describe it, really. Everything has this surreal confusing… like, haze. As much as I slept, I’ve never been more tired in my life. Sometimes I would storm around my cell naked and scream “I’M INNOCENT! I’M F***ING INNOCENT YOU F***ING MOTHERF***ERS!!!” crying, as I beat on the glass. Sometimes I’d wake up to see curious inmates staring into my glass booth at the naked crying tranny. My hair was wild, unkempt, all hygiene was completely neglected by my unsympathetic tormentors. I didn’t even have a toothbrush. I’ve never felt so broken down. So humiliated. So broken. I’m telling you, I lost a piece of my soul in that cell. It’s gone now. Just typing this, by mentally reliving that time… I’m crying thinking about it.

After a while, I realized no medic was coming. I couldn’t take the pain in my arm anymore, and they lied to me. I took toilet paper and twisted it into a type of rope. Careful not to tear the fragile paper, I gently yet tightly wrapped my arm. Layer after layer, wrap after wrap, I fashioned a cast for my arm out of the toilet paper rope. I swiped my arm under the sink, dampening it, hoping that when the toilet paper dried, it would harden and form a cast of sorts. It sounds crazy, but it did help. That was the best sleep I would get during my stay in that torture room. But, it was short lived. After what I presume was a few hours, the Medic Supervisor walked by and saw what I had done. She took one look at my homemade cast, took out a pair of trauma shears and cut it off. She sneered in my face “You can’t have that. You might kill yourself with it.” I flipped out again, crying “F*** YOU B****, YOU SICK F***ING B****!” and passed out sobbing in misery again. This went on and on. Meal after meal, until 4 days had elapsed. Finally, the Psychologist came back in. He said, “Well, we don’t think you’re suicidal. You can go back to your unit.” My clothes were returned, and a Sheriff came in and asked if I wanted a shower. It was my first shower since I had been arrested, and it was ice cold water. Not warm. Not lukewarm. Cold. But as my gooseflesh tightened, I enjoyed what I could. At least I was clean and clothed. It felt like the entire world had been given to me, and when I was placed into a new cell, I curled up on the floor once more and cried myself to sleep.

Jessica Watkins

📬 Jessica Watkins
Federal Correctional Institution
PO BOX 5000

🎂 8/16 🎂

Has been incarcerated for 1135 days.
including remaining serving time for 195 days.