Detainees in DC Prisons who have been held in facilities since Jan. 6th awaiting hearings based on activity at the US Capitol that day may be getting closer to receiving film footage that the US government has withheld from them, and which may form the very foundation of the charges against them.
Key Point: As reported here, numerous people have been held in inhumane conditions in prisons at DC jails awaiting some legal actions from Jan. 6th. Recently Lawyers who represent some of these prisoners claim that there are over 14,000 hours of footage from that day that has yet to be released to them as counsel.
Epoch Times reported last week on the massive amount of surveillance that has yet to be released to the prisoners or their lawyers.
“~14K hrs #January6 Capitol CCTV vid not yet shared with defense: “We need to see every moment of that..there’s going to be battles over the authenticity of some of this evidence” Atty JohnPierce.”
In the video: “We have all heard about the 14-15,000 hours of Capitol Hill surveillance that is out there. People like me and Steve need to see this footage and we need to understand what happened that day. Because every piece of evidence starts to drip out in terms of these videos, and I am not getting into the merits of these cases, but really raise some questions. And that has to be made available. I don’t think that we are very close to that being made available. And these defendants, in one sense want and deserve a speedy trial, at the same time it would be fundamentally unfair for them to go to trial until defense counsel has been able to see all of the relevant evidence,” Attorney John Peirce said.
“Cindy I want to add to that point exactly, this is one thing my firm has been pushing. Not only do us defense attorneys need to see this, we need to be able to share all of that information, thousands and thousands of hours of footage with our clients. Now, these individuals have tablets, but they have these tablets for a very short amount of time. We are going to be pushing for these tablets to be wiped clean so there are no security issues and for their own individual discovery to be produced on their tablet so they can review these hundreds, if not thousands of hours in their cells. So that is going to be an issue that we are going to continue to fight,” said Steven Metcalf.
~14K hrs #January6 Capitol CCTV vid not yet shared with defense:
"We need to see every every moment of that..there's going to be battles over the authenticity of some of this evidence" Atty JohnPierce @CaliKidJMP; @metcalflawnyc
— The Nation Speaks with @CindyDrukier (@NationSpeaksTNS) July 5, 2021
Remember, many or some of the prisoners are being held in solitary confinement, being denied access to resources.
Going down a Rabbit Hole: Activist group continues to push for public education over political prisoners in DC:
PRESS CONFERENCE TO STOP HUMAN RIGHTS ABUSES IN D.C. JAIL TO BE HELD AT BLM PLAZA JULY 13 AT 11:00 AM
On April 19th, the Washington Post reported that for over 400 days the approximately 1,500 men and women in the DC Detention Center were being held in solitary confinement for 23 hours a day, denied access to basic services such as grooming, exercise, visitation, medical care and more. The policy, which the District claims were to prevent the spread of COVID, has drawn harsh criticism from both Democrats and Republicans in Congress, in the District, and across the country as a violation of basic human rights. The minority leader of the House Oversight Committee has demanded DC Mayor Muriel Bowser’s answer to these concerning conditions, though to date, she has not responded.
Since the Post article, changes in the COVID policies at the detention center have only further violated the rights of inmates by allowing ONLY VACCINATED inmates to escape this 23-hour lockdown. This policy violates the international code by using egregious coercion to administer an experimental pharmaceutical. Though some further reductions in the severity of the lockdowns have occurred, for example, 23 hour lockdowns are now 22-hour lockdowns, the core abuses have not been rectified, and the mayor has not answered for her decisions or their results.
The calls to address these horrific conditions have increased. Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, in a recent statement again demanded that Mayor Bowser answer to Congress for the conditions in DC jail and again has apparently received no response. Even when Mayor Bowser was asked directly in Congress during DC statehood testimony about the conditions in DC jail, she deflected responsibility.
The citizens of DC deserve better from their mayor. In a petition to end this inhumane practice of solitary confinement and other abuses, the Anacostia Conservative Coalition is bringing together local and national activists, civil rights leaders, concerned citizens, and political figures in a nonpartisan alliance to call for an end to these abuses put in place by Mayor Bowser’s policies. The group intends to hold a press conference on Tuesday, July 13th at 11 AM at Black Lives Matter Plaza to call for congressional action against Mayor Bowser, the D.C. city council, and all other parties complicit in this abuse of power and violation of basic human rights.
Muriel Bowser loves to say that Black Lives Matter; she painted it right on the Plaza. But what about the Black lives that make up to 86% of the population within the DC Detention Center? The decision to impose these inhumane conditions represents an egregious and unconstitutional violation of human rights under the 8th Amendment to the Constitution, a violation of international codes on human rights, and a violation of the basic human dignity of these Black lives, and all of the lives currently detained in the DC jail. This is wrong.
The District of Columbia is allowing recurrent and possibly permanent harm to come to these inmates in the name of protecting them from COVID. As the Washington Post has reported, inmates are experiencing many medical issues as a result of the policies, not limited to sleep disruption, depression and other mental health issues, including urges to self harm. There is no end in sight or proposal to phase out this practice, or to make amends for permanent harm caused by the policy. DC Detention Center COVID policies are considered some of the harshest in the nation and there has been no oversight into the effectiveness or harm of these policies. Mayor Bowser and the DC Council, as their Constitutional duty requires, MUST ANSWER to the United States Congress for these abuses, and these policies MUST be changed to properly protect detainees from temporary or permanent harm. We call on Congress to intervene and demand an end to these abuses immediately.
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Kari is an ex-Community Organizer who writes about Voter Engagement, Cultural Marxism and Campaigns. She has been a grassroots volunteer with the GOP, on and off for 18 years. She is a Homeschool Mom in North Carolina and loves Photojournalism and Citizen Journalism. @Saorsa1776