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Hunger strike ends at prison

Published: Tue, May 15, 2012 @ 12:04 a.m.



By Peter H. Milliken



A hunger strike among inmates at the Ohio State Penitentiary has ended, with none of its participants being taken to the Franklin Medical Center in Columbus, the OSP warden said.

The hunger strike, which began April 30, ended with its last two participants eating again last Wednesday, said Warden David Bobby.

As of early afternoon May 7, Bobby said there were 21 hunger strikers at OSP, which is on the East Side of Youngstown and known as the Supermax. The majority of the participants ate again on May 7 or 8, the warden said.

“I talked to the group on Monday [May 7], and they just decided to start eating,” Bobby said, adding that he believes the hunger strike ended because prison officials spoke to the inmates and listened to their concerns.

The committee established to explore inmate complaints about high commissary prices still is investigating that issue, Bobby said.

Last week, Bobby vowed that no hunger strikers would die of starvation or dehydration on his watch and said any inmates showing severe symptoms would be transferred to Columbus.

Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction policy says hunger strikers whose health deteriorates will be force-fed, if necessary. Had force-feeding been necessary, it would have been done at the Columbus facility, the warden said.

In a letter postmarked May 7, OSP inmate Marcus L. Harris told The Vindicator the inmates’ biggest complaint is that they have no idea when they can earn their way from Level 5, which is the highest security level, down to lower security levels, where inmates get more privileges.

“What we’re asking is to be given something to hope for,” wrote Harris, 28, who is serving 53 years to life in prison for aggravated murder and other violent felonies.

“They have an annual security review” in which their behavior is evaluated for possible placement in a lower security level, Bobby said of the inmates.

However, even if their recent behavior has been good, inmates may remain at Level 5 “because of why they got there,” the warden said, giving violence against a corrections officer as a possible reason for keeping an inmate at Level 5.

ODRC considers inmates to be on a hunger strike after they’ve refused nine- consecutive meals.

Bobby said the hunger strike was the largest he’d seen in his four years as OSP warden.


1lee(544 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

That's to bad

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2NoBS(2516 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

So people being punished for "aggravated murder and other violent felonies" want to get more privileges than their sentence would allow them? Boo freekin' hoo.

And the hunger strike was because commissary prices are too high? Why don't they go on a hunger strike because gasoline prices are too high? Let's see where that gets them.

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3Attis(1052 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

Over a 1000 Palestinians political prisoners in Israeli dungeons and torture chambers have been on a hunger strike for weeks to demand humane treatment. That enormous sacrifice succeeded in gaining a few changes, but over there any Palestinian can still be held in prison without charges indefinitely. And US taxpayers fund this atrocity.

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4Lifes2Short(3879 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

"“What we’re asking is to be given something to hope for,” wrote Harris, 28, who is serving 53 years to life in prison for aggravated murder and other violent felonies."

Like he gave something to "hope for", for the murder victim? This loser should thank God he's alive everyday unlike his victim.

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5binx(81 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

Probably their first meal after this hunger strike was better than what some children in Youngstown eat on a daily basis, if they even had a meal. I'd rather care about giving some "hope" to a child than a guy in prision serving a life sentence for aggravated murder. UGH!

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6dawn421(265 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

here here binx!!!!! those pos should have thought about this before they did the crime. im sure most of them have friends and family there. if only the victims familys could go on a hungr strike to bring back the person these pos killed, im sure they would do it in a ny minute.

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7binx(81 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

No, what I was saying was that although they hunger striked they probably got a pretty nice meal after their antics... since things are sooo horrible there. Who cares, I thought all they ate in jail was bread and butter with water.
If I were a victim's family hearing about some goofball who killed my beloved doing this, it would tick me off to the ultimate degree..

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8praxis95(51 comments)posted 3 years, 9 months ago

Palestinians political prisoners? Palestinians political leadership refuses to recognizes Israels right to exist, has vowed to wipe Israel off the map, and teaches their children to hate Jews. And the Palestinian Authority reserves millions from the United States in aid. The atrocity is that the U.S. taxes fund this organization that wants to destroy Israel.

As for prisons wanting good behavior to count toward lowering their security level (risk), too bad, should have thought about that before engaging in their violent acts.

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