Supporting those who choose to risk arrest and are given jail time is a critical component of direct action. We keep in close contact with folks who end up spending time in the jail system, and encourage you to do the same! We also work with families and loved ones of those who are incarcerated to support them through this process as much as possible.
“At this point of unimaginable threats on the horizon, this is what hope looks like. In these times of a morally bankrupt government that has sold out its principles, this is what patriotism looks like. With countless lives on the line, this is what love looks like, and it will only grow.” -Tim DeChristopher
“As someone who spent sixty days in jail for direct action in West Virginia, I cannot comprehensively convey to others the critical importance of those on the outside who supported me. I have been on both sides of the glass, and know that the knowledge that others are holding you in their hearts and minds can lift you to a place where no walls, no barbed wire, and no chains can bind you.” -Jacqueline Quimby
There are currently 11 folks in Western Regional Jail being held on a combined $275,000 bail. We are checking with everyone to make sure they are comfortable with their names being made public. If you know someone who is in jail, please call us at 304-860-5041 and we can assist you in writing letters of support.
So far these are the names of folks who are incarcerated and who are comfortable with their names being published:
Sophia Morgan, Kathryn Dolby*, Dorian Williams, Peter Garcia, Clark Santee, George Vest, Van Pham, Matthew K. Smith, Kevin Kuenster
*We know these are misspelled, but that’s because their names are misspelled in the system and you have to write the name exactly as the jail knows it for mail to get through.
Ways to Support:
Commissary is a system by which prisoners are allowed to exchange money given to them by folks on the outside to purchase a variety of things from the jail; including stamps, paper, envelopes, toiletries, and supplemental food. The money is “put on their books” and they are only allowed to spend up to $50 a week. Any excess is added to their books, and can be used in subsequent weeks for their commissary or for any medical expenses they may incur while incarcerated. It is important to note that there is a thirty dollar “going to jail fee” that is taken by the jail from any initial donations to a prisoner’s commissary. If you would like to donate to someone’s commissary, please contact us to make the arrangement.
Sending Letters & Books:
“After being in jail for just a few days I started getting mail. Every day I was able to make a small connection to life outside of my cement block cell as I read letters of support from friends and strangers – letters that made me smile, cry, laugh, transport me away for a minute… ” – EmmaKate
To guarantee that the person you’re writing to will receive your letters: address them to their legal name, use standard sized envelopes and paper, use only a pencil or pen with blue/black ink (typed or colored ink may cause your letter to be confiscated), don’t include cards, photocopies, clippings, or other materials besides black and white written correspondence. Photos are okay. Please assume all mail will be read by the jail. Remember that the person you are writing may not have paper or stamps to write back, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t receive a reply.
Prisoners have been able to get books while in Southern Regional Jail, South Central Regional Jail, and Southwest Regional Jail, although that has not been consistent. All books must be paperback and sent from the publisher. Southern Regional Jail also accepts magazines and DVDs.
Address your letter to the inmate’s full name. You must include a full name in the return address as well or your mail will not be allowed in.
Select the appropriate jail:
Western Regional Jail: One O’Hanlon Place, Barboursville, WV 25504 – This jail includes: Cabell, Putnam, Mason, Lincoln and Wayne.
Central Regional Jail: 300 Days Drive, Sutton, WV 26601 – This jail encompasses the following nine counties: Braxton, Calhoun, Clay, Gilmer, Lewis, Nicholas, Roane, Upshur and Webster.
South Central Regional Jail: 1001 Centre Way, Charleston, WV 25309-1001 – This jail includes: Kanawha, Lincoln, and Putnam counties.
Southern Regional Jail: 1200 Airport Road, Beaver, WV 25813 – This jail encompasses: Fayette, Greenbrier, McDowell, Mercer, Monroe, Raleigh, Summers, and Wyoming.
Southwestern Regional Jail: Earl Ray Tomblin Industrial Park, 13 Gaston Caperton Dr., Holden, WV 25625 – This jail includes: Boone, Logan, and Mingo county.
Visitation can be incredibly important to someone who is imprisoned. There are many rules to visitation in West Virginia jails, but here we outline some of the basics. The days and times of visitation can vary from jail to jail. Inmates are only allowed 2 visits per week, so it’s important to check in with us so that we are not overlapping visits and can work to make sure that everyone who would like to visit a prisoner can do so! Each visit is 30 minutes long and up to three people can visit at one time. Some essential things to remember when you are planning a visit : You will need to bring two forms of identification to the jail at the time of the visit. Visits must be scheduled ahead of time, and these visits can only be scheduled on certain days, during certain times. Again, it is important that you contact us, as we will have a running schedule for visitation and work with you to find the times that fit best.