Prison gangs like the Mexican Mafia, Aryan Brotherhood, Latin Kings, Black Guerrilla Family, Texas Syndicate and the Dirty White Boys have been around for decades. Some evolved in state joints, some in the federal system. They originated and evolved for different reasons, sometimes for “the -protection of their race but most times for more nefarious purposes. Their members recognize each other through hand signs, tattoos, and a criminal network that spreads across the country’s prisons, coast to coast, border to border, like a vast spider web. From USP Marion to ADX Florence to Pelican Bay in California, prison gangs dominate. Gang life in prison is not about preparing for a law abiding life in society but about creating a thriving world for the brothers, the homies and the leaders themselves while in prison.
The Dirty White Boys are a newer gang in the big scheme of prison politics but they have spread rapidly in the federal prison system. Some say their name comes from the classic book by Stephen Hunter of the same name that described a clique of go hard white boys in the Oklahoma prison system but here at gorilla convict we went straight to the source to find out the real deal on the Dirty White Boys prison gang talking to lifer and Dirty White Boys members Robert Rosso 05546-010.
Recently, I received a letter from Gorilla Convict (gorillaconvict.com) asking if I would be interested in doing a written interview about my involvement with the Dirty White Boys prison gang. I agreed. The following is a questionnaire that I responded too.
Give us the history of the Dirty White Boys, who founded the gang?
The Dirty White Boys started a FCI El Reno in the mid 80s. Now, before I go any further, it’s important for me to mention that there are conflicting stories about this – some say we started at FCI Three Rivers. The truth is that the DWB’s were simply a group of guy’s from Texas (mainly Dallas) that hung out together and eventually started a prison softball team. They named that team the Dirty White Boys. Some of the team members then took things a little further by tattooing the name of the team on their chests. But they didn’t lust put the words “Dirty White Boys” on themselves, they tattooed the outline of their home-state along with iron bars, bricks, and a guard tower in the center. This would later become the gang’s insignia or “patch.” (Members of the gang from states other than Texas put an outline of their home-states on them. I have an outline of California on me). So what I’m trying to say is, basically, the Dirty White Boys were nothing more than a prison softball team that eventually mushroomed into the largest white prison gang in the federal prison system.
As for who the original founders are, honestly, I haven’t a clue – nor do I or anyone else in the gang even care. Through the years I’ve heard a few names mentioned, and when I was in USP Leavenworth was even a guy named Silvester who claimed that he was one of the originals but’ said that he was “done with Dirty White Boys.” Needless to say, he didn’t make it there too long’. But like I said, I have no idea who the founders are. I’m sure that there are plenty of super-duper gang intelligence-types who work for the Bureau of Prisons that could answer that question for anyone who really wants to know.
When and why did you get involved in the gang?
Wow…This is really a tough question. When I first read it my initial response was: BECAUSE I’M A FUCKING DUMBASS! But it’s Iritztle more complex than that. So I guess the best thing for me to do is to give a little background first.
To begin with, I am from- California and I also served time in the California Department of Corrections (CDC). For those of you that may not know, the California prison system is extremely racially divided and the color of a persons skin automatically places them into a certain gang-like group, like it or not. Then within that group, the city, town, or area where a person is from places them into yet another gang-like group. So si wasn’t just a white guy, I was a white guy from the Harbor Area (I’m from San Pedro, the Port of Los Angeles).
Shortly after I arrived at the Chino Central Prison For Men, I had words with anther white guy in the Madrone Unit chow hall. I knew that the guy was from Orange County, but I didn’t know that he was a member of a white prison gang called the Nazi Low Riders. To make a long story short, I pretty much punked him out in front of all of his brothers, he didn’t do shit, and the scene caused quite a stir. When the unit went to the yard later’ that afternoon, the Whites from the Harbor Area got together with the NLR’s and there was this major discussion that took place. Basically, after I got a little speech from the NLR shot-caller about disrespecting his brothers, the matter got resolved. Then about a month later, after I ended up transferring across the street to CIM (another prison inside of Chino) I become friends with some other NLR’s. Eventually, they asked me if I wanted to join their gang. I said no.
Enter USP Leavenworth.
When I arrived at USP Leavenworth in September of 1998 I met a guy from California named DB. Like myself, DB was from Southern California, he grew up skate boarding and surfing, he liked punk rock, he used drugs and alcohol, and he served time in the CDC. Unlike me however, while DB was serving time in California he joined a gang – the Nazi Low Riders. But since the NLR’s were exclusively a California prison gang back then,(as opposed-to how where they are in the federal prison system as well), DB ran with the Dirty White Boys. Eventually, he even dropped or “covered up” his NLR patch and became a member of the DWB’s.
Through my friendship with DB, I became an affiliate of the Dirty White Boys
Besides DB there were two other Dirty White Boys in Leavenworth that I liked: KL and Billy Weston. The rest I either thought were alright, didn’t care for, or really hated. In the early part of 2000 I started hanging out a lot with KL. Just about everyday I would go up to his cell, nicknamed the “snake pit”, get drunk, shoot dope, and basically, just have a good time. This was around the time that KL, who was calling the shot’s for the DWB’s, started pushing me to join the gang.
I am not someone who fits the mold of gang member. I like to spend at least one hour a day walking the track by myself, I’m not looking for a prison family to replace my biological one, I get along great with blacks and Latinos I m not scared to do my own time, and for some reason, not only do I always see to have one close friend who is black in every prison that I’ve, ever been in, I tend to have white friends that are 20 or 30 years older than me, some even old men in their 70’s or 80’s. But I also clique very well with white trash – junkies, drunks, and those who are into prison drama. Specifically, white gang members.
What KL saw in me was someone who had a life sentence, someone who understood prison politics, and someone who could communicate well with others. Hardly any DWB’s have Life sentences and most lack in proper communication skills. KL felt that the gang had way too many soldiers and far too many Generals. He wanted me to join the gang, put some work in or “earn my bones”, then focus on structuring the DWB’s into a gang similar but bigger than the Aryan Brotherhood. Meaning, the AB’s have a “commission”, a governing body much like that of the New York mafia family’s, also known as the “Five Family.” The Dirty White Boys have no governing body – the only leadership we have are the shot-callers on certain yards. They answer to no one. And in some cases, there will be as many as 10 DWB’s on a yard with no shot caller at all. In other words, members of the Dirty White Boys belong to a DISORGANIZATION. KL believed that I could play an instrumental role in changing that.
But time and time again, I turned KL down. The last thing I wanted to do was join a prison gang.
Three things happened in the spring of 2001 that changed my mind. First, I was in the hole with all of the DWB’s and we all lived on the same range together Second, I lost my second and final appeal and I realized that I was never getting out of prison. Third, one night while we were drinking, KL got on the door and really started putting pressure on me. He yelled out on the tier, “Hey, Rob. What are trying to do with all that time, Cracker he then went “.into this big spiel about how I was either for them or against them. All the rest of the DWB’s then got on the door an echoed the same. DB, who was in the cell with me, just looked at me and said, “You might as well, Rob. You already run with us anyway.”
Fifteen minutes after I announced on the tier, “Yeah, what the fuck. I’m in.” I got down on my hands and knees and puked in the toilet. I was that drunk. And when I woke up the next morning, it was way too late to take it back. I was as good as in.
I want to make it clear that the Dirty White Boys are not a White Supremacy gang. While there are some members who do subscribe to separatist ideology, that has nothing to do with the gang nor is it even discussed amongst us. Also, to join the gang a person must normally “prospect” for at least 6 months then a vote is taken. If not every DWB on the yard votes “yes,” then the guy is out. If the vote is yes, then the prospect will go on the next “mission”-hit. But sometimes the initiation process is altered or overlooked entirely. In my case, I had been running with the DWB’s long before I joined – they all knew me well. And if the truth be told, I had already been involved in some -shall we say – “criminal mischief with them. So I didn’t need to prove myself by prospecting or going on a mission. I did however volunteer to go on the next mission, and I did so alone. (I should note here that in prison a “hit” is an assault).
So to answer your question, I basically joined the Dirty White Boys because I was familiar with white prison gang members, because I realized that I was never going to get out of prison and it didn’t seem to matter much one way or the other, and because one night when I was in the hole I got so drunk that I succumbed to peer pressure – like a punk( thanks KL-asshole). But most of all , I joined the Dirty White Boys because at the time I was strung out on alcohol and drugs- all DWB’s are junkies and drunks (well, 99.9 are).
What type of things are the brothers involved in?
White prison gangs and I guess you could even say ALL prison gangs, are generally into the same types of activity: Drug dealing, gambling operations, loan sharking, extortion, contract hits, running stores, and in some cases, prostitution – i.e. pimping. Let’s talk about the latter first.
Personally, I’ve never been involved with any of the pimping gigs. But I was at USP Leavenworth when Robert Wolfe, the shot-caller of the DWB’s before KL, was selling white “punks” -prison faggots. He didn’t run a whorehouse or have punks turning tricks, he would lease them. The truth is there are a lot of “Homo Thugs” (seemingly hardcore gangsta’s and thug’s that have sex with both men and women but don’t consider themselves homosexuals or bisexual in prison that go crazy for Cracker-flavored Cream Puffs and there’s big money to be made off of them. So Wolfe would approach all the newly arrived Punks, tell them that if they wanted to stay he would protect them but they had to do what he said. He would then seek out a Homo Thug who had money or dope and broker a deal. I remember this one incident involving a Crip Homo Thug from Los Angeles named Reeves. He paid Wolfe three grams of heroin for this one punk who had long blonde hair, only to learn that the punk had one arm that was shorter than the other. Reeves complained that every time he fucked the thing all he could focus on was its short arm. He called the fag a “defect” and demanded a refund. It was actually very funny.
I’m also aware of many other instances of Dirty White Boys involved in making money off of punks. But again, I’ve never been into it.
Drug dealing is an ordinary part of prison life and I’ve never known of a prison gang that wasn’t involved in the illegal drug trade. But before I go any further, let me get something straight: The Dirty White Boys have never dealt drugs as an organization. Meaning, it’s not like in the movies where you see a prison gang leader get a bunch of drugs in and all of his guys distribute the stuff for him. Normally one person gets an amount of drugs in, he may or may not give one or more of the brothers an amount to either sell o use, and that’s that. There’s also been many cases where the DWB’s wouldn’t 1 any non-gang affiliated whites sell narcotics without braking off a cut – also known as a “tax.” The Aryan Brotherhood started doing this in the California Prison system years ago and just about all white prison gangs since have picked up on this.
When I was at Leavenworth I was involved in drug activity both inside and outside of prison (I brokered deals from the telephone) and I never gave any of my brothers shit. Why? Because the D in DWB stands for DIRTY – not honest. We all burn each other and laugh about it later.
The gambling rackets and stores are two money-making operations that I personally thrived off of, and for me, has probably been the most beneficial part of being in a prison gang. In Leavenworth, we controlled all of the white-ran card tables. If you were white, you were not going to run a card game without braking us off half – 50% of the take). We didn’t collect the money as a whole and divide it amongst us equally, the way it worked was each one of us had a certain table or tables that belonged to them. In B Lower, were I lived, I had a guy named Matt Brown running the white poker table in the unit and every night he brought in between $50 and $300. I got half. In exchange, if there was any problems in the game I had to deal with it.
In USP Lewisburg I started a store that became the biggest in the joint in lee than a year. On a bad month I pulled in $5OO; on a good month $1,500. (For those of you that don’t know what a prison store is, it’s simply the reselling of all items that can be purchased in the prison commissary. The mark-up is normally $50%). The store supported me, my celly, and one other brother, Dusty and I also ran a sports betting operation that sometimes made as much as $1,500 on a weekend. (We lost our fair share as well).
Contract hits are also something that are common but I’m not willing to go into all that. I also want to make it clear that I left Lewisburg in January of 2007 and I have not been involved in any type of gang activity since. I came here to Butner for cancer treatment, my treatment is on-going, and I will have to be monitered for the rest of my life. So when I’m responding to these questions, keep in mind that I’m talking about things that happen prior to 2007. There are no Dirty White Boys where I am today nor is there any gang activity in this prison. I guess you can say, I’m out of the loop.
Are the DWB’s strictly a federal prison gang? If so, why?
I heard rumors that the DWB’s have started to branch off in some state prison systems, but I don’t know that to be a fact. I know that shortly after Robert Wolfe was released from federal prison, he caught a new case in the state of Colorado for attempted murder. Because he was one of our shot-callers, and because he really loved prison drama, i can’t see him NOT starting a DWB chapter in the State of Colorado’s prison system.
As for why the DWB’s are strictly a federal gang, it’s because we started in the fed’s. But as time goes on, prison gang members tend to get out of one prison system and filter into the next. The Aryan Brotherhood for example started in the California system and they’ve branched out all over the place. The Nazi Low Riders also started in’ California and now they are in the Feds as well. So if there are no DWB chapters in state prison systems, mark my words, there will be.
What is the status of the DWB in the feds today?
In 2002 when I went through the Oklahoma Transfer Center I was told by one of the classification officers that the DWB’s had over 300 members. Whether not this is true, I don’t know, But if it is, keep in mind that this means that there is over 300 members in all of the federal system, not the USP’s. And I’m sure a lot of people reading this don’t understand the difference between a USP FCI, or camp, so I’ll explain.
The USP’s or the United States Penitentiary’s are maximum security prisons that house inmate that are deemed high risk. The FCI’s or Federal Correctional Facility’s are medium and lower security prisons for inmates that need less supervision. And of course, there is the FPC’s, Federal Prison Camps that house the lowest level security inmates.
Although the Dirty White Boys originated in an FCI, a medium security prison, the DWB’s in the USP’s don’t consider the ones in the FCI’s REAL Dirty White Boys, they consider them “suspect”, “lames” or “wannabe’s.” The biggest reason that they look down on them is because DWB’s in the FCI’s are notorious for selling membership into the gang. At FCI Seagoville for example, I know of one case where a guy agreed to buy all of the DWB’s in that prison ice creams every store day for his “patch”. So really, he was paying to be in a prison gang. Also, those in the USP’s figure REAL Dirty White Boys that join in FCI’s wouldn’t stay in a medium security joint very long if they were truly about something – they would be in a USP with the Big Boys. It’s like this. If you’re in a prison gang and you’re not constantly getting into trouble, then you’re faking – prison gang members stay in trouble. And if you stay into trouble, then your security points will go up which means that you’ll end up in a USP. So this means that the DWB’svj-and all other prison gang members – the FCI’s must not be putting in any real work or else they’d be in a USP, or so the theory goes, And I’ll add this, the Dirty White boys that do start in FCI’s and work their way up to the USP’s get treated like shit when they get there. They go on just about all of the missions for the first year and have to do what all of the other brothers tell them to do. It’s like they have to prospect all over again, but worse. I’ve known three DWB’s that joined in an FCI only to come to a USP and figure out that gang life just wasn’t for them – they couldn’t handle the drama. They all “checked-in,” requested protective custody.
Getting back to the question, I would have to say that the status of the DWB’s in the Fed’s is not good. Besides the fact that the ones in the USP’s don’t like or recognize the ones in the FCI’s, here’s a few more problems that’s screwing the gang up.
(A) There is no line of communication. In order for a prison gang to truly be successful, they must be able to communicate from one prison to the next in a timely manner. This means that they need a person on the outside who is willing to receive and forward mail for them as well as pass phone messages. Very few prison gangs have a solid line of communication) and the Dirty White Boys is not one of them. Therefore, we do not know exactly who is where for weeks or even months at a time, we don’t know who all of the members are, and we have no way in selecting a shot-caller for the gang as a whole. Instead leaders are restricted to the prisons that they are in.
(B) There is still no structure. People on the outside sometimes believe that prison gangs are well organized, but that’s rarely the case. Some are, b very few. Most are exactly like the DWB’s – multiple factions totally independent from each other. There is no governing body of leaders, or a President, General, etc. I’ve met four Dirty White Boys in the last nine years that really wanted to fix the problem. Their names are KL Billy Weston, Windell Rigsby, and Michael “Cisco” Montgomery. They all believed that we needed a governing body, bylaws, and colors. It never happened. (KL, Billy, and Windell all got out of prison. Cisco goes home in two years and has since transferred to an FCI).
(C) There is no clear mission. Unlike the Aryan Brotherhood who started out with a purpose, to defend whites from blacks and Mexicans, the Dirty White Boys started as a softball team. Well, now there’s hundreds of members with no real purpose wasting potential. Meaning, what is the gangs mission? To be a criminal organization? To shoot dope? To protect whites? To make money And that’s my point – no one really knows. The DWB’s are just a bunch of guys that all share a tattoo. There should be a clear mission or purpose of the gang, a governing body, and bylaws. The Hells Angels went from being a white trash motorcycle gang to a full on corporation and they nave since marketed themselves – they are, in fact, a BRAND. The Dirty White Boys could actually do the same exact thing.
(D)The DWB’s have a fucked up reputation. One of the worst things about being a member of the Dirty White Boys is having to prove that I’m not some piece of shit scumbag, like so many of my brothers are. White prison gangs in general have a terrible reputations but none worse than the DWB’s. Well, aware of this, when I was at USP Lewisburg where I was the de facto shot-caller for nearly three years I went out of my way to try and rebuild our reputation, (yeah, I know. Kind of hard to do with a name like the “Dirty White Boys,” right?) I stayed away from prostitution or pimping, I wouldn’t take contract hits, and we didn’t do robberies. I also intentionally forged relationships with other white prison gangs as well as the D.C. blacks, a group we’ve had trouble with in the past. But while we DWB’s in Lewisburg were busy repairing our reputation and building relationships across the board, DWB’s in other prisons were busy fucking up and making us look bad. It’s pretty-much a losing battle.
The DWB’s are the most hated white prison gang in the fed’s.
In the past five years there has been an explosion of white prison gang in the federal system and very few get along – and nearly all don’t like the DWB’s. We’ve had serious problems with the Aryan Brotherhood, the Aryan Circle, the Aryan Nation, the Texas AB’s, the Ohio AB’s, some skin Head gangs, and the Soldiers of Aryan Culture. (I’m sure there’s many more that I’m unaware of). And You Know what’s crazy? The Aryan Brotherhood originally started so they could. PROTECT the whites from blacks and Mexicans. Now, all these white gangs are not only at each other throats but they abuse non-gang affiliated whites as well. There really isn’t a single white prison gang out there that people think are swell guys.
So let me rephrase your question; and answer it a different way: What is the status of all the white prison gangs in the feds today? Answer: CONFUSED!
Why do People in prison join gangs?
A psychologist would probably say that people come to prison and join gangs out of fear and I wouldn’t disagree with that. I’ve seen guys join gang because they were suspected snitches looking for protection, because they were dope-fiends that owed pre-existing dope bills that they couldn’t pay, because they were physically weak, or because they thought that they had to in order to survive. But I’ve also known guy’s who just wanted to belong to something because they had no family of their own, because they were looking for a family to replace their biological ones, or because they just hung out with a certain group of guys that they liked who happened to be gang members, so they decided; to join. But I’ll tell you something else. I believe that our Rap/Hip-Hop dominated culture has not only played a role in helping tear apart America, but I see the effects that its had on white youth in prison as well. These kids in their early 20’s come to prison eager to join a gang, just like their Rapper/Hip-Hop heroes sing about. It’s a trip…
Has There Been Any Big Rico Cases Or Federal Cases Against The DWB?
The short answer to that question is no, there has not. And the reason that there hasn’t been any RICO cases I against the DWB is probably because we are a disorganization, just like I already said. The down side of being an organized prison gang complete with a governing body, bylaws, and a good line of communication is that it becomes much easier for prosecutors to nail you with Organized Crime statutes, such as RICO. Having said that, in 2000 we were investigated by the FBI for an alleged contract hit. Agents in the Kansas City office believed that reputed Philadelphia mob boss John Stanfa paid the Dirty White Boys to assault Nick Gio, a known associate of Chicago’s Greek mafia. The two assailants, DB and Windel Rigsby were charged institutionally but were never indicted, nor was Stanfa or any of the DWB’s. In 2001 federal agents from the Terrorist Task Force came to Leavenworth and attempted to interview several members of the gang. They claimed under the new Patriot Act that prison gangs could now be charged as Domestic terrorists and they were considering looking into prosecution. I just laughed and told them to run it consecutive with my life sentence. Nothing ever became of it.
There have been DWB’s who have caught new cases in prison but to the best of knowledge none were convicted for crimes involving an entire faction of the gang. The few that I do know about are as follows… In 2001 at USP Leavenworth, DB received four additional years for Illegal Use of a telephone. The case stemmed from a drug introduction conspiracy involving non-gang members. In 2005 at USP Pollack, two DWB’s busted the hinges off of their door in the Special Housing Unit and attacked a rival gang member on the tier. The victim, a member of a black gang known as the Dirty South, was stabbed repeatedly in the face and neck with a homemade weapon, specifically a melted down plastic roil-on bottle. One of the assailants, Otto Horstiene received an eight year sentence while the other, a guy called “Kid” (I forgot his real name) received a The Crime Enhancement and was sentenced to 11 years. (Kid yelled out racial slurs while he was stabbing the guy). And in 2008, at USP Big Sandy, Randy Shreve assaulted another inmate a received 18 more months tacked onto his sentence. I do not know the details of the offense.
Who Are Some Of The DWB Legends?
When I read this question I laughed my ass off. Legends? Perhaps there is a few that are legends in their own minds, but legends there is not. But I will give a few of those who I know their props…
If there is one DWB who comes close to a legend its DB. I will admit that he is one of my best friends and that may seem a little bias of me, but he really is the most notorious DWB in the feds. Not only did he call the shots at Lewisburg after I left, the boy can fight something fierce. I have run into people both here at Butner FCI and across the street at the FMC (prison hospital) never met DB but they all had stories to t about him. I really miss the fag. KL is also someone I miss and although he screwed my life up by getting me involved in the DWB’s in the first place, I forgive him. He’s been out for about four years now and I hear he’s doing great. Windel “Wilbur” Rigsby was someone that really use to piss me off but he did love being a gang member and was true until the very end– with only one week to go he until he got out of prison he volunteered to go on a mission and handled it. He’s been out since 2006 and he married a fat girl and lives in the mountains of Tennessee somewhere. Tracy Carson or “TC” ran the USP Florence car for a minute and our paths crossed in 2002. We spent about three years at Lewisburg together and when he went home I knew he was coming back – he robbed a bunch of banks and just got a fresh 25 year sentence. Randy Shreve always made me laugh, “Cisco” was (is) a trooper, “Early” is a riot, and Billy Weston got out and I heard he met a chick and is staying out of trouble – shocker. Otto, Mark Dunlap, Weasel, Johnny Rotten, Scott Tolly, Jeremy Ites, Robert “Head” Rasnick, Spaz, Kam, Dago Joe. Ronny Wiggins, Jersey, Tank, and Jerry Mare are all names worth mentioning. I know I’m forgetting some but that’s all I can think of for now.
Is there anything else that you would like to add?
As a matter of fact there is, when I joined the Dirty White Boys I was 31 years old, strung out on alcohol and drugs, trying to figure out what to do with a Life sentence, and in a very different state of mind. If I said that there weren’t times when I absolutely had a blast being apart of the gang, I would be lying, the flip side of that is that I’ve had a lot of miserable times being a DWB as well. Specifically, I hated constantly having to put out fires that were started by my own people, guys that were often totally in the wrong and pulled some scandalous shit but I had to stick up for them because we share the same tattoo.
I have been away from all the DWB’s for nearly three years, sober for two years, and I’m so far removed from that life mentally, that I don’t even think about it and certainly don’t miss it. For the first time in my life I am focused on myself, my family, my writing, my health, and world events. Politically, I even went from being a moderate to liberal democrat to a conservative republican and I’ve never felt so passionate about something in my life. (No, I don’t want to see Obama fail as a person but I most certainly do not like his politics or political views – and I’m a person who liked him in the beginning, sent a campaign contribution to him, and was happy to see him win. In closing, I want who ever is reading this to know that I’ve written a memoir based on the time I spent in Leavenworth and it’s the real deal -drinking, druging, gang-banging, assaults, and basically, just having a blast in a maximum security prison. My intension is to publish it through Gorilla Convict sometime next year. Also, I write a blog on Convict Inc.com and I hope you’ll check me out. I write about everything – and I do mean EVERYTHING.
Some of Rob Rosso’s writing from ConvictInc.com.
Wine’s Cheap, Ball’s Deep
I was in the hole living in cell A-220 with Kenny Lassitter, a guy who was not only one of my brother’s but the shot-caller of our gang, the Dirty White Boys. Our days were very routine: Wake up around 6:00 AM, eat breakfast, then either go back to sleep, go out to rec, or stay in and read; eat lunch around 11:00; workout in cell from 1:00 to 2:30, take showers, then start to drink – I ain’t talking about water. After dinner, the automatic cell door would slide open and off to work I’d go.
I was an orderly on A Range.
As the A range orderly, my official work detail included sweeping and mopping the floors (upstairs and down; A-100 and A-200) and picking up the laundry bags. Rarely did I do anything. You see, the staff that worked in the hole at Leavenworth during the years that I was there (from Sept ’98 to Oct ’02) ran things how they wanted to, not how the warden wanted them to or how BOP policy mandates. As long as we didn’t bother them they didn’t bother us- they didn’t give a shit what we did. Therefore, unofficially my job was to pass “kites”(notes) and contraband (tobacco, drugs, booze, weapons, etc.) from cell to cell, socialize, drink and do drugs, and to steal whatever I could out of the kitchen. Then depending on the officers that were on duty, we orderly’s were sometimes allowed to make unmonitored and unrecorded phone calls from the Lieutenant’s office. I normally used mine to broker drug deals on the street.
So what I’m trying to say is, the hole in Leavenworth was pretty fucking awesome – punishment it was not.
One night while I was out and about doing my thing, I decided to head on down to B 100 and check on three of my brothers, Randy Shreve, Jeremy Ites, and Wilbur Rigsby. They all lived in cell B113 together. A week earlier I had given them half of what I had taken from the kitchen – 400 apples. Ad some sugar and water to that, which they did, and they had enough fruit to make 20 gallons of hooch,
As I started down the stairs the aroma of homemade intoxicants and marijuana filled my nostrils. “Listen up”, I announced on the range. “If anybody has anything for me to pass, set it out on the tray flaps and I’ll be by in a minute to pick it up. Make sure you put the cell number you want me to bring it to on a piece of paper. And if anyone has any dope for sale, know that I got 20 books on me that are burning a whole in my sock”. The books that I was referring to were U.S. postage stamps, not reading books. In Leavenworth, like many prisons throughout the United States, stamps are used as currency. At the time all 32 cents, 33 cents, and 34 cents stamps were worth a quarter, not their face value. So a book of stamps, which is 20 stamps, was worth $5.00. I had 20 books of stamps or $100 that I was trying to spend on dope, and I wasn’t talking marijuana. In prison, “dope” is heroin.
“Rob! Come down here buddy, we need you.” The person calling me was Randy Shreve. From the sound of his voice, I could tell that he’d been drinking.
Before I could reach their cell, a black dude named Double P stopped me. “Yo, Rob”, he said through the open tray slot in the door. “Your Boys down there be havin’ some drink for sale. Tell’em I’m tryin’ to go but I aint got no money ’til store.”
“I’ll see what I can do”, I said but had no intention of doing so.
“Come on man, Rob”, he pleaded, sensing that I wouldn’t be back. “I know them dudes don’t be likin1 me much, but I’ll be havin1 some stamps come store”.
It’s true – they didn’t like Double P. Neither did I. He was a certified “Gunslinger”, one of the thousands of sick fuckers in prison that can’t control their sexual urges around female staff members. I also call them “Mad Jackers”. “Maybe if you didn’t run around jackin’ your dick in front of everybody people wouldn’t hate you so much” , I said to him before I walked away.
When I got to cell B113, I looked in the window and saw Wilbur passed out on the bottom bunk, Jeremy sitting on the floor with a cup of wine in one hand and a rollie in the other, and Randy standing over the stainless steel sink-commode scooping wine out of a plastic trash bag that was sitting in the toilet. I bent down to the open tray-slot and said, “Daddy’s here fuckboys. What’cha need?”
“Buddy!” Randy shouted, happy to see me. “Here, you’ve gotta try this shit. It’s the bomb.” He handed me a green 8 ounce plastic cup.
Without hesitation I slammed it. “Wow”, I said feeling the homebrew burn my guts. “Good job. This shit’s fire for real”.
Next door, in cell B111, a guy named Trent who was looking at me through the tray-slot asked me to tell Randy to send him a “taster cup.” Because their cell doors were only about two feet apart, and because they were both standing at their doors, Randy heard him. His response was “fuck Trent.”
“What the fuck, Randy?” Trent shot back. “I’ll pay for the goddamn shit if its straight. I just ain’t goin’ through all that crazy shit with you like the last time you sold me some bunk.”
“No money, no wine”, Randy yelled back at him.
Before I go any further I should explain a few things about Trent. He was a convicted crack cocaine dealer from North Carolina that moved a lot of dope around inside Leavenworth. The problem with Trentt was that he could be a real asshole when it came to business. For example, if he was selling papers of dope for $40 (eight books of stamps) and you were so much as one stamp short, he wasn’t giving you jack shit until you came back with the other stamp. If you were buying quantity from him, such as three grams of heroin for a thousand dollars, he wouldn’t give you any of it until the money reached its destination. (When drugs in prison are sold in quantity, the money is almost always sent “street to street.” Meaning, the buyer will have a person on the outside or in the “free-world” send the money to someone that the dealer knows on the street. Rarely is quantity purchased with prison currency, such as stamps.) Now, being asshole when you’re selling drugs in prison sometimes comes with the territory, and some would argue that Trent was being smart. The real problem with Trent taking such a position was that he wasn’t cut like that – he was soft. He was a guy who would have never gotten away with selling drugs in a maximum security prison had it not been for all of his homeboys, and there were a lot of North Carolina Blacks in Leavenworth. Had there not been, he would’ve been robbed, beat, spanked and told never to come out of his cell. So when he’d not only deny a dope-fiend a fix when they were just penny’s short but talk down to them for not bring all the money, he really made a lot of guys want to hurt him. I can’t begin to tell you how many times that I’ve been in a cell where guys were talking about robbing him.
“Aint no fun when the rabbits got the gun, is it Trent?” I said, laughing at him. “Now your sorry ass knows what it feels like to want, be treated like shit, and forced to pay up front.”
“All that noise you be talkin’ ain’t for me and you Rob”, Trent said. “Besides, lookie, lookie what I have here.” In his hand were three little aluminum foils. “Now tell me, how does it feel to want?”
“I knew you had dope on you when they brought you in last week you piece of shit,” I said. “Why’d you lie to me?
Trent smiled. “We can forget all the small talk. You want the shit or not? If you do, give me them 20 books that I heard you flappin’ your gums about and hook me up with a cup of that wine that you callin’ ‘fire’. If the shits straight, I’ll take a G (gallon) and I’ll give you all three of these. If it ain’t, I’ll give you two for twenty.”
“Bet”, I said with a quickness. I reached into my sock, pulled out the stamps and slapped them down on his tray flap, Turning to Randy I said, “Fill me up a cup for this greedy fuck over here and get me a gallon ready for him.” I then looked at Jeremy and told him to get the “outfit” (syringe) ready.
“You’ve got dope?” Jeremy asked springing up from the floor. “Lemme get some, brother”.
“Just get the outfit ready and grab a spoon and some cotton,” I said. “I’ve got a paper comin’ for me, one for Kenny, and you and Randy can have one for the gallon as long as Trent wants it. You guys can split it.”
Randy, who acts very child-like and at times sounds like Barney (the Purple Dinosaur) on helium, shouted, shouted, “Yay, Buddy! I love shootin’ dope!”
Now is probably a good time to talk a little more about Randy.
Born and raised in Baltimore, Maryland, Randy was serving an 11 year sentence for bank robbery. A crackhead at heart, he came to Leavenworth in 2000 and joined the Dirty White Boys shortly thereafter. But his joining the gang didn’t sit well with some of the members. They thought he lied to much and that he was to much of a clown. And both he was; his pathological lies were as frequent as his comedy skits. I’ve seen Randy get drunk, strip off all of his clothes, get down on all fours and scramble down the tier doing butt naked Donkey kicks, complete with “hee-haw” noises as he did. I’ve been in the cell with while he smoked crack and sang “Jingle Bells” at the same time (Randy loves Christmas music, and I mean LOVES it). I’ve seen him make paper arrows while he was in the hole, light them on fire, and intentionally shoot them out the window onto a courtyard full of dead grass and hay. When the flames shot up two stories high and the smoke started rolling in the cell windows and causing guys to choke, he laughed out loud like The Joker. Yes, I’ve seen Randy do hundreds of totally out there crazy things, including piss in a cup of wine and use his dick to stir the mixture around.
A cup of wine that he then handed to me, and I then handed to Trent.
“Mmm, mmm, mmm,” Trent said when he tasted the piss-tainted hooch. “Lemme get that G , Rob, this shit is fire for real for real.”
Do you know how hard it was for me to watch — a— man unknowingly drink wine with urine in it, say it was good, and keep a straight face? And keep in mind that in the cell next door – a cell that I could see into as Trent was doing this as well – Randy and Jeremy were Laughing their asses off.
I said Randy, “Trent wants that gallon now.”
Even louder laughter erupted from their cell. “Come right up, Buddy!” Randy exclaimed.
“What’s them fools over there laughing about?” Trent asked me. I told him that they were just being stupid.
What Randy did next made me lose it; I actually had to get up and walk away for a second. As I already mentioned, the trash bag that he had the wine in was sitting in the toilet bowl. The reason that we all put wine in the toilet when we’re in the hole is because when you’re dealing with more than a gallon it gets hard to handle. By placing the bag in the toilet we can easily scoop cups of wine out of it without needing anyone’s help. Otherwise, if you don’t want to spill any, it takes two guys – and that’s that usually two guys to many when we start drinking. If you remove all of the water out of the bowl (with a cup) before you place the trash bag inside, the bowl holds about four gallons. And that’s about the amount that Randy had in theirs. The reason that I know this is because from where I stood I could clearly see that wine was about a half inch from the rim. Therefore when Randy pulled down his pants and sat on the bowl, the wine was just high enough to make loud bubble-noises when he dropped his ass in it and farted.
Randy then started singing Tiny Bubbles: “Tiny bubbles/In the wine/ makes me feel happy/makes me feel fine.”
As if that weren’t enough, Randy stood up, straddling over the toilet, and peed in the wine. That’s when I started laughing so hard that I had to get up and walk away for a second.
“Wine for sale! Get you’re wine for sale!” Randy called out on the tier. “The wines cheap down here, Buddies, ’cause we’re ball’s deep in the stuff.”
After giving Trent his gallon of fart-infested piss -wine, I did a shot of dope then ran around selling what was left of it to guys that we didn’t like. And yes, that Mad Jacker named Double P got an issue of it.