Monday, April 23, 2007


I have just emailed the American Civil Liberties Union about the
plight of HIV positive inmates in the Hinds county jail in
Mississippi. The ACLU letter should explain the situation
adequately. I am requesting that people send letters protesting this
situation to the Hinds County Board of Supervisors at:
Hinds County Board of Supervisors
Hinds County Chancery Court Building
316 South President Street
Jackson, Mississippi,39201

The phone number of the Board of Supervisors is 601-698-6794.
The Supervisors are:
District 1 Charles Barbour
District 2 Douglas (Doug) Anderson, President
District 3 Peggy Hobson Calhoun
District 4 Ronnie Chappell, Vice President
District 5 George S. Smith
County Administrator Anthony Brister

On April 11, 2007, I sent you a letter about Karl Tyler, an HIV
positive inmate at Hinds
County Jail in Mississippi. Previously, in the late 1990's to early
2000's, you helped
when I contacted you about the plight of the HIV+ inmates at Parchman
State Prison in
Mississippi. Although Karl Tyler, a former Parchman inmate, told me
things are much
better at Parchman, his March 14th letter indicates that things are
just as bad in
Mississippi's jails.
A few days ago, I received a letter from Karl Tyler with an
affidavit signed by 16
inmates indicating that the situation is much worse. The Medical
Director at the jail,
Ruth Wyatt, "is denying HIV/AIDS inmates immediate access to their
even after we report the Medications we take while being booked in.
We are told to put in
a Sick-Call-Request and charged 5 dollars to try to obtain
medication. We see the doctor
and still don't get medication. And told we will be sent to the
Medical Mall which might
take a month or two. This is a stall tactics by Medical because the
M.D. can prescribe
these Medicines which would only take a couple of days."
The inmates are denied all program participation except anger
management, which Tyler
and the other inmate with hepatitis C are allowed to attend. "As to
this day no
HIV/AIDS offenders has been allowed to take substance abuse
counseling, GED class, work
detail, laundry house keeping, reclassification to trustee status, or
any job or classes.
Mr Tyler also says "We are exposed to mice, spiders, mice feces,
fungus in showers,
cold food, mildew in cell 5155, roof leaking upstairs which runs
downstairs into
In addition, inmate Stanley Washington sent me a copy of his
Inmate program request
form which says that the inmates' food is allowed to sit for 30
minutes in stroform
containers until it becomes cold. This allows the mice time to eat
through the containers
and make the food unsanitary.
Inmate Willie Jenkins informs me that he has diabetes, high blood
pressure and
seizures. He is unable to get his glucose and blood pressure under
control because of the
food served in the jail.
I had hoped to save time by contacting you by email and that your
requirement that you
be contacted by letter would not apply in this case since I had
already sent you a snail
mail letter about this case on April 11, 2007. However, upon
rereading the inmates'
letters of April 14th, I see that they asked me to send the
affidavits to the ACLU, so I
guess I will have to forward the entire communication to you by snail
mail. I wrote to
them and gave them your address and phone number but the two letters
they have sent me
since I wrote to them on April 11th show no indication that they have
received my letter.
So I don't know if the Hinds County Jail is letting my letters
through to the inmates.
When I contacted you about the Parchman inmates in the 1990's, one
of your officers
explained to me that your organization was not equiped to respond
immediately and it would
take some time for your board to decided whether to take the case.
It took your board
thirteen months to decide. I hope, since this case could be
considered a continuation of
the Parchman case, that it will not take another thirteen months
before you decide to take
this case. Since Karl Tyler has only 28 T-cells, and has hepatitus C
in addition to AIDS,
I am afraid he will not survive if he doesn't receive some help
before thirteen months
have passed. I am also afraid that Willie Jenkins with his untreated
diabetes, high blood
pressure and seizures will not live another thirteen months.
Robert Halfhill
125 Oak Grove, Apt 41
Minneapolis, Minnesota, 55403-4308
Phone: 612-870-8026

Letters of support to Karl Tyler can be sent to:
Karl Tyler #072480
Hinds County Detention Facility-Raymond
1450 County Farm Road
Raymond, Mississippi, 39154

Everyone should understand that whatever their feelings
about "getting tough on crime and criminals," the U.S. Constitution
forbids "cruel and unusual punishment." Cruel and unusual punishment
includes not only the Medieval punishments of burning at the stake,
boiling in oil and death on the stretch rack but also depriving a
prisoner of medical care and allowing him or her to die slowly of
their disease. In addition, the treatment of prisoners with AIDS in
Mississippi reflects extremely backward attitudes and fear of people
with HIV/AIDS, the fear of infection from inmates with AIDs being so
great that they are not even allowed to attend substance abuse
counseling or GED classes. It is important to fight these attitudes
whenever they rear their ugly head.

Robert Halfhill (SITE NOW BANNED ON AOL)
*Write AOL to complain, here:, or call 1-


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