tv Lockup Raw MSNBC April 30, 2016 2:00am-2:31am PDT
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. "lock up: raw." >> i don't know what else you want. this is it, this is life. you have your cell, this and the yard. the prison con tests of nothing else. a couple hours maybe in the day room, on the yard, that's it, day after day after day after
day, it's the same thing. nothing changes. >> 90% of prison life is actually boredom. it's what the inmates do with this down time, this lack of stimuli that has led to some of the most interesting parts about "lockup." >> the monotonous grind of prison can push some inmates to the limit. in trying to understand with how they deal with the specter of never being free again, we've recorded some of the most dramatic footage. >> i'm serving a life without parole sentence, two life sentences, two 99-year sentences, a 40-year sentence, a 20-year sentence and a ten-year sentence. all together. >> at the time of our visit, bobby gilbert had been at alabama's home and correctional facility for only four years.
but he first landed in prison at the eighth of 18. he told us how a minor dispute over money led him to murder an acquaintance. >> he told me the only way i'd get my money was over his dead body. >> how much money did he owe you? >> $36. i paid $37 for the gun i killed him with. >> once behind bars, gilbert's violent temper led to numerous other crimes, including stabbing another inmate to death, this time for much less than $36. but gilbert made it clear to us, in prison, things aren't always as they seem. >> everybody wants to talk about, you know, i killed somebody over a carton of cigarettes. it's not a carton of cigarettes. that may be the catalyst that leads to something but, you know, for -- if somebody owes me i soda pop, or i owe them a soda pop and they come to me and say
i need to get that soda pop you owe me, i spit in their face and talk to them like they a bitch or something and they kill me, whose fault is it? it wasn't about the soda pop no more. on the street, you call the police and do something about it. in here, what do you do? you stab him and say you ain't taking nothing else. here's what happens when you come to take something from me. >> gilbert's life behind bars has many run-ins with grant culver. within moments, other inmates seen that "lockup" cameras were present, decided to disrupt the hearing in the shu by banging on their cell doors.
that's when warden culver decided to take matters into his own hands. >> beat on that [ bleep ] door again. you, you, i want you to do it. you do it. you beat on the [ bleep ] door again. beat on the [ bleep ] door again. >> once the inmates calm down, gilbert's hearing got under way. his appeal for a transfer was quickly dismissed. but it didn't take long for gilbert to make another request, one to help beat the boredom of prison life, the run of his recently confiscated chess set. >> why can't i have my chess set? >> you're in segregation. >> i want to play chess. >> i'll get you some paper. >> i can play in my head. >> i just don't see how it can hurt anybody by doing something
semiconstructive. >> ask the law library copy to come through. >> you run this place. >> i follow the regs. >> that's your decision. >> i follow the regs. >> get the reg and read it. it don't say that. >> it's segregation. you ain't here for going to church or you were doing something constructive. >> you want us to exhibit some form of model behavior. every avenue is something destructive. i can't play chess through the mail like i used to. by jumping up on the door, by sticking my [ bleep ] through
the door every time a female came. >> he continued to fume over his chess set. >> i'd like somebody to give me one reason, just semiintelligent reason why it would hurt somebody sit in a cell, locked in here by myself with chess pieces. ain't hurting nobody in the world. but that's doc for you, that's rehabilitation at its finest. next on "lockup" -- >> there's nothing i've done that god has not forgiven me for. >> a serial killer claims he found god. >> is a greater sin to steal a cracker or kill someone. >> and another inmate finds satan. >> i demand the forces of darkness to bestow the eternal power upon me. you shouldn't have to go far
to get the help you're looking for. that's why at xfinity we're opening up more stores closer to you. where you can use all of our latest products and technology. and find out how to get the most out of your service. so when you get home, all you have to do is enjoy it. we're doing everything we can to give you the best experience possible. because we should fit into your life. not the other way around.
until we get there, we'll never really live in the light. we'll always live in the darkness. >> take your time! >> few events in life can motivate somebody to find religion like a life sentence. >> you know you hear a lot of people who come to prison and oh, i found god. well, i did. >> robert fry's religious conversion came only after he found himself on death row at the penitentiary of new mexico. >> i'm in for four counts of murder. and i'm currently serving three life sentences. >> i thought maybe we might do -- >> today, fry is a regular at a prison bible study. the inmates, all death row and maximum security, are confined to their cells. >> i apologize for all the filming going on here. this isn't about me.
this is about this fellowship. showing what prison fellowship in christ is doing for us. >> reporter: fry's crimes were both numerous and gruesome. >> i was very angry, very confused. >> fry received a death sentence for bludgeoning and stabbing to death a 36-year-old mother of five in 2000. >> you best show your love for god by the way you show you love for your fellow man. >> he has three other murder convictions, as well. fry beat one man with a shovel and threw him off a cliff. another victim was nearly beheaded. but when he sat down with us, fry told our producer he was confident of one thing. >> i believe i'm going to be with my lord. when i die, i go to my maker with a clear conscience. because i have accepted him as a my savior and i have asked forgiveness of my sins. >> do you feel like your god forgives you? do you feel -- >> he's your god, too. >> okay, does god forgive you?
>> god forgives all. god loves everyone, regardless. >> fry would not discuss his crimes with us. but our producer pressed him on whether his victims would be as forgiving as he believes god will be. >> what would you say then if you actually showed up to the afterlife and there were the people that you had victimized? >> hello, brother. you know. when we go to the kingdom of god there is no anger, there is no strife. all that will be taken from us. ♪ amazing grace the people i've hurt directly i do beg forgiveness. you know. but i've already asked god for his forgiveness. and all i can do is ask you to please forgive me. and if you don't, okay, then you get to live with the power of your own hate. >> fry surprised our crew when he placed his four brutal murders on the same plain as another crime. >> let me ask you a question. is it a greater sin to steal a cracker or to kill someone? >> to kill someone. >> god doesn't see it that way. you break one sin, you break all sin. if you are guilty of the least
of this, you are guilty of all. so, what does it matter what sin you perpetrate? sin is sin. ♪ amen >> sounds like somebody running over a cat with a lawnmower. >> today, fry remains on death row at the penitentiary of new mexico while continuing his appeals. >> even at the hour of your death, if you turn to god, and are truly repentant of the things you've done, he'll forgive you and he will accept you, and he knows. >> what if that's not the case? >> that is the case, though. >> but what if it's not? >> that is. >> but what if it's not? i mean have you considered that. >> you can say what if and why about anything in the world but it's faith -- >> does it ever come into your mind that maybe the interpretation is not quite there and you may be meeting a different kind of maker? >> no. no. it's faith. faith brought me to god. faith cleansed me of my sins and faith will see me through.
>> when we visited iowa state penitentiary, we found the prison attempts to provide services for a wide range of religious beliefs. >> a lot of religions are just a quieting, mellowing, peaceful time and so for them to pray to see god answer something is just very, very special, so it's empowering. >> then we met an inmate named travis wolfkill. >> in the name of satan the ruler of the earth, the king of the world, i command the forces of darkness to bestow the forces of eternal power upon me. i'm in a satanic group here. only about four of us here. it's real small community. the church of satan is about enjoying life. it's about doing what you want to do. we believe in indulgence rather than abstinence. we believe in doing what makes us happy, and what improves the quality of our life. >> such an attitude may have been what led wolfkill to a life sentence without the possibility
of parole for murdering his grandmother over a $300 tax refund check. but he told us he has found a salvation of sorts in his religion. >> this is what's called the eleven satanic rules of the earth. and if you look at number nine, it says do not harm little children. number ten says do not kill nonhuman animals unless you are attacked or for your food. so that right there itself just destroys all the bad stereotypes that you have about this religion. there's no human sacrifice. >> later in our meeting, we asked wolfkill to clarify a few points about his church's doctrine. >> you had pointed out number nine. >> yeah. >> tell me what that is again. >> it says do not harm little children. >> and tell me the next one. >> it was do not kill animals unless you're hunting. unless you need them for food. actually. >> it said do not kill nonhuman
animals. >> no. is that what it said? non-human animals? okay. do not kill -- >> it begs a question. >> non-human animals, yes. that sounds about right. >> but yet you're here for murder. >> yes. yeah. it says do not kill little children. i'm not in here for killing a child. coming up -- >> if i'm not busy, i have a tendency to get in trouble. >> "lockup" discovers true talent behind bars. ♪ [ cheering ]
we sat down, we kicked back, and we watched tv! [ cheering ] this win is just the beginning! it doesn't end here. because your laundry can wait! keep those sweatpants on! order another pizza! and watch on! [ cheering ] don't wait a whole year for xfinity watchathon week to return. upgrade now to add the premium channel of your choice so you can keep watching. call or go online today. a life behind bars can lead some inmates to further destruction. even death. but others use the time to create something meaningful. >> you know you need a segment of the talent inside these walls. >> "lockup" producers only had to walk to the other side of the
dorm, at the holman correctional facility in alabama, to learn how right he was. >> that's all i play, blues, country and old rock 'n' roll. i don't mess with the hard rock stuff. >> while robert tetter passes time playing music, that's not what amazed our crew. it's that tetter builds his own guitars out of one of the few recreational resources allowed inmates, model boat kits. >> this is 2 1/2 boat kits makes this one. all of these are stood up together, glued together, to make this neck like this and down inside of it we have one radio. the tone control, three controls down here, the set of batteries, and this one back here is the mic mixer. then we use magnets to hold the lid on it. ♪ >> tetter always includes one other element on his guitars.
it's for his muse. >> everything i do i dedicate to my wife. the blue heart is because we've been separated for 23 years now. and she's still with me. she's sticking with me right through this. and i always put a blue heart on every letter i mail to her. every card i send her. and i put a blue heart on the case and on the guitar. it's just our symbol. being separated so long. ♪ >> while music helps tetter cope with life at holman we met another inmate who finds his aggressive tendencies are soothed in the prison hobby shop at the spring creek correctional center in alaska. >> tell me your first and last name. >> patrick harrington. >> patrick harrington? >> yes, i've been in this prison since june of 1988. august will be 20 years. charge is murder, murder in the first.
i try to get to the hobby shop here as much as i can. for me, if i'm not busy, i have a tendency to get in trouble. when the place first opened up i wasn't really busy, i was in fights. basically beating up other people. >> but in the hobby shop, harrington focuses those energies on something far more delicate. an incredibly detailed doll house he was building as a gift for his niece. >> i've been working on this doll house for about two years now. and it's for that young girl, but the young girl, she has no idea i'm making it. she has no idea it's coming down there. >> harrington gave our crew a tour of his masterpiece. >> the windows here, they all work. up and down. all the doors open and close. all the lights work. the doors open. all the yellow colored wood is the natural color of the wood. this door up here, it's pulldown stairs. so like a little doll can come up, come around up top. the shingles are individual. this is real brick. 900 individual bricks. yeah, it's a lot of work.
it's a lot of fun. you know. >> with hobby shop security consisting of little more than surveillance cameras, time spent here is a privilege accorded to only the most trusted inmates. >> you know there is no officer in here. officers do walk through here at times. you know the windows, they look through the windows. but while this hobby shop has been here there's been no fights, no trouble in here. >> thank you. >> just a few months away from finishing his niece's present, harrington already has his next project lined up. >> my brother has another daughter that's a year and a half. so will i have to make another doll house for her other daughter? maybe. if i do, well, you know, i'll do it. >> with a 99-year sentence, he'll have plenty of time to build many more doll houses. >> i could go to the parole board in 2019. so, will i get it? i don't know. but there's a chance. >> in the exercise yard at california state prison corcoran, we met an inmate whose art is inspired by his life.
>> tell me your name. spell your last name for me. >> kevin moore, m-o-o-r-e. >> what were you convicted of? >> doing a parole violation for sales of marijuana. >> the yard is an interesting place because you never know who you're going to run into. you never know who you're going to talk to. you never know what personality or who they are. i kind of just started looking around and trying to find interesting looking faces. so i happened upon kevin moore. he started telling me that he's a rap artist. he's a ghost writer. >> i got a record deal waiting on me at death row records for anybody, anybody wrap fans that's listening my aka is sassoon and i've got a demo coming out in a few months. >> when you start talking to inmates, you're not really sure what to believe. they start telling you these stories and you're kind of like saying all right. >> i've been a ghost writer in the rap industry for about 13 years. a lot of stuff that i've written from behind these walls i've sold to other artists that have been out there and been successful.
>> i said, well do a rap for me. and then he just like he just rolled one right off his lips, and it was called 15 to life. >> you ready? here we go. ♪ 15 to life ♪ doing 15 to life ♪ chained like a slave on a bus ride to the state penn ♪ >> when we met him moore was 17 days away from his release date. >> now finally my head's straight, and i'm going to go for that, because i'm burnt out on this. you don't see no females. you don't see no laughter. this is like a cemetery. once you're here, you're stuck, it's like you're dead. a lot of cats here you might as well consider them dead. i don't you know i got home boys that you could consider deceased that are right here. that have been forgotten. i don't want to be one of them cats. >> still, moore could not guarantee he would stay clear of conflicts that might keep him here. >> i'm 17 days from going home. ain't no way i'm going to do
something, you know what i mean, to delay my stay here unless it's something that can't be avoided like a racial situation somewhere. i have to react. ♪ back to the zone ♪ if the race war is on i might not make it home ♪ ♪ you got the browns and the whites against the blacks ♪ the first rule of the game is watch your back ♪ ♪ it's either kill or be killed ♪ ♪ if you're scared to make a knife then the next [ bleep ] ♪ ♪ will so find me some steel and make a strap ♪ >> i'm sitting there listening to words, and he's basically running about every little experience that he's had inside there. >> like doing 15 to life. that's it. >> right here. >> what you talking about, baby. >> yeah.
good morning. coming up on msnbc's "your business" things can get heated. so how do you as a small business owner deal with employees who discuss politics at work? educators become entrepreneurs by selling classroom materials to other teachers. and the otherers of a men's skin care company get an education on distribution and packaging and learn a lot from their mistakes. we have so much good information to help you run your small business coming up next on "your business." >> american express open can help you take on a new job. or fill a big order.