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by Sharon Rondeau

MCCX Warden Shawn Phillips

(Sep. 9, 2017) — TDOC inmate Grenda Ray Harmer, #88710, continues to report difficulties with Morgan County Correctional Complex (MCCX) staff since he was placed in protective custody (PC) at the end of July following an altercation with the gang member which he believes was “orchestrated.”

PC is the equivalent of “maximum security,” otherwise known as solitary confinement, and is utilized to protect from potential harm an inmate who has reason to fear for his physical safety or life.

Harmer arrived at MCCX on June 2 and launched a hunger strike on June 5 which did not reach its conclusion until more than a month later, when he was found unresponsive in his cell.  Just days before, following a 30-day period in maximum-security, Harmer was moved into the general population with a cellmate. He has speculated that had that not occurred, he would not be alive today.

In several letters since he began his recovery, Harmer has indicated that MCCX staffers have told him, “I could have let you die.”  He has quoted a medical staffer as having said, “I don’t care if you live or die.”

Harmer’s current complaints, enumerated in a September 4 memorandum to TDOC Commissioner Tony Parker, include the disappearance of request forms and grievances; an inability to use the prison law library because of his “PC” status; and a two-month waiting period to obtain “a copy of my false disciplinary report so I could file an appeal,” among others.

In the memo, Harmer reported that Warden Shawn Phillips has not rendered a decision on the appeal of a disciplinary report issued in June in association with his placement in maximum security which he said should have been issued by August 17 in accordance with TDOC policy.

He then urged Parker to “do your job for once in your life and do the right thing: Fire Warden Phillips.”

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