Dear Friend,

This year Democracy Now! is celebrating our 25th anniversary—that's 25 years of bringing you fearless, independent reporting. Since our very first broadcast in 1996, Democracy Now! has refused to take government or corporate funding, because nothing is more important to us than our editorial independence. But that means we rely on you, our audience, for support. Please donate today in honor of our 25th anniversary and help us stay on air for another 25 years. We can't do our work without you. Right now, a generous donor will even DOUBLE your gift, which means it’ll go twice as far! This is a challenging time for us all, but if you're able to make a donation, please do so today. Thank you and remember, wearing a mask is an act of love.
-Amy Goodman

Non-commercial news needs your support.

We rely on contributions from you, our viewers and listeners to do our work. If you visit us daily or weekly or even just once a month, now is a great time to make your monthly contribution.

Please do your part today.

Donate

Incarcerated Activist Kinetik Justice & Others Severely Beaten in Alabama Prison DOJ Sued over Abuse

Web ExclusiveFebruary 05, 2021
Listen
Media Options
Listen

Incarcerated activist Kinetik Justice, whom Democracy Now! interviewed in 2016, was severely beaten last Saturday by guards at one of 12 Alabama prisons the Justice Department has sued for excessive use of force by staff. His mother describes his injuries.

Related Story

StoryMay 13, 2016Alabama Prison Strike Organizer Speaks from Behind Bars: We Are Engaged in a Struggle for Our Lives
Transcript
This is a rush transcript. Copy may not be in its final form.

AMY GOODMAN: A warning to our audience: The next headline contains disturbing details and images.

The incarcerated activist Kinetik Justice, who Democracy Now! interviewed in 2016 during a nationwide prison strike, was severely beaten last Saturday by guards at the Donaldson Correctional Facility in Bessemer, Alabama. Witnesses say Justice tried to defuse an altercation after guards struck a mentally ill prisoner unconscious with an “ax-like” baton. Video shows pools of blood and a dislodged tooth in the cell. Both men were airlifted to a trauma center in Birmingham before being returned to prison Monday. Democracy Now! spoke to Kinetik Justice’s mother Ernestine Council after he was allowed to call her Wednesday and described his injuries.

ERNESTINE COUNCIL: He had stitches in his head, and his eye was swollen shut, where he had got hit, and that he had broke ribs, had two broke ribs, and bruises where they had beat him on the back of his head, his shoulder, his back and on his thigh. Those are the injuries that I know, that he told me that he had, and severe. They beat him badly. But thank God that he’s yet alive. He was in the hospital in a bed at that time when I first heard about it. He was in a holding cell. It wasn’t no bigger than a closet. And so, when he got up to do anything, [inaudible] that he couldn’t hardly walk.

AMY GOODMAN: In December, the Justice Department filed a major lawsuit against Alabama’s Department of Corrections for excessive use of force by staff in a dozen prisons, after an investigation detailed incidents such as a guard beating a handcuffed prisoner in a medical unit while shouting, quote, “I am the reaper of death, now say my name!” Guards involved in last weekend’s attack are now “on leave,” and the FBI may investigate.

The original content of this program is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Please attribute legal copies of this work to democracynow.org. Some of the work(s) that this program incorporates, however, may be separately licensed. For further information or additional permissions, contact us.

Up Next

Alabama Prison Strike Organizer Speaks from Behind Bars: We Are Engaged in a Struggle for Our Lives

Non-commercial news needs your support

We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work.
Please do your part today.
Make a donation
Top