Digital News Report – California State Senator Tom Harman says that inmates should not have cell phones and the only cell they should have is the one they are in.
While it is illegal to provide cell phones to prisoners, nearly 10,000 were confiscated from prisoners in California prisons last year alone. Even Charlie Manson was caught twice.
Harman says inmates use the phones to commit crimes behind bars. Besides calling their friends and family, they look up their victims and try to find contact information for judges. Many phones have internet access.
New legislation, SB 26, will make the act of bringing a phone into the prison punishable with a $5,000 fine. Even if the phone never makes it into the cell, the intent to do so carries the same penalty.
“A prisoner’s access to cell phones undermines the criminal justice system and the government’s role to keep the public safe”, Harman tells Digital News Report.
By Mark Williams