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NICI convicts caroling brought into question

Letter to the Editor

Christmas 2017 is done. Mom really enjoyed the carolers who warmed the halls of Grangeville Health and Rehabilitation. Mom always has candy and always offers something to visitors. These carolers were no different. But they were.

These were 19 convicts from Idaho Department of Correction (IDOC).

Mom told me they were just in for smoking pot and driving drunk. I knew better, though. Having a wife retired as a correctional lieutenant and having worked in the Idaho prison system for 13 years, I know.

After a public records request, balked at by officials who wanted to charge me money, I got a list of the convicts. Like the list in “The Twelve Days of Christmas,” there was a similar list. One drug dealer, one wife beater, one identity thief, two child beaters, three grand thieves, four sex offenders, five DUIs and six for having drugs. Some of the crimes read like horror stories with real victims.

Don’t misunderstand me. People deserve a second chance after completing their sentence. We all make mistakes. Each family has members who struggle, who we love, and who we want to help and support.

However, the IDOC should carefully consider all prisoner outings. The prisoners should be vetted before exposing vulnerable people to them.

The state, county and local police should be notified prior to scheduled outings. All these work crews need scrutiny and close supervision.

Security and safety first.

Glen Scott Swearingen



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