On January 13 of this year four prisoners were shot by a guard at Soledad State Prison. Three of them, blacks, died. The other, white, was just wounded. On January 16 the Monterey County DA called the murder “justifiable homicide.” The surviving prisoners disagreed with the verdict. They made their decision and implemented it by beating a guard to death. Three black prisoners were selected by the pigs as scapegoats for the guard’s death.
The three: George Jackson, Fleeta Drumgo, and John Clutchette were dutifully indicted by the Establishment’s Grand Jury and are now standing trial before Monterey County’s version of Julius Hoffman; Judge Gordon Campbell.
Possible defense witnesses have disappeared into the bowels of the state prison system and are unavailable to defense lawyers. Lawyers have also been refused the right to look at the site of the alleged crime.
The trial is being held in America, 1970. The prisoners sit in the courtroom shackled, chains dragging from the ankles, wrists and waists.
What follows is a report on conditions in Soledad as seen by an ex-resident…a wise old con too well versed in the ways of the state prison system to believe that he could use his real name and still remain on the outside of the gray steel bars.