New documents filed in Eric King's ongoing court case reveal the extent of staff intimidation and threats toward Eric and his family. This information was first posted on his legal fundraiser page. Content note: the following text includes a discussion of suicide
On Tuesday, March 10, 2020 Eric’s legal team filed a motion asking the judge to have Eric removed from the Secure Housing Unit (SHU) in FCI Englewood, where he has been held since this case started in August. Judges in criminal cases do not ordinarily get involved with where a prisoner is held, but the judge can take action to protect Eric’s right to meaningfully work with his defense team and prepare for trial. Throughout the past six months FCI Englewood has subjected Eric, his family, and even his legal team to unconstitutional and illegal treatment, so on Tuesday, the attorneys filed a motion asking the judge to intervene.
Eric waived a lot of important rights in order to have this declaration filed in court and tell the world what prisoners in the FCI Englewood SHU experience with the prison administration every day: retaliation, restrictions on communication, witnessing suicides, threats to children, cell tosses, double-bunking in an 6x8 cell, and monitoring and harassment of any supportive people on the outside.
Eric and his legal team submitted evidence from the last six months of Eric’s imprisonment, including a 19 page declaration from Eric, a declaration from one of his lawyers, and documents to back up what Eric and the lawyer say in their declarations.
The evidence submitted to the Court shows that Eric’s family has been threatened
Eric has been repeatedly questioned about the political beliefs and activities of people on the outside who support Eric, and the prison has prevented Eric’s partner from visiting because of her ideology
At one point, Eric went on hunger strike because the prison was ignoring his requests for better treatment. The hunger strike happened at the same time Eric was doing the internal appeal of how the prison was treating him.
The prison has also interfered with Eric’s ability to talk to his lawyers about the mistreatment Eric and his family are experiencing.
We will end this update with one of Eric’s recent poems and a story about Levi Roberts. Levi Roberts was a young person who had not been convicted of a crime but who Englewood brought into the FCI SHU pretrial. On December 31, 2019, he committed suicide on Eric’s tier in the SHU. Eric’s efforts to speak out about witnessing the suicide resulted in the prison administration retaliating through disciplinary write-ups, illegal sanctions, and keeping Eric alone without his property, a phone call, or legal paperwork for a week. Eric’s poem is included here with the request that people truly share and contemplate the conditions Eric and Levi Roberts and so many others are experiencing while they try to defend themselves in court.
“The Wrong One”
Greilick holds the rope.
Excuses will get passed
“If someone wants to go they will”
And if someone wants to ignore mental health,
Ignore skipped medications
keep someone in a silent box
With no phone calls, no radio, no personal contact
No stimulation mentally whatsoever
They also will.
And Warden Greilick did,
Now Roberts is dead.
Deliberate indifference is state murder
Mail from his family arrived that same day
Medical needed to wait for an escort
Even though he was purple
Day cops will take the blame, but why?
They didn’t institute isolationist policies
Didn’t keep someone pre-trial and openly suicidal
Buried in a box, with all of the state’s pressure
No excuses are needed
A family lost a son
In the custody of this warden
They will never breathe again
Greilick will continue to collect that 6 ﬁgure check
The wrong neck got burned
The state got another
Levi John Roberts was murdered by federally sanctioned torture.
Eric will continue to speak out about abusive Bureau of Prisons behavior. Donations help Eric to know that he has community support when he speaks truth to power and help the legal team to keep doing what we are doing to defend Eric and his rights. Please feel free to share widely and keep checking in!