Prison Journal: An Irreverent Look at Life on the Inside

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9781555533120: Prison Journal: An Irreverent Look at Life on the Inside

Successful Boston politician Joseph Timilty was indicted in 1993 for conspiracy to commit fraud in a condominium development project. "Technically, I'm guilty, " he admits. "I put my name on a HUD form stating there was no secondary financing. I'm guilty of stupidity, but not conspiracy to defraud." Other defendants cut deals with the U.S. Attorney in exchange for information on suspects the government hoped to implicate. But Timilty refused to falsely inform against those he knew were not involved in the case. As a result of his resistance to a plea bargain, Timilty was arrested at home by the FBI, convicted, and sentenced to serve time at Schuylkill, a federal penitentiary in Minersville, Pennsylvania. For the next four months he kept a secret journal, a diary that he smuggled out of prison in coded notes and letters to his wife. His poignant and frequently hilarious observations about his arrest and trial, his imprisonment, and the aftermath of his experiences are now compiled in this volume. A blend of drama and black comedy, Prison Journal captures the paradox of life behind bars - the alternating tedium and tension that develop into monotony and fear and eventually into passivity and violence. Timilty writes with insight about racial tensions among blacks, whites, and Latinos, and with sensitivity about homosexuality at Schuylkill. Amid the horror and the humor, he also comments on hypocritical efforts at rehabilitation and on a rigid, hostile bureaucracy that squanders government funds to preserve an expensive and unsuccessful prison system.

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About the Author:

Joseph Timilty is a former Boston city councilor who served five terms as Massachusetts state senator and ran three close races for mayor of Boston. He is known for his progressive legislation and his advocacy for affordable housing. Currently living in Canton, Massachusetts, he is a lobbyist who represents clients before the Massachusetts legislature.

After being convicted of conspiracy to commit fraud in a condominium development project in 1993, he secretly kept a journal during his four-month incarceration at the Schuylkill federal correctional facility in Minersville, Pennsylvania. Prison Journal: An Irreverent Look at Life on the Inside compiles his observations about his arrest and trial, his life in prison, and the aftereffects of his experiences.

From Library Journal:

On October 4, 1993, Boston politician Timilty turned himself in to Schuylkill Federal Penitentiary to serve a four-month sentence for conspiracy to commit fraud in a condominium development. Prison was an eye-opener for this former city councilor. In this journal he kept daily, smuggled out in coded letters to his wife, Timilty records his observations. His portrayals of the other inmates are as often hilarious as they are heartrending. What sets his journal apart from most other prison writing, however, is his commentary on the mismanagement of the facility. He is appalled by the filth, the waste in the prison purchasing process, and the meaningless activities in the name of rehabilitation. Now released, Timilty asks, "How can tax payers agree to this sham?" Recommended for criminal justice collections.?Frances O. Sandiford, Green Haven Correctional Facility Lib., Stormville, N.Y.
Copyright 1997 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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