I’m publishing Rahim/Brennan’s log of events on July 22 without comment….except to note that while his covering letter seems generic, as addressed to “Sir/Madame”, it was meant for the Montreal lawyer we’ve known for over ten years who has a large practice in the penitentiary and post-conviction law field, and who is acting for Rahim in this action. I’ll publish some comments in the next posting.
July 25, 2014
My objectives, by importance:
Secure copy of video documentation of “Use of Force” incident dated 2014/07/22, involving inmate #104902C, B. Guigue. CRR (Correctional Reception Centre) – Ste. Anne-des-Plaines, QC
Obtain reference to CSC protocols regarding the use of chemical agents against unruly or disruptive inmates; – circumstances/authorizations
(The date is Friday, July 25/14, 11:13am. I have just returned from 1 hour yard. The sun is high and I sweat in my jeans……my lower back and my buttocks are inflamed all over again! It’s bearable…..but just barely.)
Obtain manufacturer’s information on type of chemical used;
-typical effects / over 50% of body (naked)
-training/demo video if possible
-chemical composition/ i.e.: effects of using water of affected areas
My goal is to use their own (CSC) information and directives to establish that their control measures were extreme, cruel, and unnecessary according to my behaviour. Also, knowing what they know about this chemical agent……that their (guards) actions and direction constitutes “cruel and unusual punishment.”
Secure the video, watch it, and then decide for yourself.
I wish to retain counsel to simply satisfy the 3 objectives I have outlined. Then we can discuss it further action is warranted. I will pay you cash.
Thank you for your time and consideration.
Again, I wish to stress, at no time did I ever behave in an aggressive or threatening manner.
B. Guigue, #104902C
I am currently at Donnacona Institution, Seg. Unit 0-106. I welcome visitation.
“Use of Force” incident, dated July 22, 2012 – Regional Reception Centre, Ste. Anne-des-Plaines, QC
On Tuesday, July 22, 2014, I was placed in segregation due to “a poor attitude”; I gave a parole officer “the finger”.
During the intake procedures performed on all inmates entering the segregation unit (i.e. strip search) it was discovered that I was possibly in possession of contraband. A “plug” was found in my underwear.
It was then decided that I would instead be placed in what’s called “the dry cell.” It is more of a ‘protocol designation’ where an inmate is to provide 3 stool samples for inspection in order to ensure he/she does not have anything secreted within their bowels.
It should be noted that I was co-operating fully with the officers and even identified the type and weight of the contraband already discovered. I did not challenge the decision to place me in the “dry cell” as I had nothing more than the 0.6 gm of contraband already seized. In fact, I even asked the K-9 Handler (we’re familiar with each other) if he could use his ‘pull’ to get me lot’s of fibre and corn. It helps in the process. He said he’d do what he could and told me he’d see me the next day.
Off to the “dry cell” I went. It was about 2 -2:15pm.
I’m in the “dry cell”, everything is fine. It’s dirty but that’s to be expected. The sink works and the toilet has water, but you can’t flush. It’s more for urination. You must tell the guard (intercom) whenever you need to defecate, and officers will come to escort you to a specialized toilet specifically designed to “catch and clean” ‘plugs’ (wrapped packages
which have been deposited).
It’s dinner time and when the female guard comes to my cell she seems to notice something on the window of the door. She tells me that I should clean it off. To me it looks like dried spit, perhaps from the previous occupant. I tell her (1) “I did not spit on the window.”, and (2) “I don’t have anything to clean it with.”
She tells me that she heard me spitting on the window while she was delivering meals to the other cells. Incredulously I say, “What?! You mean you heard me spit over all the banging and yelling, over the sorting of trays and slamming of door hatches….you heard me over all that? Then why is it dried and crusty?”
This last question seemed to upset her and she told me I should use my hand.
I then told her that I was not going to use my hand to wipe off someone else’s spit, and she was crazy if she thought I would. So please get off your power trip, give me my damn food, and let me get on with the business of shitting!
Honestly, I felt like a mother who’s lost her patience dealing with a petulant child.
She finally said to me, “Well, I guess you don’t want to eat.”, and passed me by.
I lost my temper.
However, I did not react in the way one might assume.
I yelled at her that if she wanted to take my food from me that was fine.
“You’ve taken my freedom from me! You’ve taken my dignity from me! Here! Take these clothes! Here! Take these slippers! Take it all……it’s yours anyway! You might as well have it all. Now, I’m naked. There’s nothing left to take from me! I don’t want nothing from you; now you have no power over me. I’m free!!”
I never swore. I was not threatening or aggressive. I simply began to pace back and forth in the cell. There’s a camera in the cell recording 24 hours a day.
When I refused her orders to get dressed, she told me, “Okay, but you will not like what comes next!” I continued to ignore her and she left.
Initially I did cover the camera in the cell with spit and some scrap paper from the floor, but then cleaned it off as it was my only witness to these events.
After 20 minutes or so, a Keeper showed up (‘Jean-Pierre’ I believe his surname was) and told me to get dressed. When I tried to protest the officer’s childish and immature behaviour in withholding food (Can she do that?), he refused to listen to me. Why would he, I’m just a lowly inmate.
So, I decided to ignore him by moving to the bunk, laying flat on my stomach and placing my hands behind my back……naked.
You see, what I didn’t tell you was that the Keeper came to my door accompanied by 5 officers, all wearing gas masks. One held a camera (I believe his name is Nyuyen.), one held a large black canister, and I’m assuming the other three were there to restrain and handcuff me. I figured that if I did not behave in an aggressive or threatening manner, they legally could not use a chemical agent against me. Hence the prone position, a completely submissive posture, which I’d assumed on the bunk.
The door opened, they came in and handcuffed me. They then stood me up and escorted me to the segregation shower a few feet away. They placed me in the shower, then removed the cuffs, …….still naked. And, in total compliance….except for the clothes.
The shower is one half the width of a regular cell (maybe even less), lined as one might imagine with two and a half inch tile, and metal fixtures (railing and bench). Cold floor…, damp chilly air…., very uncomfortable for a naked guy just hangin’ out.
So………., I am left there for about 10 minutes while the Keeper discusses the matter with officers in a nearby, but separate and different area. Leaving only Nguyen and his camera to keep me company……, he removes his mask.
Shortly thereafter I notice Nguyen put his mask back on, then the others are back. This time the Keeper is holding a pair of institutional underwear.
He informs me that I am receiving my first direct order to put the underwear on……, then a second.
Before the third direct order is given, I again assume a non-aggressive, submissive posture by lying face down, and placing my hands behind my back, feet slightly apart.
At this point the officer with the canister puts the brass coloured nozzle, which is attached by a short hose, under the shower door and “doses” the shower space. Immediately I feel the burn in my eyes and throat. In less than two seconds I begin to mucus and tear, and cannot take even the slightest breath without choking.
I immediately submit and try to tell them I will comply
I am ordered to get up, step backward toward the door of the shower, then told to get down on my knees and place my hands on head. “Do not move!”
Facing away from the door, blind, fighting for breath, and with a burning sensation ALL over my naked body, I wait for them to come in, handcuff me, and take the next steps.
Instead however……, I heard the hatch open, and feel another heavy dose, spray from my right foot, up my leg, over my buttocks, over my back and arms, then down my left side in reverse, ending at my left foot. I had the sensation of being a picket fence being “whitewashed”……, no lie! In that one spray I probably got a good 10 to 15 doses! (When you see the tape you will see it’s no exaggeration.) Then they came in, cuffed me, and proceeded to walk me backwards from segregation to a protocol cell in USD (the Special Handling Unit) for decontamination.
I know it’s gonna get worse, but at this point, as you can see in the video, I am able to question the Keeper about how not wanting to wear underwear is justification for the use of a chemical agent.
When he doesn’t respond to me, I tell him it’s fine because…eventually… he’ll have to explain to someone much more important than me.
Oh, but the real fun is just beginning. I have no idea of the pain that’s coming!
U N – F U C K I N G B E L I E V A B L E!
So, now I arrive at the “cell 100” in the USD/SHU; it is the ‘protocol cell’ used for decontamination. There is a toilet, a shower, and nothing else. No air is circulated within this cell. I am put into the cell, the handcuffs are removed, and I am directed to go under the shower.
The shower in the ‘protocol cell’ is nothing more than a thin stream of high pressure water, and it is difficult and painful to get under even when not covered in a burning chemical agent.
Following instruction, I attempt to wash this stuff off. However, getting underneath the water, I find that it is hot water coming out. I try one of two more times, but there is absolutely no way I can use this source for decontamination. If you would like to understand what I was experiencing, go boil some water, put your arm over the post and get a nice steam burn. Wait five minutes, and then turn of the hot water in your sink and put your arm under it. Now, imagine that is your whole body.
The screams that you will hear in the video are very real…., this is not a show to gain sympathy or for the benefit of the camera. It’s real life torture.
After pleading with them to put cold water, they tell me that they have no control over the temperature. There’s nothing they can do.
The only other source of water in the cell is from the toilet. I begin dowsing my face and eyes with toilet water. It is cool and plentiful.
While I am doing this an officer comes and presses the shower button which sends another stream of hot water over my back. To get at the toilet water, I must lean in the path of the shower stream.
Okay, so when I can open my eyes without them burning, I switch to dowsing my back. This is largely ineffectual as I only have my cupped hands to use, and the ‘dosing’ I received was so large. But, what choice do I have?
Through all of this I have this thought that keeps seeping through all the pain……., “I hope I don’t get sick from splashing toilet water all over my face and body.”
As you can see in the video, different guards appear before the camera. They ask me, “Does it burn? Put more water.”, they say, and make a splashing motion. I say, “But it makes it worse”, and the guards says, “You’ve gotta keep using the water.”
What you do not see is the group of officers standing just off camera, mocking my actions and demeanor, and laughing.
I came to realize that these ‘people’, these upstanding pillars of their respective communities were not advising me in order to help alleviate my suffering…..(Oh yes, there were two nurses standing right there amongst them!)…., their only goal was to further increase the hilarity of the situation.
I begin to understand that this stuff was designed to prevent rioters from flushing themselves, then returning to the protest. Water makes it worse, by design.
After some time I noticed an institutional cup just outside the cell and ask for it. It’s given to me and makes things easier. CK Nguyen is even gracious enough to flush the toilet to replenish the (“nectar of life”) water in it. Now the Keeper comes and tells me I must come out. He gives me a towel.
The problem – as you will see – is when I stop dowsing myself, the burn becomes unbearable all over again.
By the way…..if you feel this account of the events is dragging on and on, consider suffering through it.
You must understand….my genitalia was sprayed, even my anus was burning! You see me sitting down to better reach those areas.
I preferred the good ol’ days when the guards would just come into your cell, beat you up, and then leave. I longed for that instead of this. This was an eternity, which strips away ALL sense of manhood and dignity. Absolutely!
Sorry, I got off track.
This goes on for a time. I’ve lost all concept of time and so I cannot tell you how long. Two…, maybe three hours. I only know it’s about 7:30pm when I am barely able to make it to the nurse’s station for a physical exam (heart rate, blood pressure, lungs).
Speaking of the nurse…….., his initial appearance on the scene came after I was already in the process of decontamination, and he still had difficulty talking to me due to feeling the effects of the chemical agent. He was forced to put a mask on himself, just to talk to me!
That made it difficult for me to receive instruction from him as he was also trying to talk through a plexiglass wall as well.
Now I’m out of the ‘protocol cell’, being examined by the nurse. There is still a process I must go through and that is a whole new round of shaking and burning.
I beg to go back to the shower for fear that it will become too much to bear, and I will attempt to remove the green cover-alls, and they will spray me all over again. My request is denied, and they’ve turned off the toilet anyway. There’s no point.
Anyway…….I can barely walk back to the ‘dry-cell’ as my legs are weakened and rubbery from the experience. I make it back to the ‘dry cell’ and they ordeal is pretty much over.
Later that evening, I provided a stool sample to them and was transferred to Donnacona the very next morning.
When I arrived at Donnacona, I passed by a psychologist who I knew and also a parole officer. A look of mild horror and disgust come over them upon greeting me, and it was only once I got into the cell did I realize why……..looking in the mirror I could see that my face was covered in what I can only describe as “chemical burns”. Face, arms, legs, and hands……all burned.
You see……I have a well documented case of eczema, and I believe this condition – not to diminish the fact that my dosing was extreme – caused by reaction to be even more severe.
I told the intake nurse at Donnacona that I wished to document my injuries and he told me that I would be seen the following day. Once in my cell, I sent a written request asking the same.
I have yet to see anyone, and don’t imagine that I will. CSC has no interest in allowing their victims to formally document injuries inflicted by their staff….., why would they?
Okay, I’m here. I survived.
I want a lawyer.
One who is fluent in English, and one who is familiar with the unlawful and inhuman practices of the Correctional Service of Canada.
One who will not be swayed by their lies and misdirections.
I need a REAL FIGHTER!
I hereby swear that all of the information shared is true and accurate to the best of my recollection.
Brennan Wayne Guigue, #104902C
Signed….. B. Guigue