The Toilet Paper Revenge.
A visit to the psych centre.
Our visits soon became routine. we had regular clinics 3 times a week and responded to calls twenty-four hours a day. One or more students or residents attended the clinics to learn how to deal with these difficult and often manipulative patients. The variety of patients were extreme ranging from the xxy ( the bad guys in old monster movies ) who you wouldn't want to meet in the back alley on a dark night, all the way to clean-cut, well-groomed even in prison garb, inmates. All the usual complaints that occur in any practice presented, as well as a large number of manipulators who came to the clinic with some ulterior motive that could range from the desire to get hold of some illicit medications to getting hold of some item of clothing that had become popular (and 'fashionable') among most of the prison population. For instance Nike runners were a high prestige item and inmates often demanded them for painful feet or low back pain. They were often aggressively specific in their demands and they were loyal to brand names so that a cheap trainer would be quite unacceptable to them. Their response, when they were not given what they want could sometimes be violent. Such demands could run right through the institution and if an inmate managed to manipulate such a prescription there would be an avalanche of people with foot pain and lower back pain all needing Nike shoes. Eventually, when I was presented with such requests I had a cover story that they could only be prescribed by a specialist in Orthopedics and I would be glad to arrange an appointment for them but that the waiting time would be about a year. That worked very effectively and usually stopped the request.
One of the common situations was an attempt to obtain narcotic drugs by feigning symptoms. They thought that would result in a prescription for what they wanted. They had other schemes to obtain drugs that they could not get prescribed for them. Visitors entering the institution were screened very carefully because they sometimes smuggled in illicit medications. Indeed the inmates were so successful at getting medications illicitly that the staff carried out searches from time to time. The inmates were cleared out of their cells and a spontaneous search would sweep through the institution looking for narcotics and other drugs. Many drugs were discovered on these searches and on one occasion a search revealed a partially completed homemade still to distill alcohol. Although it never actually succeeded in producing any alcohol, its manufacturer's had made significant progress in its construction before being discovered.
Some of our students were attractive young women and in an all-male institution of this sort, this naturally aroused considerable interest and necessitated careful security precautions
Some of the inmates were only temporarily remanded while a psychiatric assessment was carried out. Those individuals were sometimes released into the community. When they did not get what they wanted, some of these inmates would level threats at the psychiatrists, physicians and or nurses. I recalled one such individual who issued a threat that when he got out he would ‘get’ me. As he was only being held on remand and it was likely that he would be out soon, it left me feeling a little uncomfortable. Shortly thereafter he was discharged. Not long afterwards, I came home one night to find that the trees and bushes in my front yard were draped with toilet paper and my front room windows were smeared with toothpaste spelling out some obscene words. After cleaning up and considering who was responsible, It occurred to me that it might be the individual who had previously threatened me. I went along to our local police station to report damage and danger. I explained the background and that I worked in a maximum-security prison. The police sergeant said, " They didn't do much damage, you were lucky they only used toothpaste and not paint.”
I pointed out that it was not the property damage I was concerned about but the potential danger to my family and myself.
“ Oh well, we'll have a patrol car cruise around your cul-de-sac once in a while and keep an eye out for anything strange.” He didn't seem worried at all. The end result was that my neighbour who had a trailer parked outside his house on the street in our cul-de-sac found a fifty dollar ticket on it a few days later.
"Strange "he said to me.`` It's been parked there for ages and I never got a ticket before. "
I didn't tell him it was because I'd asked the police to keep an eye on our house. I guess they thought they might as well ticket his trailer and have something to show for their trouble. Fortunately nothing ever happened and I never did find out who the perpetrator was, but when my colleague suggested that he lend me his shotgun for a while in case any murderers or rapists break into my house I gave it serious consideration.
The Break-out. (Almost).
As I entered the RPC one morning, there seemed to be a lot of commotion at the entry gate with a line up of individuals with various business to complete waiting to get in. By this time I was well enough known to the guards to push my way ahead to gain entry. There were a lot of officers there.
"What's up," I asked. "What's the big hold-up?"
"One of the guys tried to break out and he managed to get into the area between the inner and the outer fence. He was just starting to climb the outer fence when Gil showed up with a shot-gun, lined him up in the sights and told him he better get down or he'd be shot."
"I'll bet he did as he was told" said I.
"He did," said the guard.
I walked across the courtyard and entered the building. As I approached the clinic I saw Gil, sitting at a desk, typing earnestly with two fingers.
"What are you doing there? " I asked.
"You heard about what went on this morning ? I'm just writing up my report."
I started reading over his shoulder.
"the prisoner had managed to get over the inner steel chain fence and had made his way to the outer fence and had begun climbing it to make his way to freedom. I pointed the shotgun at him and said 'please step down immediately or I will have to shoot you.'
I laughed because I knew that Gil didn't talk like that. "Okay, what did you really say?"
Gil laughed right back and said, " I said 'drop, fucker, or I'm going to waste you! He dropped!'"
I attended the RPC for seventeen years and that was the closest we ever got to a jail break!