Sucks to be me.
Back in early February, I got the flu. I hugged the toilet for two days.
Terrible. In the midst of it, a staffer witnessed me puking and insisted I go to medical.
At medical, I was seen by Nurse Amy Starkey who told me I didn’t have a fever despite the sweat pouring off of me… in February. She listened to my lungs and didn’t hear the sludge that was broiling in there. She suggested I had food poisoning– which would only make sense if all eleven hundred of us were puking… since we all eat the same shit.
Medical did nothing for me. Nothing. I shambled back to my cell, an hour older and a lot more annoyed.
So, early March, when I still had the gurgling sludge in my lungs, I signed up for sick call. I wanted to get that cleared up before the zombie apocalypse arrived at the prison gates, since people with
preexisting conditions sputter out at a far greater rate than those who don’t have them.
I got called back to the medical clinic. Nurse Amy Starkey again. I told her I had pneumonia in 2012 and it felt like this lung sludge only more intense. She listened to my lungs and documented the congestion, then got up and left. A few minutes later, she returned. “The Nurse Practitioner says its normal to have that kind of congestion up to eight weeks after you get over the flu.”
I don’t know if the nurse practitioner said that or not. If the nurse practitioner said that, they both need fired. Medical did nothing for me at all.
Days later, another prisoner (who shall remain nameless) told me he had a prescription for an antibiotic. It’s the same antibiotic given to me when I had pneumonia. He let me take his pills.
So, for several days, I took antibiotics. By the time I finished what he gave me, my lungs were clear. Clear. And that means the sludge in my lungs was a bacterial infection, since the antibiotics got rid of it.
Three days after the antibiotics ended, the sludge started coming back.
So, I currently have a bacterial infection in my lungs and I have a snowball’s chance in hell of getting medical personnel to get me the antibiotics I need to shake that off before COVID 19 hits here. And
that’s all bad for me.
I can’t use the grievance process because I’m not an “offender” as defined by the rules; I don’t have a conviction in Virginia. And even if I could use it, I’d be dead before I was ever vindicated.
I want to live through this. So, my “play nice” promise to Virginia be damned. Anyone reading this should feel free to contact Buckingham at (434) 983-4400 . Either Warden John Woodson or Assistant Warden Jeffrey Snoddy are here each day during normal business hours. Ask for one, and he’s not there, ask for the other. Feel free to fax this update to them, (434) 983-4017 . Attach your demand that they do something to clear my infection now.
One blessing of Sean’s transfer to the Virginia prison system is that he’s no longer suffering the petty (and not-so-petty) abuses at the hands of Ohio authorities that have accumulated after decades of Sean’s defense of his dignity. One tangible effect of this can be seen in his access to the mail sent his way. With no fart-goblins hiding or destroying his communications as they were at various Ohio prisons, Sean receives sometimes revelatory communications.
Back in 2012 during the whole manufactured “Army of the 12 Monkeys” kerfuffle, during which he was accused of helping to mastermind a successful prisoner-led sabotage movement in Ohio prisons against privatization and privation, Sean endured torture for his criticism of changes occurring in the ODRC and for holding anarchist beliefs. Recently, Sean was finally able to receive the communications from the OAS that his case was in consideration. He was only able to receive this because his mail was no longer being censored and tampered with by the ODRC flunkies.
But don’t take our word for it, check out his segment from The Final Straw Radio airing on September 15th, 2019 explaining his experience. Content warning, it contains descriptions of sexual violence by ODRC employees.
Below is a recording of his testimony to the Organization of American States Inter-American Commission of Human Rights. Please give a listen and help Sean to get these words into the hands of competent legal workers who can help him gain justice in this case.
Sean has been transferred again, this time to Dillwyn, VA, in the center of the state. We just got word that he’s sitting pretty at Buckingham Correctional Center and can be written at:
Sean Swain #2015638
PO Box 430
Dillwyn, VA 23936
After 27 years of incarceration in the state of Ohio, Sean Swain must bid a fond “fare-the-well” to his former wardens and jailers. Sean has been transferred to the Commonwealth of Virginia, given a new number and is sitting pretty at Nottoway Correctional Center near to Burkeville, VA. You can write to Sean to let him know you care and let his captors know you’re watching at the following address:
Sean Swain #2015638
Nottoway Correctional Center
P.O. Box 488
Burkeville, VA 23922
We’ll post more updates as they come up as to what this means for his security status, his legal challenges, his options for programs and parole.
Sean Swain Supporters
PS: if you feel like checking with his warders in VA on his status, that he’s in good health and getting what he needs, you can ask here:
2892 Schutt Road
P. O. Box 488
Burkeville, VA 23922
A few supporters were able to get over to Youngstown and in to visit Sean in mid February. Sean seems in good spirits and in good health. While at Warren C.I., a certain fartgoblin in the mail room continued to mess with Sean’s mail but no such issues have arisen in the month or so back at OSP and his phone access is up and running. Sean is, however, still without email access for some reason.
A couple of interesting developments have also occurred in the Ohio Department of Rehabilitations and Corruptions (ODRC); Director Gary Mohr has retired and threatened to move to North Carolina to cunsult the NCDHS, which oversees prisons there; and counselor Trevor Clark is no longer employed by ODR, a change which occurred within days of Sean’s public announcement that he had been genitally groped by Clark in 2013. Details will be published as we get them.
He’s also begun producing new segments for The Final Straw, so give a listen to the latest segments!
From Friends of Sean:
Sean is currently facing increased scrutiny and repression from the ODRC in retaliation for his published writings, including loss of privileges and a possible increase in security status.
On October 1, 2018, Sean ended a 29 day hunger strike. It is no longer necessary to call in to the prison, but it would be a great time to send Sean warm words of encouragement as he recovers from his strike. If you’d like, you can include a couple embossed envelopes in with your letter, available at the post office.
From Friends of Sean:
We have gotten confirmation from Sean that he is off hunger strike and has been in negotiations with the Warden.
Thanks to those who called and otherwise reached out to support Sean. That solidarity means a lot to his continued well-being.
From Friends of Sean:
We have not heard from Sean in a week and have received word via a proxy that he is 6 days into a hunger strike.
We have also heard that Sean is facing repression of various kinds, such as false conduct reports, unnecessary/unexplained cell changes, and limitation of his communications.
Although as of yet these issues are unconfirmed, we would like to request that supporters take a moment to call Warren Correctional and inquire about Sean’s status and raise concerns about how he’s being treated right now.
Warren Correctional Institution:
(513) 932-3388–press 7 to be connected to the Warden’s office.
It just never ends.
On February 16, Mailroom fart-goblin Ryan Applegate– whose personal war against all anarchist literature made him globally famous –sent me another notice of withholding. This notice indicated that what was being withheld is a CD.
The notice does not indicate who sent the CD, or where it came from, or what is on it, or why it was sent. It also does not indicate any criteria for withholding which is required on the form.
The notice was signed by Ryan Applegate, the same guy who has made it his full-time job to fuck with my mail.