Jennifer Crosson’s heart sank when the judge read the verdict: “You are to be remanded to the Louisana State Prison for Women for a period of no less than five but no more than fifteen years,” he said.
Judge Rutherford was well-known for his tough stance on drugs and drug dealers. And Jennifer’s was an open and shut case; she had been caught with the drugs in her house when the cops showed up.
Jennifer’s boyfriend had set her up to take the fall for his drug dealing. He had gotten wind that the police were wanting to talk to him about a couple of burglaries that had occurred recently and he knew that if they started questioning him, the drugs could very well be brought out.
And because he didn’t want to go back to prison, he had planted some drugs all cut up and packaged for sale along with some drug paraphernalia and some “seed money” in her house and then made an anonymous call to the local police.
The police found the drugs and money easily enough right where the caller had said and they arrested her on the spot. After her trial which she was easily found guilty despite her protests of innocence, Judge Rutherford pronounced his sentence.
She was led in handcuffs back to her cell to await transport to the prison. When the time came the van pulled up and Jennifer was put in transport chains–her ankles were cuffed, leaving only a short distance with which to walk, and her wrists were cuffed to a belt around her waist. A chain behind her back connected the two.
As she was being loaded into the van, she received yet another blow.
“Your boyfriend was the one who turned you in, you know,” the guard said, “Hell, I doubt he was even who he said he was–he was probably using a fake name the whole time you knew him. It’s a common trick to play up to some innocent person and win their affections so they have a convenient patsy to put the blame on if things get too hot!”
He clicked her chain into the lock on the floor to keep her in her seat during the trip. “But you were caught with the goods and that’s all that matters to Judge Rutherford!” he added then moved on to the next convict.
There were two other girls in the van, and all three were headed to the same place. Jennifer didn’t know why the other girls were going to prison and didn’t ask.
Jennifer sat there in her seat, too stunned to speak as the van began its long drive to the prison. Because the local jail was overfull and due to the length of her sentence, she had been sent to the Lousiana State Prison for Women. Which was about a three-hour drive from the jail she was temporarily kept at.
She looked out at the countryside as it went by. Her view, however, was through the thick steel mesh covering the windows–a reminder that she wouldn’t get a clear view of the outside world for several years. This only added to her sullen, frightened mood. How was she going to survive for five long years?
Jennifer had never been in trouble like this in her life. She was always a good girl; she never even skipped school when she was younger! And she wouldn’t dream of doing drugs–she didn’t even drink coffee for Pete’s sake!
Too depressed to look out the window anymore, she instead just hung her head and looked at the floor and the chains that held her in her seat. Her thoughts went back to her boyfriend who claimed to love her.
Jenny had met him when he came into the store that spring day two years ago. She was a customer service representative at the local cell phone company and she was behind the counter when he walked in the door.
She had been lucky (or so she thought at the time) when his turn to be helped came up, that she was the one who was free to wait on him. He had just moved into town and he was looking for a new cell phone since he couldn’t use his old one.
The two got to talking and he asked her where she was from originally. She told him that she was born and raised in Montgomery Alabama but had moved to Mobile after she graduated high school so she could be near the ocean.
“Ohmygod! I’m from Montgomery too!” he said. This would be the first of a surprising number of things they seemed to have in common. Looking at things from this side now, Jennifer could see now that it all seemed a little too coincidental and she kicked herself mentally for being so gullible.
But there was little she could do about it now. He was long gone–off to find some other girl to take advantage of and screw up her life, more than likely. Meantime, Jennifer had to figure out how she was going to make the next five years. She knew she wanted to just do her time and get through it the quickest and easiest way possible.
Jennifer just wanted to keep her nose clean, do as she was told, and hopefully get some time knocked off for good behavior. She had no idea what to expect when she got to prison–she’d never even watched a prison movie or documentary before so life behind the walls of a prison was as foreign to her as life on another planet.
She would be so totally out of her element and the unknown scared her half to death.
She had a lot of time for her imagination to dream up all manner of horrific scenarios and plots, where her innocence would be taken advantage of by the other, more hardcore, criminals.
She had heard stories of some convicts making sex slaves or “bitches” out of the newer and weaker cons. She didn’t know how true these stories were and she hoped that they were just urban legends. But she would soon find out one way or another!
After a long, hot, miserable ride on a van with no air conditioning (it was August and the temps regularly reached the mid 90’s with 80% humidity), they got close to the prison. Jennifer could see the huge monolithic prison walls from the road leading to it, and it looked every bit as frightening as her worst nightmares.
The 1,100 person prison was located in a small town a few miles south of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Lousiana State Prison for Women, or LSPW as it was also called, consisted of three cell blocks–A, B, and C–with a fourth building that contained the administration, training center, cafeteria, and other general use and operations offices. Each cell block had its own outdoor yard area with a basketball court and grassy park-like area.
The van pulled up to the enormous, twenty-foot-high gate and the driver clicked the remote to open the outer gate. Once the van pulled into the prison entryway, the outer gate shut to allow the inner gate to open and the van continued up to the main building entrance.
“Welcome to Lousiana State Prison for Women, ladies, your new home until your sentences are completed and you are released. Now, everyone out and head into the Admissions and Receiving room,” he directed. There were a couple of female guards outside waiting to walk the prisoners where they needed to go.
Once they were inside, the guard at the front of the group stopped them in the hallway outside of the Admission Room. “Okay, ladies do you see the lines painted on the floor? You will walk between the wall and this line,” the guard said, pointing to the line on the floor.
“If you step across the line, you will be disciplined. If you do it again, you will spend a little time in the hole. This is to keep order and prevent squabbles between inmates. Inside the cell blocks, there’s only one narrow strip down the middle of the row that you will walk on, away from the front of the cells.
“We don’t take to fighting here at LSPW. If you get involved in a fight–even if you aren’t to blame–you will get disciplined. We are not interested in who did what to whom. And we don’t have the time to investigate each incident. We have a prison to run and it’s a full-time job, too.
“So we just round up those involved and punish everyone. We figure either you started the fight or you could have avoided it or reported it instead of getting involved. So either way, you are guilty of something!” she said.
“Your first offense will result in your being locked in your cell for a while to cool off. Your second offense will result in some privileges being taken away. and subsequent offenses will result in further disciplinary actions. But trust me when I tell you Warden O’Conner is not someone you want to test or trifle with! She runs a tight, disciplined ship here, and crossing her is a bad, bad idea!
There are two sides to life here at LSPW; for those who keep their nose clean and do what they are told without fuss, there is a lot to do here. We have various rehabilitation and training programs and you can even get your G.E.D. or online college degree here.
But for those who try to buck the system and are always creating chaos, well even a short ‘nickel tour’ here can be a long, long time!” she said. (a ‘nickel tour’ is a five-year sentence, the minimum sentence for an inmate at this particular prison)
Jennifer listened carefully to what the guard said. The last thing she wanted to do was cause any kind of trouble, accidentally or on purpose. Once her orientation lecture was over, she took each of the new inmates one at a time into the Admission Room and got them signed in and issued them the things they needed.
Each inmate got a pillow and pillowcase, sheets, and a blanket. They also got two orange jumpsuits which would be their clothing for their stay at LSPW. Everyone wore orange jumpsuits except for the sex crimes inmates who wore light blue jumpsuits. You didn’t want to be a “blue suit”–they were the most hated and the most picked-on inmates in the whole prison.
The inmate’s street clothing, jewelry, and personal effects were then inventoried, written down on an inventory sheet, and bagged in a locked bag while the inmate watched. The inmates were then taken next door to the showers where they were allowed a short, five-minute shower to wash the sweat and road grime off, and then they were to get dressed in their jumpsuits.
Once they had all showered and changed into their prison wear, the female guard put them back in their chains and led them into the cell block to their cells. The three girls would all be housed in Cell Block C.
On the way to their cells, the girls were subjected to the hoots, whistles, catcalls, and other vulgar sexual comments from the other inmates they passed by. The crude remarks frightened Jennifer and the other girl, both of who were fairly new to life behind bars. The third girl, however, wasn’t so easily fazed and Jennifer wondered how she could remain so unflappable in the face of such obscene and offensive words.
“Okay, Crosson, this is home for you,” the guard said when they got to her cell. She walked in and the door slammed shut with a damning finality behind her. She looked around the room in bewildered silence. Everything was either concrete or steel, there was no hint of softness at all. Just cold, sterile, institutional functionality.
It was all too much for her to take and she sat down on the cold concrete floor, leaning against the block wall and curled up into a tight ball, sobbing into her knees.
Jennifer stayed there curled in her protective ball for some time. She was fortunate that they had arrived and processed in late in the afternoon and the workday was coming to a close. Otherwise, she may not have gotten the luxury of feeling sorry for herself like this. But eventually, even her late arrival wouldn’t be able to keep her from the reality of prison life.
“Let’s go, Crosson, it’s dinner time!” one of the guards passing by her cell said. “Didn’t you hear the announcement?”
Truthfully she hadn’t. She was so wrapped up in her misery that she hadn’t heard much of anything. But she hadn’t eaten anything since breakfast that morning and she was hungry. She also knew that if she missed her allotted mealtime there was no second chance, she’d be hungry till morning!
Jennifer got up and followed the rest of the inmates to the cafeteria. Because of the size of the prison, each of the three cell blocks had separate mealtimes. Jennifer, whose cell was on the second floor of Block C was in the last group to be fed. Each group was given a half-hour to eat and clear their table ready for the next group.
Jennifer got her tray and waited in line to get served her food. As the line progressed, she finally came to the server and the inmate behind the counter dished up her food. Well, this certainly isn’t what I’d consider fine dining! she thought to herself. Jennifer wasn’t a gourmet chef by any means, but this stuff barely looked edible!
Shrugging her shoulders, she took her tray and went to find a seat. She looked around and found a seat at a table by herself. After they ate, the inmates were all led back to their cells for the night. Jennifer lay in her metal bunk on the well-worn mattress under her coarse wool blanket. It had been quite a day to be sure… and only 1,825 more to go!
As the lights went out that night, Jennifer Crosson cried herself to sleep in the cold lonely darkness. But as interesting as her first day was, her second would be even more so!
The next morning came early for Jennifer. After a fitful, restless night’s sleep, she woke to unfamiliar surroundings. It took her a couple of moments before she remembered where she was, and when the realization struck her, her heart sank. It wasn’t just a bad dream after all!
But she had little time to sulk, as she had to get ready for breakfast and her first day of work in the prison.
She got dressed in her orange jumpsuit and got ready to go eat breakfast. Getting ready for the day was considerably faster now that she didn’t have to pick out what to wear or put on her makeup. And although she liked the ease of this new way of doing things, she also missed all the primping and polishing she did. She just didn’t feel right–like something important was missing–and her whole day would be off-balance now.
The announcement that it was her cell block’s turn to eat came and just like the previous night the cell doors opened and the inmates stepped out front of their cells and stood there, single file in a row. Finally, they started filing towards the cafeteria and breakfast.
After a hardly recognizable breakfast, the group disbursed to their individual work assignments. Being as this was Jennifer’s first day of working in the prison, one of the female guards, a woman known as Jones by the nametag sewn on her uniform, escorted her to her work detail.
“Okay Crosson, you are on bathroom detail. The new inmates always get the bathroom detail when they first arrive. You will be here scrubbing toilets and cleaning sinks and showers until a new inmate arrives to take your place,” the guard said.
“Yes Ma’am,” Jennifer said.
As the guard explained what the job required her to do, the bathroom door opened and an older, tougher-looking inmate came in.
“So this is the new fish, eh Jonesy?” she said. “She’s a pretty one!”
“You take it easy on this one Roxie…” the guard warned. “She’s never been in the pen before.”
Roxie held her hands up and gave the innocent eyes look, “Who me, Boss? I was just askin’!” she said, stepping back a few steps.
As the guard turned back to continue talking to Jennifer, Roxie formed her fingers in a V at her mouth and wiggled her tongue in the notch, making sure Jennifer saw it and letting her know that she would be seeing her later!
After the guard left and Jenny began work, Roxie returned a little while later and startled Jennifer who was busy on her knees, scrubbing the base of the toilets with her back to the door.
“Oh! Sorry, I didn’t hear you come in! I will step outside and give you some privacy,” Jennifer offered.
“Don’t bother, pretty, I’m not here to piss!” Roxie said, stepping closer.
Jennifer backed up against the wall, “W-what do you want?” she stammered.
Roxie just smiled and moved closer. “You really are new to prison life, aren’t you darling! Well, I will tell you what I’m here for. I’m here because you are new and I like fresh unspoiled pussy!” she said with a wicked grin.
“What? I-I don’t understand!” Jennifer said, alarmed.
“Oh, pretty, let me explain how things work in here. You see, I run Cell Block C and I always get what I want. You can ask anyone. What Roxie wants, Roxie gets. And right now, Roxie wants a little taste of that pussy!” she said.
“But, but, I’m not… I’m not a lesbian!” Jennifer cried.
“Aww, don’t worry about that baby. Five years from now you won’t even remember men!” Roxie said. “You and I are going to be great friends, pretty. And if you play your cards right, I can see that your stay here in LSPW is very comfortable and very safe.
“Some of the other cons in this place aren’t as nice and agreeable as I am. I can see that you aren’t bothered or hassled by anyone. I can even tell the guards to take it easy on you.
Would you like to get out of this bathroom detail? I can do that for you. Want extra helpings of dinner from time to time? I can do that too. Cigarettes, a second blanket, even a play toy, I can get these things for you. But you have to be nice to me if you want me to be nice to you. That’s how things work here, we look out for each other.”
As she spoke, Roxie ran the back of her hand against Jennifer’s soft cheek. “Mmm, so pretty…” she purred.
Jennifer stood there trembling, afraid to resist this woman, but not wanting her to go any further. However, further was exactly where Roxie was going with this.
“Let’s see if you are this pretty in other places!” Roxie said. She grabbed the front of Jennifer’s jumpsuit and ripped the snap front open as Jennifer gasped loudly.
Inmates at LSPW were not allowed to wear bras–it was one of the forbidden items they would take from them at Admissions when they took their personal possessions and gave them their issued prison wear. So when Roxie ripped open the front of her jumpsuit, Jennifer’s small B-cup tits were plainly visible.
“Oooh, bitty titties!” Roxie said, “Yummy! Makes you look like a young virgin! You aren’t by any chance are you?”
“No… I’m not a virgin. But, I’ve never been… with a woman,” Jennifer said, her voice shaky.
“Well that’s close enough,” she said. She leaned forward and used the tip of her tongue to lick around one nipple.
“Please… You can’t!” Jennifer said.
Roxie pulled her head back a bit and looked at the terrified girl. “Silly girl! Of course I can,” she said with a wicked smile,
“I told you, I run this cell block and the guards don’t interfere when I am playing with another inmate. Jonesy knows what I am doing in here and who I am with. So do the other guards.
“But they don’t try to stop me… we have an ‘understanding’ the guards and I. Besides no one likes a snitch and if you start running that sweet little mouth, you are going to find yourself in a lot of trouble with a lot of people here. It’s best if you keep our playtimes to yourself… I would hate to see anything to happen to such a pretty, pretty thing!” she said with a wicked smile.