The following was written by a prisoner in North Carolina and was transcribed comrades in the Atlanta Anarchist Black Cross. It details repression following the National Prison Strike.
I just received your newsletter today. Thank you. But I’m no longer at Hyde. I was moved to Bertie, for my role in being one of the three people who organized the protest at Hyde Correctional in Swan Quarter, NC with outside parties organized by John Roberts.
I saw a article y’all had wrote about the four inmates being held in segregation. I am one of those four, and I only know of two others. Because they were with me at Hyde to organize and participate in the peaceful protest. Our names as followed: Todd Martin, Randy Watterson, and myself Jace Buras. The protest which was peaceful, was supposed to start on August 21st 2018. I told T&R and John that it would be better to do it on August 20th 2018 so the police, if got wind of it, would still believe it was on the 21st. On the day of August 20th, around 1 p.m. five or more cars pulled into Hyde’s parking lot, and out came many protesters. They were marching, blowing trumpets, beating drums, videotaping everything. All the while inmates hung up self-made banners saying “In Solidarity”, “Better Food”, “Better Wages”. Simple heartfelt messages asking to be treated as human beings and not slaves & animals. While the peaceful protest went on, prison guards had their weapons pointed at us and the outside protesters.
In order to get the 400-plus inmates to no longer protest and cause friction inside the prison, they closed the yard and put Hyde on lockdown. To which in spirit of the protest, everyone went peacefully inside. Many men, some with no release date under NC’s structured sentencing law, had tears in their eyes. Why? Because it showed to them that there are people who still believe in them and want them to be free and productive members of society. Which is all of us what. Even under such harsh sentencing, we just want a second chance and to be viewed as men, not convicts. After the prison shut down, days later I was put in the hole for backlog and pending investigation. The following day so was Todd and Randy. We three went on a hunger strike starting that day. The following Monday we were shipped away from Hyde. I was moved to Bertie, and have no clue where Todd and Randy went. For my understanding they were and still are in segregation.
I myself was placed on ICON for 180 days, which is long-term isolation, my release date was pushed to February of next year, and I was labeled srg level 3 for a non gang infraction. To this, I stand proudly still and hope that all men and women who deserve a second chance at life is given it. You may lock me away and throw away the key. But you cannot take my voice.
In solidarity, Jace
Jace Buras #1522417
PO Box 129
Windsor, NC 27983