On April 30th, 2013 the Mansfield Correctional Rules Infraction Board (RIB) held a hearing for Sean Swain where they again tried to make the case that he is the leader and founder of the Army of the 12 Monkeys (A12M), an anarchist prison gang / guerilla army. The hearing lasted an unprecedented three hours and forty-five minutes. Leslie Dillon, admitted founding member of A12M testified that Swain is innocent and that the charging official, investigator Angela Hunsinger actually provided the guerilla manuals. The hearing and conduct report were rife with inaccuracies, jurisdictional issues, illegal investigative procedures, and absurdities, but still resulted in a guilty verdict against Mr Swain.
A summary of some of those irregularities (more detailed analysis, from Sean is online here.:
1. They admitted that the first conduct report was harassment and unconstitutional targeting- and described the current conduct report as a rehearing of that conduct report. In other words, they are saying that they are repeating and continuing harassment and unconstitutional targeting.
2. This is NOT a rehearing, there are new charges and a whole new set of supposed evidence, collected in March of 2013. 200 days after the investigation was supposed to be over.
3. Legally, there is no conduct report. ManCI investigator Angela Hunsinger signed the conduct report, she’s the charging official, but in the hearing, she disavowed the entire thing and testified that she did not write it.
4. Leslie Dillon’s testified in Sean’s favor, re-affirmed his affidavit. This exonerates Sean completely and proves the entire process is just malicious harassment.
5. No evidence was admitted during the hearing by the charging official. None. Not one piece of paper. The guilty verdict of the RIB was based on Hunsinger’s totally inaccurate and blatantly false characterizations of letters written by 12 Monkey-accused prisoners.
6. ManCI investigators should not have had access to those letters. They can only review prisoners’ outgoing correspondence for a 21 day investigation. The investigation started September 19th and ended October 10th, 2012. The letters referred to in the conduct report (but not presented as evidence during the hearing) were written in March of 2013.
7. Three of those letters were written by other prisoners and have no bearing on Swain’s conduct.
8. None of the letters Sean wrote are conceivably threats to the security of the facility or indications of involvement with the army of the 12 Monkeys.
A. Letters in which he mentions that 12 Monkeys manuals can be found online at http://ge.tt/2ckaeFo/v/0 and http://ge.tt/6UJJ4xp. He has presented this information to people he wrote to (including ODRC Director Gary Mohr) as evidence that someone outside the prison with access to the internet must have created A12M.
B. In one letter he makes a joke that outside supporters should capitalize on 12 Monkeys notoriety by printing T-Shirts. He compares them to the famously ironic Che Gueverra t-shirts. This is obviously irrelevant and protected speech.
C. In another letter, he proposes a feature to a website he does not own or control (seanswain.org). A proposal which was rejected by the people who do control the website, and which, even if adopted, would be considered protected free speech by precedent set in federal courts.
9. Trevor Clark- who assisted in writing the conduct report (or, based on Hunsinger’s testimony, likely wrote the report and had her sign it) was visibly agitated and left the hearing. Later, he repeatedly burst back in to interrupt the hearing and tell everyone that he was on the phone with the FBI and had told them about that time when he shared the home addresses of Ohio politicians with Sean during one of their interviews. Clark seemed to intend this as some kind of threat… we’re not sure how stupidly sharing his mistake with more people hurts Sean. Clark said he would be writing a new conduct report against Sean.
Despite all of these absurdities, the RIB hearing found Sean guilty and will continue to hold him in the control unit and deprive him of basic rights and human needs, like sleep and adequate meals while he files his appeals.
Swain’s supporters believe this is ManCI’s true intention. They want to keep Sean there, so they can continue to torture him. If we beat these charges, they’ll just manufacture new conduct reports to keep Sean under investigation permanently. The conduct report Clark threatened to write would be the fourth frivolous and nonsensical report filed against Swain since September: 1.the admittedly ideology-targeting report, 2. the “redo” report producing this hearing, and 3. a frivolous report filed by Uriah Melton– Swain’s supposed advocate at ManCI are the other three. 4. Clark’s new report, to be uncovered.
Please send Sean mail, please donate to his legal fund. We are going forward with the lawsuit and could use all the help we can get. Thanks to hours Kate from RedBird spent on the phone with central office, Sean and the others can receive zines again. Please send things to read.
It seems like the mailroom continue to throw Sean’s mail away, randomly. If you mail him, or any of the A12M accused prisoners anything, please drop firstname.lastname@example.org an email so we can verify if he received it (via Mr Fitrakis’ legal mail).