All Articles: Profiles

San Quentin Poetry Volunteer C.D. Wright Passes at 67

By Miguel Quezada Staff Writer Poet C.D. Wright passed away on Jan. 13, 2016 in her home in Barrington, R.I., at age 67. She left behind a husband, son and a world of aspiring poets. Her unexpected death was a mere two days after she gave the second in a series of poetry workshops with […]

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Lam Paroled After 22 Years

By John Lam Journalism Guild Writer During his years in San Quentin, Ngheip “Ke” Lam never failed to light up the room with his bright smile. Now, after serving 22 years in prison for first-degree murder, he can smile for the outside world. Lam was found suitable under SB 260 and paroled in December 2015. […]

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Francisco Vargas Finds That Getting Back Into Prison Can Be as Hard as Getting Out

By Tommy Winfrey Arts Editor Artist and ex-convict Francisco Vargas returned to San Quentin to talk to a group of men about his successes and failures in life. But his return to the historic prison did not go as planned. Getting out of prison can be rather difficult; just ask any lifer. For Vargas, getting […]

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San Quentin’s Iconic Painter Alfredo Santos Dies at 87

By Tommy Winfrey Arts Editor Alfredo Santos, a San Quentin legend, died at the age of 87, at 6:15 a.m. at Jacob Healthcare in San Diego on Friday, March 15. Famed for his creation of the murals in San Quentin’s South Dining Hall, Santos gained recognition for this work in 2003 when he returned to […]

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Watani Leaves San Quentin Again…This Time It’s Legit

By Arnulfo T. Garcia Editor-in-Chief One of the few men ever to escape San Quentin State Prison walked out legitimately this time, after a long stint in the same prison. In 1974, Watani Stiner fled the U.S. and lived as a fugitive in South America for the next two decades before turning himself into U.S. […]

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Nurse Raney Dixon’s Retirement

Nurse Raney Dixon retired at the end of December after more than 10 years at San Quentin. Members of the medical staff and co-workers of Dixon had this to say about the retiree: Beverly Allison: Ms. Dixon is a very caring person, and she has really cared about the well-being of the inmates. I have […]

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Obituary: Honoring the Life Of Russell Mefford

Russell Mefford died of cancer at 6:57 p.m. on Aug. 22. His devoted wife, Denise, lost a husband. His three sons – Andrew, Austin and Adrian – lost a father. His family lost a member. “As a result of Russell’s death, San Quentin will be a less happy place,” Michael Wolke said. Wolke said he […]

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Free After Spending More Than 30 Years Behind Bars

By Tommy Winfrey David Basile walked outside the walls of San Quentin on June 3, a free man after more than 30 years of incarceration. Convicted of first-degree murder in Santa Clara County, Basile acknowledges that the road to freedom has been full of obstacles of his own making. “I began to use illegal drugs […]

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Wrongful Identification Still Haunts Inmate Guy Miles

By JulianGlenn Padgett According to court papers, there is strong evidence that San Quentin inmate Guy Miles has been incarcerated for 16 years for crimes based upon a wrongful identification. Years after his conviction, the Innocence Project lawyers report they uncovered the actual perpetrators of the robbery: Bernard Teamer, Jason Steward and Harold Bailey. “Steward […]

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National Science Foundation Honors Ashley Schappell

By Jarvis Juvan Clark The National Science Foundation has honored a renowned psychologist who once taught college classes at San Quentin by awarding her $25,000 to research how violence affects inmates during incarceration. Counseling and treatment for victims of prison violence should begin during their incarceration, and once released, community support services should give aftercare, […]

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