MEANINGFUL PAROLE HEARINGS, Part 3 – It may be that legal experts need to identify any Ohio prisoner who has seen and been denied parole by the Ohio Parole Board in the past TEN years. Those prisoners, both male and female should be considered as members of a class action legal suit. A legal team of experts would need to represent said class of individuals and fight to bring about change that is fair, for all.
First, I would hope to see each and every Ohio Parole Board Member, especially the Parole Board Chairperson, to be required to undergo evaluation by independent experts in the mental health field, to determine whether they indeed may suffer from PTSD or some other cause that brings their suitability to make parole decisions without allowing their emotions to be involved.
I would ask that the ODRC provide confidential help for those members at taxpayer expense. Provide them with the necessary tools to either retire, step down, or be placed in a job of equal pay, until said time they can retire, with benefits. Mental health is not a reason to punish any of these members. They should not lose their livelyhood or ability to provide for their families. Their well being should be the forefront.
I would ask that steps be taken to replace said members with individuals whom would utilize proven assessment methods/tools used in most other states when it comes to parole.
I highly urge that NO individual connected to ODRC have any role in the decision/vetting process. To appoint former ODRC employees to any committee or forum, dealing with parole process or clemency process, is a huge mistake. Recently former Director Mr. Wilkinson and former parole chair Ms. Mausser were selected for a special committee to review issues dealing with release methods. These are some of the same people, along with others appointed, who are part of the present problems, created under their watch, decades ago. One must ask, can you teach an old dog new tricks? Lives of people behind bars are at risk. Who can say these people making these decisions are mentally sound? Until steps are taken to guarantee that people connected to ODRC/parole/clemency process are of sound mind, show no signs of PTSD, or signs of other mental issues, especially signs or red flag concerns, until proven fit, no person in any decision capacity should be permitted to carry on in those positions.
ODRC should utilize modern methods that involve checks and balances, scientific based results, they remove the emotional, revenge, factors. If a prisoner is parole eligible and he or she has maintained a clean institution record, been involved in self improvement programs, been an asset to charitable causes in society, been a positive individual, that person should be released.
I believe only a class action suit will bring about the change necessary to fix the delima thousands of Ohio prisoners face. Our Governor could have implemented a moratorium on all parole proceedings until things were fixed but he did not do so. The Director could have taken steps but so far we have not seen her step in to fix the problems. She placed a few band aids here and there, which is commendable, but now it is time for her to roll up her sleeves. Many want to see her and Mr. Stuart Hudson create a state of the art environment, we really do. If anyone in ODRC history is capable, it is them.
But first they need to consider that there is a problem, consider the possibility that the board suffers symptoms described throughout this message. Prove me, prove everyone else, wrong. Order the board to undergo psychological intervention from independent professionals in the mental health fields. These experts would furnish their findings to the Director with permission from each individual examined. Keeping in mind this is a private/doctor-patient confidential ordeal and legally could prove troublesome.
I believe that some reputable firm needs to step up to the plate. The town hall meeting itself provides over 200 witness’ as well as staff who hopefully would not risk perjury, to plainly testify to what each of us saw and heard and the message we all carried away.
Such steps should not be necessary. Ohio could easily avoid a public legal challenge, the Governor and ODRC Director can fix this issue easily. All prisoners seen the past TEN years need to be reheard/screened/released, providing none have committed any crimes while in prison, since their last continuance. Reason for the ten year scope is because the legislators enabled the Ohio parole board to issue ten year continuances, this should include anyone seen the date this action reaches maturity and back ten years from that date. To be fair to all Ohio parole eligible prisoners, both male and female.
I pray the board members will seek help, seek treatment. I pray their co-workers will be supportive, and help them to overcome a hell they have been living with. Too often we lash out at parole board members and blame them for everything. They often only do what the legislators enable them to do. For decades concerned citizens have fought the wrong battles.
This PTSD issue has never been examined or challenged. All this time it has been right in front of everyone’s eyes. The board should be relieved, as well as former board members. Now they can leave this line of work and be eligible for special benefits and seek a suitable severance package.
Please think about what I have said. If you agree or have suggestions, feel free to contact me or whomever you feel will listen. These issues need to be debated, mental health experts need involved.
Please do your part, contact your legislators and voice your views. I wish each of you the best. I come in peace..I am, Jim Fussell .Thank YOU.
You can go to www. JPAY.com to set up a user account to contact me by email. Search for James R. Fussell Jr. A154-973. or you can write snail mail to:
Jim Fussell A154-973
M.C.I. PO Box57
Marion, Ohio 43301
To learn more, just Google, James Fussell/ Domino Deeds