Magazine article Corrections Forum

Hostage Scenario

Magazine article Corrections Forum

Hostage Scenario

Article excerpt

The world's biggest action star, Brick Brockton, just signed a huge deal to be the star in a prison action/thriller. In order to prepare for his biggest role to date, Brockton petitions the state's correction department to allow him to visit several prisons, to "get a feel" for what life inside the prison is like.

Brockton wants to talk with the cons, "man to man," to "get inside their heads"- all research for his role as the compassionate but tough prison warden in the upcoming blockbuster City of Cells. No country club institutions for him, he wants maximum security.

The state's most famous prisoner, Samson White, a killer with a political agenda and almost complete control of the prison population, is in the hole, and the place is on edge from the inmates to the guards. This doesn't stop the commissioner, under huge pressure from the state's film bureau, the media and society at large, from granting Brockton's request to visit Ironville Maximum Security Prison.

Brockton's request to talk with Samson White is denied, however. Brockton appeals, but the commissioner turns a deaf ear. No way is he going to let an actor meet his highest profile prisoner while he is in isolation. Additional security is added, and the commissioner goes over the rules with Brockton-stay with your escort, no close contact with the inmates, and above all, do what you're told.

Brockton agrees to all of the restrictions. He's just glad to finally get the opportunity to do some proactive research-he can't wait until the steel door slams shut behind him.

The morning of Brockton's visit dawns clear and very cold, a perfect day for a triumph of public relations ingenuity. Brockton gets to the facility early, chomping at the bit, and at 7:00 am, thirty minutes ahead of schedule, Brockton and his entourage, head into Ironville. The inmates are as excited as anyone--getting to see an action star like Brockton is a dream come true for them.

It starts innocently enough. Brockton and his group walk into the cafeteria during the breakfast rush. The inmates cheer as Brockton steps onto the green and gold tiled floor.

Basking in the adulation makes Brockton want to walk among the inmates, something he is specifically prohibited from doing. "I'm not in any danger," Brockton says as he bolts toward the cafeteria line. "I'm Brick Brockton." The extra security isn't prepared for this departure from the plan, and they are left standing there flat footed as Brockton heads into the belly of the beast. …

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