“ Clink Clank Clink Clank” the sound you hear as you do the walk of shame to MPF AKA Crisis Management AKA the ice house. Its called the Ice house due to the coldness, and if asked why it’s cold, it’s told because “There is “patients” on physc meds and have heat restrictions so it has to stay cold” you notice the temperature difference from outside to inside, its so cold you’re shivering. your wearing a paper gown, shower shoes and shackles around your wrist, feet, and a belt around your waist which is all connected together, which make it difficult to walk. The officer have on their uniform and a vest while some have on jackets. The walk from the Door to the nurses station is about a 45 second walk. The nurse station consist of a Long Desk where the officers sit and a Room for the nurses. “Get your weight states a nurse as you hit the nurses station by the front desk. Then you sit down in a chair that has a towel on it. The nurse began to Ask you medical questions about injuries or “are you suicidal. After she checks your blood pressure, prick your finger for your blood sugar and make sure you dont have injuries, if you do the nurse will clean them and re-bandange them. Then your cleared to go to a cell. They make you stand up and kneel on the chair while removing shackle while officers stand around you and hold on to your shoulders. Then your escorted to a little brown Rusty Cage, it’s a metal cage that you have to stand in to get stripped search which consist of Being naked, Lifting your breast, Run your fingers through your hair, Bend at the waist and spreading your buttocks. The men officers are at the front desk and cant see in the room the cage is in. Then your taken to the Boss II chair which is a metal chair that look like stairs. You have to sit on it and raise your Legs, Lift to the side and wiggle. While coming out of the cage you are put on this sheet gown and walked to your cell after the Boss II chair. And if your approved you recieve a suicide blanket, which is basically a blanket that hard to tear. If not approved you have to be in the cell naked cold and shivering. The officers knock on your door every 15 minutes and you gotta respond or they take your blanket. When you have to use the restroom you have to ask for tissue and they give you a Roll off which is 8 sheets of tissue. If you need more you have to ask. Dont let you be on your period because all you get is one pad and you gotta prove you’re on your period by showing blood. You can get a pad if its proven you’re on your period and you have to give them the other one to get another. Only women suppose to sign the Doors and give tissue and pads but men do it to. Which is degrading and make you feel nasty, low, and violated.
All you hear is the offenders screaming they need tissue or screaming to a friend or what not, offenders banging on the door with their fist or kicking the door, and officers laughing and joking around at the front desk, So the next day after you came ms. Teague suppose to see you sometimes she do sometimes she dont. Ms. Teague is the psych lady and she comes in at 7-8am and does Rounds which means go to every door and Askes Rudely “why are you here” or “Are you ready to go back to your unit”. The place degrades you as a human being, Having to ask to use the Restroom, having to prove your on your period. It makes you feel less than Human, Like a animal. The day after being sexually abused by an officer (5/19/22) which wasnt taken serious until I went to MPF and still wasnt taken serious til this day I went to MPF and I felt low, degraded, and violated and the worse sense people continue to go back because they feel they dont get the help they need the first time they came, Air condition, or they want to get away from the brutality of their unit. I feel as we need real counseling as to 2 minutes standing at our door and you’re fine attitude. If mental health really helped us by listening and talking us through our trouble there would be less cases of suicide. The things we have to do to get help is crucial. I witnessed at least 5 suicides and at least 50 suicide attempts. My arms is all cut up (self mutilation) because you have to prove you need help, cant just say it. If they (Mental Health and officers) took us seriously there would be less suicides or cutting. After the fact they want to ask you “why did you do that” or “you couldve just talked to me” And they take you real serious when your bleeding Everywhere. Being in a Environment that shows you’re nothing it hard to want to live. The food we eat is 2 sandwiches 1 peanut butter jelly and 1 meat sandwich which might belonga, salami, chicken patty, or hamburger patie. And a Dixie cup half full of water or juice, Dont get thirsty because they tell you to drink it out of your faucet with your hand. Shower time is the saddest part. You get one bar of green soap which is about 3 inches long the width about 2-3cms real small and you get a pea size of toothpaste with no toothbrush. I have no idea why but shoes aren’t allowed until you leave back to your unit. so your barefoot in the shower that at least 9 people went to before you. You can ask for more green soap but its rare they give it to you. No shampoo. The shower you can adjust the temperature to hot or cold. It is such a traumatic experience the way I felt was violated and low as a person I think they should work on the mental Health System in prison. TDCJ. After returning from the psych center I was worse because I stop feeling violated and got used to it now I go all the time. They make you feel as that is okay to be treated like that. The avg age of most people in the psych center is early 20’s. we all have in common that we cut ourselves just to get the help we need. The thing that surprised me the most about the psych center is that you see the same group of people almost all the time. It sucks you back in and you continue to go It’s like a cycle.
1916 N HWY 36 ByPass
Gatesville TX 76596
Lane Murray Unit, Gatesville, Texas
3 years in solitary / ad seg
December 23, 2022
Words by KIERA HENDERSON
Photography by TEXAS LETTERS