C1 Stories: Counseling the crazy


I started out as a Correctional Officer, and then turned Counselor at a max male secure prison. I've heard my share of sob stories and everyone being innocent, family dying and inmates need to call or find a way to visit. The stories are always interesting! 

I worked with an infamous inmate known for killing his whole family, including the dog, and just walking away like it was nothing. He has been in since the 70's and will never be coming out. He always claimed he was innocent, been on TV dozens of times doing documentaries, movies have been made over and over throughout the years and he has never admitted he was guilty. 

One day while we had our monthly meeting, he decided to tell me the "truth" about the night of his crime, but didn't want me recording anything he was talking about. His eyes were a dull glassy look from all of the meds he was on and his beard was a yellowish color from smoking so much. His hair was pulled back into a ratted-up ponytail, filled with grey and streaks of black hair. Now, thinner than I remembered, he walked into my office to tell me his story, saying he needed to just talk. 

Within the first five minutes, he admitted to killing his father, mother, all of his sisters, and his brother. Then he had to kill the family dog because he was the last witness and because the animal told him to kill his family. He started to tell me the walls were opening up, talking to him, that the gun was melting in his hand... Maybe he was on drugs? Maybe he had a psychotic breakdown?

I never met someone with such passion about killing his whole family, including a 4-year-old little girl that looked up at him to ask "what are you doing?" When he answered her, all he said was "go back to sleep." It was disturbing, especially because he had no remorse. 

As an officer, you rarely know the inmates stories to the fullest. Everyone thinks they know this inmate’s story because he had books and movies made, but I never spoke to him on the level of a counselor till this day. I can only mark him "crazy".

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