Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women

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Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women
Location 30 Route 513
Clinton, New Jersey
Status open
Security class mixed
Capacity 709
Opened 1913
Managed by New Jersey Department of Corrections

Edna Mahan Correctional Facility for Women (formerly the Clinton Correctional Facility for Women)[1] is a prison facility for women of the state of New Jersey Department of Corrections, located in Union Township, Hunterdon County, New Jersey,[2][3] near Clinton.[4] Its official abbreviation is EMCFW. The facility was named for Edna Mahan (b. 1900, pronounced Mann), one of the first female correctional superintendents in the U.S.

The current administrator is William Hauck; he has served in that position for 4 years. As of February 2009, the prison holds 950 inmates in maximum, medium and minimum security sections.

According to the New Jersey Department of Corrections, Edna Mahan "provides custody and treatment programs for female offenders ages 16 and older. The facility features the Puppies Behind Bars program [1], in which inmates train guide dogs for the blind, among other unique ventures. EMCFW has a drug and alcohol treatment unit as well as Bureau of State Use Industries shops specializing in clothing and tele-response/data entry."

The facility played host to The Rolling Thunder Revue Tour on December 7, 1975, headed by Bob Dylan.

Escape[edit]

On November 2, 1979, Assata Shakur, in prison serving a life sentence for the 1973 murder of New Jersey State Trooper Werner Foerster, escaped from the facility, after three members of the Black Liberation Army drew .45-caliber automatic pistols. Two officers were taken hostage as part of the escape and were released unharmed.[5][6] Charged with assisting in her escape was her brother, Mutulu Shakur, and Silvia Baraldini. In part for his role in the event, Mutulu was named on July 23, 1982 as the 380th addition to the FBI's Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list, where he remained for the next four years until his capture in 1986.

Lawsuits[edit]

A class action lawsuit was filed on behalf of male correctional officers alleging that the policy of only employing female officers was discriminatory. In 1991, the state entered into a consent agreement allowing male correctional officers to work at Edna Mahan.

The addition of male officers resulted in problems leading to additional legal action. Officers were disciplined, fired, or criminally prosecuted for offenses including exchanging sexual favors for gifts or money. One officer, Lt. Ralph Grier, was sentenced to five years for paying an inmate $30 to pose for nude photographs.[7]

Another officer, James Gallichio, was charged with second-degree misconduct and sexual assault in 2008 after an unidentified inmate told investigators that she and Gallichio had a "mutual sexual relationship" inside the prison, according to a probable cause affidavit. Court papers state Gallichio got a cell phone so that the inmate could call him "numerous times throughout the day" from her cottage, or unit, inside the facility. In all, police said they captured 894 phone calls between the two from November 2007 to March 2008. Because the conversations were done over a recorded line, investigators said they heard the pair professing their love for one another and also taped Gallichio mentioning that he brought the inmate a "wand" that "tells you something," according to court papers. The inmate said Gallichio had brought the "wand," a code name for a pregnancy test, because she thought she was pregnant, according to investigators. Gallichio was later arrested for an armed robbery at a filling station in East Brunswick, New Jersey and is currently serving a twelve-year prison sentence.

Additionally, pursuant to a consent decree applicable to all New Jersey prisons that had been in effect since 1991, EMCF was required to (1) make minimum privacy accommodations for female inmates and (2) institute formal training and policies for guards with respect to gender sensitivity and inmate privacy in areas such as locker rooms and showers. Recorded incidents are as follows. In spring 1998, guard Jeffrey Barr was fired for having sexual “contact” with an EMCF inmate. The investigation was forwarded to the Hunterdon County Prosecutor’s Office. Earlier in 1998, guard Robert Scannicchio was fired for vacationing with a former EMCF inmate and for becoming “unduly familiar” with her while she was still incarcerated at EMCF. In the summer of 1997, guard David Clappison admitted to having sexual relations with an EMCF inmate. He pled guilty to second degree sexual assault and was fired. Also in 1997, a Lieutenant Ruff allegedly engaged in sexual relations with an inmate. He apparently continues to be employed at EMCF. In late 1995, guard William Jimenez was fired for staying with an inmate at a hotel during a leave of absence. In late 1994, guard Kevin Brodie admitted to having a sexual relationship with an inmate and a parolee at EMCF.[8]

Film appearances[edit]

The 2004 documentary Freedom Road by Lorna A. Johnson, depicting the lives of three inmates, was filmed at Edna Mahan. Another documentary, Going Home, was also shot at Edna Mahan and based on Steven Kalafer's observation of the Life Skills Academy program.

Notable inmates[edit]

  • Kathleen Dorsett – convicted of the 2010 murder of her ex-husband
  • Diane Downs – convicted of the 1983 murder of her daughter and attempted murder of her other children; transferred from Oregon after escape
  • Amy Locane – original cast member of Melrose Place; convicted of 2010 vehicular homicide and assault by auto[9]
  • Michelle Lodzinski – convicted of the 1991 murder of her five-year-old son
  • Melanie McGuire – convicted of the 2004 murder of her husband
  • Assata Shakur (formerly Joanne Chesimard) – convicted of the 1973 murder of a New Jersey State Trooper; escaped in 1979

References[edit]

  1. ^ Cori Anne Natoli and Arpi Nakashian. 1998, October 25. "Sentencing looms for Drexler." Asbury Park Press.
  2. ^ "Edna Mahan Driving Directions Archived 2009-01-15 at the Wayback Machine.." New Jersey Department of Corrections. Retrieved on December 1, 2010. "30 COUNTY ROUTE 513 CLINTON, NEW JERSEY."[dead link]
  3. ^ "Union township, Hunterdon County, New Jersey[permanent dead link]." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on December 1, 2010.[dead link]
  4. ^ "Clinton town, New Jersey[permanent dead link]." U.S. Census Bureau. Retrieved on December 1, 2010.
  5. ^ "Miss Chesimard Flees Jersey Prison, Helped By 3 Armed 'Visitors'; Miss Chesimard Escapes in Jersey Roadblocks Set Up", The New York Times, November 3, 1979. p. 1
  6. ^ Churchill, Ward and James Vander Wall. 2002. The Cointelpro papers: documents from the FBI's secret wars against dissent in the United States. South End Press. ISBN 0-89608-648-8. p. 308
  7. ^ Peet, Judy. "In this prison, little room, little money, lots of women." The Star-Ledger. Monday May 24, 2004. Retrieved on December 1, 2010.
  8. ^ "No. 04-1786 Jacqueline Heggenmiller And Tammy Davis Appellants" (PDF). United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit. February 11, 2005. Retrieved 30 June 2016.   This article incorporates text from this source, which is in the public domain.
  9. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-02-21. Retrieved 2014-02-09. 


Coordinates: 40°37′45″N 74°56′04″W / 40.62917°N 74.93444°W / 40.62917; -74.93444