Tuesday, February 02, 2016

S.O.S. from Rev. Pinkney: Please Make Calls

Update 1/13/16: Rev. Pinkney appears to be okay for the moment, but is still in a hostile environment when Officer Schretter is on duty. Please keep calling daily to inquire about Rev. Pinkney's health, safety, and well-being.

We believe Rev. Pinkney may be in unusually grave danger and we are asking for your help.

Rev. Pinkney is now able to communicate by email using the prison email system (his phone privileges are still suspended). Today several supporters received two messages sent by Rev. Pinkney yesterday (Tuesday, Dec. 15). The first message, sent at noon, did not contain anything unusual. He wrote that he was happy that last Saturday's Emergency Conference went well; that he is still experiencing daily harassment, threats, and intimidation; and that he will continue to speak out to expose corruption and prisoner abuses at Marquette Branch Prison.

The second message, sent just six hours later the same day, had a very different tone. Rev. Pinkney's emails are likely to be read by prison officials and he may not be able to discuss in detail the threats he is coping with. We believe the message may be an S.O.S. alerting us to a sudden escalation in the level of danger in his current situation. While we do not want to alarm supporters unnecessarily, in an abundance of caution, we should take what actions we can to let MDOC know we are watching closely.

Please read on and see below for actions you can take to help ensure Rev. Pinkney's safety.

Rev. Pinkney's second message stated, in part:
I have been placed in a hostile environment. The Department of Corrections knew, or should have known, that the threatening, harassing, and intimidating behavior by Corrections Officer Schretter created a hostile environment and the Department failed to implement corrective measures to protect me.
The Department on purpose set me up for failure. Their action can never serve a legitimate penological purpose. The Department of Corrections has jurisdiction and power to promulgate rules and standards, but failed to do so to protect me.
They have continuously threatened, harassed, and intimidated me. I am even afraid they will plant a weapon in my locker.
We must make this known as soon as possible.
Rev. Pinkney concluded by mentioning the possibility of contacting the state police. We hope that Rev. Pinkney's attorney--the only individual currently able to speak with him by telephone--will be able to reach him and gain further understanding of the current level of threat Rev. Pinkney is facing.

In the meantime, please continue making these phone calls.

Sample script:
"My name is _______ and I'm calling from __________. I'm calling about Rev. Edward Pinkney, ID #294671. I am concerned about the Reverend's health and safety." (See below for specific requests).
  • Call Governor Rick Snyder at 517-373-3400. Tell him you are concerned about Rev. Pinkney's safety in an environment of harassment, threats, intimidation, and hostility. Tell him to restore Rev. Pinkney's phone access, to transfer Rev. Pinkney back to Lakeland Prison, and to remove Robert Napel as warden at Marquette Prison.
  • Call Legislative Corrections Ombudsman Keith Barber to demand an investigation into Rev. Pinkney's treatment: 517-373-8573.
  • Call MDOC Director Heidi Washington at 517-241-7238 (leave a message with Sandy Simon, Director Washington's assistant).
  • Call Marquette Branch Prison at 906-226-6531 and demand assurance that Rev. Pinkney is safe and not being mistreated or threatened by any staff members.