Contributed by the article author – There are indications that that DPR’s home for the next 50 years or so until he dies will be The United States Penitentiary, Coleman II
Cursory observations of this complex reveal it classified as:
Maximum Security Prison – The United States Penitentiary, Coleman is a high-security United States federal prison for male inmates in Florida..
Let’s take a look at another high profile, double life sentence inmate that he will share a block with;
“Former Boston crime boss James “Whitey” Bulger has taken up residence at the Coleman Federal Correctional Complex in Sumterville.
The notorious Bulger is serving two life sentences after a 2013 racketeering conviction tying him to 11 murders and other gangland crimes in the 1970s and ‘80s.
Prior to his conviction of these 11 murders (those 11 were considered open and shut cases for the Prosecution, with all parties acknowledging he was likely involved directly in the murder of 150 or more individuals) Bulger, in December 1994 went into hiding and was on the run for the next 16 years.
For 12 of those years he was No. 2 on the FBI’s Most Wanted list, behind only;
Osama bin Laden.”
However, mob boss Whitey Bulger, age aside so all things being equal, would be released long before Mr. Ulbricht.
Concerned with the public safety threat that a freed DPR would apparently represent (or, as some classify it, a particularly cruel abuse of power used to “run up the score”), bonus sentences were meted out of – five years for computer hacking, 10 years for conspiracy to traffic in fraudulent identification documents, and another 20 years for ONE count of conspiracy to commit money laundering.
We should all be thankful to the crack staff of Preet Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and his rubber-stamping jurist compatriot, Federal Judge Katherine Forrest. Because regardless of how illogical it may be to effectively classify Ross Ulbricht as a much larger threat to public safety than Mr. Bulger who was decade long, domestic PUBLIC ENEMY #1 and globally only trailing Osama Bin Laden, we can rest comfortably in the fact that they certainly know what they are doing more than any of us. I know that because I was raised to be a good boy and to always trust and respect Sheriff and the Judge because they were there to protect me.
Consequently, I am programmed to feel grateful that Mr. Bharara and Judge Forest have made the world safer for my children and the future generations of my family. But here’s the problem. It’s not 1970 anymore. I have seen too much bad shit coming from our government to know that my parent’s world is not the world today. I actually can remember the days when my blind faith and patriotism was not only common, but it was well founded! We used to be better than this. When did I lose my faith that the judicial system was breaking before my eyes? I really don’t fucking know. I can point to the day that I lost hope, but by then I was already 70% out the door. The day I realized that we are no more free in America than they are in all the countries, led by Russia, that still embrace the Soviet-like oppression strategy – and consequently 100% sure that we are fucked as US Citizens, was the day Edward Snowden enlightened the world. The first “Day of Snowden” news cycle had me by the balls and I was screaming for this traitor to be assassinated before he could leave Hong Kong. 48 hours later I was still awake and in the middle of a speedball binge. I had by then read everything my dope fueled mind could absorb and I knew my mind would never be the same again. Any remnants of a security blanket I had been grasping were snatched completely from my paws. Being a US citizen it seems would never bring me pride again and I only hoped that my kids generation could somehow restore the madness. But for me? Nah, I’m broken.
First, as response to those that continue to propagate the incorrect assumption about Federal Prisoners not getting parole (i.e. 5 year sentence = 5 years, no breaks), you are wrong. In fact, according to Justice Department’s recent figures; most federal prisoners served 58% of their maximum sentences before being paroled. With respect to DPR’s sentencing, the court had options that ranged from the minimum – 25 years – as the defense suggested all the way up to some silly and inappropriate maximum of double life sentences + 35 years (which the prosecutor may have asked for as his dramatic exclamation point to the State’s slam dunk, achieved by shutting down any reasonable directions for the defense). Word is that they would have been happy with a a press-friendly, though unenforceable sentence of 100 years.
The public would have viewed that as staggering and the old ladies would have been thrilled that the US was winning the drug war. But in reality DPR would have had the benefit of a system that grants automatic triggers for parole hearings.
In retrospect, turns out the defense should have actively pursued an egregious appearing term in prison that reached into 3 digits. Hell, a 150 year sentence at least comes with plenty of hope thanks to a parole-centered penal system. But the thought would have been that they could have never signed off on their client accepting 100++ years as that would be viewed as incompetence or potentially malpractice.
Some in our community that think this will all work out (I mean, can we REALLY impose a harsher sentence on actors like DPR than Whitey Bulger?)
Here’s the problem though. Thanks to Judge Foster’s ruling, DPR may only have a shot at fresh air one day if he is able to get his conviction OVERTURNED! Yes, there are other routes, but the fact remains that the burden of reversing a double life sentence is exponentially harder – like solar systems away exponential – than successfully positioning a client to have a shot at a parole hearing in 8 years (not that he would be granted it on first shot, but the process will have begun on the journey to freedom).
Instead, life AND law is going to take the form of a drastically different, rather ominous beast.
In 8-10 years from today he’s sitting on a zero balance defense fund that was drained in his one and only appeal attempt they managed in the past decade.
His life well could be relegated to a reality that sees him with a typical result when you mix pretty white boys with federal max-level prisons, and he exists mostly as Bubba’s Bitch where he will remain for a few decades.
In the year 2045 DPR will be thoroughly broken and looking like he is 80 instead of 60 because when his ass was no longer a premium he lost any physical protection he ever had and is just another old man who survives in general population by trading poptarts for coffee and judging whether he is having a good week or not on whether the brothers kicked his skinny white ass to steal those poptarts before he could eat them.
Statistically his body is broken as well as his mind and he appears identical to every other broken inmate that walks the yard with a pronounced gimp that he did not have when he arrived.
In about year 2045 he is awoken at 5am by the machine known as structure – On step 35 of his 132 steps it takes to walk back to his cell after breakfast, he is jarred from his trance-like concentration of counting said 132 paces by a guard who takes him to a room he has never seen before. It is the first of several rooms he will see for the first time that day.
After a hurried and incoherent exit interview he is asked if he wants any of the shit in his cell or should they just toss it out? He finally hears and understands what they are saying.
Today he is being kicked on a pity commutation signed by Charlene Clinton, the NY Governor who is trying to draw the young vote next year when she runs to take the seat her Grandfather and Grandmother once held. Her polling staff says they may get a bump perhaps as big as the MOE if she lets this long forgotten felon out early.
It seems the prisoner is sort of a legendary folk “pirate” to the grown kids that were around when all this DNM stuff started – and these kids did a change.org campaign and gathered the trivial requisite signatures required to have (barely) landed the issue on Governor Clinton’s Super Pac radar. As a sad epilogue to the destruction of this man’s life he will come out to his mom and dad’s gravestones long passed from old age and broken hearts, not welcoming hugs.
A fly on the wall – or one of the many mini camera drones buzzing about with the feel of a bad LSD trip – can see all the players and gatekeepers populating the staging area. This is about as far as the drone flies travel because the procession has just reached the final door on this final day. But no matter how clear the picture or how advanced the resolution is, they, NOR ANY OF THE HUMANS – can capture the magnitude of the tragedy at hand.
The humans don’t give a shit and the drones can’t quantify it. How DO you quantify the value (and decades long complete and total DE-valuing) of a man’s spirit and soul? Unnoticed by all is the fact that the real crime here was the states ease and willingness to allow this spirit to forever be unkindered. It seems so obvious now, though! Sigh.
All checklists are done. The state has dotted the i’s and crossed the t’s required to absolve all liability they had on their ward. An unprepared gimp is shown the door. It leads to a world that long passed him by. It’s too late for any justice and his dignity has long ago expired like buttermilk in July. The ordeal is over.
Nobody looks back though – it’s unimportant now and surely self-inflicted but the fact will always remain that our society crafted an outcome that was destined, by design, to result the effect that codifies the incredible waste of this man’s life (and men to come). A sickness would meet anyone that dares to look back at the facts – Forever lost was Ross’ potential, we instead murdered through transformation a good, smart, educated, young mind that Ross entered the system with into a gimpy skeleton.
Instead of just taking a punitive attitude, we should have thought it out and. Imagine Ross had instead been used for good – used to further harm reduction – used perhaps to counsel drug addicted kids that had legal issues – have him do this and more in the morning. In the afternoon let him testify to policy makers as a valuable resource toward perhaps a collective think process. A process tasked with making the world better, safer and freer. DPR was a all-in guy! I have NO DOUBT that treating him as an asset would have motivated genuine spark and dedication in his veins, i.e. he would have been just as good playing for the team society labels the good side.
He steps into the street – it’s more of an alley really – He heads toward that liquor store over there. It will help his pain as he immediately is self-aware of his irrelevance and insignificance in this new world. He does not recognize much. The irony is this technology completely passed him by due to cruel consequence of restrictions put on him to keep him off the internet and any other technology device for the last 30 years. He has gone from a place among the top 10% in tech/pioneering/entrepreneurship and social knowledge, to an old man that won’t know how to catch the autonomous bus to his parole officer for his piss test.
Most in the legal world (save for perhaps Judge Foster) were aware of the tricky spot the US has found itself in (yet again) where we are seen by the entire world as a nation of hypocrisy filled barbarians and spies with draconian drug laws and prison warehousing – yet also the nation that accounts for 60% of global demand. Legal-types figured things would end up on a more rational note when sentencing day arrived. Instead, a collective gasp screamed from Lady Liberty when the sentence was read aloud. The mutterings in the courthouse were screamed whispers of disbelief that any civil society could reconcile this prison sentence as “Justice Served”.
Ross had told them he did not want anything from his cell that day. While he knew they would not hold it for him, he was left with an inexorable feeling he would soon be back.
If you are looking down on me, Mom & Dad don’t be disappointed. When you instilled those values I believed you because they held TRUE. My only regret to your memories is that I was unable to carry these values and beliefs you taught me to the next generation. Maybe your great-grandkids will see and feel this pride someday if this generation can fix things.. It was really fucking cool to be a proud American!!