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tv   Lockup Raw  MSNBC  May 16, 2015 11:00pm-12:01am PDT

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due to mature subject matter, viewer discretion is advised. msnbc takes you behind the walls of america's most notorious prisons into a world of chaos and danger. now the scenes you've never seen. "lockup: raw." >> if personal relationships can get complicated on the outside, they can be even more complicated behind bars. >> my mom gave me the best advice. everything that has happened in my life, she told me that was going to happen. >> are you having a relationship with gay men or straight men here? >> straight. >> and for those unable to cope with them, relationships can lead to a life in prison.
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>> i threatened everybody in her family tree and this husband and her dog, too. when we shoot "lockup: extended stay," our crews film for four months inside a single prison. the last stage, usually an easy day, we're doing something called b roll, doing pickup shots, kind of exteriors. most of the time we're thinking about the flight home. but in prison, you never know who you're going to run into. >> in one such instance, the person we ran into was rick clapsy. he was serving a life sentence at the penitentiary of new mexico. >> it was our last day of filming, and we were getting some b roll of a particular inmate, and clapsy was the inmate next door to this guy. and clapsy started talking to me through this cell door, and he started telling me that he was serving a life sentence for the torture/murder of his girlfriend and that he would like to be on the show. >> and we warn you, the interview that took place was
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one of the most disturbing we've ever conducted. seven years earlier clapsy was working for a cell phone company we he met a 24-year-old woman studying to become a medical animator. her name was mary alice. >> she was, you know, 5 foot nothing, 100 pounds. beautiful, caring. i considered her like an angel. i mean, she was this pure little thing. i mean, i wouldn't smoke around her. i would curb my sailor's tongue around her because it was mary alice and she was fragile. you know? >> during the few months the pair dated clapsy says he often used drugs, including methamphetamines. then one day clapsy says he discovered two movie tickets in the back pocket of mary alice's jeans. >> usually, you don't go to the movie by yourself with two ticket stubs, so i got a little suspicious. sometimes i'm not as smart as i think i am. i found out during this yelling and screaming match that she was actually married.
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she was separated. she had been separated for a couple of years. but legally she was married to some guy. >> clapsy says he went into a drug-fueled fit of rage. >> i said some horrific things. i mean, i threatened everybody in her family tree, and this husband and anybody else. i mean, and her dog, too. i mean, just it was, you know, if you tell anybody i'll -- >> clapsy kicked mary alice out of his house, and over the next couple days he continued to obsess over the situation. he says he went on a meth and cocaine binge. then devised a plan. >> i wasn't going to let her get away with this. i mean, just it was -- today was the day of reckoning. i convinced my roommate to lure her to the house. i held a gun to his head and told him that if he didn't complete this task i would put a bullet in his brain pan.
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>> clapsy's roommate then called mary alice. >> the ploy was that i was diagnosed with cancer and that i could use some cheering up. and that's what got her to come over. >> when mary alice arrived, clapsy says he handcuffed her and tied her to a chair. >> i don't know, i guess she'd been in the house an hour or so, and i strangled her to death with a hemp cord around her neck. >> he described in detail how he tortured and murdered his girlfriend, and because of how gruesome it was, we decided not to air all the details. but in his interview he seemed adamant to convince me that she had accepted her fate. >> i believe that she knew spiritually that she was okay. that regardless of anything, this was not her fault.
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that she was okay with god. >> how about this option? she was so filled with terror she was paralyzed. >> quite possible. >> clapsy says he wrapped up mary alice's body and hid it in a nearby dumpster. less than a day later, her family reported her missing. >> the police came to my house. i'm having a party just a night after the murder. yeah, i'm -- i mean, i've got a pile of coke on my computer desk. i mean, i've got people running around. i stepped out of my home. what can i do for you? we're looking for mary alice. i don't know where she is. you know? i even made a pretense of anything i can do to help, let's do flyers, let's do this, let's do that. >> clapsy's offer to help, however, fooled no one. four days later he and his roommate were arrested. both confessed. >> i usually review inmates' records.
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i realized during the interview that i was actually talking to him on the anniversary date of the murder. and he had been so unemotional and almost cavalier in his telling of his crime, so i decided to ask him what day he committed the murder. >> august 4th, 2001. >> you know what today is? >> yeah, i know what today is. >> what happens to you on august 4th? >> well, now that you've brought it up, something is probably going to happen to me that i get to deal with all by myself, but usually nothing. it's not an anniversary i celebrate or don't celebrate. i can't posture and say, you know, i think about her all the time. i don't. she's dead. now, how i feel about what i did is a different story. i feel horrible. i mean, i can't believe that i did these things that would
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result in this woman, despite the fact that she was an adulteress and a liar, she was a good person. >> there are very few times when i have visceral reactions in an interview. i was stunned when i heard that. >> she was an adulteress because she went to a movie with a husband with whom she was separated? she was an adulteress? >> actually, she was an adulteress for having sex with me. because she was married and having sex with me. i'm sure there's a dictionary around here. i think that fits the definition of adultery. she was married, and she broke her vows. >> she was separated. >> okay. but i'm not talking about human behavior. today, i'm speaking as a muslim. i could be speaking as a christian, a catholic or a jew as well. there's no situational ethics for adultery. >> i found it bizarre that he would take a moral high ground
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about his behavior and pretty much blame the victim. and about 15 minutes later his whole emotional demeanor shifted and he suddenly became contrite and emotional and teary-eyed."v= i found that an odd shift, and i certainly have my own opinions as to why it occurred, but in the capacity of my job it's not up to me to say. >> if it comes up, if i'm watching a television program, i'll start to cry because the girl on the tv is a medical animator or a doctor and her name is mary or something. it's not a day. i'm here for the rest of my life. but that's nothing. i mean, i took her life. so it doesn't take a day or an anniversary, but when i think about her, i think about her. i'll think about her tonight. >> what got you so emotional? that's the first time you've showed any emotion. >> well, because i'm really
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trying to keep a handle on it because, you know, my peers are going to see this. my family's going to see this. and -- >> and? >> being vulnerable in front of strangers is not my strong suit. >> coming up -- >> four of my homeboy from my hood jumped me. i was part of the hood now. i belonged to something, and i loved it. i'm not going to lie. i loved it. >> a former gangster learns the meaning of family. >> nobody from the neighborhood -- nobody cares no more. >> the only people that care is your mom. in a world where
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in a world where relationships mean everything, 24-year-old phillip kirkpatrick had already managed to lose the two families he's ever known. >> i used to send letters to the
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streets with stamped envelopes saying, write me back, the address is right here. all you got to do is address and say [ bleep ] whatever. you know what i'm saying? never got any of that. >> we met phillip in san quentin prison in california. and he really stood out as this young kid in a very hardcore old-school prison. his life was at a pretty precarious point, but he also remained sort of optimistic. >> from the second i got in trouble to this moment in time, i know god put me in this cell for a reason. whatever it is, i don't know at this time. maybe it was just to give me time to realize what i was doing. or who knows? maybe there's something inside this time that i'm going to do that's going to put me into perspective and make he realize stuff. i don't know. but i'm in here for a reason other for than the crime that i did, that god has a plan for me. i'll be all right. i'm going to make it. >> you're moving my head that way. >> i'm not moving it, you're moving it. >> i said i want a nice little haircut and he gives me a bald head. >> kirkpatrick rejected the lessons he had learned from his
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biological family at a very young age. that's when all his problems began. >> my mom gave me the best advice that she could. everything that has happened in my life, she told me that was going to happen. everything. you know, okay, phillip if you go home and you study for your test tomorrow, you're going to do good. if i did that, that's what would happen. okay, phillip, if you keep running the streets and gang banging and using drugs you're going toned up in prison. that's what happened. you can only lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink. you know what i'm saying? >> kirkpatrick was 13 years old when he joined a notorious hispanic gang, one that rarely admits caucasians. >> it doesn't matter if you're white, black, mexican, any kind of race, as long as you're down, as long as you're there for the cause and the struggle. as long as you're there for it. >> kirkpatrick says he relished gang life right from the day he was jumped in, an initiation rite where a group of current gang members fight the wannabe.
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>> four of my homeboys from my hood jumped me. they told me whatever you do, don't just curl up in a ball and lay down, you know what i'm saying? then you're going to look like a coward or a punk. you know what i mean? so i did the best that i could. and i slung with the best that i could. you know? i still got my butt whooped. i was still busted up in the face and all sore the next day, but i was part of the hood now. i belonged to something. and i loved it. i'm not going to lie. i loved it. >> having abandoned his family for gang life, kirkpatrick turned to other crimes. when we met him, he was serving his second prison term, eight years for burglary. >> i know right from wrong. i'm not a stupid individual. i might make stupid decisions, but i'm not a stupid individual. >> during his time in prison, kirkpatrick still had his gang to fall back on, but like his biological family, he eventually left his gang family, though not totally on his own accord. >> i was holding contraband, and i was holding something, and i lost it. yeah.
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i had lost it. >> any specific enemies, names, numbers? >> no. >> kirkpatrick explained the contraband was a packet of gang information including a roster of current members. when he realized it was gone, he was afraid the gang might order a hit on him as punishment. >> i told the c.o., look, i got to go. he was like why? i said because i lost something i'm not supposed to. you need to get me out of here before something more serious happens. >> kirkpatrick turned his back on his gang. he requested a move to protective custody. reconnecting with his family was difficult. not only because he had rejected their advice in the past, but because most of them were now employed by the same system incarcerating him. >> phillip really floored us. it seemed that most of his family worked in corrections, and here he was an inmate. he started naming off one relative after another that worked in different california state prisons. >> my grandfather before he passed away was associate warden at tracy. my uncle worked for new folsom or something to do with the folsom penitentiary.
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my biological father worked at tracy at one time, and now works at a women's prison in chowchilla. my mom right now currently is getting ready to retire from tracy prison. she's not a cop, she's an accountant. she works for the corrections department. >> when kirkpatrick left his gang, he asked his family to take him back. >> all these letters i have all over my bed right here, 90% of those are from my mom. >> but there are complications. kirkpatrick's past makes it impossible for him to even keep pictures of his relatives, including his mother. >> oh, i don't want one. my mom don't like the way she looks in pictures. i said, it doesn't matter, i'm your son, it's not like i'm going to go around showing it. she's like but what you don't understand is i work for cdc. i don't want my picture going through and people might recognize me or know who i am. i was like all right, i understand. and that's [ bleep ] up because that shows that she's ashamed of me. you know what i'm saying? that's the way i see it. >> leaving his gang also left kirkpatrick struggling for a sense of identity.
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>> it was like okay, i went to prison now and now i'm a dropout. what i call my career, it's over. and at first it was hard for me to deal with. i'm not going to lie. i didn't like it. but it was either learn to deal with it and accept it or try and pretend like you can stay on the mainline and get moved on and i'd get moved on by my own people. i'd either get sliced or i'd get stuck. >> surrounded by other gang dropouts in protective custody, kirkpatrick also began to realize that not only would his former gang take him out for making a mistake, they were never really the family he thought they were. >> don't nobody care about me. nobody from my neighborhood wrote me a letter. >> that's right. nobody from the neighborhood wrote you a letter. nobody cares no more. >> the only people that care is your moms. >> is your mom. and you only got one or two friends. >> while kirkpatrick still had challenges ahead of him inside san quentin, the biggest challenge he faced was outside the prison. it involved his relationship
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with his third family. >> every time that they're smiling, i'm not seeing it. i shouldn't have to have a picture of them to make up for time that i'm not there. >> he has two young sons, and his only hope is that they will take the advice he once rejected. >> see, people don't -- some people don't realize when you [ bleep ] up, yeah, you're doing your time, you're doing the time for the dirt that you did, but it's not you that just hurts. you know what i'm saying? your kids hurt. your family hurts. i don't want to hurt nobody in my family, but i definitely don't want to hurt my kids or my mom. and my mom, man, if i were to lose my mom, like i said, i'd let up. i would know that ain't nobody going to be there to step to the plate for my kids. >> coming up, one inmate finds companionship takes the form of six strings. >> it transcends me when i play. it's like i'm not even here. ♪ there was a nice house that lived with a family.
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california's 150-year-old san quentin state prison has
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been the site of much history, including the first ever prison performance by johnny cash. >> we actually found out that johnny cash had played at san quentin ten years prior to his more famous folsom concert. so our producer asked us to find inmate musicians, and i could hear eric phillips playing all the way down this noisy tier. >> here in san quentin phillips's guitar has grown to be his best friend. >> i really wanted to play the guitar, so i picked one up, like back in the late '80s, i bought one and just started getting my practice on and playing. you know? and just picked up from there. that became my main thing, my main passion. >> but pursuing that passion is complicated by the fact that overcrowding in san quentin has forced two men to live in cells originally designed for one.
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that means musicians don't always get to choose their accompaniment. but no distraction can keep phillips from his guitar. >> it provides for me a comfort in a sense that it takes me away from all this. and you know, it's like it transcends me when i play. it's like i'm not even here when i play. >> it also helps him think less about the past. phillips has a 38-year to life sentence for second-degree murder. >> i don't like to talk about it because it's painful to me and obviously it's painful to them. the people, you know, the victim's family. one minute changed my whole life, you know? if i could have that minute taken back so fast, if i could go back to that day and just
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stop right there. get the alcoholic stupor out of my mind. all that. and just put that bottle down and just keep going. one person would still be -- still be alive. you know? still be enjoying their lives. still be, you know, having their goals and dreams, you know? i'm just looking for god's mercy. you know? i would like to have a second chance. i would love that second chance. because -- man, i would love a second chance. ♪
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>> coming up -- >> i've stabbed officers, i've sliced officers, i've probably thrown chemical warfare on 30 people, 40 people. if not more. >> a notorious inmate finds love among the prison staff. >> i would have given up the job. i just couldn't give him up.
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due to mature subject matter, viewer discretion is advised. every time we go into a maximum security prison with our "lockup" crews, the same general pattern happens. at first there's hostility from the general prison population that we're there. we're breaking up their routine. >> [ bleep ]. [ bleep ]. >> then that slowly changes into curiosity. they start asking questions, how long are you here for, what are you doing, what kind of questions are you asking? and then the third phase is actual enthusiasm for us being there. because really every inmate has a story to tell. >> when penitentiary of new mexico inmate david scritchfield agreed to an interview, he still wasn't forthcoming. >> why don't you tell me how ferocious you used to be? >> i wasn't. i was just a kitty cat. i wasn't ferocious. none whatsoever.
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>> because you do seem to have a reputation. >> do i? someone's told you about that? >> scritchfield did eventually open up about the violent acts he committed in prison, acts which added more than a dozen years to his original 18-month sentence for burglary. >> i've stabbed officers, i've sliced officers, i've probably thrown chemical warfare on 30 people, 40 people, if not more. >> what's your nickname? >> animal. >> every staff member i asked about david scritchfield had pretty much the same thing to say. he was a threat. historically, he always attacked staff as well as other inmates. so he was a huge problem for them. >> i've been convicted of aggravated assault on peace officers probably two or three times. i fought the law and the law won. >> at first he was a very challenging interview because he was so reluctant, definitely no trust for our camera crew, but
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slowly, slowly the more we talked he started to open up. and when he did, in the course of this conversation, he revealed something to me which was very surprising. who is david now, then? >> david's just a guy that -- that actually found someone who took the time to get to know him and love him and be a part of his life. even though they got fired. >> what happened? >> oh, no, i don't want to open that door. >> i think he let it slip because he was still in the throes of new romance and was excited to talk about it, and then when he realized what he had done he quickly tried to retract. but eventually he decided to trust and he started talking about the situation. >> i -- i fell for a staff member here. >> basically, what it turned out to be was he had fallen in love with a nurse who worked on the staff there at the prison, and
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she had fallen in love with him. and once their relationship had been discovered, she was fired and he got into trouble. >> it sucks. it really, really sucks. i need to be able to see her, and they won't let me see her anymore. she's not allowed on the compound. you know? >> intimate relationships between prison staff and inmates are considered amongst the most grave security threats. they can lead to anything, from escape to the passing of contraband. >> half these other guys in this environment would have tried for anything they could have got their hands on, drugs, anything, cell phones. that's just how we are. we're manipulators, so they say. but you know, i wasn't going to do that to her. i wasn't going to put her in any kind of trouble. i did everything i could to make sure she didn't get in trouble. and we got in trouble anyway. >> obviously, when i heard about this thwarted love story, i was intrigued. so i asked david about the possibility of being able to talk to paula, the nurse that he had fallen in love with.
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>> them people, remember i told you about that? those people that were coming to see me? they want to talk to you. >> although paula montoya had been denied access to the prison, she and scritchfield were still allowed to have phone calls. >> because like somehow in the middle of the interview it just kind of came out about you. >> talked on the phone and then she agreed she would do an interview. >> we met paula montoya and her teenage daughter, shantay, at their home not far from the prison. >> that's what he always puts here for me, because he kissed it, so i kiss it. because that's how we kiss. he does it on all his -- on all his letters. see? kiss. >> that's cute. >> i know. isn't it precious? >> why don't you tell me how it is you ever came to meet david and kind of take me through what happened? >> my first real encounter with david was when they brought him down to medical and the doctor decided she was going to change some of his medications.
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he wanted to know why. she didn't tell him. and he just went ballistic. i told him that i would check into it, i would see what i could do. and he didn't believe it. he says that nobody ever follows through with what they say they're going to do. i said i will, i'll do it. his whole demeanor changed. his eyes changed. his personality changed. as intimidating he can be is as loving as he can be. >> she was just kind of your typical woman who was madly in love. she just happened to be in love with this inmate. >> baby, it's in there. >> she was more distraught by the fact that she was not able to see him. >> my daughter took this picture of me, and david sent me that one for christmas, and she put them together so we could have a picture together. >> how long did it take you to fall in love? >> about three months. but it was something that it was like -- it was electric.
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immediately. like, we just knew. >> since scritchfield was in the prison's highest security wing, he was not allowed outside his cell to make phone calls. instead, he would be given a phone to make occasional collect calls from inside his cell. the calls are routinely monitored by prison staff, and that's how their relationship was discovered. >> hi, baby. >> hi. >> i should have left when i started having feelings for him. i should not have put myself or him or any of them in that position because it was wrong. you know, i would have given up the job. i just couldn't give him up. >> after our "extended stay" shoot at the penitentiary of new mexico, scritchfield was transferred to another prison where the couple was allowed to marry. that resulted in the lifting of their visitation ban. >> it actually seemed like an authentic deal to me. they truly seemed to love each other, and according to what i heard from paula, everything is going really well and she's just
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waiting for him to be released. >> a copy of the marriage license. >> how does that make you feel? >> good. >> and although his past first led us to think scritchfield's story would be about his penchant for violence, we discovered that at least for now it was a love story. one best summed up in this letter to paula. >> i know god works in mysterious ways, for him to grant me this second shot of love has to be the truest gift a man like me could ever receive, especially being that i'm just an old knucklehead, that i may not even deserve this chance. i do not have a lot to give you but what i do have is truly mine and i will give it to you until the day god takes breath from my body. >> he's a very extraordinary man. i mean, he's passionate, he's intelligent, he's funny, he's giving. he's loyal. got morals and values that a lot of people out here don't even carry anymore. i was just captivated by him and i still am. i just love him to death.
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there's no one else i'd rather be with. >> coming up -- >> i love him. love him to death. that's the only one i'd sit down with, have a real conversation with. >> a prison friendship transcends sexual orientation. >> and if someone walks up here and just calls him your boyfriend or girlfriend or something like that, how do you react? >> it wouldn't matter. i don't react.
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the complicated world of inmate relationships often leads to violence. sometimes death. but at the holman correctional facility in alabama an inmate nicknamed "cheese curl" told us a very different story.
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>> why are you called "cheese curl"? >> because i like cheese curls. >> when is the last time you had a cheese curl? >> last night. >> by all appearances, tommy "cheese curl" tunstall, serving life for robbery, was one of holman's most popular inmates. >> tommy was an interesting inmate to interview, actually, because he seemed very calm and confident. quietly confident. >> bring your ass on. [ bleep ]. >> more often than not, when we would start interviewing tommy, inmates would start yelling things at him. >> you've got to tell me what the deal is with you. everybody -- you could run for president in here. >> i guess i get along with everybody. >> but tunstall chooses to spend much of his time with just one man, kenyatta mcmillen, who is serving life without parole for murder. >> i love cheese because he
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always been there for me, no matter what, and he ain't never changed or turned his back on me on nothing. >> mcmillen and tunstall had been friends for about three years when we met them at holman. >> it done got to the point to where it's like if i'm thinking about something, before i can get it out, he can say it. and it's vice versa. >> do you identify as gay? >> do me -- do i do? yes. >> you're gay? >> yes. >> i was fascinated by the friendship between kenyatta and tommy. kenyatta is openly gay and tommy was openly straight. and it seemed to me that their friendship was truly platonic but very bonded. they were obviously an amazing support system for each other. >> we mainly came across each other going through the struggle. helping each other out and stuff like that. you in here by yourself, you're going to have to look for somebody to confide in. mainly they got to be on the same level as far as thinking
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and outlook. >> i love him. love him to death. that's about the only one i can sit down with and have a real conversation with. >> kenyatta, he a deep individual. i like to see how far i can go with arguments, conversations, debates, and all that. and he put up that fight. >> people probably suspected their relationship was something other than what it was. but from my observation, it was truly a platonic friendship. >> people got their own opinion about me and him. but then you know, everybody got their opinion. as long as it ain't true, then why put up an argument? if you put up an argument, that's showing some kind of guilt. >> right then a group of inmates walked by and started yelling things out at tommy. i couldn't understand what they were saying, but he barely missed a beat. my initial concern was they were
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making fun of him either for being interviewed or because of his relationship with kenyatta, and then i realized he just took it in stride, almost seemed pleased and proud about the situation, and then just kept going. if someone walks up here and calls him your boyfriend or girlfriend or something like that, how do you react? >> it wouldn't matter. i don't react on stupidity. >> tommy, would you two be friends on the street? >> yeah. yeah. >> his homosexuality is not a factor? >> no. i don't look at individuals by what they do or what they is or what they done did. i mean, we're all humans. >> through all my relationships that i've been with with guys, he's been tight, he's been right there supportive of me. we've been close. real tight. real friends. partners. >> would you say you love him? >> as a friend, yeah. >> normally, mcmillen and tunstall live in the dorms together, but during our stay at holman they were separated.
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mcmillen had requested to be put in administrative segregation. >> he had had an operation recently when we encountered him, and he was having i guess a lover's quarrel with his current boyfriend, and because he was afraid it might escalate into something violent, he had himself locked up. >> the person that i was with, we was on the verge of separating, but they didn't want to, and it got to the point where it started being threats made and -- >> kenyatta had indicated to us that he had been involved with a number of men at the prison romantically. he seemed to rely more and more on tommy as a big brother figure. >> i mean, he got to make his own decisions, but now before he do any of that he'll ask what i think about it. and i'll give my opinions. and when we sit down and agree upon it, it's going to be whether he want to deal with the dude or he don't. as simple as that. but as far as if he do get a relationship with anybody, then
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i know what type of individual he is, and he don't get in no trouble, he don't bother nobody then nobody ain't got no business putting their hands on him. i get offensive like that. >> having a relationship with gay men or straight men here? >> straight. >> straight guys? >> yeah. they gay too, though. actually, in their mind they're just gay for that minute. after it's over with, they ain't gay no more. but wait till the next time, then they're gay again for another minute. >> as for their future, both men were serving life sentences. though tunstall would someday qualify for parole, mcmillen had life without. >> i know i'm going back to the free world one day. so you know, the only thing i can do is make the best out of my situation. so i kick it around individuals with minds on the street. that way i won't fall victim to whatever is going on inside these walls. >> you have a lot of people that don't understand time because they don't have any.
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so if i got life without parole, my mind, then i'm going to be here forever if i don't do something about it. >> once i get out by him having life without i want to help him get out. but as long as i'm here i want to make sure he's all right. so it's a bond that nobody can come between, unless one of us die. >> coming up -- >> when did you cut yourself? yesterday? two days ago? >> not bad, though. >> let's see. well, it's bad enough. >> one of the most complicated jobs in a complicated world. >> i didn't do it. i'm innocent. let me out. i was framed. the men and women who work
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[beeping] ooo come on everybody, i think this is my grandson. [lip syncing] ♪little girl you look so lonesome oh my goodness. ♪i see you are feeling blue ♪come on over to my place ♪hey girl ♪we're having a party happy birthday, grandma! ♪we'll be swinging ♪dancing and singing ♪baby come on over tonight the men and women who work in prison walk a thin line every day.
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to effectively perform their duties they have to know inmates on a personal level while maintaining a professional detachment. >> feces in my damn cell for. get the [ bleep ] out. >> it's tough enough for correctional officers. but for mental health staff it can be an even greater challenge. >> i believe you that don't give a [ bleep ] and anybody that's working with you don't give a [ bleep ]. >> at indiana state prison we had the opportunity to follow head psychologist dr. reggie matias as he walked that fine line on a daily basis. >> i didn't do it. i'm innocent. let me out. i was framed. >> one of the most notable things about dr. matias was his sense of humor. he was a very funny guy. >> it's the only way i keep myself sane. i go from one thing to another. so i have to use humor. >> we followed dr. matias to the prison's residential treatment unit, where inmates with varying levels of mental illness are housed. a number of them cope with the stress of prison by cutting themselves.
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>> knock knock. >> what's up? >> nothing much. how are you? >> how are you? >> he had a very gentle way of dealing with the inmates. even with the inmates who had done something he wasn't very happy about. >> when did you cut? yesterday? two days ago? what's today, friday? thursday? so wednesday? >> yeah. >> that was after group? >> yeah. >> come here. >> it's not bad, though. >> let's see. well, that's -- that's bad enough. let me ask. you know the stress was building up and you felt the tension. it clicked in your head that you should ask for me, talk to the mentor? >> yeah. >> tell them to bring you over to the hospital? anything other than -- >> i just didn't want to be stuck in the cell. i'm not suicidal. that's just how i relieve my pain, you know? >> these guys are generally functional, so we're trying to get them out to population.
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they need a lot of support, encouragement. >> all stressed out. >> yeah. but see, the -- in terms of management the trick is not to let your emotions hijack your brain. >> dr. matias is a key because he's kind of the gatekeeper for the rtu. he's the psychologist who continually monitors and assesses and evaluates the offenders, not only who needs to come into the unit but when somebody is ready to leave the unit. >> one of those inmates is frank street. on the outside street suffered mental illness. voices that haunted his mind. instructed him not only to murder his mother but to eat part of his brain. he originally told us his story in 2005. >> i wasn't a sane person who did that back then. you don't eat brains from someone's body if you're sane. >> at the time street was in the residential treatment unit. as he was when we shot our "extended stay" series in 2008.
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but this time he was on the verge of a major move. >> mr. street's been working for the electrical shop for about four weeks now. he leaves rtu every day and goes back at the conclusion of the day and i think maybe it's time to look at moving him out of the e dorm. >> he's been stable out there and doing a good job? >> yeah. med compliant. >> mr. street. he's our star. he's doing great. he's very calm, very focused. he's been working well. mental healthwise he's been very stable. he's been taking his medicine. and i think, you know, we see the results. >> we were with street as he was transferred from the residential treatment unit to a general population dorm. where he would have considerably more freedom of movement and the opportunity to interact with more inmates. >> dr. matias would check in on frank street periodically, and we filmed one of those visits. and we were kind of surprised to hear frank talk about how the "lockup" show and his appearance on it had affected his life.
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>> i had someone write to me from -- he said it was georgetown college in washington, d.c. and then there was a lady from north or south carolina. and there was another lady from buffalo, new york. >> mm-hmm. >> that i enjoy the letters and everything. but i'm 43 years old. and these sounded like 20-year-old women with problems. and i didn't want to add to my problems. so i didn't really -- if i did write to them, i told them i appreciated it but i can't afford to write to you. >> there's a lot of folks out there that like to keep in touch with guys in prison. >> the reason they knew about me is because of the msnbc. >> right. they thought you were cute and wanted to write to you, right? >> but the conversation also took on more serious topics. street's medication sometimes caused involuntary tremors. and dr. matias didn't want that to be a problem in general population.
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>> you could see how dr. matias was concerned, and he was worried how the inmates might react to it. but he dealt with it in, again, in a humorous way. >> we don't want you to develop permanent movements. >> yes. >> because one day you're going to get out of prison and you'll be out there. you're going to meet a beautiful woman and fall in love. and you don't want to be twitching when you're talking to her. >> he's really quite a different person now. so you know, we'll continue to support him in whatever way makes sense, continue to encourage his good functioning. he's come a really long way. >> but on one of the other days we were following dr. matias we encountered a far more agitated inmate. mark hughes. >> you're just an fbi investigation going on from this facility right here, have my family kidnapped -- >> just seconds later hughes lashed out at an inmate in a nearby cell.
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>> man-y don't you shut the [ bleep ]. knock your teeth out. >> all the dudes that were kicked out of dorms for it. because they knew you and you never got caught. but i know why you're there. because they don't give a [ bleep ] against you. >> it soon became clear that mark hughes was just reacting angrily to everything and everyone around him. >> he's crazy. i've got to get in the cell and -- that's redundant. >> then he turned all his rage toward us. >> respect. >> and just started lashing out at us. >> take the [ bleep ] off of me. respect. >> dr. matias, again, with his very caring and kind way, completely defused the situation. >> get you stabilized, take your meds. >> yeah. >> because it's just going to cause more problems. you're going to start getting write-ups. >> i don't want no more write-ups.
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>> that had been a very chaotic and draining episode but for dr. matias he acted like it was just a normal everyday routine. >> long day? >> yeah. actually, today my schedule was pretty clear. so i can catch up on paperwork and get things done. but i've been running from one thing to another since i got here. it's another day at i.s.p. >> that was usually his answer. just another day. but there was one time when he responded in a way that still is my favorite. it showed how just simple pleasures could get matias through a day at indiana state prison. >> all right. where are you off to now? >> you want to know the truth? i'm going to go back to my office, and in there i have a little cupcake. you know those little chocolate cupcakes that are cream filled on the inside and devil's food and frosting on top with the little squiggly white circles? that's what i'm going to do. have a great day.
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due to mature subject matter, viewer discretion is advised. msnbc takes you behind the walls of america's most notorious prisons. into a world of chaos and danger. now, the scenes you've never seen. "lockup: raw." in prison, time can be an inmate's worst enemy. >> apparently another guy over there said that i hit him. what do you do when you get ready to fight? >> why would she be ready to fight if you're in the cell? >> some find constructive if not unusual ways to fill it. >> this is how i stay out


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