Reps. Marjorie Taylor Greene (GA) and James Comer (KY), listed accusations of abuse against the Jan. 6 detainees in the facilities and requested Bowser arrange for the congressional delegation to tour the facilities.
The letter also asked for lawmakers to interview the Jan. 6 detainees and DC Department of Correction employees.
According to the letter which was sent Thursday, “Eyewitness accounts of conditions at the DC Jail Facilities — particularly regarding the treatment of January 6 detainees — paint a picture of despair, hopelessness, and a severe abuse of justice. No prisoner in the United States should be treated in this fashion.”
In a report released in December 2021, Greene described her findings regarding the treatment of the Jan. 6 detainees after the Georgia Republican toured the facilities and said the, detainees showed her evidence of “abuse and neglect.”
One inmate claimed they had been beaten by other detainees and denied medical treatment with another showing evidence of a fractured bone left untreated, according to the letter
Jan. 6 detainees also claim to have been denied counsel, religious material, communion and access to their families, food served with chemicals or other substances and of food allergies not being accommodated.
According to the letter, “Rep. Greene witnessed non-January 6 detainees receiving instruction from law school students about how to handle their pending matters in court.”
Greene claimed she witnessed non-Jan. 6 detainees being treated better than the Jan 6 inmates and that other inmates “the residents [have] retrofitted cells into workforce development opportunities, including a barber shop.”
From Oct. 18- Oct 23, a team of eight US Marshals conducted an unannounced inspection of the DC facility after a US District Court found that DOC Director Quincy Booth and Warden Wanda Patten violated a detainee’s civil rights. According to the letter, “The team inspected the facility and interviewed more than 300 detainees and found ‘egregious’ conditions at the DC Jail Facilities.
However, on October 24, 2021, DC DOC employees ordered the marshals to leave the DC Jail Facilities. One marshal said he ‘ha[d] never seen a jail bar marshals from entering.’”
The acting US Marshal concluded during the preliminary review there was “evidence of ‘systemic’ mistreatment of detainees” and sent the findings to the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division.
Despite the Department of Justice announcing that 400 Jan. 6 detainees would be transferred from DC jail, the Oversight Committee claims, “none of the January 6 detainees were part of the group removed from the DC Jail Facilities.”
The Oversight Committee also asked for all documents and communications that include the Jan. 6 detainees’ waiver of a speedy trial, their complaints regarding their prison conditions, access to food, access to legal counsel, access to materials relevant to their legal defense, and access to religious material and/or rites.
Greene told the media that she would be opening up the tour to lawmakers outside the committee and on both sides of the aisle.
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